PO 101: Intro to Political Science Unit 7: Public Opinion, Political Parties, and Participation
Administrative Matters… Unit 8 (Runs today through July 12) Discussion Board (2 THREADS!!!) KEYNES/HAYEKand INTERVENTION Seminar 2 Tomorrow Night UNIT 6 AND 7 QUIZZES – TONIGHT AND FRIDAY!!! UNIT 8 QUIZ - 30 QUESTIONS – 60 MINUTES Chapter 16 Questions from you folks?
Remember This…The Political Process Public Opinion Political Parties Interest Groups Why Aggregate Interests?
Interest Groups S
What are Interest Groups? An interest group is a group of people that organizes to be heard and influence government programs and policies.
TYPES OF INTERST GROUPS - Public vs. Private Classification based on the “GOALS” that the group pursues…Do they pursue ends for EVERYONE or MEMBERS ONLY?
What Makes an Interest Group Powerful? 1. Resources, Resources, Resources 2. Size 3. Leadership 4. Cohesiveness The most effective groups like the NRA and AARP have all of these.
Interest Group Strategies Interest Groups have very different strategies from Political Parties: ACCESS – Ability to have face to face contact with a decision maker. What does it take to gain ACCESS? Lobbying, Lawsuits, Amicus CuraeBriefs, Grassroots (Astro Turf)
Political Parties Parties are quite different from Interest Groups! GOALS are the SAME! Strategies and Scope DIFFERENT Parties are: Inclusive Broad
Parties and Democracy Many political scientists believe that parties are essential to democracy, serving as the main instrument of popular sovereignty and majority rule. What parties DO makes our democracy work.
Keeping officials responsive – Compete in Elections
Including a broad range of groups – Winning Majorities
Stimulating political interest – Mobilizing Voters
Ensuring accountability – Knowing who is Responsible
Make Sense of Complexity in Politics – Party Labels
Making government work – Encourage Cooperation
The Case for Strong Parties Partisanship is not America’s political problem; instead, our parties are not strong enough to function effectively. STRONG parties promote CHOICE! Parties are the principle organizations that… 1. Recruit Candidates for public office (Choice) 2. Organize and Run Competitive Elections (Choice) 3. Present Alternative Policies to the Electorate (Choice) 4. Accept Responsibility for Operating the Gov. 5. Act as the Organized Opposition to the Party in Power (Choice)
Political Parties Simplifying Choices for Voters Voters are pretty Dumb! (Rationally Ignorant) Clear and Consistent policy positions taken by parties offer valuable information about candidates and cues on policy issues. Once voters know which party usually represents their interests, the party label can be a very useful shortcut.