American government

Material Information

American government
Lenz, Timothy O., 1952- ( author )
Holman, Mirya ( author )
Place of Publication:
Gainesville, FL
Orange Grove Texts Plus
Publication Date:
Second edition.
Physical Description:
1 online resource (522 pages) : color illustrations


Subjects / Keywords:
Politics and government ( fast )
Politics and government -- United States ( lcsh )
United States ( fast )


Includes bibliographical references.
Statement of Responsibility:
Timothy O. Lenz and Mirya Holman.

Record Information

Source Institution:
University of Florida
Holding Location:
University of Florida
Rights Management:
This item is licensed with the Creative Commons Attribution Non-Commercial No Derivative License. This license allows others to download this work and share them with others as long as they mention the author and link back to the author, but they can’t change them in any way or use them commercially.
Resource Identifier:
on10194 ( NOTIS )
1019427397 ( OCLC )
9781616102180 ( ISBN )
035826440 ( ALEPH )

UFDC Membership

Orange Grove Texts Plus


This item is only available as the following downloads:

Full Text
xml version 1.0 encoding UTF-8
REPORT xmlns http:www.fcla.edudlsmddaitss xmlns:xsi http:www.w3.org2001XMLSchema-instance xsi:schemaLocation http:www.fcla.edudlsmddaitssdaitssReport.xsd
INGEST IEID EGEQSZUBF_74J76O INGEST_TIME 2018-01-18T17:23:22Z PACKAGE AA00061950_00001


American GovernmentSecond Edition Florida A&M University, Tallahassee Florida Atlantic University, Boca Raton Florida Gulf Coast University, Ft. Myers Florida International University, Miami Florida State University, Tallahassee New College of Florida, Sarasota University of Central Florida, Orlando University of Florida, Gainesville University of North Florida, Jacksonville University of South Florida, Tampa University of West Florida, Pensacola


American GovernmentSr Efn t. b University Press of FloridaGainesville Tallahassee Tampa Boca Raton Pensacola Orlando Miami Jacksonville Ft. Myers Sarasota r


Copyright by the Florida Atlantic University Board of Trustees on behalf of the Florida Atlantic University Department of Political Science is work is licensed under aCreative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works. Unported License. To view a copy of this license, visit licenses/by-nc-nd/./.You are free to electronically copy, distribute, and transmit this work if you attribute authorship.Please contactthe University Press of Florida ( purchase printeditions of the work. You must attribute the work in the manner specied by the author or licensor (but not in any way that suggests that they endorse you or your use of the work). For any reuse or distribution, you must make clear to others the license terms of this work. Any of the above conditions can be waived if youreceivepermission from the UniversityPress of Florida. Nothing in this license impairs or restricts the authors moral rights. ISBN ---Orange Grove Texts Plus is a joint imprint of the University Press of Florida, which is the scholarly publishing agency for the State University System of Florida, comprising Florida A&M University, Florida Atlantic University, Florida Gulf Coast University, Florida International University, Florida State University, New College of Florida, University of Central Florida, University of Florida, University of North Florida, University of South Florida, and University of West Florida. University Press of Florida Northwest th Street Gainesville, FL


Contents. Why Government? Why Politics? e U.S. System of Constitutional Government Congress e Presidency e Courts Federalism e Media, Politics, and Government Public Opinion Political Ideology Political Participation Political Parties Interest Groups Public Policy Economic Policy Food Policy Civil Liberties and Civil Rights Global Aairs


