We The People Ch 6, Ch 7, Ch 12, Ch 13, Ch15
Terms in this set (293)
citizens' attitudes about political issues, leader, institutions, and events.
a cohesive set of beliefs that forms a general philosophy about the role of government
Believe that social and economic outcomes are frequently unfair without government action
Big government is a necessary tool for common welfare
Largely began the liberal ideology including support for minority rights
Civil Rights Revolution
The civil rights movement of African Americans in the 1960 commit their party in support allowed for
began a relatively negative view of American military involvement abroad, though this has diminished in recent years
The War in Vietnam
In response to the strong religious component of the Conservative Movement, liberal ideology often supports the separation of church and state. Especially in terms of policies which endorse a particular religion's traditions or values
Values capitalism free from government
Individual responsibility for economic circumstances
The Conservative Movement
1950s and 1960s - before this time economic conservatives were just seen as wealthy people who believed government interference in the economy would hurt their wealth
-Ideological way of viewing the world - not completely motivated by economic self interest
the first "movement conservative" to win the White House
1. Prefers little or no government action in the distribution of social and economic benefits
2. Individuals should take responsibility
3. Place a high value on the principle of order, family values, and patriotism
How Do People Form Political Opinions?
a. Political socialization
b. The Importance of Family
c. Schools and Churches
d. The Media
e. Opinion Leaders
f. Major Life Events
g. Peer Groups
h. Economic Status and Occupation
the learning process through which most people acquire their political attitudes, opinions, beliefs, and knowledge
Importance of Family
Children clearly perceive their parents' attitudes
Political party of parents often becomes political party of children.
children usually see the political world for the first time through their parents' eyes
Early on children learn about the political system
More education = more political knowledge
Religious beliefs contribute to political socialization
is the most influential of media, still dominates for people older than 45
How does media influential the people? debate
- people receive their information from media sources.
- there is also the possibility that people already have preconceptions about issues when they seek out the media and their preconceptions often block out information that they do not agree with.
- Wields most influence over views of people with unformed opinions
are people who citizens listen to
1. May be public officials, religious leaders, or teachers
ii. Play a significant role in formation of public opinion - especially true of former politicians, think of Bill Clinton's speech in the 2012 DNC as significantly impacting the campaign
iii. Can fall from grace by expressing radical views
Major life events
i. Major events influence attitudes of a generation
How the Great Depression influence in the politics opinion?
this generation was much more inclined to believe that the government should step in to assist when the economy is in decline, usually forming an attachment to the Democratic Party
How the World war II influence in the politics opinion?
this generation believed in the idea that America should intervene in foreign affairs, whereas the generation immediately following, of the Vietnam War was more skeptical of this.
How the Terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001 influence in the politics opinion?
still too early to tell how this has fully affected political socialization for this generation, but it certainly will. Same thing goes for 2008 Great Recession.
i. Our friends' views influence school age children
ii. Significant factor from junior high school and on
iii. Friends, classmates, co-workers, or club members
iv. Most socialization occurs when the group is politically
How do economic Status and Occupation form political opinions?
i. Economic status can influence political views
(Poorer people likely favor assistance programs)
(Co-workers influence one another)
i. An important and lasting predictor of how one will vote
ii. Emotional attachment to a party - there has arguably been a decline in party support in recent years; this is a trend that we see in all established democracies, but arguably less in the U.S. than in some places.
iii. Large number of voters call themselves independents
1. Many actually support one of the major parties regularly
perception of the candidates
candidates are evaluated on their personalities as well as their physical appeals. Example: New Jersey governor Chris Christie having lap-band surgery because he was seen as being too fat for a prospective possible presidential candidate.
How is Policy choices important for decision of people vote?
i. Voting for a candidate with the same position as you - known as policy voting or issue voting
ii. Historically, economic issues have strongest influence on voters - when the economy is doing well, incumbents usually benefit, and challengers (especially presidential) to win against incumbents. The exact opposite is true when the economy is doing poorly.
iii. Social issues are emphasized less frequently - Social issues are often where candidates tread more carefully because people hold such strong opinions on most of them.
Policy voting or issue voting
Voting for a candidate with the same position as you
Historically, economic issue have strongest influence on voters
Which is the standard battery of factor that explain how different people vote?
There is a General rule: people with more education are more likely to vote Republican
In recent years, voters with post-graduate degrees tended to vote Democratic
ii. Occupation and Income
1. Businesspersons tend to vote Republican
2. Laborers and union members tend to vote Democratic
3. Income used to be much more explanatory, in that wealthier individuals were more Republican, but in modern times this has not been shown to be as true.
The Income not as explanatory currently in how the people vot
How do the age is important to decision of people vote?
1. Age differences in party support is small
2. People's attitudes are shaped by the events that unfold as they grew up
3. The Myth of Conservative Aging
How do the gender is important to decision of people vote?
1. Gender gap becoming a determinant in elections - women are tending toward the liberal side.
How do the religion and ethinic is important to decision of people vote?
White Christian voters who attend church regularly favor Republicans
African Americans are strongly Democratic
Today what are the most Democratic religious group in the nation
South, Great Plains, and parts of Rocky Mountains are Republican
Northeast, West Coast, and Illinois are Democratic
Midwest swing states
The "Solid South"
this is a term from the era for more than a century after the Civil War where the South was completely solid Democratic.
"War between the States"
term given by many Southerners after the Civil War
How is the Political spectrum indicator of how people will vote?
1. Liberals vote for Democrats
2. Conservatives vote for Republicans
What is the vital center important in how people vote?
Position between political extremes - where compromise needs to occur, and especially difficult because low voter turnout and voter interest in politics is the most prevalent in this section of the electorate.
How is the ideology in Recent Elections
1. The conservative triumph - the conservative Republican block of the electorate voted in much higher rates than they had in 2008
2. Ideology and the 2012 elections - the turnout is still the story, turnout among democrats was not as high as in 2008 that led to such a staunch victory, but the turnout from the conservatives was not enough to actually win the election.
Public Opinion Polls
i. Survey of the public's opinion on a particular topic at a particular moment
ii. Sampling - which is a smaller group of individuals, representative of the general
Early Polling Efforts
1. Ask a large number of people the same question
2. Usually a biased sample - meaning that there is some unrepresentative quality to the sample from the actual population of citizens
3. 1936 Literary Digest error
1936 Literary Digest error
Predicted Alf Landon would defeat FDR in 1936 with 57.1% of the vote
FDR actually won the election with 60.8%
How do the Polling Today measurement the public opinion?
polls are a permanent fixture in modern political life, politicians and media sources take place a great deal of faith in polls, and often more currently, news sources will even conduct their own polls.
Polls can be very accurate when they are conducted correctly, but as we have already established, those conducted incorrectly can yield some very biased results.
Types of Poll
1. In-person surveys
2. Telephone polling
3. Internet survey
the way polls were conducted earlier on, especially before telephones were in almost every household.
In person survey
surveys over the phone without an actual interviewer with prerecorded messages that ask for responses.
- decreased the cost and time of conducting larger polls.
- there is a problem with telephone surveying techniques as a growing and significant portion of the population only use cellular telephones, and such are much more difficult to conduct proper sampling techniques in trying to conduct a survey
- the newest arena for polling
-. The Harris poll especially specializes in internet political surveys.
- concerns for whether we can get a representative sample of the American population through this kind of survey.
What is the most important principle in sampling?
Randomness, and also reliability and validity in our polls
meaning we get about the same responses each time we ask the same question
in that the poll actually reflects what we are trying to find out.
What does meaning that public opinion polling by nature is statistical
meaning that it is not an exact result.
True result of a poll is a range of probabilities - meaning
that the real number in the population is usually in a small range around the reported figure
is the difference in the result from what the poll says and what it would have said if the entire population would have been asked
A commonly used confidence is 95%; this will also usually translate into a plus or minus points to the reported percentage result as well
Polling firms weigh responses of demographic groups - it is incredibly difficult to get a representative sample of certain groups of the population, the extremely poor, students, etc. are notoriously difficult to survey
Polling organizations will often then choose to weight these responses that they do get to make them closer to the actual size of that group's representation in the population
there are some more bias in polling results, especially as weighting is incredibly difficult to do with partisanship in elections, as polls want a representative sample of Republicans, Democrats, and independents, but doing so is quite difficult, so each major organization has their own statistical formula that they use to do this.
