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NOMINATIONS AND CAMPAIGNS

NOMINATIONS AND CAMPAIGNS

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NOMINATIONS AND CAMPAIGNS

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  1. NOMINATIONS AND CAMPAIGNS

  2. More voters More competitive Less incumbent advantage Lower turnout in midterm elections Take more credit for individual projects Able to distance themselves from DC Franking privileges Coattail effect has declined Presidential vs Congressional Campaigns

  3. RUNNING FOR PRESIDENT

  4. Getting Mentioned • Off the record to reporters • Make speeches • Fame • Associated with major piece of legislation • Governor

  5. Money • Individuals • Political Action Committees

  6. Organization • Fund raisers • Lawyers • Accountants • Pollsters • Volunteers • Position papers

  7. Competing for Delegates • Caucus: • Neighborhoodcounty—congressional districtstate convention—national convention • Primary • McGovern-Fraser Commission • Superdelegates • Frontloading

  8. Evaluation of Primary and Caucus • Disproportionate attention to early caucuses and primaries (Iowa and New Hampshire) • Difficult to find time to run • Money • Low participation: • 5% of registered voters in caucuses (except Iowa) and 20 in primary • Too much power to media

  9. Strategy and Themes • Tone: Positive or negative • Theme: trust, change, experience • Timing: heavy or light campaigning • Targets: Which voters will change their minds?

  10. Primaries and General Election • Extreme in primary • Center in general • Clothespin Vote: lesser of two evils

  11. Campaign Issues • Position Issues: • Two opposing views • Social Security, abortion, death penalty • Can lead to party realignment • Valence Issues: • Universal issues • Strong economy • Low crime • Patriotism

  12. Federal Election Campaign Act (1974)

  13. 1. Federal Election Commission • Oversee elections to ensure they are complying with rules

  14. 2. Presidential Election Campaign Fund • $3 voluntary check off box on income tax (11% of taxpayers)

  15. 3. Partial Public Financing for Presidential Primaries • Presidential candidates who raise $5,000 on their own in at least 20 states can get individual contributions of up to $250 matched by the government (matching funds) If they accept federal support, they agree to limit campaign expenditures • Bush and Kerry declined matching funds • Minor party candidates (5-25% of vote): part of costs paid by the federal government

  16. 4. General Election • Public financing for major party candidates in general election • Major party candidates receive fixed amount of money ($75m in 2004) • Kerry and Bush accepted this money

  17. 5. Full Disclosure • File with FEC • List contributors • Detail how money was spent

  18. 6. Limited Contributions • Individual contributions to presidential and congressional candidates: $2,000 each (as of 2004) and indexed to inflation ($2,300 in the 2008 presidential election. • Originally $1,000 but changed by McCain-Feingold Act

  19. Campaign Finance Rules (1974) • PACs: • One PAC per corporation, union, or association • Register 6 months in advance • At least 50 contributors • Give to at least five candidates • No more than $5,000 per candidate per election • No more than $15,000 per year to national party

  20. Loopholes • Soft money: • Funds NOT for specific candidates • Get-out-the-vote • Voter registration campaigns • Bundling: combining contributions to be given at once (makes more of an impact)

  21. Effect of Reforms • Growth of PACs (4,217 in 2006): contributed $288.6 m in 2004 House and Senate elections • Party power has weakened • Rich candidates can avoid rules • Favors ideological candidates • Favors incumbents: they are more well known, so they can get the individual contribution • Must enter race early because of the need to raise money

  22. Bipartisan Finance Reform Act of 2002 (McCain-Feingold Act) • Banned soft money; national parties can only receive hard money (individual contributions or PAC contributions) • Limit on individual contributions raised from $1,000 to $2,000 per candidate per election (indexed to inflation)

  23. Bipartisan Finance Reform Act of 2002 • Independent expenditures by corporations, labor unions, trade associations and (under certain circumstances) nonprofits are sharply restricted: • Barred groups from running issue ads within 60 days of a general election (or 30 days before a primary) if they refer to a federal candidate and are not funded through a PAC (i.e., regulated funds)