1. 0 | What is Government? Government can be defined as the institutions and processes that make and implement The government unit can be a city, a school board, a county, a state, a multi state regional compact a national government, or even an internati onal body In t he U.S., government includes the national government inst itutions Congress, the p residency, the federal courts and the federal bureaucracies; the 50 state governments state legislatures, governors, courts, and bureaucracies; and the thousands of local governments cities, counties, and other special government districts such as school boards and the transportation authorities that govern airports, seaports, and mass transit These g overnment s make legally authoritative decisions that include legislation administrative regulati ons, executive orders, case law rulings, and other public policy actions that are authoritative because individual s and organizations are obligated to obey the m or face some kind of legal sanction. 1.1 0 | Why Government Is gov ernment necessary? Do people need governing or is it possible for people to live without government? What should government s do what are the appropriate or legitimate functions of government ? Why do governments exist all over the world even though people everywhere are so critica l of government? These are political questions that were first asked in ancient times when people began thinking about life in organized societies. They are still asked today T he answers to questions about the need for government and the legitimate role of government reflect co ntemporary thinking about fundamental human values and goals including freedom, order, morality and ethics, equality, justice, individualism, economic security, and national security Although these are widely shared values and goals their relative importance varies a great deal among the countries of the world The why government questions are especially relevant in the United States because of its strong tradition of anti government rhetoric. The strong strain of anti government thinking is evident in public policy. For example, most Americans think that employees should get paid family leave to care for babies or family members who are sick or injured. However, the U.S. is the only develope d country that does not mandate paid family leave. What explains this disconnect between public opinion and public policy? One explanation is the general public skepticism about government mandates and social programs. A PEW Research Center survey revealed strong public support for paid family leave, but also differences of opinion about whether the family leave should be required by the government or whether employers should merely be encouraged to provide it. 1 A federal law The Family and Medical Leave Ac t provides for 12 weeks of unpaid leave, but only about 60% of workers are eligible for it. Furthermore, the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) data indicate that only 13% of employees have employer paid leave and these are upper income workers, not the low paid workers who have the greatest need for it. Organizations such as The Center for WorkLife Law at the all government is evil, and that trying to improve it is largely a waste H.L. Mencken (1880 1956) the worst form of government except for all those others that have been Winston Churchill (1874 1965)


Un iversity of California Hastings advocate for employment policies that accommodate employees with fam ily caregiving responsibilities, and laws that ta rget family responsibilities discrimination (FRD) discrimination against workers with family caregiving responsibilities. T he comparatively strong anti government political culture in the U.S. is the primary reason for the comparatively limited family leav e policy in the U.S. 1.1 1 | Why Politics Government is not the only way to organize life in a political community. Life is also organized by civil society The term civil society refers to the private sector individuals that voluntarily cooperate with others, the families, the political parties and interest groups the professional associations, schools, and religious institutions or faith based organizations These civil society organizations and institutions are not government entities. Life is also organized by b usiness Business is also the private sector, but it is the private for profit sector rather than the not for profit sector Fi gure One below illustrates the three sectors of society that organize life in a community : government (the public sector); civil society (the private sector); and business ( the for profit sector). In American politics, anti government rhetoric commonly reflects the belief that the growth of government (the public sector) i s taking over political functions that were traditionally (and perhaps better) performed by the private sector ( civil society and business ) Public policy debates about education, job training, health ca re or other social services, highways, parks, and protection from crime are often abou t whether these functions and services should be provided by government or the private sector Although politics is often associated with government, i t is important to remember that g overn ment does not have a monopoly of politics. T here is a great deal of non government politics in civil society and business Figure 1.11 : The Three Sectors of Society Business (For profit Sector) Civil Society (Private Sector) Government (Public Sector)


