POS 2041 One Class Part 2.docx

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University of Florida
Latin American Studies
POS 2041
Beth Rosenson

Political Parties Positive Functions of Parties • Organize and contest elections • Organize and run government • Help voters decide Negative Functions of Parties • Confuse responsibility for public policy • Deliberately sabotage attempts to govern by the other party • Makes voters more cynical 5 Party Eras/Systems • Jeffersonian • Jacksonian Democracy • Civil War and Reconstruction • Industrial Republican • New Deal Party System • Divided Government Why do party eras end? Voters shift loyalties based on big issues that arise. (Realignments- move to a new era) • Realignments bring: new party in power Parties – Rising or Declining • Evidence for decline – compare to before the Progressive Era, pre-1880s • Evidence for resurgence – starting in 1960s • Parties take on new roles Interest Groups Organization or association of people with common interests st Positive vision: 1 Amendment protection, Supreme Court has to uphold rights of groups to form Negative vision: Federalist #10, Today- argument that interest groups exert undue and harmful influence inAmerican politics Reasons Groups Form • Economic, social, technological changes • Incentives to join groups • Different incentives groups use to attract members o Solidary o Material o Purposive Free Rider Problem • Larger the group, bigger the problem is • Coercion, Selective benefits Influence of Groups on Gov. • Lobbying • DirectAction • Litigation • Electioneering Congressional Elections House and Senate Elections • Incumbency advantage: o Decline of parti
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