Spring 11 POS 2112 Chapter 4 Notes-1

Spring 11 POS 2112 Chapter 4 Notes-1 - POS 2112 American...

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POS 2112 American State and Local Government Chapter 4 Participation in State Politics I. Voter Participation discussion A. Discussion- Does it make sense to vote? Why or Why not? Is voting rational? 1. According to the book, a “rational” voter should only vote if the costs of voting are exceeded by the expected value of having the preferred candidate win, multiplied by the probability that one’s own vote will be the deciding vote. 2. If voting was truly rational, not many people would vote. 3. Political theorists have determined that there must be something else to motivate people to vote. a. They believe that voting has added “intrinsic values”. These include: i. Patriotism ii. A sense of duty iii. And allegiance to democracy 4. The authors mention 10 reasons that people stay home. a. Burdensome and confusing registration requirements b. Voter unawareness of the availability of the alternatives to voting in person c. Lack of competition d. No high profile races e. No personal contact by a candidate or political party f. Purely personal reasons g. Social and cultural attributions and experiences h. Psychological “disconnects” with the political system i. The way the media covers elections j. A decline in the quality and the quantity of high school civics and government classes. B. Who fails to vote? 1. 1 st generation immigrants a. Especially those that do not speak English b. Those who seldom participate in organized religious activities c. Newcomers to a community d. People with little or no interest in politics i. Little trust in government ii. No belief that voting is a civic duty iii. And no belief they can make a difference by voting. II. Securing the right to vote A. Elimination of Property Qualifications 1. Voting was limited to males a. over 21 years of age b. Who resided in the voting district for a certain period c. Owned a considerable amount of land or received a large income from other investments.
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i. In the 1780s only 120,000 people out of 2 million were permitted to vote. B.
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Spring 11 POS 2112 Chapter 4 Notes-1 - POS 2112 American...

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