1. 1 2 | The Power Problem T he power problem is at the foundation of thinking about good government. The power problem is the need to grant government enough power to effectively address the problems that peopl e expect government to address while also limit ing power enough so that government officials can be held accountabl e for their actions Finding the right balance between grants and limits is difficult and imbalances either way are political power problems A good system of g overnment is one where governmen t is given enough power to provide public safety protect national security promote economic prosperity and establish justice but not so much power that government can not be held accountable by the people. T oo much power can be a problem because strong governm ent can threaten individual rights and become corrupt Too little power can be a problem because weak or ineffective governments are likely to be unable to provide economic security, national security, or justice. Criminal enterprises and terrorists can also take advantage of the opportunities created by f ragile government s and failed state s F ind ing the right balance between granting and limiting power is difficult because people have conflicting beliefs about what government should do In constitutional democracies such as the U.S. individual, ideological and partisan differences of opinion about the power problem are resolved in both the political sys tem (primarily elections) and the legal system (court rulings) One recurring political problem in democracies is the tension between freedom and order. Individual freedom (or liberty) is an essential element of democracy because self government requires liberty. The American political t radition places a high value on individual liberty For instance, the First Amendment to the U.S. Cons titution provides reedom of religion, speech, press, or associatio n. But o rder is also an important political value. Creating and maintaining good public order is a primary responsibi lity of government Gover nments are expected to provide public safety protection f rom crime, foreign invasi ons, and domestic disturbances and to regulate behavior that members of the political community consider inappropriate. The l aws that are pass ed to achieve good public order, such as laws that prohibit disturbing the peace, limit individual freedom. Politic al debates are often about whether people should have freedom of choice about how to live their lives or whether government should have the power to regulate behavior in order to maintain good public order. In American politics, these debates are often framed as a conflict between freedom and order because the relationship between individual freedom and government power is con sidered a zero sum relationship. In a zero s um relationship, an increase in one thing (e.g., government power to regulate behavior ) means a corresponding de crease in the other thing ( e.g., individual freedom) : so more government means less freedom. However, democratic values include equality as well as freedom and order, and more government can mean more equality. Civil rights laws, for instance, political, economic, and social equality by decreasing the freedom to discriminate 1. 1 3 | Politics P eopl e have different opinion s about whether their political system allows too much freed om or provides too little public order. They also have different opinions about what


government should be doing. The U.S. Constitution does not provide many specific answer s to questions about where to strike the right ba lance between individual rig hts and government powers. T he Fourth Amendment declares the unreasonable searches and seizures rch or seizure is un re asonable or whether the right applies to non citizens. The Fifth and Fourteenth Amendments guarantee due process of law but do not specify what it means. The Eighth such punishment A nd Article I, Sec tion 8 of the Constitution grants Congress power to does not specify what the general welfare means Anyone familiar with politics expects c onservatives and liberals Republicans and D emocrats libertarians socialists, and populists to have different ideas about government power. Less attention is paid to conditions and events Events and conditions have a major impact on ideological and partisan thinking about where to strike the right balance between individual right s and government power Is it a time of war or peace? Is the econom y good or bad? Is the country experiencing a crime wave, or are crime rates stable or declining? What is the terrorism threat leve l? The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) used to provide color coded threat levels, but now uses the National Terrorism Advisory System (NTAS) to communicate threat levels to the ge neral public. T he Constitution does not say very much about government power during times of crisis or emergency. Article I Section 9 of the Constitution does provide that Congress ion the striking the right balance between granting and limiting power are political questions more than legal questions. Questions about the right size and role of government are left for each genera tion to decide according to the particular circumstances or conditions they face American po litics is often framed as debates about the size of government but political differences of opinion are more likely to be about the role of government Describing politics as a debate between those who support big government and those who support small government tends to overlook ideological differences of opinion about what government should be doing. Debates about the appropriate role of government are arguments about whether government is doing the r ight things or the wrong things, whether certain public policies should be change d or reformed or ended, and whether the government needs to change its priorities So politics is about beliefs about the right size and the proper role of governme nt 1. 1 4 | Justice Ideally, politics is about establishing a just political system. The Preamble to the U.S. Constitution Justice is a concept that is central to thinking about politics and government but it is a concept that is hard to precisely define. A simple definition is that j ustice mean s fair treatment Defining justice as fairness means that individuals or groups should get what they deserve: good or appropriate beha vior is recognized, encouraged, and rewarded, while bad or inappropriate behavior is also recognized discouraged, and even punished. This understanding of justice as fairness is a universal value in the sens e that all societies value fair treatment However, the definition of fairness and the


