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All Notes for Government Exam 1.docx

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Department
Political Science
Course
POLS 207
Professor
Thornton
Semester
Fall

Description
State Political Cultures A. Political culture- shared beliefs among people about the role of government and citizens should play in the political system. a. States differ on this opinion b. Way in which people see government and officials B. Daniel Elazar a. Typology of political culture b. Early migration patterns resulted in different religious/ethnic concentrations in states C. 3 Cultures/Subcultures a. 1- moralistic political i. Arose in areas with heavy Scandinavian (n. Europe) and German Protestant pop. ii. Government is a positive instrument for change iii. Means to promote general welfare iv. Citizens believe government should achieve moral goals (common interest) v. Honorable profession vi. Citizens expected to be active vii. Government has right and obligation to intervene in the private sector (for well being) viii. New England and upper Midwest b. 2- individualistic political th i. Traced to 19 century European immigration of Catholics to mid-Atlantic states ii. Southern/eastern European iii. Working class iv. Democratic order is a marketplace 1. Go to political system and see what can be gotten out of it v. Everyone pursues own self interest  optimum society vi. Government should NOT interfere in private sector 1. Regulating only so people pursue self-interest vii. Political positions left to those who want to as a profession viii. Expected to vote, no other obligations ix. Midwest, southwest c. 3- traditionalistic political i. Legacy left by plantation economy of deep south ii. Fundamentalist white protestants 1. Social hierarchy iii. Primary function of government is the maintance of the status quo (former confederate states) iv. Keep those who are in power, in power v. Discouraged mass political participation D. Moralistic States a. Higher voting rates b. Bigger governments E. Do NOT take Elazar’s model literally a. Why not? i. Only shared dominant view ii. Mix of people/views (minority) iii. Most states today have a mixed culture (all three) iv. Migration patterns weaken political differences v. Expansion of federal government b. BUT it’s still worthwhile i. Tax rates/burdens ii. Political participation rates Texas Political Cultures A. A Combintion of traditionalistic and individualistic B. Who brought in what culture? a. Regionally divided due to large area b. 20s, anglo settlers from deep south into east texas, before it’s a state (traditionalistic) C. Individualistic- hill country, central state Elazar says Scandinavian and german protestants=individualistic in Texas D. Two subcultures share similar views a. Conservative government view b. Individuals should do for themselves c. Government only does what individuals can’t d. Government should keep taxes low, limit social services, limit civil right advancement i. Difference of holding off and not promoting E. The basic structure of texas state government and politics follows the individualistic/traditionalistic mode very well F. Party Change a. Dominated by democratic party to a state dominated by republican party b. No change in political culture c. Democratic platform in state (40s and 50s) vs. modern republican party platform d. Don’t mix up political culture/platform G. Demographic Trends a. 4 factors explain large migration to texas in past 30 years (1970-2000 grew almost 2 x) i. Fairly nice weather (sunbelt) ii. Proximity to mexico (inc. economic activity) iii. Oil boom (jobs, $) iv. Midwestern economic decline b. Political consequences of trends i. Large growth in state budget 1. Due to increasing demand (more coals= more road) ii. Party change 1. Democratic party (life and generation texans) 2. Republican (new migration from Midwest) H. Minority Groups and Their Role in the Political System a. Increase larger percentage of population of state b. Greater impact on texas politics from migration c. Barriers lifted (African americans) i. Greater participation d. Greater influence i. Locally due to concentration e. Hispanics i. Increase since 1960 (30% tx pop in 2000) ii. More Hispanic candidates iii. Greater role iv. Limited influence 1. Due to voter turnout rate (any minority) 2. (VTR= % who CAN vote vs. those who do) v. Removing barriers 1960s 1. Leading to more important role vi. Asian americans 1. Smallest minority group 2. 1% 1980, 2% 1990 3. Elected to LOCAL government vii. Minorities greater influence 1. East texas ( African americans) 2. West, south texas (Hispanics) a. 50%+ Hispanic population I. Economic Trends a. Most of texas history: economics tied to land i. Cotton 1820s-1860s (pre civil war) ii. Cattle (after civil war) th iii. Oil= dominate economic activity early 20 century (east texas) b. Past 30-40 years i. Economy diversified and less dependant on land ii. Restructuring since mid- 1980s 1. Growth of high tech state (TI, Dell, etc.) 2. Introduction of NAFTA a. Economic activity and trade with mexico State Constitutions “It is very doubtful whether man is enough of a political animal to produce a good, sensible, serious, and efficient constitution. All the evidence is against it.” ~ George Bernard Shaw (English Dramatist) A. Education= most $ spent B. Each state has a constitution a. Establish government structure, describe/limit powers available to government b. Should remain stable over time c. Protect rights & freedoms (further limit