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Lecture 32

Political Science 1020E Lecture Notes - Lecture 32: Make America Great Again, Amicus Curiae, New Social Movements


Department
Political Science
Course Code
Political Science 1020E
Professor
Charles Jones
Lecture
32

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Poli Sci Lecture 32 Mar. 1. 16
Populism and the Parties of the Extreme Right
Why do They Emerge?
When issues of immigration and integration are salient
When mainstream parties ignore or mismanage these issues
o When you see extreme right parties become successful its because the
mainstream parties neglect issues that they feel aren’t important or
wont advance their political needs
When new party ingredients are available:
(a) Charismatic Leadership
o The charismatic leadership allows them to standout and make a
connection between the charismatic leader and the people
(b) Organization, Internal Cohesion
o Not as well organized as the mainstream parties. If they don’t come up
with a connection between leadership and the members, and if they
avoid conflict between leaders inside the party then they will fail
(c) Avoidance of Anti-Democratic and overtly racist appeals
o Back in the day these parties made clear that they were anti-
democratic and overtly racist
o BUT nowadays they avoid this issue as to get elected and spread
their venom (push the line as far as possible without crossing it).
With help of Electoral System:
(a) Proportional Representation Best
o Allows the smaller parties to get heard, and this aids these extreme
right parties because they can now hold a voice in parliament
o The Canadian style system makes it very difficult for this to happen
because FPTP favours the major political parties
(b) Especially with Low Threshold
The Dutch Case
Late start: Trust in Elites and institutions
Issue of salience increases Early 21st century
o Immigration, multiculturalism
Established parties fail to respond effectively
o The mainstream parties ignored the issues that were coming about
o They went back to parroting the line for which Netherlands was built
Fortuyn and Wilders paint picture of ‘Out of Touch’ elites, exploit resentment
Niche: Left on tax/spend, Right on Immigration
Highly proportional electoral system, with a very low threshold (meaning if
you get 2/3 of 1% of the vote you get a seat in parliament

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The US Case
It can’t happen here – Single-member plurality, two-party system
Trump has commandeered one of the parties as a vehicle for his call to
strengthen borders, “Make America Great Again”
Trump’s Opening: Socially Conservative, Fiscally Liberal Republicans
Solutions
Exclusion These parties feed off outsider status
Principle Depends on all major parties following suit
Adoption Too tempting to competitive parties
Engagement and interaction work best
If other strategies, don’t limit to economic dimension
Poli Sci Lecture 33 Mar. 1. 16
Interest Groups and Social Movements
Lecture Plan
Define Interest Groups
Identify and Discuss the different kinds of groups
Explore the four major models of group politics
Distinguish between social movements and new social movements
Defining Interest Groups
Interest groups aim to influence, not become, the government
Like parties, interest groups emerged alongside representative government
And modern mass society Cleavages:
Class
Ethnicity
Region
Types of Groups
Communal Embedded, Not Detached
o Embedded identities are essential and fundamental to who you are,
it’s the group or identity you’re born into
o Detached is a voluntary identity or interest that you can assume or
take them off at will
Institutional Groups Parts of Government
o Focused on the fact that there are multiple interests within the states
Associational Groups:
o Voluntary Detached, not embedded identities or interests
o Involves a set of shared interests
“A complex web of Competing Interests” – There aren’t a few issues, there
are many issues that are well organized and competing
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Sectional Groups
They exist to defend the members of their interest group that is all
Promotional Group
Its trying to defend a broader value structure
WWF We’re trying to defend and protect animals from extinction and the
protection of all wildlife
Advance a set of prominent values
Interest Groups Targets
Groups try to influence:
o Bureaucracy
o Legislature
o Courts e.g. amicus curiae (“Friend of the Court”)
o Parties
o Media
Republican Model
Rousseau: Organized interests degrade general interest
French Revolution:
o (a) Cleared away established interests
o (b) Banned independent workers’ associations
Deprived the workers the ability to organize and defend their
interests
o (c) Republic as “One and Indivisible”
This was now The People in charge in a strong unified sense
The aim is to avoid internal division
Pluralist Model
De Tocqueville: Modern democracy best grounded on interests, associations
o We should have an acknowledgement of different interests and an
acceptance of this as well
Early 20th century American Political Science embraced pluralism
Model depends upon:
o (a) Interests easily form into groups
There are no major impediments to people finding what they
believe and finding others with same beliefs and then
organizing them
o (b) Fair competition of interests
o (c) Influence in line with size and intensity of support
Pluralist Democracy?
Interest groups outperform parties at linking people and government
Competition, bargaining, compromise… policy
This is how people participate in decision-making
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