commitment to living up to ideals of justice vary a great deal from one country to another. In the U.S., the Bill of Rights and civil rights statutes are the primary sources of legal protection for justice defined as fair treatment by the government. One way to th ink about j ustice is that it is about the proper ordering of individuals, values, things, and groups within a society. The nature of a just society or political syste m has been the subject of political thought since people first began thinking about li ving a good life in an organized society. Justice is a familiar subject in works of politics, philosophy theology, and law. The Ancient Greek philosophers Plato and Aristotle described what they believed to be t he attributes of a just society and the bes t form of government to achieve justice. The Founders of the American political system thought a great deal about the best form of government to create a just society. For instance, t he Declaration of Independence explains why the American colonists were justified in fight ing the Revolutionary War against Great Britain It includes a l ong list of charges that acted so unjustly that the colonis ts were justified in taking up arms and breaking their political bonds with what John Q. Adams In a July 4 th 1821 Independence Day S peech Adams explained that as British s the hand wielding the whip. The interest in establishing a more perfect, just political system did not end with the founding era. Both sides in t he Civil War claimed to be fighting for justice T he North fought against slavery and for preservation of the Union. T he South fought for the preservation of slavery and the power of states, as sovereign entities within a federal system of government, to leave the Union. T he variou s primarily liberal civil rights movements that began i n the latter years of the 19 th Century and developed during the 20 th Century were organized efforts to a chieve a more just society for b lacks, women, and other minorities. Most recently, the Black Lives Matter movement was inspired by the belief that polic e use of force against young black males and other people of color was unjust. There is also a conservative civil rights movement that has had a profound impact on public policy. It consists of conservative movements including the pro life movement (to li mit abortion rights) the gun rights movement (to limit gun control policy) and the property rights movement (to limit environmental and other zoning laws). Tea Party Movement is another conservative movement working to, among other things, reduce federal taxes and spending and increase border control Politics is usually inspired by efforts to create a more just political order The pursuit of j ustice continues to inspire political action because, as John Rawls argued in A Theory of Justice e first virtue of social institutions, as truth is of systems of 2 J ust ice is a universal human value that is recognized as an important value in virtua lly all political communities. Politics is often about competing ideas about what justice is


P olitical science studies both individuals and systems At the individual level of analysis, justice can be defined as expectation that she or he will be treated fairly that they will get what they deserve. Is a person recognized and reward ed for doing well or behaving appropriately, or sanctioned for not doing w ell or behaving inappropriately? T he system level of analysis examines the workings of institutions. A just political sy stem is one that maintains institutions that treat people fairl y This is why justice is closely related to government legitimacy. Legitimacy is the belief that a acceptance of government authority and therefore the obligation to obey th e law. J ustice as fair treatment is a universally accepted concept valued in all cultures an d countries, but beliefs about what justice requires in a particular situation is a subjective value judgment R etributive justice is probably the kind of justice that is most familiar to the general public because it is closely related to thinking about punishment. Retributive justice is concerned with the proper response t o wrongdoing, particularly criminal sentencing policy The law of retribution lex talionis is based on the principle of retributive justice the belief that the life, eye for eye, tooth for tooth, hand for hand, foot for foot, wou nd for wound, stripe for stripe, e of retributive justice. However, there is no consensus that principle of retributive justice should be interpreted literally to mean that retributive justice requires taking the eye eye, taking a hand hand, taking a tooth from a person who tooth, crimes or wrongful injuries. The alternative to literal biblical verse is the metaphorical interpretation The metaphorical interpretation is that retributive justice requires proportionality : the punishment must fit the crime. A just punishment must be proportionate to the cri me, but it does not require that punishment be identical to the crime. A second way of thinking about justice is restorative justice Unlike retributive justice, restorative justice is not primarily concerned with punishing an offender. R estorative justice emphasizes the importance o f restoring the victim making the victim whole again AND rehabilitating the offender. Distributive justice is a nother kind of justice It is most relevant to thinking about the economic order rather than criminal justice. D istributive justice is concerned with the proper distribution of values or valuables among the individuals or groups in a society. The valuables can be things of material value ( such as income, wealth, food, healt h care, tax breaks, or property) or non material values (such as power, respect, or recognition of status). D istributive justice is based on the assumption that values or valuables can be distributed equitably based upon merit. Political debates about economic inequality, a fair tax system, access to education, and generationa l justice (whether government policies benefit the elderly more than the young) are often conducted in terms of distributive justice: who actually gets what and who should be getting what. 1.2 | The Social Contract Theory of Government The social contra ct theory of government is the most influential modern democratic theory of government. Thomas Hobbes, John Locke, and Jean Jacques Rousseau were


