AP GOVERNMENT YEAR OUTLINE • CONSTITUTION & FEDERALISM (SEPT) • AMERICAN LAW(OCT-NOV) • POLITICAL BEHAVIORS AND INSTITUTIONS(DEC-JAN) • CONGRESS(FEBRUARY) • EXECUTIVE BRANCH (MARCH) • REVIEW (APRIL)
Unit 3Political Behaviors and Institutions Political Socialization Political Parties Voting and Elections • Campaign • Process • The • Media Interest Groups Kitchen Sink Unit
1 Political Socialization • Political Culture: our way of thinking about politics and economics • Political Ideology: views on what government should do (liberal, conservative, etc.) • Americans mostly agree on political culture, but not on ideology
Our Political Culture…. We don’t like: • Excessive gov’t regulation • Socialism (econ. equality) • Religion mixed w/ gov’t • Government in general We like: • Freedom • Equality (of opportunity) • Democracy • Civic duty • Individual responsibility
$341.98 WE ARE WHAT WE EAT…
$500.07 WE ARE WHAT WE EAT…
$260.11 WE ARE WHAT WE EAT…
$317.25 WE ARE WHAT WE EAT…
$1.23 WE ARE WHAT WE EAT…
IDEOLOGY: Liberals and Conservatives LIBERALS (Democrats) • Government can help make the US more of a just and fair society • Support individual rights • Strengthen society by closing the gap between rich & poor CONSERVATIVES (Republicans) • Limited role of government • Conserve traditional values • Strong defense and law enforcement BUT MOST AMERICANS CALL THEMSELVES MODERATES!
Public Opinion • Political Ideology: Our set beliefs on how government should rule • In USA: liberal, moderate, conservative • Social issues: abortion, culture, gays, drugs, etc • Economic issues: taxes, gov’t spending, Soc. Security
Ideologies According to Dave Berry Conservatives Liberals “Ignorant racist fascist knuckle-dragging NASCAR-obsessed cousin-marrying road kill-eating tobacco-juice-dribbling gun-fondling religious fanatic rednecks.” “godless unpatriotic pierced-nose Volvo-driving France-loving leftwing Communist latte-sucking tofu-chomping holistic wacko neurotic vegan weenie perverts.”
Political Socialization The way people acquire their political values. • Family members. • School and peers. • Media, especially television. • Religion. • Demographics: race, ethnicity, gender, age, and region. • Outside events (9-11).
Political Knowledge Back
Types of Political Polls • Push polls are used to influence opinion. • Tracking polls are taken on a daily basis. • Exit polls are taken after leaving a polling place.
Shortcomings of Polling • Must consider margin of error. • May make errors in selecting the sample. • Polls limit respondents’ options. • People may not have enough information to answer. • Measures of intensity may be imprecise.
American Political Culture • POLITICAL EFFICACY:how well we can understand and influence politicshas decreased in recent years. Why?
“The Culture War” • “The Culture War” highlights our disagreements over values. The battles include: • Abortion • Supreme Court Nominations • Homosexuality • Evolution in schools • Stem Cell Research • Terry Schiavo
Public Opinion • What causes cleavages in public opinion? (cleavage=think split!)
Racial and Ethnic Attitudes Back
Views on Hurricane Katrina Back
LINKAGE INSTITUTIONS political parties, elections, campaigns interest groups & the media YOU GOV’T
Political Parties • Why do we need parties? • The political party gives like-minded people a stronger voice in democracy • Two Party System: Consensus needed, discourages radicals (US) • Multi-Party System: More choice, coalitions needed (Germany) • What do parties do? • Select candidates • Raise money • Run campaigns • “inform” public
Party platforms (where they stand) Republicans • Limited role of government • Conserve traditional values • Strong defense and law enforcement Democrats • Government can help make the US more of a just and fair society • Support individual rights • Strengthen society by closing the gap between rich & poor
party decline Political Parties play an important role in American politics, however, their power has decreased. Why? • Split ticket voting • No longer can parties count of straight ticket vote • Decline of the machine and bosses • Regulations have helped • Party realignments • Democrats of the 1920s are Republicans today and vice versa • Voter Apathy • Americans less interested in voting and participating
American Voting Trends • Presidential Elections: about 55-60% of eligible Americans (Less in Congressional & local elections) • Who votes most? • Whites, women, older people, married, educated, higher incomes, homeowners, longtime residents • 2008: youth & minorities voted more (will this last?) 2008
American Voting Trends Reasons for not voting: Too busy 20% Sick 15% Not interested 12% Out of Town 10% Other 10% Didn’t Like Candidates 7.7% Registration Problems 7% Forgot 4% ?
GET ELECTED PRESIDENT: Follow the Steps… • Announce candidacy (year before election) • Fundraise • Campaign within party • Collect enough delegates (votes) through primaries and caucuses to win your party’s nomination (Jan-May) • Formal nomination at party convention (summer) • “move to the middle”, seeking independents • Campaign against other party’s candidate (fall) • Win at least 270 electoral votes on election day (1st Tue. In Nov.) • Be elected by electoral college (Dec.) • Inauguration (Jan. 20)
What are electoral votes? • Each state gets as many electors as members of Congress (538 total) • These electors are encouraged to represent the vote of their state using a winner-take-all system. (If CA votes for GOP, all 55 electors vote GOP, even if the total popular vote was 51%-49%) • Magic number: 270 electoral votes are needed to become president. • Founding Fathers wanted a way to prevent the people from outright electing the president...they were afraid of Joe Six Pack!
USA: Electoral Map State sizes are determined by the number of electoral votes.
Flaws in the system • Winner of popular vote doesn’t always become president (1824, 1876, 1888, 2000) • Nothing requires electors to follow the votes of their states. • If no one wins majority of elector votes, H of R decides election. 4. Big “swing” states (OH, FL)become key to an election, candidates spend most time/$ there. Dang you Founding Fathers!
Red State/Blue State? No. Blue City, Red Country RED and BLUE states Key Swing States
Oneosevenia’s 3 states:7 out 13 electoral votes to win Bydooria: 5electoral votes R Popular Votes____D Popular Votes____ STATE WINNER: R or D 5 Electoral Votes Middla: 3 electoral votes R Popular Votes____D Popular Votes____ STATE WINNER: R or D 3 Electoral Votes Windowrado: 5 electoral votes R Popular Votes____D Popular Votes____ STATE WINNER: R or D 5 Electoral Votes Podium Island Ritterdesk Sea
Congressional Elections • Senate: 1/3 of chamber up for election every 2 years (6 year terms) • House: all 435 districts up for election every 2 years • Incumbents reign supreme (80% reelected) • Most House districts considered safe for one of the parties—why? The parties help create the districts! • Leads to many one-sided elections which decreases voter turnout and increases partisanship
Gerrymandering • practice of drawing House district boundaries to benefit a certain party or group-shame, shame, shame! • Go to: http://www.redistrictinggame.org/ Then Now