government powers) d. Constitution= limited government e. Contains i. Preamble ii. Bill of rights iii. Outlines powers iv. Ammendments C. State Constitutions a. Preamble i. Statement of purpose ii. Where power/authority comes from b. Bill of rights i. Protections of individual freedoms and the guarantee of liberty ii. Most states have same bill of rights as US and include Additional Rights (equal rights, etc.) c. Structure of government i. Power of governor (executive), legislative courts ii. Suructure of executive branch iii. Organization and powers of local governments iv. Structure of legislative branch 1. (houses, senate, etc.) d. NEBRASKA ONLY HAS ONE HOUSE e. Local government is NOT mentioned in US constitution (created by state) f. Amending state constitutions i. Always a way to modify ii. Question of frequency 1. (US: over 200 years and only 17 amendments. State= at least 1 every 2 years) iii. Several methods to amend 1. Legislative proposals a. In legislature (2/3 vote in both houses) b. Vote of public after proposal c. Most popular 2. Popular initiatives a. Use public process to propose amendments to legislature (w/petition) b. Ratification through a vote of the public (ex. Cali w/controversy) c. Direct democracy d. VERY HARD. Often started by interest groups e. Likely need interest groups for success 3. The referendum a. Vote of the public to ratify amendment b. Yes/no vote of the public 4. Constitutional convention a. Voters approve and legislatures propose b. To propose amendments, rewrite constitution c. Very rare 5. Constitutional commissions a. Set up to establish and write amendment (ex. State lottery) b. Meets, studies issue, writes amendment, delivers back to legislature c. Extra stage in legislative process Differences in US vs. State Constitutions A. Length a. State constitutions are MUCH longer i. 8,700 vs. 30,000 words B. Frequency of Amendments a. US= rare b. State= frequent i. At least once every 2 years C. Focus a. National= bare bones document, very basic b. State=policy already written into them i. The more detailed and specific a state’s constitution is, the more likely interest groups have been successful and influential D. Range of Powers a. US has 2 powers i. Enumerated/expressed 1. Specified in the us constitution ii. Implied 1. Necessary and proper clause b. States: cannot coin $, reserved powers (10 amendment) i. Ex. Education (most money spent local government!) c. Shared powers i. Federal and states 1. Ex. Court system E. Supremacy Clause (Article 6) a. US constitution= subordinate law of the land b. States are subordinate to US constitution and federal laws Texas has been governed by 7 constitutions What makes a constitution different from others? Political culture of each. Changed constitution due to historic events (independence, etc.) A. 1827 Constitution of Coahuila y Tejas a. Unicameral legislature b. Texas elected 2 representatives to provincial legislature c. Lacked a bill of rights d. Catholicism e. Slavery not recognized f. Provisions regarding Catholicism and slavery ignored (protestant churches and slaves) B. The Republic of Texas Constitution of 1836 a. Composition of U.S. and several southern states b. Unitary form of government c. President (3 year term without reelection)  limit power d. Raising an army e. Freedom of religion and property protection (bill of rights) f. Slavery legalized g. Reflects distrust of government, traditionalistic C. The Statehood Constitution of 1845 a. Southern traditionalistic culture i. Limited governor’s authority ii. Biennial legislative sessions iii. 2yr. terms for most state officials (limited!!!) b. Spanish/Mexican cultural heritage i. Women & property rights ii. Community property iii. Earlier in tx. Than in other states 1. Women get half of what’s gained in a marriage D. The Confederacy Constitution of 1861 a. Prohibition against the emancipation of slaves b. Much like 1845 constitution c. Limited executive authority d. Biennial legislative sessions e. 2 year terms for most state officials f. Provision seceding from the union and joining confederacy i. Keeping slavery  leaving union g. Southern traditionalistic political culture E. The Readmission Constitution of 1866 a. Presidential reconstruction b. Slavery abolished c. Ordinances of succession nullified d. Secession rights renounced e. Wartime debts redubiated i. Loan $ to fight u.s., won’t get $ back f. African American rights i. No full rights/voting rights ii. More than other states though g. Overturned by u.s. congress’s reconstruction acts h. Showed political defeat of confederacy, still included traditionalistic from two other constitutions F. Reconstruction Constitution of 1869 a. Approved under supervision of federal government’s military rule b. Centralized power in the hands of the state government i. Ex. Education, courts, etc. ii. Up until now, LOCAL government had power c. Strong governor with four year term and extensive appointive powers i. Plural election= governor and others elected SEPARATELY (weakens governor) d. Public schools centralized e. Annual legislative sessions f. Most state executive branch officials given four-year terms and higher salaries g. Local government was substancially weakened and county courts abolished h. African americans given equal rights/ right to vote (FIRST TIME) i. The planter class (elites) removed from control j. Modern and forward looking in terms of power, organization, and machinery of government k. Hated b/c it was a r
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