A pollster's results consistently favor one of the parties - this is basically that some polling organizations' polls consistently favor one party over another. This is not always wrong, but certainly needs to be considered.
Phrasing can affect how people answer a question - using words to prime respondents can influence the results that you get
Does the Personality and voice of interviewer affect responses
Problem of socially desirable answers
where respondents will give an answer that might not actually be their opinion, but one that is more socially acceptable.
This is especially worrisome with face-to-face interviews because seeing who the interviewer is can impact their answers to certain questions. If the interviewer is from a minority race, a woman, younger, or older can all impact the answers a respondent might give them.
Opinion polls must be taken often to be accurate - especially because there are often rapid shifts in public opinion.
Conducted on people exiting polling places - these are often what are used to predict how states will go in presidential elections before all or even most of the results are in. We have seen even more turmoil with exit polling following the 2016 election, as many exit polls proved unreliable in states like Michigan, Wisconsin, and Pennsylvania.
Bias in Framing Questions
Phrasing can affect how people answer a question
Personality and voice of interviewer affect responses
Problem of socially desirable answers
Misuse of Polls
Complaint that polls end up creating public opinion
Polls can create a "bandwagon" effect
Media can also misuse polls
candidates will often say that they are ahead in the polls to try and inspire greater levels of support for their campaigns
Many people want to support a winner, so they can bring voters to their side. This is often called the: "bandwagon" effect
presidential approval ratings also lend themselves to the bandwagon effect as well.
Media can also misuse polls - some are quite lazy in only reporting polls from one source, or just using polls to determine their election reporting
The Problem of Push Polls
"Fake" polling questions
Purpose is to "push" voters toward one candidate
Some see push polls as actual political manipulation, spreading rumors and lies.
Perhaps the most famous use of push polls is in the 2000 United States Republican Party primaries, when it was alleged that George W. Bush's campaign used push polling to torpedo the campaign of Senator John McCain. Voters in South Carolina reportedly were asked "Would you be more likely or less likely to vote for John McCain for president if you knew he had fathered an illegitimate black child?" This hypothetical question seemed like a suggestion, although without substance. It was heard by thousands of primary voters. McCain and his wife had in fact adopted a Bengali girl.
Checklist for Evaluating Public Opinion Polls
i. Who conducted the poll, and who sponsored or paid for it?
ii. How many people were interviewed for the survey, and what part of the population did they represent?
iii. How are these people chosen, and how random was the sample?
iv. How were respondents contacted and interviewed? Were they questioned by a live person or by recorded script? Were cell phone users contacted?
v. What is the margin of error for the poll?
vi. Were any of the questions worded in a way that might influence the answers?
vii. When was the poll conducted?
viii. What other polls were conducted on this topic, and do they report similar findings?
How does Some have described the media?
as the fourth check in our political system, checking and balancing the power of all three branches of the American political system.
the internet has replaced printed news and radio, and among younger generations even television as the source for political news and information.
The Media and the First Amendment
at the time only applied to print media,
i. Film did not receive First Amendment Protection until 1952
ii. Court extended First Amendment protections to the Internet in 1997
iii. Cable TV received protections in 2000
The Agenda-Setting Function of the Media
the place of the largest influence of the media on politics, particularly during campaigns, is to set the issues.
the media isn't controlling what people think but instead controlling what people think about the media can often influence what issues are being debated and discussed.
the first ever televised war and brought the events of the war into the living rooms of the nation.
the Vietnam War
setting up a particular story with selected facts that will influence the position of the listener in a certain way
is providing a certain context for a media story, sometimes telling a story in a familiar way or filtering some kind of information through a preconceived idea
Limits of agenda-setting
it is really a chicken and egg scenario as it can very easily be argued that the media are just reporting on the public's opinion, not making it for them. They are simply reporting what the people are interested in already, not making them interested in it.
presidential politics, candidates for office are intimately aware of the medium of television. Massive amounts of time and money are spent giving candidates a television footprint, and done so methodically and precisely in contemporary American politics.
Spending on the Swing States .
candidates are precise in the places that they will spend revenue on television advertising
In 2012 residents of Ohio and Florida were privy to $100 million campaigns being done in television advertising by the candidates
residents of California and Texas saw none, only seeing advertisements that were run nationally
no amount of advertising would make California a Republican state and Texas a democratic state.
has a vast number of political ads from 1952 onward
Early advertisements were filled with jungles as if they were advertising any other common product. These ended almost entirely by 1960, but some were incredibly successful.
1952 - Dwight Eisenhower
"Ike for President" - You're all very welcome for having this stuck in your head the rest of the day.
1960 - John F. Kennedy
Kennedy For Me" - Kennedy was able to use an ad like this a bit after TV ads had become much more about discussing issues, or attacking your opponent.
The first personal media attack appearance on television was in 1952 when we saw advertisements on TV take a negative turn for the first time.
Personal media attacks go way back
In print media the 1800 printing of the Federalist Gazette of the United States described Thomas Jefferson as having "weakness of nerves, want of fortitude, and total imbecility of character" (SICK BURN!).
1952 - Adlai Stevenson - "Double Talk"
the first time a political ad was attacking their opponent (their entire party in fact) suggesting that the GOP flip-flops on their stances, which is a carnal sin of politics
1968 - Hubert Humphrey - "Laughter"
this ad is easily one of the most simplistic ever released. Here Hubert Humphrey released this short ad following the 1968 Republican National Convention where Richard Nixon selected the relatively unknown Spiro Agnew to be his Vice President. Humphrey simply showed Agnew's name on a TV with himself laughing at the announcement.
2004 - George W. Bush - "Windsurfing"
This ad in 2004 was an attack on Democratic candidate John Kerry, suggesting that he was a flip-flopper on the issues. This ad has many remarkable similarities to Stevenson's "Double Talk"
aside from just outright personal attacks, candidates can also use negative issue ads to focus on the flaws that their opponents have concerning some major issue.
1964 - Lyndon Johnson - "Daisy Girl"
this ad was aired 1 time, as after it was shown the public outcry was massive.
one of the most powerful and well-known political ads of all time.
Johnson clearly wanted the American people to know that the threat of nuclear war was the most important issue at stake in the 1964 election, and that he was the only candidate credible to deal with this threat.
1984 - Ronald Reagan - "Bear in the Woods"
in this ad Reagan needed to remind everyone that the most important issue at stake was the threat of the Soviet Union. The imagery of the Bear has long been associated with Russia and the Soviet Union, thus the message was loud and clear to the people.
an ad that intends only to inform the public about the candidate, their history, or just their demeanor. These ads are usually very cheerful, warm, and positive. These are very rarely successfully done by campaigns, and rarely resonate with the public. However, there have been two presidents who have successfully used this kind of ad
i. 1984 - Ronald Reagan - "Morning Again in America"
ii. 1992 - Bill Clinton - "Little Town Called Hope"
1984 - Ronald Reagan - "Morning Again in America"
(who really mastered this kind of ad first) shows why the American people should keep him in office (which they did in a landslide). The ad is cheery, warm, makes you feel good to be an American. It was very successful.
1992 - Bill Clinton - "Little Town Called Hope"
Bill Clinton was a relative unknown outside of Arkansas in 1992. The Democratic Party expected George H.W. Bush to be re-elected easily in 1992. Bill Clinton needed to introduce himself and his backstory to the American people. This ad was incredibly successful at personalizing Bill Clinton and making him incredibly relatable to the American people.
Negative Advertising - good or bad?
i. Bad: can backfire, creating sympathy for the candidate being attacked
ii. Bad: may alienate citizens from political process itself
iii. Good: sharpens the public debate
iv. Good: likely to focus on issues
since 1960 - Since the debates between John F. Kennedy and Richard Nixon - JFK appeared youthful and tan and collected, meanwhile Nixon appeared visibly less confident, sweaty, and pale. So TV viewers resoundingly picked JFK as the winner, but radio viewers were slightly tended towards Nixon, having not seen his appearance. This leads us to the question of what influence do these really have on the outcome. The 1960 case is strong anecdotal evidence to the affirmative.
