59 terms

AP Gov Test #3


Terms in this set (...)

high-tech politics
behavior of citizens and policymakers, as well as the political agenda itself, is increasingly shaped by technology
mass media
Television, radio, newspapers, magazines, and other means of popular communication are called _______ because they reach out and profoundly influence not only the elites but the masses. Often have media events
media event
scripted/staged primarily for the purpose of being covered
press conferences
an event where the press are allowed to ask the person unscripted questions. FDR was the first to use this form of media effectively.
investigative journalism
the use of detective-like reporting methods to unearth scandals—pits reporters against political leaders. Evidence that TV's fondness for investigative journalism has contributed to greater public cynicism and negativism about politics. Started after the Vietnam War and Watergate
print media
Newspapers (popularized in the mid 19th century) and magazines)
electronic media
Gradually taking over print media. Radio and television
Media program on cable TV or Internet that is focused on one topic and aimed at a particular audience
Groups of newspapers published by media conglomerates and today accounting for over four-fifths of the nation's daily newspaper circulation.
Specific locations/people from which news frequently emanates that reporters check in with from time to time, like Congress or White House.
trial balloons
An intentional news leak for the purpose of assessing political reaction.
sound bites
Short video clips of approximately 10 seconds. Basically just the headlines, very little analysis
talking head
a shot of a person's face talking directly to the camera. Boring, and viewers will switch channels in search of more interesting visual stimulation.
policy agenda
the issues that attract the serious attention of public officials
policy entrepreneurs
People in or out of government who invest their political "capital" in an issue they want on the policy agenda
party competition
the battle between Democrats and Republicans for control of public office.
political party
A team of men and women seeking to control the governing apparatus by gaining office in a duly constituted election. 3 parts (electorate, organization, government)
linkage institutions
translate inputs from the public into outputs from the policymakers. Elections, political parties, media, interest groups.
rational-choice theory
parties and political actors have goals (such as winning elections) that are more important to the party than ideology. ex: successful political parties stay close to the middle to appeal to a broader number of voters
party image
The voter's perception of what the Republicans or Democrats stand for, such as conservatism or liberalism.
party identification
self-proclaimed preference for one of the parties
ticket splitting
Voting with one party for one office and with another party for other offices. Mostly independent voters
party machines
Political party organization relying heavily on material inducements to win votes and govern. ex: Tammany Hall giving jobs to people who supported their policies as a way to stay in power longer (i.e. patronage).
A job, promotion or contract given for political reasons rather than merit; used by party machines to gain support.
closed primaries
People who have registered with the party can vote for party's candidates
open primaries
Voters decide on Election Day to vote in the Democrat or Republican primary. People unregistered with the party can vote
national party convention
Meeting of party delegates every four years to choose a presidential ticket and the party's platform
national committee
The people in charge of the party composed of representatives from the states and territories, keeps the party operating between conventions
national chairperson
The person in charge of the party. Day-to-day activities of the party.
Individuals and groups that support the political party
party eras
one party has been the dominant majority party for long periods of time. Ex: Dem-Republicans vs Federalists, Dem-Republicans vs Whigs, Republicans vs Democrats
critical election
An election where there is a change in party power and a demographic change between parties. Ex: Civil War Democrats
party realignment
rare events typically associated with a major crisis or trauma in the nation's history (such as the Civil War and the Great Depression)
New Deal Coalition
Group of new democrats after FDR got the economy moving after the great depression. EX: urban working class, ethnic groups, Catholics and Jews, southerners, intellectuals, liberals, the poor, and African Americans
party dealignment
people are gradually moving away from both political parties
third parties
Electoral contenders other than the two major parties who either promote specific issues (ex: green party), splinter parties (ex: Gore losing due to Ralph Nader of the green party), or form based on the admiration of one politician (ex: John Anderson (1980) and Ross Perot (1992 and 1996))
winner-take-all system
The reason third parties aren't represented. Party that receives a plurality (more votes than anyone else, even though it may be less than a majority) is declared the winner; the other parties get nothing
proportional representation
(used in most European countries), legislative seats are allocated roughly according to each party's percentage of the nationwide vote. Allows third parties some representation and creates the need for coalition governments
coalition government
created when two or more parties combine their numbers to form a majority of seats in a national legislature especially due to proportional representation
responsible party model
calls for each party to present distinct, comprehensive programs; carry out its program if elected; implement its programs if it is the majority party or state what it would do if it were in power; and accept responsibility for the performance of the government.
Blue Dog Democrats
Fiscally conservative Democrats who are mostly from the South and rural parts of the United States, and are resistant to any domestic policy proposals that would enlarge the scope of government.
Moderate to socially liberal Republicans who are mostly from the Northeast and West Coast that more commonly vote with Democrats on some social and economic issues (name is a criticism issued by conservative Republicans)
interest group
organization of people with similar policy goals that tries to influence the political process to try to achieve those goals. Don't run campaigns just support the candidates who support their interests
Competition among groups trying to get their preferred policies. This theory argues that interest group activity brings representation to all; groups compete and counterbalance one another.
Upper-class elite holds most of the power and runs government with their money
Groups are so strong that government is weakened. This theory asserts that too many groups are getting too much of what they want, resulting in a government policy that is often contradictory and lacking in direction.
iron triangles
Sub governments - congressional committees, interest groups, government agencies.
potential group
composed of all people who might be group members because they share some common interest.
actual group
composed of those in the potential group who choose to join
collective good
something of value (such as clean air or a higher minimum wage) that cannot be withheld from a potential group member. Members of the potential group share in benefits that members of the actual group work to secure (ex: minimum wage worker doesn't participate in getting the minimum wage higher but still reaps benefits i.e. free-rider problem)
free-rider problem
occurs when potential members decide not to join, but rather to sit back and let other people do the work (from which they will nevertheless benefit).
selective benefits
goods that a group can restrict to those who pay their yearly dues, such as information publications, travel discounts, and group insurance rates. EX: AARP
single-issue group
has a narrow interest, dislikes compromise, & single-mindedly pursues its goal. Characteristically deals with issues evoking strong emotions (nuclear power, gun control, abortion)
Communication to a governmental decision maker with the hope of influencing his or her decision
Getting the right people into office or keeping them there by financially supporting them or getting their members to vote for them. Key strategy of interest groups
political action committees (PACs)
provided a means for groups to participate in electioneering by allowing for large financial support
union shop
requires new employees to join union representing them. Creates powerful unions, company owners don't like this idea
right-to-work laws
outlaw union membership as a condition of employment
public interest lobbies
Groups that seek a collective good that speak for those who cannot speak for themselves, such as children, animals, and the mentally ill