Political Science Final:
• Why does Lijphart view low turnout as a problem?
o If low turnout…only rich is voting
o What’s to see democratic response to all not just rich
o Unequal socioeconomic turnout
o ( local elections equal lower turnout)
• In the U.S about what percentage of voters usually vote in congressional (off year
such as 2010 and 2014) elections? Local elections? What about in presidential
elections? How has turnout presidential elections in the U.S been changing?
o Local elections: 25%
o Off year elections : 35%
o When local elections fall on bigger elections voting turnout goes out….but some
voters still only vote for bigger electoral.
• What institutional features does Lijphart suggest to remedy low turnout?
o ( LOOK UP ON PAGE 7-10 IN PACKAGE)
• Status Quo:
o The current policy
o The set of policies that can defeat the status quo
• Veto Player:
o An actor who must approve of any policy change. If a veto player vetoes a
proposed policy change then the status quo remains the current policy. In order to
change policy we must have unanimity among veto players not a majority.
• The Three Claims:
o Weaker agenda setting powers
o Greater policy stability ( changes are infrequent)
o Smaller changes in policy
• Two implications:
o During divided government: Policy output will be lower
o During divided government : Policy output will be less radical
• What is a principle/agent:
o Principle:An actor that stipulates what task is to be completed, along with how it
is to be done
o Agent: The actor assigned to complete the task on behalf of the principal.
• What is enacting coalition?
o Principle hires agents to do task Ex: president, senate, house of representatives.
• What is “Fact”? o Create a triangle by wrapping a line around the vote players in plots. If the status
quo falls inside this triangle, then the winset is empty. If the status quo falls
outside this triangle, then the winset is non-empty.
• What is “implication”?
o Agents are free to move about within the triangle. Since they don’t have to worry
about corrective legislation. But they can’t move outside the triangle or all the
veto players will agree that corrective action needs to be taken.
• Bureaucratic Drift:
o Occurs when agents drift from the policy established by the enacting coalation
and toward their own preference.
• Be familiar with the theory that Canes-Wrone suggests (Assumptions, implications,
o Assumptions 1:
The president is a rational actor who has policy goals
o Assumptions 2:
Members of congress(MC’s) are also rational actors with policy
preferences, but their preferences depend on:
• (1)Their voters policy positions
• (2)Their party’s policy positions committees preferences and
• (3)Their personal political preferences
o Assumption 3
Public appeal about an issue increase its salence, but not the v