The 1960 case is strong evidence that the appearance influence the people to choose the candidate.
Evidence on whether presidential TV debates shape the outcome of elections is mixed
Now there is competition among news broadcasters to have breaking news and exclusives with candidates for office, candidates and their campaign staffs have developed strategies for capitalizing on this and have begun to have campaign managers
What is a campaign managers
responsible for press coverage of the candidate, having individuals in charge of camera angles, lighting, and accommodations for the press. They have staff that is in charge of making whatever the candidate is doing interesting to the media. Often these are people who know media personalities, and try to influence their reporting in a positive spin for the candidate
What are the popular television shows are actually showing the highest numbers with younger demographics than any other news source
The Daily Show with Trevor Noah.
Last Week Tonight with John Oliver
i. The majority of Americans think that the media reflect a bias in one direction or another
ii. The Attitudes of Journalists
1. Substantial evidence exists that top journalists working for the nation's most famous newspapers do tend to be liberal
iii. The Impact on Reporting - even with the acknowledged tilt among journalists, the question then becomes what, if any, impact this has on their reporting
Media scholar Kathleen Hall Jamieson - suggests that).
we should not think of the media bias in partisan terms, but a more appropriate and readily perceivable bias in the media in their reporting is the bias against losers in campaigns. Basically losers (those who perform less well in the campaign, the primaries, etc.) receive much less media coverage than the winners (usually the front-runners
Use of winner-loser paradigm to describe
events throughout the campaigns - we talked about this a little bit in that we always immediately want to know which candidate "won" the debate or who is ahead in the polls at all times, because they are "winning". The losers in these are much less interesting.
Selection Bias and the bottom line -
because the business of television is so massive in today's world, the decision to air certain things is often influences by the bottom line, or said another way, the revenue that the media outlet might generate from such programming or what have you, usually in terms of advertising.
More than a third of all journalists surveyed in a recent Pew study stated that they have felt pressured by either advertisers or corporate owners concerning what they write or broadcast
A changing news culture
news organizations today are changing the way that they present the news. Most are choosing to look for special niches in which to build an audience, instead of trying to capture a general audience. Many political news outlets, especially national broadcasts, are choosing to focus on personal commentary by highly politicized TV figures. The focus is changing to focus on HOW they present the news instead of WHAT they cover.
Campaign Ad - 1960 John F. Kennedy - "Kennedy for Me" Democrat WIN (Nixon)
200 commercials, which varied widely in subject and style. Kennedy spots showcased his speaking abilities, using excerpts from rallies, speeches, and debates.
ads: Jackie Kennedy's Spanish-language ad was aimed at Hispanic voters
Harry Belafonte rallied the support of African American vote.
More than the ads, two key television events gave Kennedy his winning. The first was speech to the Houston Ministerial Association in which he responded to concerns that Catholicism he proclaimed his allegiance to the separation of church and state and turned the issue into a question not of religion but of religious tolerance. The second and more important was the Kennedy-Nixon debate on September 26, the first of four televised general-election presidential debates. Kennedy appeared tanned, confident, and vigorous. Nixon, wearing no makeup and a light-colored suit that blended into the background, looked exhausted and pale, and sweated profusely.
John F. Kennedy, was attempting to become the first Catholic president and, at age 43, Nixon argued that he had the maturity and experience to deal with the Communists, while Kennedy attempted to turn his youth into an advantage, proclaiming in his acceptance speech at the Democratic convention, "We stand today on the edge of a new frontier."
Campaign Ad - 1952 Adlai Stevenson - "Platform Double Talk" You Never Had It So Good" democrat loose
President Harry S. Truman announced that he would not seek re-election. Truman support Illinois Governor Adlai Stevenson.
Speaking about the role of television advertising in election campaigns, Adlai Stevenson said, "I think the American people will be shocked by such contempt for their intelligence. This isn't Ivory Soap versus Palmolive."
Stevenson based his television strategy on a series of eighteen half-hour speeches that aired on Tuesday and Thursday nights at 10:30.
Stevenson never warmed up to the medium during the campaign. He refused to appear in his own spots, and his speeches, his son tells him, "I like watching television better than being on it," Stevenson replies, "I guess that goes for all of us, doesn't it?"
Campaign Ad - 1952 Dwight Eisenhower - "Ike for President" Republican WIN
strategists preferred thirty-minute blocks of television time for the broadcast of campaign speeches. What distinguished Eisenhower's campaign from Stevenson's was that it relied more on spot ads than on speeches. The campaign pioneered their use with a series of ads titled "Eisenhower Answers America."
The idea for the spots came from Madison Avenue advertising executive Rosser Reeves, who had created the M&M "melts in your mouth, not in your hands" campaign. Reeves convinced Eisenhower that spot ads placed immediately before or after such popular TV programs as I Love Lucy would reach more viewers, and at a much lower cost, than half-hour speeches.
In each of the simple, twenty-second spots, Eisenhower responded to a question from an "ordinary citizen." focused on three issues cited by polls as the voters' main concerns: the Korean War, corruption in government, and the high cost of living.
played a key role in planning the Allied victory in World War II. A poll in March 1952 found Eisenhower the most admired living American, and in November he won a landslide victory on the basis of his pledge to clean up "the mess in Washington" and end the Korean War.
Campaign Ad - 1968 Hubert Humphrey - "Laughing" Democrat Loose Humphrey-Muskie, Two You Can Trust" (Richard Nixon Win, another Wallace)
By 1968, one of the most turbulent years in American history, the number of American troops in Vietnam had risen . Martin Luther King, Jr. was assassinated, Robert F. Kennedy was assassinated Vice President Hubert Humphrey, who entered the race late and had not won any primaries, became the Democratic nominee.
The Republicans nominated Richard M. Nixon, who was attempting a political comeback after losing the 1960 presidential. Nixon claimed to speak for the "silent majority" of law-abiding citizens whose voices were presumably drowned out amidst the social upheaval, and he promised a return to the stability of the Eisenhower years.
The strategy behind the 1968 Democratic commercials was to convince the public that Hubert Humphrey could be trusted and Richard Nixon could not.
it was easier, and safer, for Humphrey to attack. campaign produced several powerful negative ads reminiscent of Johnson's anti-Goldwater campaign. One spot, which evoked the famous "Daisy Girl" ad by showing images of mushroom cloudes while criticizing Nixon's opposition to the signing of a nuclear nonproliferation treaty, aired during a broadcast of Dr. Strangelove.
Humphrey's positive ads stressed his personality, portraying him as a trustworthy, compassionate man with a commitment to domestic issues such as civil rights, education, and Social Security. One spot, "Voting Booth", openly acknowledged voter apathy.
The centerpiece of the Nixon advertising campaign was series of spots by filmmaker Eugene Jones. With orchestrated montages of still photographs accompanied by jarring, dissonant music, his ads created an image of a country out of control, with crime on the rise, violence in the streets, The ads implicitly linked these problems to the Democratic administration, of which Humphrey was a part.
The most controversial of Jones's ads, "Convention", juxtaposed unflattering still photographs of a smiling Humphrey with images of Vietnam and the chaos of the Democratic convention, all to the ironic accompaniment of the Dixieland song "Hot Time in the Old Town Tonight." The ad implied that Humphrey either had caused these problems or didn't care about them.
Campaign Ad - 2004 George W. Bush - "Windsurfing" Republic Win. "Steady Leadership in Times of Change" (Kerry)
Terrorism and the war in Iraq were clearly the central issues of the 2004 presidential
The most influential ads of the campaign were produced by a relatively small PAC committee, Swift Boat Veterans for Truth. Their ads, including "Any Questions?,"
The Internet became an important medium during the 2004 campaign. Candidate Websites functioned as the online equivalent of campaign, used to organize, mobilize, energize, and raise funds from existing supporters. the Democratic and Republican nominees took advantage of new social networking technologies and platforms. The widespread availability of broadband access made it possible for video to be circulated easily on the Web. Web ads tend to be edgier and more provocative than TV commercials, partly because they are often targeted to specific groups with strong opinions about candidates and issues, but also because of the nature of viral video.
the main goal of the President's advertising efforts was to portray Senator Kerry as a flip-flopping liberal in favor of high taxes and reckless cuts in defense spending.
