Patterson Chapter 6

Patterson Chapter 6 - Chapter 6 Public opinion is a...

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Chapter 6 Public opinion is a powerful yet inexact force in American politics, ie: Americans normally support their diplomats’ means of implementing their (the people’s) decision. Public opinion ( defined as the politically relevant opinions held by ordinary citizens that they express openly) consists of those views held by ordinary citizens that are openly expressed—Public officials have many means of gauging public opinion but increasingly have relied on public opinion polls to make this determination. The process by which individuals acquire their political opinions is called political socialization. (Defined as the learning process by which people acquire their political opinions, beliefs, and values) This process begins during childhood, when, through family and school, Americans acquire many of their basic political values and beliefs. Socialization continues into adulthood, during which peers, political institutions and leaders, and the news media are major influences Americans’ political opinions are shaped by four frames of reference: ideology, group attachments, partisanship, and political culture. These frames of reference form the basis of
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Patterson Chapter 6 - Chapter 6 Public opinion is a...

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