Political Science Final Study.docx

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Political Science
Course Code
POL 111
David Caputo

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Political Science. 6. Describe and evaluate the role of political parties throughout history. Although the founding fathers of the constitution make no mention of political parties, America has adopted them as the strongest force in politics. Parties get candidates into office, not people. Without party support it is nearly impossible to make it to even primary elections. The parties choose who they think best represents them and run them throughout their campaign. This goes for federal and state politicians. Voters have difficulty identifying candidates without party labels, also resulting in lower voter turnout. It is easier for them to affiliate with a party that has the same views as them on economic and social policies. Politicians such as Michael Bloomberg, mayor of New York City, have called for non-partisan elections to start the reform of parties to end corruption and have them act more democratically. America has the oldest two party system in history. There have been a handful of influential third parties, but ultimately the Democrats and Republicans have ruled every election. The modern day Democrats began with Martin Van Buren, Andrew Jackson and Thomas Jefferson, respectively. Jefferson was the leader of the early Republicans until their party began to change their roots and developed into something that was not affiliated with his views. Teddy Roosevelt’s Bull-Moose party and the Progressive party were two of the most significant third parties to develop. The Bull-Moose party earned 27% of the vote and 88 electoral votes in the 1912 election. It may not seem like much of an impact but it took that many more votes away from the other two dominant parties, making the race even closer. Third parties rarely carry an entire state. Popular vote doesn’t matter if they can’t carry entire states. The Progressive’s earned 17% of the vote and 13 Electoral College votes in the 1924 election. Today, the rising third party is the Tea Party, beginning in 2006. They developed within the Republicans and want to influence Republicans to be more like them. They are informally called the extremist Republicans and are extremely left-winged and unwilling to compromise. A legislature without compromise is completely ineffective. With the House and Senate divided it becomes very hard to get bills discussed for presentation to the executive. Bill Clinton expressed that Democrats need to be more centered. This is hard to justify when there is an entire sub party of the Republicans who are set on not compromising their extremist ideas. Centering the Democrats could persuade the Republicans not a part of the Tea Party to do the same. 3. Party identification theory how it helps us understand American politics and is it useful. Party identification theory is whether people call themselves and vote for Democrats or Republicans. This decision is based mostly on liberty and morality. 1/3 of Americans don’t identify with any party. With the creation of a standstill with the two parties not compromising and continuing to argue one another’s party beliefs, some people believe the two party system may be eliminated. To have any change in any aspect of the US there must be compromise on pivotal issues. More Northern protestant whites, Southerners, mid westerners, people over 60, richer people, married men have identified themselves as Republicans. Immigrants/minorities, working families, western coast and north eastern coast, women, single men, people under 60, union workers tend be Democrats. It is useful for parties to know who their demographic is to target them with campai
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