In late June, the Bush campaign issued a Web ad, "Kerry's Coalition of the Wild-Eyed," which attempts to depict Kerry and fellow Democrats as being excessively angry. The controversial ad intercuts images of Adolf Hitler from MoveOn's "Bush in 30 Seconds" competition. Links to the ad were e-mailed to six million supporters, and graced the Websites of major news outlets.
The controversial August ad from Swift Boat Veterans for Truth ("Any Questions?") was the first from an outside group to inspire response ads directly from the opposing campaign (such as "Old Tricks").
before John Kerry became the presumed Democratic nominee, the Democratic Party benefited from anti-Bush ads created Political Action Committees. The MoveOn PAC enlisted help from well-known Hollywood directors and personalities for its ads, and appealed to Internet audiences to fund the television broadcasts. The best MoveOn ads were those made by documentary filmmaker Errol Morris, including "Real People: Rhonda Nix," part of a series of interview ads with Republicans who were disenchanted with President Bush.
while Kerry's positive biographical ads were playing on television, the Democrats and Kerry issued online attack ads using images of President Bush. Capitalizing on increasing public disaffection with events in Iraq, the Democratic National Committee issued "Mistakes Were Made," in which Bush's remarks from an April press conference are set to ominous music.
In the face of strong attack ads from the Bush campaign and from independent groups, Kerry's TV ads became much more aggressive in tone as well, frequently attacking the President on Iraq and the economy. His campaign also created a few response ads for television within hours, such as "Juvenile," a rebuttal of the Bush ad "Windsurfing." The Kerry ad was made on the same day as the Bush ad, and both ads were given free play on the evening news.
Campaign Ad - 1964 Lyndon Johnson - "Daisy Girl" Democrat Win (Goldwater)
President Lyndon B. Johnson, who took office following John F. Kennedy's assassination in November 1963, enhanced his image as a tough legislator by winning a hard-fought battle to pass the landmark Civil Rights Act of 1964, which guaranteed African-Americans access to all public facilities, and banned discrimination by race, religion, or sex.
The most celebrated and perhaps most notorious of all political commercials was aired as a paid spot just once, during the NBC Movie of the Week on September 7, 1964. In Johnson's "Peace Little Girl (Daisy)" ad, a young girl counts to ten as she picks the petals off a daisy. When she reaches nine, an ominous adult voice begins counting down to zero as a close-up of the little girl dissolves to a nuclear explosion. Tony Schwartz, the ad's creator, called it "the first Rorschach test on the American public." Without mentioning Goldwater or citing any statements by him, the ad exploited the established public fear that he would start a nuclear war if elected president.
Campaign Ad - 1984 Ronald Reagan - "Bear in the Woods" Republican Win. "America Is Back". "Morning Again in America." (Mondale)
In 1984, the economy was in an upswing. Oil prices were low, interest rates were high. The popular President Reagan was earning the label "the Teflon president" for his ability to escape unscathed from setbacks. In October 1983, 241 marines were killed in a terrorist attack in Beirut. The debacle was eclipsed days later by a marine invasion of Grenada, purportedly to save a small group of medical students from the island's new leftist government. Public confidence in the military was restored.
Reagan succeeded in tagging Mondale as a typical free-spending Democrat, and won the most lopsided electoral victory since 1936.
With lush images of Americans buying houses, raising flags, washing cars, going to work, and playing in their yards, all set to swelling music in a montage style familiar from soft-drink and beer commercials, Ronald Reagan ads presented an upbeat image of "Morning in America." Reagan consultant Philip Dusenbery has said that the ads were designed to evoke emotion rather than thought or understanding: "That's the most powerful part of advertising. Reagan campaign produced several ads to defuse Mondale's main attacks. The most memorable spot,"Bear," responded to charges that Reagan had unnecessarily escalated military spending. In the ad a bear, representing the Soviet threat, prowls the woods as the narrator asks, "Isn't it smart to be as strong as the bear—if there is a bear?" Another ad rebutted Mondale's charges that "Reaganomics" was unfair to the middle class by defining "Mondalenomics" as higher taxes. In addition, Reagan's ads consistently tied Mondale to the Carter administration, asking, "Now that our country is turning around, why would we ever turn back?"
Campaign Ad - 1992 Bill Clinton - "Little Town Called Hope" Democrat WIN "For People, For a Change" (Clinton, Bush, Perot)
George Bush, the incumbent president, enjoyed approval ratings near 90 percent following America's decisive military victory in Operation Desert Storm in 1991
Democrats, nomination Bill Clinton, governor of Arkansas. By early 1992, the U.S. economy was faltering, and Clinton's campaign decided to focus almost exclusively on this issue. A prominently placed sign in Clinton's campaign headquarters read "It's the economy, stupid!" Ironically, because of the fall of the Soviet Union in 1989, which the Republicans took credit for, the Cold War was not an important issue during the campaign, and the Democrats were able to keep the emphasis on domestic concerns.
Bill Clinton's masterfully orchestrated campaign made effective use of free television as well as paid advertising. Cable television provided numerous opportunities for unpaid appearances, whether on talk shows, in televised town meetings, in unedited coverage of campaign events on C-SPAN, or in news specials on MTV. The daytime talk-show format, in which candidates took questions from a live audience, was so popular at the time that it was even used for one of the presidential debates. Clinton proved to be extremely comfortable with this intimate format.
Clinton's ads were consistent in style and message. Attempting to show that his detailed economic plan was solid, many of them used statements of facts and figures, cleanly presented with black letters on a white background, with key words underlined in red. Clinton's commercials were also successful in presenting the candidate as a centrist, with positions that couldn't easily be labeled liberal. One ad stated that Clinton and Gore "don't think the way the old Democratic party did," and cited the ticket's support of the death penalty and their desire to "end welfare as we know it," balance the budget, and cut spending—all traditionally Republican positions.
Bush campaign had trouble finding a strong positive message.
The Structure and Makeup of Congress
the Legislature (or Congress) was purposefully intended by the founders to be the central institution of American government. This is why we set up this branch in the constitution first
How is the apportionment of House Seats?
Provided for in the Constitution
-Based on state's population
-Reapportioned every 10 years after Census;
Because we no longer increase the number
of seats in the House, each states gain
directly results in another states' loss of
-Each state guaranteed at least 1 seat
How are the Congressional Districts elected?
U.S. Senators are elected to represent the entire state, but representatives are elected from specific areas know as congressional districts. The constitution does not mention how these districts will be made, that decision was granted to the states to draw their own district lines.
How many congressional district are? The size of the House
435 Members - so there are 435 congressional districts across the United States. Because we are no longer expanding the size of the House of Representatives , many members of congress are now representing more and more people, most usually about 725,000 people
How does the congressional district line is make?
state legislatures were originally tasked with drawing congressional district lines, this may also be done by independent commissions if delegated to by the state legislature.
What are the Requirement of Equal Representation for congressional district line?
-Baker v. Carr (1962)
this is the most important, as states are required to make districts that have approximately the same population of citizens. If the populations of the districts were not the same, then the value of citizens' votes would not be the same.
In the past, representatives from rural areas often tried to have districts be malapportioned to disadvantage voters in urban areas.
ii. Baker v. Carr (1962) - it was not until 1962 that the Court decided to address the issue of Malapportionment, and ruled that states would be required to make districts of the same size. This is the case that established the principle of "One man, one vote."
meaning that a district has to be connected together
though this has been relaxed often in a process called gerrymandering:
this is when a district's lines are drawn in a way to maximize the influence of a certain group or political party.
When was the first gerrymandering?
in the election of 1812, the Massachusetts legislature had drawn the Essex country district in a way that advantaged Governor Eldridge Gerry's party, and the district resembled a salamander, so the newspaper called it Gerry's salamander, then shortened to gerrymander, and the name stuck ever since.
