chapter9 - CHAPTER 9 Political Parties 0OBJECTIVES This...

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CHAPTER 9 Political Parties 0OBJECTIVES This chapter examines political parties, with an emphasis on the two-party system that has evolved in the United States. After reading and reviewing the material in this chapter, the student should be able to do each of the following:0 10. Define the term political party and contrast the structures of European and American parties, paying particular attention to the federal structure of the U.S. system and the concept of party identification. 20. Trace the development of the U.S. party system through its four periods. Explain why parties have been in decline since the New Deal. 30. Describe the structure of a major party. Distinguish major from minor parties. 40. Indicate whether there are major differences between the parties. Describe some of the issue differences between delegates at Democratic and Republican conventions, and compare their policy positions with those of rank-and-file party members. 0OVERVIEW A political party exists in three arenas: among the voters who psychologically identify with it, as a grassroots organization staffed and led by activists, and as a group of elected officials who seek to act on its ideals. This chapter studies the party primarily as an organization that takes various forms at the local level. These include the political machine, the ideological party, the solidary group, the sponsored party, and the personal following. National parties are weak coalitions of these local forums. As organizations that influence the political systems, parties are becoming even weaker. Voters no longer strongly identify with one of the major parties. The spread of the direct primary has made it harder for parties to control who is nominated for elective office, thus making it harder for the parties to influence the behavior of officeholders they once elected. Delegate selection rules, especially in the Democratic Party, have contributed to shifting the center of power away from officeholders and party regulars and toward the parties’ more ideological wings. Minor parties have arisen from time to time, but the only ones that have affected the outcome of presidential elections have been those that began as splinter groups within one of the major parties. An example of such a party is the Bull Moose Progressives. The two-party system is maintained, and minor parties are discouraged, by an election system of winner-take-all, plurality elections. This arrangement makes voters fear that they will “waste” their vote if they vote for a minor party. Meanwhile, the primary system makes it possible for minor parties to wield influence through the major parties.
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Chapter 9: Political Parties 0CHAPTER OUTLINE WITH KEYED-IN RESOURCES0 I0. Parties—in the United States and abroad0 A0. Decentralization0 10. A party is a group that seeks to elect candidates to public office by supplying them with a label (party identification) by which they are known to the electorate. 20.
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chapter9 - CHAPTER 9 Political Parties 0OBJECTIVES This...

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