  24. Bipartisan Finance Reform Act of 2002 • 527 Groups are not subject to contribution restrictions as long as political messages did not make explicit endorsements of candidates by using phrases, such as vote for, or vote against • $424 million in 2004 (52 gave over $1 million; 213 gave over $100,000)

  25. VOTING FACTORS

  26. Incumbency • In good economic times, party holding White House normally does well; in poor times it does badly (pocketbook vote) • Many who are doing well will vote against incumbent if country is not doing well because of friends or customers not doing well

  27. Character • Honesty and reliability • Opinion on crime, abortion, and school prayer • Acting presidential (speaking well, dignified, compassionate, authoritative, reasonable, likable)

  28. Money • Does not make a difference since each candidate gets same amount (If both candidates accept public funding.) • Makes a difference in Congressional races: • High-spending incumbents do better than low-spending incumbents • Average spending has increased over time (incumbent to challenger ratio: 2.47)

  29. Non-factors • VP nominee • Political reporting • Religion • Abortion: might affect who gets nomination • New voting groups: “angry white males did not elect Republican Congress in 1994 and soccer moms did not elect Bill Clinton in 1996”

  30. Party Identification • More Democrats than Republicans, but Democrats lost 7 of 10 presidential elections since 1968: • Democrats less loyal (80% of Republicans vote party line, but 1/3 of Democrats voted for Nixon and 26% for Reagan) • Republican attract a majority of independents, who are usually younger whites • Higher percentage of Republicans vote

  31. Issues • Prospective/Policy voting: • Voter learn about the issues • Select best candidate • Retrospective voting: • If voters look at how things have gone in the past and they like it, they will vote for candidate who will continue those policies (and vice-versa) • Elections are decided by this factor

  32. Campaign • Revive party loyalties • Voters see how candidates handle pressure • Judge character and core values

  33. Democratic Coalition • African-Americans (most loyal) • Mexican-Americans • Puerto Ricans • Jewish People (most loyal) • Lost strong support of : • Catholics • Southerners • Union Members

  34. Republican Coalition • Business people (most loyal) • Farmers (volatile) • Professionals • Poor people (most are elderly and retired; low-income blacks vote Democrat, but less than 25% of Democratic vote)

  35. Party Realignment • “sharp lasting shift in the popular coalition supporting one or both parties • “new issue of utmost importance to the voters cuts across existing party divisions and replaces old issues that were formerly the basis of of party identification” • Five major shifts in American history

  36. 1800 Elections • Jeffersonian Republicans defeated the Federalists

  37. 1828 Elections • Jacksonian Democrats win

  38. 1860 • Slavery issue • Whigs (Constitutional Union Party) silent and fall • Democratic Party split • Northern part waffling • Southern party in favor of slavery • Republicans win with Lincoln

  39. 1896 Elections • Economic causes (depressions) • Republicans defeat William Jennings Bryan • Republicans: urban, workers, and businesspeople, Catholics, Lutherans • Democrats: farmers, small towns, low tariffs, and rural interests, fundamentalists • North/South became East/West

  40. 1932 Elections • Great Depression • Roosevelt Democrats win • Democrats: urban workers, northern blacks, southern whites, Jewish voters

  41. Party Decline • Ticket splitting increasing • Leads to divided government • Office bloc (Massachusetts ) ballot: list candidates by office • Party-column (Indiana) ballot: can vote straight party with one mark

  42. Campaign Finance Rules (1974) • GENERAL: • Federal Election Commission (6 people) • Full disclosure of donors ($100 or more) • No cash contributions over $100 • No foreign contributions • No limit if candidate does not accept federal funding (up to $50,000 if he does)

  43. Campaign Finance Rules (1974) • Individual Contributions: • No more than $2,000 per candidate per election • An individual may not make federal political gifts exceeding $95,000 every two years, of which only $37,500 may go to candidates

  44. Campaign Finance Rules (1974) • Presidential Primaries: • Matching funds for $250 donations or less • Candidate must raise $5,000 in each of 20 states in $250 contributions or less to be eligible

  45. Campaign Finance Rules (1974) • Presidential Election: • Major party candidates: all costs up to a legal limit paid by the federal government (if they accept federal support) • Minor party candidates (5-25% of vote): part of costs paid by the federal government