Types of Gerrymandering
This is drawing district lines to advantage one political party over another. This type of gerrymandering has been determined to be unconstitutional and districts drawn in this manner are deemed illegal and have to be redrawn.
this is usually accomplished by creating what are called minority-majority districts, which are districts that will basically be just that, a racial minority group of some kind will be the majority in that district. This is basically just packing a racial group into one district. This is debated heavily by both sides, those in favor suggest that it is necessary to protect equal representation under the Voting Rights Act of 1965, and they will also point out that these minority majority districts have led to a great increase in African American elected officials, especially in the South. Even with this possible benefit. It is also illegal and violates the constitution.
this type of gerrymandering is meant to draw districts that advantage incumbent (already elected) politicians, irrespective of their political party. This kind of gerrymandering frequent and legal, thus continues today.
Could you Limiting Racial Gerrymandering ?
opponents to racial redistricting will suggest that doing so violates the equal protection clause, and is unconstitutional.
This is where a certain population of some kind is split between a bunch of districts so that they are less influential in each of those districts
This is where a certain population is lumped all into one district so that they will clearly dominate the district they are packed into, but not influence any of the others.
The Supreme Court held that when race is the dominant factor in drawing district lines, they are unconstitutional and must be redrawn -
Picture of Chicago's 4th District on Second Slide
What is Gerrymandering Documentary ?
gives you a more in depth look at the concept of incumbency gerrymandering in particular
The Representational Function of Congress
The trustee view of representation
The instructed-delegate view of representation
The partisan view of representation
The "politico" style
Congress is the closest branch of government to the actual people. it is quite often that congresspersons face difficult decisions between policies that might help the American people at large but could be perhaps damaging to their home districts or their constituency (the segment of the electorate they are elected from and represent). Different legislators have different views on how they should act in their representation of the American people.
The Trustee view of representation
this idea of representation believes that elected officials should act as trustees of the people, acting on their behalf for the betterment of the whole society, not just the ones that elected them into office. This believes that legislators are much freer to vote their conscious and what they believe is in the best interest and needs of the nation as a while.
The Instructed-Delegate view of representation
this view of representation sees elected officials as the delegates of the people that elected them and should act on their behalf only. In this form, representatives would as best as possible mirror the views of their electing constituency.
The partisan view of representation t.
this view of representation is that elected officials are supposed to act on behalf of their party, basically taking their views and actions based upon what party leadership would suggest.
The "Politico" Style
this is basically just a blending of all three forms of representation. Representatives will be trustees on some issues, delegates on others, and partisans on others.
Who can be member of the House Representative?
A citizen for at least seven years prior to the election
A legal resident of the state from which he/she is to be elected
At least 25 years old
Who can be member of the Senate
a. A citizen for at least nine years
b. A legal resident of the state from which s/he is to be elected
c. At least 30 years old
What are the The Power of Incumbency?
Incumbent politicians enjoy several privileges over their opponents
Congressional franking privileges
Access to the media
most elected officials already have systems of generating funds in place, thus making re-election campaigns easier to finance.
Congressional franking privileges
members of congress can mail newsletters or correspondence to their constituents at the taxpayers' expense. (though this is less valuable in a time of email and social networking)
administrative staffs in Washington can assist in re-election campaign efforts.
incumbents have had the ability to actually effect legislation that might benefit their constituency, and can take credit for legislative successes.
Access to the media
have the ability to stage press events, they're gaining free publicity basically
they already have name exposure in their constituency especially. They are better known to the voters than challengers.
House of Representatives - 2 years
Senate - 6 years (staggered terms - 1/3 of the Senate is elected every 2 years - this makes the Senate much less susceptible to rapid shifts in control, or at least extreme shifts)
iii. Congressional Sessions
1. Each congressional term is divided into two regular sessions - one in each year of the Congress
iv. Term Limits
1. There is no limit to the number of terms a senator or representative can serve
Each congressional term is divided into two regular sessions - one in each year of the Congress
There is no limit to the number of terms a senator or representative can serve
1. Speaker of the House - Currently Paul Ryan (R - Wisconsin)
2. Majority Leader - Currently Kevin McCarthy (R - California)
3. Minority Leader - Currently Nancy Pelosi (D - California)
4. Majority and Minority Whips
House leadership 1. Speaker of the House
Chosen by members of the House
Controls committee assignments and bill placements
Presides over sessions, votes to break a tie, sets House rules, and schedules
usually the speaker of the house selected as a longstanding member of the House of Representatives that has some party clout and notoriety.
committee assignments are coveted by members of the House as these are the places for more power and influence in policies passed by the House. So the Speaker's power to assign appointments to committees and especially chair positions.
House leadership 2. Majority Leader
Elected by the caucus of majority party members
Keep the party together
Plans the party's legislative program
- this is basically the second in command to the Speaker of the House
House leadership 3. Minority Leader
1. The primary duty is to maintain solidarity within the party
2. When there is a change in seat distribution after an election the majority and minority can often switch and in this case what usually happens is the minority leader then becomes the Speaker of the House. In 2010 Nancy Pelosi was the Speaker of the House and John Boehner was the House Minority Leader. After the election shifted the majority to the Republican Party, they switched positions.
House leadership 4. Majority and Minority Whips
1. Assistants to the majority and minority leaders
2. Responsible for making sure party positions are known by all party members
The Majority and Minority Whips are usually thought to be the ones rallying support by partisans for or against a vote on different measures, basically they "whip" the party members into shape and get them to behave in a certain way that the party wants them to act. Whips constantly seek to determine how each party member will vote on any issue or bill so that they can determine how votes will come down and maneuver to secure the necessary votes for any policy.
1. The constitution makes the Vice President the President of the Senate - Currently Vice President Mike Pence
2. President Pro Tempore - Currently Orrin Hatch (R - Utah) and has been a U.S. Senator since 1977 (40 years)
3. Party Leadership - Majority leader in the Senate currently Mitch McConnell (R - Kentucky) and minority leader Charles Schumer (D - New York).
4. Whips - Currently Majority Whip is John Cornyn (R - Texas) and Minority Whip is Dick Durbin (D - Illinois).
the President of the Senate - Currently Vice President Mike Pence
S/He cannot take part in Senate debates and may cast a vote in the Senate only in the event of a tie - Mike Pence has cast 1 deciding vote in 2017 with the nomination of Education Secretary Betsy DeVos. His predecessor, Joe Biden, never cast a vote in his 8-year tenure as the President of the Senate. Some VP's in history have cast as many as 29 deciding votes (John Adams).
President Pro Tempore of the Senate
Elected by the whole Senate, serves in the absence of the Vice President - usually the Vice President is busy tending to other matters and the President Pro Tempore is usually the one presiding over the Senate. The President Pro Tempore is usually from the majority party and is usually the member with the longest standing tenure in the Senate.
Party Leadership - Majority leader in the Senate and minority leader
The real power in the Senate is held by the majority leader, the minority leader and their whips
Whips - Majority Whip and Minority Whip of the Senate
Assistants to the majority and minority leaders - and again they are charged with doing the same partisan vote whipping that is done in the House (granted there are much fewer members that they have to do this with).
The committee system is a way to divide the legislative labor - this also allows different legislators to specialize in particular areas of policy.
What is the long lasting, permanent and most powerful committees in Congress
who is controlling the committesss?
Committees are controlled by the majority party - committee membership is divided based on the number of members in each chamber from each party
There are more than 200 subcommittees in Congress today.
Special, or select committees
Special or select commitees
These are committees that can be permanent or temporary that are put together to study a specific problem or issue
these are created when there needs to be joint action by the House and Senate, and are made up of members from both chambers of Congress.
these are formed when there is some difference between legislation on a particular issue between the House and the Senate. This committee is comprised of members from both chambers, and meets to determine how these discrepancies (usually in narrow wording or formation of proposals) can be resolved. These are necessary because of the requirement that no bill can be sent to the White House for Presidential approval before it is passed in both the House and Senate in identical form.
What are the differences between Senate and House
a. House of Representatives
i. Members chosen from local districts
ii. 2-year term
iii. Always elected by voters
iv. May impeach federal officials
v. Larger (435 members)
vi. More formal rules
vii. Debate limited
viii. Floor action controlled
ix. Less prestige and notoriety
x. Originate revenue bills
xi. Local or narrow leadership
i. Members chosen from entire state
ii. 6-year term
iii. Originally (Until 1913 with the 17th Amendment) elected by state legislatures
iv. May convict federal officials of impeachable offenses
v. Smaller (100 members)
vi. Fewer rules and restrictions
vii. Debate extended
viii. Unanimous consent rules
ix. More prestige and media attention
x. Advise and consent on presidential appointments and treaties
xi. National leadership
a. Introduction of Legislation
b. Referral to Committees
c. Reports on a bill .
d. Rules Committee & Scheduling
e. Floor Debate
g. Conference Committee
h. Presidential Action .
i. Overriding a Veto -
although legislation can be created by a number of sources (the executive, private citizens, lobbyists, members of Congress or their staff) WHO can formally introduce a piece of legislation.