social contractarians whose thinking about human nature, the origin of government, and the obligation to obey the law influenced the American foun der s thinking about government. The social contract continue s to profoundly thinking about government. According to soc ial contract theory, people create governments by entering into agreements whether written or unwritten to live together under a particular form of government. The agreement is social because the membe rs of a community decide to create a binding agreement to live together under a form of government. If the form of government is a democracy or a republic, the agreement is to create a form of self government. The agreement is a contract because it includes terms and conditions that bind both parties the peopl e and the government. The contract specifies the rights and obligations of citizens (e.g., freedom of expression; obey the laws), and the powers and limits of government (e.g., to provide public safety and good public order) The social contract theory of government was revolutionary for its time because it is based on the idea of popular sovereignty the belief that legitimate governing authority comes from the people the people as sovereigns rather than either the divine right to rule or the government itself. I n w estern political thought, the state of nature is used to explain the origin of government. The 17 th Century English political philosopher Thomas Hobbes (15 88 1679) believed that l ife in a state of nature (that is, life without government), would be se human beings are self interested actors who will tak e advantage of others if given the opportunity Hobbes thought that it was human nature for the strong to take advantage of the wea k. T he continual competition for economic and political advantage created aga inst believed that government was created when people decide d to enter into a social contract t hat created an authority with enough power to mainta in order The social contract is a contract in the sense that it include s specific terms and conditions that bind both parties: the people give up a measure of individual freedom in exchange for the government providing public safety and security classic work Leviathan (1651) describes a strong government with power to create and maintain order. The word Leviathan co mes from the biblical reference to a great sea monster an image that critics of big government consider appropriate Beliefs about human nature are the foundation of a ll ideologies. Some ideologies have a basically negati ve view of h uman nature: people are considered by nature to be basically self interes ted or even quite capable of evil and therefore need government and civil society institutions such as organized religion to keep them from harming others Some ideologies have a more positive view of human nature : people can learn to be public spirited cooperative, and even benevolent These different views of human nature directly affect thinking about the size and scope of government. Anarchists think that


people are capable of getting along well without government. Libertarians think only minimal gov ernment is necessary. Conservatives and liberals think gov ernment is necessary and useful but for different purposes. Authoritarians think human nature makes Leviathan necessary 1.21 | John Locke (1632 1704 ) and Jean Jacques Rousseau (1712 1778) In An Essay Concerning the True Original, Extent and End of Civil Government the English political philosopher John Locke described life in the pre actions and dispose of their possessions and persons, as they think fit, within the bounds 3 Locke did ve people license to do whatever they wanted He believed that the natural state of man is to live free from oppression and the will of man But history teaches that some people ine vitably gain power over others and that the stronger use that p ower to harm the weaker Locke believed that free individuals deci de to leave the state of nature and live under government in order to prevent the misuse of power In The Social Contract J ean Jacques Rousseau wondered why people are born free everywhere but everywhere live under the obligation to obey government. As he succinctly put it, This puzzle remains relevant in contemporary politics Is it possible to live under government, where an individual is legally obligated to obey the law, and still be free? Has democracy solved the problem by creating self government? 1.22 | Influences on the American Founders John Locke believed that in dividuals decided to leave the state of nature and live under government because government offered greater protecti on of the right to life, liberty, and property. This natural rights based thinking understandin g greatly influenced the writers of the Decl aration of Independence. The Decla ration of Independence explains and justifies the Revolution ary War as the right and duty of a free people to assert the ir y, and the Pursuit of Happiness against governmen t tyranny Some of the most important words and ideas in the Declaration of Independence c an be traced to Locke: Natural rights. T he concept of natural rights as rights that individuals have because they are human beings rights that are not created by go vernment ; Social c ontract theory The idea that the Constitution created rights and obligations for both the people and government ; and Popular sovereignty. The idea that the people are sovereign and government legitimacy must be based on the consent of the governed. The s ocial contract theory that government is based on the consent of the governed explains why it is rational for an individual to voluntarily give up the freedom of living in the state of nature and agree to live under a government that can tell them what they c an and cannot do, a life, liberty, and property.


