Chapter 11 - Study Guide

Chapter 11 - Study Guide - Chapter Eleven Congress:...

Info iconThis preview shows pages 1–2. Sign up to view the full content.

View Full Document Right Arrow Icon
POLS101I – American National Government Hagan Chapter Eleven Congress: Balancing National Goals and Local Interests Learning Objectives Having read the chapter, the students should be able to do each of the following: 1. Explain why incumbents have such great electoral success and why they sometimes lose. 2. Discuss the relationship between incumbency success and democratic responsiveness. 3. Identify the major leadership positions in Congress and explain the sources of leadership powers. 4. Explain the argument concerning internal and external democracy in Congress. 5. Discuss the role of the congressional committee system. 6. Identify the major parts of the legislative bureaucracy and assess the impact of those agencies on the performance of Congress. 7. Define and explain the three major policymaking functions of Congress. Analyze to what degree these roles are complementary, competitive, or mutually exclusive. 8. Describe how the increasing preoccupation of representatives with local concerns has affected their ability to carry out Congress’ functions. 9. Explain the effect of partisanship on congressional effectiveness, and summarize recent trends in the rise and fall of partisan and other influences on voting patterns in Congress. Focus and Main Points The author details the nature and relationship of congressional election and organization. In describing the factors affecting electoral politics, he focuses primarily on the issue of incumbency, its advantages, and its drawbacks. The discussion includes an assessment of the influence of these electoral campaigns on members of Congress. The author then examines the organization of the institution, and the nature and sources of congressional leadership. Congress is organized in part along political party lines; its collective leadership is provided by party leaders of the House of Representatives and the Senate. These party leaders do not have great formal powers. Their authority rests mainly on shared partisan values and the fact that they have been entrusted with leadership responsibility by other senators or representatives of their party. Congress is well organized to handle policies of relatively narrow scope. Such policies are usually worked out by small sets of legislators, bureaucrats, and interest groups. Individual members of Congress are extraordinarily responsive to local interests and concerns, although they also respond to national interests. These responses often take place within the context of party tendencies. Congress is admired by those who favor negotiation, deliberation, and the rewarding of many interests, particularly those with a local constituency base. Critics of Congress maintain that it hinders majority rule, fosters policy delay, and caters to special interests. The main points of this chapter are as follows:
Background image of page 1

Info iconThis preview has intentionally blurred sections. Sign up to view the full version.

View Full DocumentRight Arrow Icon
Image of page 2
This is the end of the preview. Sign up to access the rest of the document.

This note was uploaded on 10/10/2011 for the course POLS 101 taught by Professor Hamilton,t during the Summer '08 term at College of Southern Idaho.

Page1 / 5

Chapter 11 - Study Guide - Chapter Eleven Congress:...

This preview shows document pages 1 - 2. Sign up to view the full document.

View Full Document Right Arrow Icon
Ask a homework question - tutors are online