ONLY a member of Congress
what is markup session
The subcommittee will then meet and decide if they want to approve the bill as is, add any amendments, or draft a whole new bill in what is called a
Where are sending once a bill is formally introduced by a member of Congress and given a number, it is then sent to the appropriate standing committee.
In the House, this is the Speaker's job, in the Senate it is the presiding officer (so either the Vice President, if in attendance, or the President Pro Tempore). Once there, the chair of the standing committee will usually send the bill to a subcommittee. Once here the members of the committee begin the process on researching the bill, possibly conducting hearings where they bring in experts to testify about the bill. The subcommittee will then meet and decide if they want to approve the bill as is, add any amendments, or draft a whole new bill in what is called a markup session. Once the bill is done in the subcommittee, then it goes before the standing committee, where they have their own markup session.
Reports on a bill
this is where the standing committee will report their decision on a bill back to the full chamber. Can report favorably or unfavorably and can report the original bill, offered with amendments, or an entirely new bill.
Rules Committee & Scheduling on a bill
this is where a bill gets put on the official legislative calendar. The Rules Committee in the House will determine when the bill will be considered and debated, and will also set up the length of the time the bill can be debated for, and whether the bill can be amended during the floor debate. The Senate is a bit different, as the bill is offered up to be brought before the whole chamber by a vote of unanimous consent. So this is where an individual legislator can disrupt the process and stop a bill from being considered for a vote.
Because of the house's size, floor debate is considerably limited. The Speaker is responsible for recognizing those who are allowed to speak on a bill and also can remove their privilege to speak if they do not "stick to the subject" (so no reading of Green Eggs and Ham in the House of Representatives). Though it should be said, that floor debates rarely change mind of Congresspersons, it's just a formal part in the process.
Vote on the Bill
In both the House and Senate, the members present all vote on the bill for or against. There are some that can choose to be present but abstain (or just not cast a vote in either way). Votes can be done by voice vote (yay or nay) or they can actually record votes (also called roll-call votes). The House (again because of its size) since 1973 has adopted electronic voting; the Senate still does not have this
Conference Committee on the Bill
a bill must be considered in both the House and Senate and if there is any difference between the bills that pass between the two chambers (and there almost always is) then there will be formed a conference committee made up of Senators and Representatives to come up with a compromised version of the bill that the two chambers can take back and pass so the bill will be identical.
Presidential Action on the Bill
once the bill is passed through both the Senate and the House in identical form the bill is sent to the President for their decision on the bill. The President has 10 days to decide whether to sign the bill or veto it. If the President does not sign the bill after 10 days it actually goes into effect, unless Congress has adjourned before the 10-day period. This particular kind of veto is called a pocket-veto.
When a president does not sign a bill within 10 days when Congress is not in session
Overriding a Veto
If a president chooses to formally veto a bill, Congress can still make the bill into a law. If the Congress can get 2/3 of the members to vote in both chambers, then they can override the president's veto. Practically, this rarely happens because presidents know when congress would override their veto so they will usually just not sign the bill, let the 10 days pass and it will become law, without the president's signature.
The Investigative Function
Check on the Executive and sometimes Congress
Independent oversight bodies
Some often suggest that when a Congress and President are from the same party that Congress will often slack on their oversight function, but Congress has put some checks in place to guard against this by establishing oversight bodies that are responsible to Congress but not from Congress.
what is the biggest check that the legislature has over the executive branch. Congressional committees and subcommittees will often have investigatory hearings and oversight meetings where they investigate the executive branch, and sometimes even member of Congress as well
The Investigative Function
the process of impeachment is begun by the House where an official is actually voted on to be impeached (which again is just the formal accusation of a crime or misdoing) Once an official is impeached by the House, then the Senate actually tries the official for the misconduct. Only two presidents have been impeached by the House: (Nixon resigned in 1974 before the House voted to impeach him.)
1. Andrew Johnson (1868) - Johnson removed Edwin McMasters Stanton from office as Secretary of War in violation of the Tenure of Office Act - was acquitted
2. Bill Clinton (1998) - was charged with perjury and obstruction of justice concerning the investigation into his affair with former White House intern Monica Lewinsky
Impeaching other officers
1. Judge Thomas Porteous in 2010 - He was a U.S. District Court Judge for Eastern Louisiana whom the House impeached for bribery and signing false financial disclosure forms which constitutes perjury (lying under oath). The Senate convicted him and disqualified him from ever holding office in the United States again.
2. Justice Samuel Chase in 1804 - the only Supreme Court judge ever brought up on impeachment by the House, but was acquitted by the Senate
i The Constitution grants the president the power to appoint ambassadors, justices to the Supreme Court, and other offices of the United States - "with the Advice and Consent of the Senate"
ii. Presidential nominees appear first before the appropriate Senate committee. If the committee approves the nominee, the full Senate will vote on the nomination.
a. Authorization and Appropriation
i. Budgeting is a two-part procedure
1. Authorization: involves the creation of the legal basis for programs
2. Appropriation: Congress determines how many dollars will actually be spent in a given year on a particular government activity
a. Many public assistance programs (also often called entitlement programs) operate under open-ended authorization that in effect, place no limits on how much can be spent
b. The government is obligated: Social Security and veterans' benefits
c. Remaining federal programs fall under discretionary spending and can be altered by Congress
The Actual Budgeting Process
Begins 8-9 months before start of fiscal year
1. First budget resolution
Sets overall revenue goals and spending targets
Passed in May
2. Second budget resolution
Sets "binding" limits on taxes and spending
Passed in September before October 1
Whenever Congress is unable to pass a complete budget by October 1, it passes continuing resolutions - or in the recent case, will actually shutdown and suspend the functioning of most government until such continuing resolution can be passed
Who Can Become President; Article II, Section 1 of the Constitution states:
i. "No Person except a natural born Citizen, or a Citizen of the United States, at the time of the Adoption of this Constitution, shall be eligible to the Office of President; neither shall any Person be eligible to the Age of thirty-five Years, and been fourteen Years a Resident within the United States."
ii. Natural Born Citizen - Sorry Arnold Schwarzenegger, Ted Cruz?
1. Jus Soli - Citizen by soil - so being born on American soil
2. Jus Sanguinis - Citizen by blood - so being born to American citizen parents.
iii. 35 years of age
iv. 14 year resident
Perks of the President
Use of White House and staff
Fleet of automobiles, helicopters, and jets
Secret Service protection for the President, First Lady, and children forever.
Dental and Health Care
Compensation: $400,000 salary, $50,000 expenses, $100,000 travel no taxable, $19,000 entertainment
Even with all of the "perks" the job of president is still easily one of the most taxing jobs in all of America and is usually said to "age" the person far more than otherwise would have happened in normal 4 or 8 years.
Presidential Age and Occupation
Most common occupation: lawyer(has been 27 lawyers)
Must be 35 to be President, but average is 55 ( JFK was the youngest elected at 43 (Teddy Roosevelt was 42 when he assumed the presidency after the assassination of William McKinley), and oldest was Ronald Reagan who was 69 until the 2016 Election where Donald Trump won at age 70
President Race, Gender and Religion
Historically white, male, protestants
1960 - First Catholic - JFK
2008 - First African American - Obama
2012 Republican Candidates, Mitt Romney, was of the Mormon religion - In fact none of the top 3 challengers were Protestants as Rick Santorum and Newt Gingrich were both Catholic.
President Kennedy after the Bay of Pigs disaster. Kennedy went on national television and made a speech I don't think we'll ever hear again in our lifetime. I'm going to quote from it: "Ladies and gentlemen. Success has a thousand fathers and failure is an orphan. I failed. Blame me." Do you know what happened to Kennedy's popularity? It shot way up. People don't expect perfection from leaders, they expect honesty.