The English political philosopher John Stuart Mill (1806 1873) elaborated on these ideas about government power in liberal democracies those western style governments that are based on limited government, individualism, and equality. His classic book On Liberty reflected the increased importance of individual liberty in the 19 th Century. While generally supportive of popular sovereignty and the contract theory of government, Mill advocated for stronger protection of individual liberty from the majority rule For example, Mill is remembere d today for advocating the Harm Principle as a way to answer According to the Harm Principle, the only legitimate reason for government to use law is to prevent someone from harming someone else The Harm Principle is libertarian It considers moral regulatory polic ies that is, laws that legislate morality or which are primarily intended to promote morality illegitimate uses of government power. The Harm Principle is also libertarian because it considers laws that are intended to prevent pe ople from harming themselve s inappropriate The Harm Principle does not allow paternalistic legislation such as laws requiring the wearing of seatbelts or motorcycle helmets or laws that prohibit drug or alcohol use or gambling in order to protect people from harming themselves The contract theory of government still strongly influences thinking about government. In A Theory of Justice (1 971), John Rawls argues that it makes sense for individuals to give u p their individu al preferences or, to put it another way, their persona l freedom to do as they please and ag ree to obey laws enacted by the members of the political community. Lik e Locke and Mill, Rawls believes that people create governments because they believe that li fe will be more secure and more just than life without government. Support for the social contract theory is especially st rong in the U.S. The social contract was originally appeal political experiences included creating governing documents The British colonists created governing documents such as the Mayflower Compact of 1620 and the Ma ssachusetts Bay Charter of 1629 when they came to North America. Th e founders also created two forms of government: the Articles of Confederation a nd the Constitution The y actually created s ocial contract s based on self government. Popular sovereignty is the belief that governmen t authority ultimately comes from the people This belief remains strong in contemporary thinking about government. The s ocial contract theory is also especially strong in the U.S. because the U.S. has a capitalist economy. Capitalism is based on economic contracts where individuals and organizations enter into legal agreements to provide goods and service s for money An eco nomic culture where people regularly enter into contracts to buy and sell is likely to support a political culture where people think of government as a social contract that specifies the terms and conditions for managing public affairs. 1.3 | Modern Gove rnment The U.S. has a strong tradition of a n ti government politics but criticism of government does not extend to anarchism. Anarchism is the pol itical philosophy that government should be abolished because it is unnecessary and illegitimate Anarchist s believe tha t government is unnecessary because people can freely organize their own lives.


