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a process by which political parties select and offer candidates for public office.

direct primary

an election in which voters choose candidates to represent each party in a general election.

closed primary

an election in which only declared members of a party area allowed to vote for that party's nominees.

open primary

an election in which voters need not declare their party preference.


the most votes among all those running for a political office.

runoff primary

second primary election between two candidates who received the most votes in the first primary election.


a formal request for government action; or, a process by which candidates who are not affiliated with one of the two major parties can get on the ballot for the
general election in most states.

political party

an association of voters with broad, common interests who want to influence or control decision making in government by electing the party's candidates to public office.

two-party system

a system of government in which two parties compete for power.


parties that challenge the two major parties


a series of statements expressing the parties principles, beliefs, and positions on election issues.


each individual part of an platform

national committee

helps raise funds for presidential elections and organizes the party's national convention.

national party chairperson

runs the committee; main job is to manage the office, direct the committee staff, and leads fundraising efforts.


meetings of state and local part organizations


a representative to a meeting.


a geographic area that contains a specific number of voters

county chairperson

a person who runs a county committee, often having a great deal of political power in the country.


several adjoining precincts that make a larger unit.

political machine

a strong party organization that can control political appointments and deliver votes.

Democratic-Republican Party, Federalist Party

The first two political parties in the United States were the______________, which was led by Thomas Jefferson and the_____________ that was led by Alexander Hamilton.

Reform, Independent, and Bull Moose

The three independent parties that organized around independent candidates were the ________and the_________.


The party that replaced the Federalists as the main challenger to the Democratic-Republican party in 1830 were the_____.

closed, open primary

The two mechanisms that are used by parties to select delegates to the national convention are____and_____.

raising large amounts of money

what is the main role of the congressional campaign committees in the political arenas?

write the platform

what is the main job of the delegates at a national convention?

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