What is the meaning The president is often said to wear many hats.
meaning that the office of president is expected to fulfill a number of roles and jobs.
Roles of the President
1. Chief Executive
Article II of the Constitution
2. Commander in Chief Executive branch
Power to deploy armed forces
3. Head of State
Acts as country's representative
4. Chief Diplomat
5. Chief Legislator
State of the Union
6. Political Party Leader
Head of their party
Roles of the President; Chief Executive
the leader of the executive branch of government, the branch that enforces laws and federal court decisions, and treaties signed by the U.S.
iii. Examples: President can appoint, with Senate approval, and remove high officials in the federal government. Can grant reprieves and pardons. Is also usually responsible to handle national emergencies (like national disasters - think the president declaring an area a natural disaster area, sending the national guard, etc.)
Roles of the President; Commander in Chief Executive
i. The Power to deploy the armed forces - leads the entire nation's armed forces.
ii. Examples: the War Powers Resolution: the President can commit troops for 90 days in response to military threat, secret agreements with other countries, set up military governments in conquered states
iii. Can end fighting by calling cease-fires (armistice)
Roles of the President; Head of State
i Acts as the country's representative to the rest of the world - performing ceremonial functions and is a personal symbol of the nation as a whole
ii. Examples: declaring war heroes, dedicating national parks and post offices, throwing out the first pitch at baseball games, lighting the national Christmas tree, receiving foreign heads of state.
Roles of the President; Chief Diplomat
i President is the leader in foreign affairs of the nation, deals with foreign governments
ii. Examples: can negotiate and sign treaties with other nations, make pacts (executive agreements - without senate approval like is required with treaties), can acknowledge the legal existence of a country (think South Sudan)
Roles of the President; Chief Legislator
i The Constitution requires that the president "from time to time give to the Congress Information of the State of the Union, and recommend to their Consideration such Measures as he shall judge necessary and expedient."
ii. Examples: President gives their legislative agenda in the traditional State of the Union address. Suggests budget to Congress, can veto a bill by Congress, and can call a special session of Congress
Roles of President; Political Party Leader
i Head of their respective political party
ii. Examples: president chooses their vice president (during the campaign), makes appointments to top government positions usually to party faithful (patronage), and attempts to push through the party platform. Attends party fund-raisers. May help in the reelection or election efforts of party members in other offices.
The President's Constitutional Powers
1. The Constitutional Debate
2. The Specified Powers
Sections 2 and 3 of Article II of the Constitution
Proposal and Ratification of Treaties
Treaty - formal agreement between countries
Not always approved
Power to Grant Reprieves and Pardons
Pardon - a release from punishment or legal consequence of crime
3. Proposal and Ratification of Treaties
4. The Power to Grant Reprieves and Pardons
5. The President's Veto Power
6. The Veto in Recent Administrations
7. The Line-Item Veto
8. Pocket Veto
The Specified Powers of the President
Sections 2 and 3 of Article II of the Constitution - these are basically the roles of the president; commander in chief, executive appointments, make treaties, granting reprieves and pardons, deliver the State of the Union, call special sessions, receive ambassadors and other foreign dignitaries, execute laws passed by Congress.
Proposal and Ratification of Treaties
Treaty - formal agreement between countries.the president has the sole power to negotiate treaties with other countries. Though treaties have to be approved by the Senate by a 2/3 vote of those present.
Not always approved by Senate.
What is a pardon
A pardon is a release from punishment or legal consequences of a crime. This is the president's official check on judicial power. The president can grant a pardon in all issues of federal offenses except for cases of impeachment.
What was the most controversial pardon?
by a President (Gerald Ford) was granted to the former president Richard Nixon before he had been brought up on formal charges for his involvement in the Watergate affair.
The President's Veto Power
This is the president refusing to sign a bill into law
How was the first President that uses the Veto power?
Andrew Johnson who vetoed 21 bills
How was the president that most veto are used?
372 regular vetoes (9 were overridden by Congress) and another 263 pocket vetoes. He is also the only president to serve four terms.
FDR (Franklin Delano Roosevelt)
How many time does George Bush use the VETO?
(12 times) used the veto very rarely, only once in his first 6 years in office, because Congress supported his policy agenda (being controlled by Republicans. After the Democrats took control of Congress in 2007, he vetoed 11 bills (4 of which Congress overrode his veto).
How many times Obama used the Veto?
(9 times) did not need it in his first two years because his party controlled the Congress. Only using it twice. Surprisingly though, even in the next three years since the House has switched to the Republican majority, Obama did not use any vetoes at all, as most legislation he did not agree with did not survive past the democratically controlled Senate. Later in his term, Obama used his veto power more so, since after 2014 the Republican Party controlled both houses of Congress. Since 2014 (Actually since February of 2015) he used the veto 7 times, making his total 9
the power of a president, to reject individual provisions of a bill. because the president would have to veto the whole thing even if they were only were opposed to a very small portion of the bill.
President Bill Clinton actually signed a line-item veto bill into law in 1996, but the practice was deemed unconstitutional in 1998 by the Supreme Court.
when a president can choose not to act on a bill that comes to their desk. If they do so, after 10 days of inaction the bill becomes a law, just without presidential approval for it. This is essentially the President pulling the bill into the desk "pocket".
The President's Inherent Powers
Those that are necessary to carry out the specific responsibilities of the president as set forth in the Constitution
What is the president's prerogative power?
when presidents have been able to significantly expand the role and authority of the office of president.
Because the Constitution is vague as to the actual carrying out of the presidential powers, presidents are left to define the limits on their authority
The Expansion of Presidential Powers
i. Expansion under Later Presidents
ii. The President's Expanded Legislative Powers
iii. The Increasing Use of Executive Orders
iv. An Unprecedented use of Signing Statements
v. Signing Statements under Bush
vi. Evolving Presidential Power in Foreign Affairs
the Constitution is very vague on the powers of the president, so the presidents themselves have expanded and carved out the powers that the office has. Many were established under George Washington, like removing officials from office, a power he believed was implied under the president's explicit right to appoint officials as well.
The Expansion of Presidential Powers
this is a tactic often used by popular presidents of threatening to use public opinion as a bargaining chip against Congress to persuade them to do what the president wants.
The power to persuade -
Richard Neustadt "Presidential power is the power to persuade" - the president has expanded their ability to persuade members on Capitol Hill to work to extend their legislative agenda to match that of the president.
What was the most strongly expanded under the FDR presidency during and after the Great Depression. Since that time, the president has been expected to be involved in the economic policies of the country and its social programs. This expectation is most extremely pushed for during difficult economic times, so in 2007 there began the push during the Great Recession in 2008.
The power to influence the economy
are considered an inherent power of the president; these are orders of the president to carry out a policy that are described in laws passed by Congress.
FDR's terms as president, after that we saw a dramatic decrease in the use of executive orders. FDR issued 3522 executive orders, Obama issued 277, George W. Bush issued 291. Executive orders can be for very high profile measures that the president issued to cause immediate action without congressional delay
Signing statements are a small statement that a president will attach to their signing of a bill that describe the way in which the president will discuss their position on a bill in more detail. (Ronald Reagan used 3x)
Who was the president that used more signing statements?
George W. Bush, issuing more than 161 statements affecting 1200 provisions in federal law
who is the leader of the nation in foreign affairs
Evolving Presidential Power in Foreign Affairs
The War Powers Resolution
The War on Terrorism
pacts between the president and other heads of state. The only restriction on executive agreements is that, since it was passed in 1972, the president has to inform Congress within 60 days of making such agreements.
the U.S. Constitution gives the power to declare war to Congress, but the president, in their commander in chief function has often disregarded this and committed the armed forces to conflict without a declaration of war from Congress
Military Actions ; example
Truman sent troops to Korea in 1950
Lyndon Johnson sent troops to Vietnam in 1965
Nixon invaded Cambodia in 1970
Reagan sent troops to Lebanon and Grenada in 1983
George H.W. Bush sent troops to Panama in 1989
Clinton sent troops to Haiti in 1994, Bosnia in 1995 and bombed Iraq in 1998. Also in 1999 decided on his own to send U.S. troops under the command of NATO to bomb Yugoslavia.
