A Platform Made from Planks

A Platform Made from Planks - 1968 Democratic convention is...

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A Platform Made from Planks The term party platform once had a more literal meaning: Candidates literally stood on a platform to explain their positions on issues. Political scientists use the word plank to refer to a position on a particular issue. National Conventions Convention delegates are the party members or officials who vote on nominations and ratify their party’s platform. Delegates are party activists, people who believe so strongly in the ideology of their parties that they devote time and energy to working on the platform. Nowadays, conventions primarily serve as large-scale advertisements for the parties. In recent years, party leaders carefully choreographed conventions to present a united front and to put a positive face on their party. Controversial issues are sometimes avoided, whereas speeches aim for broad appeal. Convention Disasters A chaotic or ugly convention can harm a party’s chance in the presidential election. The
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Unformatted text preview: 1968 Democratic convention is perhaps the best example: While protesters fought with police outside, the convention turned chaotic when opponents of Democratic nominee Hubert Humphrey tried to speak out. The convention floor itself then turned violent. Humphrey secured the nomination but lost the election to Republican Richard M. Nixon The American Two-Party System The United States has only two major political parties: the Democrats and the Republicans. These parties have a duopoly, meaning that they share almost all the political power in the country. Parties in Other Democracies Most democratic countries have more than two parties. In Israel, for example, twelve parties or party alliances held seats in the seventeenth Knesset. Japan has several major parties, including the Liberal Democratic Party, the Democratic Party of Japan, the New Komeito, and the Japanese Communist Party....
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