Review Sheet on Political Parties, Interest Groups, and Mass Media

Review Sheet on Political Parties, Interest Groups, and Mass Media

Review Sheet on Political Parties, Interest groups, and Mass Media

  1. Political parties and elections
  1. Functions
  2. Organizations
  1. Differences between the two parties in the USA
  1. Beliefs
  2. Demographics
  1. Third parties and their impact
  1. Obstacles to their success
  2. Contributions
  1. Development and reform
  1. Realignment
  2. Dealignment
  3. Critical election
  1. Effects on the political process
  1. Financing campaigns
  1. Federal Election Campaign Act
  2. Soft Money and McCain-Feingold Act (Bipartisan Campaign Finance Reform Act)
  3. Buckley v Valeo (1976)
  1. Party voting behaviors
  2. Individual voting behaviors
  1. Straight ticket voting vs. ticket splitting voting
  2. The power of incumbents
  1. Electoral laws and systems
  1. Party caucus
  2. Election cycles
  1. Closed primary
  2. Open primary
  3. Blanket primary
  1. Primary Season
  2. National Conventions
  3. General Elections and the Electoral College (winner take all)
  4. Midterm election v Presidential Elections
  5. Congressional districts determined by state legislatures (equal representation for each voter)
  1. Changes through the years to the presidential election process
  1. Longer campaigns
  2. Increased campaign costs
  3. Media coverage
  4. Front loading (States)
  5. Professional consultants
  6. Decline in party leadership
  7. Increased importance of primaries v. conventions
  8. Process is more representative
  9. Party machines
  1. Interest groups, including political action committees (PAC’s)
  1. The range of interests represented
  2. The activities of interest groups
  1. Lobbying
  2. Litigations
  1. Testifying before Congress
  2. Court Action (amicus curiae)
  1. Campaign Contributions
  2. Endorsements
  3. Rallying their membership
  4. Propaganda
  1. The effects of interest groups on the political process
  1. Organized vs. unorganized groups.
  2. How some are able to effect public policy? (like the Farmers and the elderly)
  3. Free rider
  4. More effective on the DL
  1. The unique characteristics and roles of PACs in the political process
  2. Citizens United case and the development of Super PACs
  1. The mass media
  1. The functions of media on politics
  2. The impact of media on politics
  1. Public opinion (horse race journalism)
  2. Voter perceptions
  3. Campaign strategies
  4. Electoral outcomes
  5. Agenda development
  6. Images of officials and candidates

a. Symbiotic and conflictual relationship with candidates and elected officials

IV. Incumbents

  1. Advantages
  2. Consequences of incumbency advantage

Related chapters to read: Wilson Chapter 7, 8, and 9

Wilson (13th Edition) (Chapters 9, 10, and11)

ESLRs Addressed: Critical Thinking, Technological Proficiency, and Post Secondary Preparation (Cooperative Learning and Critical Thinking)

Standards Addressed:

American Democracy Standard 12. 6

Students evaluate issues regarding campaigns for national, state, and local elective offices.

American Democracy Standard 12. 8

Students evaluate and take and defend positions on the influence of the media on American political life.