Download American Political Parties and Elections: A Very Short by L. Sandy Maisel PDF

By L. Sandy Maisel

Few americans or even fewer voters of different international locations comprehend the electoral approach within the usa. nonetheless fewer comprehend the position performed through political events within the electoral method or the ironies in the approach. Participation in elections within the usa is way less than within the overwhelming majority of mature democracies. probably reason why of the shortcoming of festival in a rustic the place in simple terms events have a real probability of successful, even though quite a few electorate declare allegiance to neither and imagine badly of either. or even this is why within the U.S. crusade contributions disproportionately prefer incumbents in so much legislative elections, or that principally unregulated teams reminiscent of the now infamous 527s have as a lot influence at the consequence of a crusade as do the events or the candidates' crusade agencies. learning those elements, you start to get a really transparent photograph certainly of the issues that underlay our a lot trumpeted electoral system.

This Very brief creation introduces the reader to those concerns and extra, delivering an insider's view of the way the procedure truly works whereas shining a mild on a few of its flaws. As we input what's absolute to be one more hugely contested election yr, it's extra very important than ever that american citizens make the effort to benefit the process that places such a lot of in power.

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Extra resources for American Political Parties and Elections: A Very Short Introduction (Very Short Introductions)

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2 The contributions of these early years to nation building are truly astounding, and the parties, reviled by the founders before they came to power, played a major role. First, a popular president, who could easily have been reelected as long as he wanted, voluntarily relinquished power in 1796. Then, after the election to succeed him, a candidate who opposed the policies of the president and was narrowly defeated agreed to serve as vice president, because that was the constitutional stipulation in place at the time.

For decades after the Civil War, and particularly after the end of Reconstruction in 1876, when the Democrats made serious inroads into the South because of lingering resentment toward the party of Lincoln, national partisan battles were closely fought. In a time of rapid industrialization in the nation, the leaders of industry dominated both parties. They backed candidates, many of them generals from the Civil War, who would support their programs of economic advancement. Immigrants flooded the nation’s shores and 35 A brief history of American political parties the importation of slaves to the new state.

Except that for the most part election winners are determined by a plurality of those voting, not a majority. If true majority rule were the norm, the results of many 20 elections might be changed. It is worth questioning whether a more effective representation would be the result. Think about Dino Rossi. 8 million votes cast. Neither candidate had a majority. 3% but enough to influence the result. If a majority had been required, a runoff election might well have favored Rossi. Again, changing from the current system of ‘‘first-past-the-post’’ winners, that is, the person with the most votes (a plurality) wins, whether that is a majority or not, strikes many Americans as strange, despite its obvious undemocratic implications.

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