And they believe government is illegitimate because it is based on power, force or c ompulsion rather than consent The word anarchism derives from a Greek word me aning without bosses Does this mean that anarchists advocate complete freedom? The symbol of a narchism the Anarchism Flag is variously depicted as a slashed black a black circle. Is anyone really an anarchist? Jonnie Rotten The former m a natural Anarchy in the U.K. Critics of a narchism associate it with anarchy chaos or extreme disorder But a narchists do not advoca te chaos or disorder Th ey simply believe that individuals should be able to freely and voluntarily organize their lives to create social order and justice without being forced to do so by the government. Ideologies are based on belief s about human nature. Anarchists have an optimistic view of human nature. They believe that the human reasoning capacity makes it possible for individuals to exercise self control AND to realize the benefits of voluntarily working tog ether for the common good. Anarchists also believe in the ability of the private sector to provide the g oods and services including good public order that people have come to be dependent on government to provide Americans love to hate government, but t he U.S. tradition of anti government politics does not include anarchism. The anti government politics is commonly expressed as a libertarian belief that the size and scope of government ought to be greatly reduced but not eliminated entirely. T he general consensus that government i s necessary if a necessary evil does not mean there is widespread agreement on the size and role of government American politics includes lively debate s about the right size and the appropriate role for government 1.31 | Market Failures G overnment s everywhere are expect ed to maintain good public order, provide national security, maintain public saf ety, and provide material prosperity and economic stability. What is the best way to decide what the government should do ? The U.S. has a democratic political system that is b ased on limited government and a capitalist economic system that is based on a market economy So for political and economic reasons, the default answer to the question what should government do is that goods and services should be provided by the private sector where possible The preference for goods and services to be provided by the private sector rather than the public sector (government) is sometimes called the Subsidiary Principle According to the subsidiary principle, Think Ab out It! Are people by nature good or bad? Read President Inaugural Address Lincoln d escribes people as capable of good OR evil, stresses the importance of education and socialization to develop the better instincts and moral conscience and he appeals to Americans to be guided by


wherever possible decisions should be made by the private sector rather than the government, and wherever possible decisions should be made by the lowest possible level of government In terms of the level of government, this means that a decision should be the responsibility of the lowest level of government local, state, or national Th e Subsidiary Principle directs that government action should be limited to those situations where the private marketpl ace is unable to efficiently or equitably provide a good or service. For example, market failures justify government provision of a good or service. The following describes some of the market failures that are commonly considered justifications for government action despite the preference for private action The first market failure is the fact that markets do not always provide for public goods. A public good is one whose benefits cannot be limited to those who have paid for it once the good is provided Clean air, cle an water, safe streets national security and an educated citizenry are often considered public goods The government provides national security because the benefits of being safe from foreign attacks or terrorism cannot easily be limited to those who hav e been willing to pay the cos ts of providing n ational security. The government regulates air pollution because i t is hard to limit the breathing of clean air to those individuals who have vo luntarily paid for it The benefits of safe streets are hard to li mit to those who have paid for police forces. The fact that it is hard or even impossible to limit the benefits of a good or a service to those who have paid for i t creates the f ree rider problem: individuals have an economic incentive to freely enjoy the benefit without paying the cost One solution to the free rider problem is that government provides public goods such as c lean air national security and crime control by requiring everyo ne to pay taxes to pay for the public good Is health care an example of a market failure? Medicare and Medicaid are federal government programs that provide health care for the elderly and the poor because of the belief that the marketplace cannot provide affordable health care insurance for these two populations of consumers. The extended debates over the Affordable Care Act (Obamacare) and its reform or replacement are essentially between those who think that the free market can provide affordable health insurance and those who think that health insurance is an example of a market failure that requires government intervention in some form or another. A sec ond market failure is externalities In a perfect m arket, an economic transaction that is, the buyi ng or selling of something w ill include the total cost of producing and consuming the good or service In a perfect market, the only people who are affect ed by a market transaction are the buyer and seller Therefore, t hese agreements to buy or sell someth ing are private agreements that do not involve the government However, sometimes private market transactions do affect people who are not party to the agreement. An externality occurs when a market transaction affects individuals who are not a party to th e transaction. There are negative externalities and positive externalities An example of a negative externality is the pollution that is caused by making or using a product but which is not reflected in its price. The price of a g allon of gasoline does not include the e nvironmental degradation caused by burning a gallon of gas to run a lawnmower or drive a car. The purchase price of a plastic toy or a steel car does not include the cost of the air pollution or water pollution that is caused by mining the raw materials, manufacturing the steel or plastic, playing with the battery powered toy or driving the gasoline powered car if the mining company or the factory are able to externalize some of the cost of production Externalities occur when a factory (o r an


