Political Parties - images.pcmac.org

Political Parties - images.pcmac.org

Political Parties Parties and What They Do What is a political party? A group of persons who seek to control govt. thru the winning of elections and holding of public office Two major parties in the U.S. Democrats and Republicans More specifically A political party is a group of persons who

seek to control govt. in order to affect certain public policies and programs Important: the two major parties in the U.S. do not fit this definition; they are election oriented. What Do Parties Really Do? Political Parties Role: 1.Essential to representative govt. 2.Medium thru which policy and leadership choices are presented to

voters 3.Link between government and its citizens 4.Bring conflicting groups together thru compromise Major Functions of Political Parties 1) Nominate candidates to run for public offices 2) Informing and activating supporters campaign for candidates take stands on issues

criticize the opposition candidates educational process : advertising material, speeches, rallies 3) Bonding Agent Parties ensure the good performance of its candidates and officeholders 4) Governing Those who govern are chosen based on party Partisanship: strong support of their party and

its policy stands Separation of powers agreement: political parties help the executive and legislative branches work together 5) Watchdog party in power controls the executive branch The Two-Party System How and why did it begin? No mention of political parties in the Constitution. Washington warned the country

against political factions and divisiveness. Four major reasons: 1)Historical Basis 2)Force of Tradition 3)Electoral System 4)American Ideological Consensus Historical Basis Argument over the ratification of the Constitution gave rise to two factions: 1. Federalist: lead by Alexander Hamilton 2. Anti-Federalist: which became the DemocraticRepublicans or the party of Thomas Jefferson

Force of Tradition Once established, human institutions are likely to be self-perpetuating. Why do most Americans accept the idea of a two-party system? Because the institution has always existed!!!!!!!!! Electoral System Single member voting districts: contest in which only one candidate is elected to each

office on the ballot winner-take-all election minor candidate vote is a wasted vote Election laws: much of the legislation is written to discourage minor party candidates Demo and Rep work together to make it difficult for minor parties and Independent candidates to get on ballots American Ideological Consensus

Pluralistic society: a society consisting of several distinct cultures and groups However, over time, the American people have come to share many of the same ideals, basic principles and patterns of belief or come to a consensus Consensus: general agreement among various groups on fundamental matters How has the Ideological Consensus made the two major parties look alike? Both parties attempt to be moderate(take the

Multiparty Systems Multiparty: system in which several major parties and many lesser parties exist, seriously compete for, and actually win public offices Ex. Many European Democracies (Italy) Weakness One party is often unable to win the support of the majority of the voters. Coalition governments: temporary alliances of several groups who come together to form a working majority

One-Party System Refer to most dictatorships in the world today and is really a no-party system (Ex. North Korea, China, Cuba) Certain regions of the U.S and certain states have had periods where one-party dominated to such an extent that it was perceived to be Two-Party System In America Federalist

Democratic-Republicans Party of Hamilton rich and well-born Party of Jefferson common man Strong central government Economy based on manufacturing and trade

Limited role for the central government Economy based on agriculture - Supporters were artisans, merchants, bankers manufacturers and Eastern farmers Liberal interpretation of the Constitution - Support came from the rural south and west

and were usually farmers Strict interpretation of the Constitution American Political Parties: Four Major Eras A. Era of the Democrats (1800-1860) Federalist Party disappears by 1816 President James Monroe=Era of Good Feelings (1816-1824) Pres. Andrew Jackson=Jacksonian America (1828-1836) Several changes to the political landscape under Jackson 1.

voting rights for all male whites 2. larger bureaucracy 3. spoils system : jobs and favor for political support However, a split occurs within the Democratic Party in the mid 1820s. Whig Party Considered the other major party from the mid 1830s-1850s Led by Henry Clay (KY) and Daniel Webster (MA) Drew support from eastern bankers, Industrialists and large

southern plantations Opposed Jackson and supported high tariffs (tax on imports) Elected two presidents, both war heros (William Henry Harrison & Zachary Taylor) B. Era of the Republicans, 18601932 Slavery issue divided the Democrats into North and South Rise of the Republican Party: Founded in 1854 Also called the GOP or Grand Old Party Formed from former Whigs and anti-slavery Democrats

Election of Lincoln in 1860 began 75 years of dominating national politics drew support from businesses, banks, farmers and newly freed African Americans Era of Republicans, 1860-1932 Democratic Party attempted to rebuild after the Civil War and the Reconstruction period (Solid South) Won the White House only twice during the remainder of the century (Grover Cleveland in 1884 and 1892) Election of 1896:

battle between financial monopolies & railroads vs. small business, farmers and labor unions Republican William McKinley wins Election of 1912: A Republican Split Republicans nominate the Incumbent William Howard Taft over former President Teddy Roosevelt Roosevelt forms the Bull Moose Progressive Party Allows the Democrat Woodrow Wilson to win Republicans take back the White House in 1920, 1924, And 1928.

C. Return of the Democrats, 19321968 The Great Depression of the late 1920s changed the political landscape and marked a shift in how Americans viewed the role of government. Dem. Franklin D. Roosevelt (FDR) begins the first of his record four terms in 1932. Democratic support came from southerners, labor unions, and big-city political organizations Harry Truman completed FDRs 4th term and then won a slim victory Gov. Dewey

of NY in 1948 Republican and WWII hero Dwight Eisenhower won in 1952 and 1956 over Adlai Stevenson 0f Illinois. Senator John Kennedy (JFK) reclaimed the White House in 1960 w/a narrow victory over VP Richard Nixon. Lyndon Johnson succeeded JFK after his assassination an won in a landslide in 1964. Start of A New Era Civil Rights, the Vietnam War and social welfare issues

hurt the Democratic party in the late 1960s. Republican Richard Nixon defeated VP Hubert Humphrey and 3rd Party candidate George Wallace in 1968. Nixon is re-elected in 1972 but resigns in the wake of the Watergate scandal . Democratic Gov. Jimmy Carter of GA defeats Gerald Ford in 1976 A worsening economy and the Iran Hostage Crisis leads to a landslide victory for Republican Ronald Reagan in 1980.

Republicans will control the White House until 1992 when Arkansas Governor Bill Clinton defeats Pres. George H.W. Bush. Republican George W. Bush wins in 2000 and 2004 , and in doing so, becomes the second father/son tandem to serve as President. Democrat Barack Obama becomes the first AfricanAmerican elected President of the U.S. in 2008 and is currently serving his second term. The Minor Parties Fall into four categories: 1) Ideological parties: based on a particular set of beliefs

that center around social and economic issues (Ex. Libertarian, Socialist and Communist Parties) - Libertarian Party: emphasize individualism and less government 2) Single-issue parties: focus on one public policy matter Free Soil Party: opposed the spread of slavery on the mid 1800s American Party(Know Nothings): opposed IrishCatholic immigration in the 1850s 3) Economic protest parties: developed due to economic hard-ships

- focused attention on the monetary system, Wall Street Banker, the railroads (Greenback Party and the Populist Party of the late 1800s) 4) Splinter parties: split within the major parties and formed around a strong personality - Progressive Party or Bull Moose-Teddy Roosevelt (1912) - States Rights Party or Dixiecrats Strom Thurmond (1948) - American Independent Party- George Wallace (1968)

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