Political parties

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Political parties

  1. 1. U.S. Political Parties<br />
  2. 2. Parties, who needs ‘em?<br />Washington warned against political parties:<br />“Let me now take a more comprehensive view, and warn you in the most solemn manner against the baneful effects of the spirit of party, generally. The alternate domination of one faction over another, sharpened by the spirit of revenge, natural to party dissension, which in different ages and countries has perpetrated the most horrid enormities, is itself a frightful despotism. But this leads at length to a more formal and permanent despotism. The disorders and miseries, which result, gradually incline the minds of men to seek security and repose in the absolute power of an individual; and sooner or later the chief of some prevailing faction, more able or more fortunate than his competitors, turns this disposition to the purposes of his own elevation, on the ruins of Public Liberty. The common and continual mischiefs of the spirit of party are sufficient to make it the interest and duty of a wise people to discourage and restrain it.”<br />Source: George Washington’s Farewell Address, 1796<br />
  3. 3. We Need Parties<br />John F. Kennedy disagrees with Washington:<br />“Our Founding Fathers did not realize that the basic fact which has made our system work was outside the Constitution. And that was the development of political parties in this country so that the people would have the means of placing responsibility on one group, that group would have a chance to carry out its program, and the American people would have an opportunity to indicate their dissatisfaction by going to an alternative.”<br />Source: John F. Kennedy, Democratic Committee, 1963<br />
  4. 4. Purpose & Function<br />Political party—organized group that shares common values and goals<br />5 Functions:<br />Nominate candidates for office<br />Governing through party legislation<br />Educate the public about issues<br />Opposition “watchdogs”<br />Reduce conflict?<br />
  5. 5. Party Systems<br />Two-Party System (Oppositional dominance)<br />Multiparty System (Several competing factions)<br />Coalition(Necessary in multiparty systems)<br />One-party system (Political Monopoly)<br />
  6. 6. Independent Voters<br />Independent:<br />no party affiliation<br />Swingvoters:<br />can decide elections<br />
  7. 7. History of the Parties<br />Liberal<br />Conservative<br />Anti-Federalists (1789-1792)<br />Democrat-Republicans (1792-1824)<br />Democratic (1828-present)<br />Federalists (1789-1820)<br />Whigs (1833-1856)<br />Republican (1854-present)<br />VS.<br />
  8. 8. Party Organization: Decentralized<br />National Party: national conventions, platform, national committee<br />State Party: state central committee, fundraising, elect candidates<br />Local Party: county committee, precinct, wards, voter turnout<br />
  9. 9. Party Platforms<br />
  10. 10. Political Ideology Scale<br />

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