The War Powers Resolution
passed in 1973 that limited the power of president s to not seek Congressional influence in military engagement. This requires the president to notify Congress within 48 hours of committing troops and the president cannot keep troops engaged for more than 60 days without Congressional authorization.
Congress passed a joint resolution that allowed the president to use "all necessary and appropriate force against those nations, organizations, or persons he determines planned, authorized, committed, or aided the terrorist attacks that occurred on September 11, 2001". This was the basis for involvement in Afghanistan and then also 2002 passage of another joint resolution for involvement in Iraq.
The War on Terrorism
There was not a formal Declaration of War for the War on Terrorism after the attacks on September 11, 2001.
The President's Cabinet
Today -14 department secretaries, the attorney general, and other officials.
VP (vice president) typically also.
A kitchen cabinet
is a very informal group of persons to whom the president turns to for advice - name came from Andrew Jackson who allegedly met with his group of advisers in the kitchen of the White House
President Obama has centralized the advisory function by appointing a large number of in-house "czars," each having responsibility for a certain policy area - some have suggested that this undermines the authority of cabinet members and also the Congress because they do not get to confirm these czars like they do the president's actual cabinet members.
The Executive Office of the President
Established in 1939
Consist in the top advisers and assistants
The organization EOP is subject to change
The White House Office
Most direct contact with the President
Headed by the Chief of Staff
Office of Management and Budget (OMB)
Main function - assist the president in preparing
President appoints the director of OMB with the
consent of the Senate
The National Security Council
Established in 1947 - defense and foreign
policy of the United States
Members: President, VP, Sec. of State and
Defense, several informal advisors
Who is the person that often meeting with the press and making public statements on the behalf of the president
There is usually some policy, or issue that the first lady will take up during their time in office that they will work in
Vice President (VP)
Chosen to balance the ticket - this can be done to balance the ticket for office in terms of partisan bases or in terms of satisfying critiques over the presidential candidate
What is the role of the Vice president (VP)
Growth in VP responsibility
VP is an important advisor
The VP becomes chief executive should the President die, be impeached, or resign
Nine VPs have become President
Who was the most influential VP in history, having extensive knowledge of the bureaucracy (having worked in the Ford administration as Chief of Staff) and also in Congress having been a representative from Wyoming, also influence in the Bush administration
How many VP are become President by succession?
Nine VPs ;
John Tyler after Harrison died of pneumonia, Millard Fillmore after Tyler died of illness,
Andrew Johnson after Lincoln was assassinated, Chester Arthur after Garfield was assassinated, Teddy Roosevelt after McKinley was assassinated, Coolidge after Harding dies from a heart attack, Truman after Roosevelt died from cerebral hemorrhage,
Lyndon Johnson after Kennedy was assassinated, and Gerald Ford after Nixon resigned.
Twenty-Fifth Amendment (1967) ---Presidential Succession
the 25th Amendment not only provides for when there is a vacancy in the office of president, but also when there is a vacancy in the VP position. In this case the president is allowed to nominate a person and have them confirmed by a majority in the House AND Senate
The Case of Gerald Ford
the only person to ever serve as president who was not elected either president or VP. In 1973, Vice President Spiro Agnew (Under Nixon) resigned from office under tax evasion and money laundering. Because of the 25th Amendment, President Nixon was allowed to Gerald Ford as the new Vice President. Ford was then confirmed by the House and the Senate and became VP. Then about 9 months later Nixon was embroiled in the Watergate scandal and resigned from the office of President. Due to the line of succession his new VP, Gerald Ford then assumed the office of President.
Note on #14: Secretary of Transportation Elaine Chao would be 14th in the line of succession, however she is ineligible from becoming President because she is not a natural-born citizen, as she is a Taiwanese naturalized citizen.
Congressional and Presidential Relations ("Frienemies")
The relationship between Congress and the President is perhaps the most important of the branches of government.
Congress still maintains the ultimate legislative authority.
Divided government; when branches of
government are divided among partisan lines
in 2014 the majority in the Senate also switched control from Democrats to Republicans and remains so today.
because elections are not always concurrent, the president and Congress will feel different motivations or senses of urgency to get a legislative agenda through.
Members of Congress and the president have different constituencies, which influences their relationship
Advantage: The President
An inherent power claimed by Presidents to withhold information from, or refuse to appear before, Congress or the courts
Can extend this privilege to other executive officials
Uses and Abuses of Executive Privilege
controversial, and sometimes viewed as an abuse of power.
1. Richard Nixon invoked executive privilege to not speak with Congress during the Watergate Scandal
2. Bill Clinton invoked executive privilege to keep details of his sexual relationship with Monica Lewinsky a secret
3. George W. Bush invoked executive privilege regularly after 2007 (when Congress became controlled by Democrats) in a number of investigations about actions taken by his administration during the war on terror or in Iraq.
4. Barack Obama invoked executive privilege with regards to information on government activities working to combat Mexican drug cartels in 2012, which served top effectively shield email correspondence from Attorney General Eric Holder in what came to be known as the Operation Fast and Furious records.
The interplay between Congress and the President
is more often covered by media, brought to the public's attention. Supreme Court justices are nominated by the President and then Congress (the Senate) provides "advice and consent" (Article II, Section 2)
Mitch McConnell (R - Senate Majority Leader)
Republicans - "Delay, delay, delay"
U.S. Constitution > Partisan politics
The vacancy on the Court lasted more than a calendar year (Scalia died Feb 13, 2016). This is the longest since the U.S. Civil War
What was the game being played in 2016 with the prospective nomination by the Republican Senate at the time of Scalia's death.
Any appointee by then-President Obama would need to be, given the late term in office and a Republican-controlled Senate, a more moderate justice, which his appointment of Merrick Garland definitely was.
Another outcome is to delay which could result in some alternative, thus the gamble.
-The first outcome would be that the backlash against the Republican party for the stall tactic is severe, resulting in a Democratic controlled Senate and President, which we would then expect a more liberal nominee (least desired outcome for Republicans).
If the backlash were perhaps not as severe and they say only lost control of the Senate, or only lost the Presidency, then we remain in divided government and the nominee would need to be moderate.
However, should the republican's gamble pay off, and a Republican win the presidency in 2016 and maintain control of the Senate they could nominate a more conservative justice.
Since Trump's victory in the 2016 Election, we can now say that their gamble paid off, as a Republican is in control of the White House as well as have control of the Senate, thus giving us the nomination of Neil Gorsuch, a more conservative justice.
The Common Law Tradition
this was just a continuation of the legal tradition of the British for centuries before, so the colonists just adopted from that.
The Rules of Precedent
judges decisions and principles that they apply to a case
the decisions made previously by other justices are considered as part of the law on that subject
Stare Decisis - "to stand on decided cases"
is the actual doctrine or practice of deciding cases based on the decisions of prior cases
Departures from Precedent
sometimes there can be decision that are made that fly directly in the face of past decisions, often because of changes in the times, and sometimes just because of changes in the makeup of the court (largely Supreme Court)
Brown v. Board of Education of Topeka (1954)
this case, reversed the longstanding precedent of separate but equal
Citizens United v. Federal Elections Commission (2010)
is the Citizens United case where the Supreme Court reversed the precedent established in cases like Austin v. Michigan Chamber of Commerce and McConnell v. FEC and determined that the government cannot ban political spending by corporations.
Primary Sources of American Law
these are the laws that are derived from the U.S. Constitution and the written constitutions of the fifty states
these are laws that are passed by any legislative body of the government
1. Federal statutes apply to the entire country
2. State statutes apply only to the state in which it was passed
3. Local cities and counties can also pass statutes like ordinances
these are the rules and regulations and other decisions made by regulatory agencies.
this is law that is established in judicial actions by the courts, often interpretations of constitutional provisions or statutes passed by legislatures
Basic Judicial Requirements
1. Jurisdiction - the authority of a court to hear and
decide a particular case
Jurisdiction of State Courts
Federal Court Jurisdiction
2. Standing to Sue
3. Court Procedures
Basic Judicial Requirements definition
courts cannot just decided any issue any time, these act as restraints on the judicial branch from becoming too active and too powerful.