electrical power plant, for that matter) is able to discharge polluted water into a river if th e plant is located along a waterway, or the plant is able to send some of the cost of production up the smokestack where the Jetstream disperse s the ai r pol lution when the prevailing winds carry it away from the site Under these conditions, the price of a gallon of gas or a car or an electrical watt does not capture all of the cost of making or consuming the product. Neither t he manufacturer nor the consumer pay s the full price when the costs of production and consumption do not include w ater and air pollution Those who live downstream or downwind pay some of the price by living with dirtier air or dirtier water. These are negative externalities because the producer and consumer agree on a purchase price that negatively affects third parties people who are not the parties to the market transaction. These negative externalities are one justification for g overnment intervention in the marketplace So one answe r to the question, what should government do, is that government action should prevent negative externalities. Not all market failures are negative. P ositive externalities include education vaccination and crime control A person who pays for an educatio n can benefit from it. And education could be limited to those who actually pay for it. But t he benefits of education are not necessarily limited to the student who pays the tuition and receives the education) or the school that receives the tuition. The positive externalities include employers who are able to hire from a qualified workforce without having to pay for the cost of education or training, and society because democracy require s an educated citizenry. These have historically b een arguments for public education paid by taxpayers rather than solely by students A third example of a market failure is a monopoly Free marke t economic theory is based on c ompetition. If a single business monopolizes a particular sector of th e market, the lack of competition likely result s i n market inefficiency Capitalism assumes competition results in fair pricing, product innovation, and good customer service. The absence of competition is likely to result in high pricing, a lack of innovation, and poor customer service. This is why the development of sectors of the economy that are dominated by fewer and fewer larger and larger companies is usually a concern. The Industrial Revolution resulted in large corporations that monopolized sectors of the economy such as oil, steel, and other commodities. Congress passed the Sherman Antitrust Act in 1890, which prohibited monopolies or restraints on trade that limited competition At one time, the Standard Oil Company controlled about 90 % of the oil refinin g in the U.S. The law was passed during the Progressive Era, a time when there was support for creating big government to ke ep big business in check Currently, corporate mergers in the information economy domination of the software market or telecommunications companies dominating television, radio, and the internet. The fourth market failure justifying government intervention is e quity Economics is about the efficie nt allocation of resources. In a capitalist system, people get what they can pay for. Goods and services are available on the basis of the ability to pay. Politics is about equity or fairness or justice. Equity is the perception that people are getting wha t they deserve. Collective goods (or social goods) are those that could be delivered in the private sector ability to pay for the good or service but which are often provided by the government or subsidized by taxes as a matter of public policy Public utilities such as water and sewage and electricity and telephone service, for


example, could be provided by the private sector solely on the basis of an individu ability to pay for them, but the political system consider s these goods and services, including basic education and perhaps health care, social goods 1.4 | What is Politics ? Government involves politics, and it is hard to talk about government without talking about politics but government is not the same thing as p olitics Po litics happens wherever people interact with one another in families, organized religions schools, sports teams, and the workplace. Political scientists focus on certain kinds of politics, the kinds that involve government and public policy, for example. 1.41 | Two Basic Conceptions of Politics? There are two basic conceptions of politics: a material conception and a values conception The political scientist Ha rold Lasswell defined politics as the determination 4 This materialistic d efinition focuses on politics as the authoritative allocation of scarce resources such as money, land, property, or other valuable thing s P olitics is also about values. David Easton defined politics as authoritative allocation of values for a 5 These non material values include freedom, order, patriotism, honor, duty, religious belief, ethics, and conceptions of morality. Politics includes organized efforts to enact public policies that support values and beh aviors that are considered desirable and worthy of government support Examples include public policies that support marriage by providing tax breaks for married persons support child rearing with policies that provide employees with parental and family l eave and parents with food stamps, support education by providing income tax deductions for educational and professional training expenses, and support work by requiring those who receive unemployment compensation or other social welfare programs to be loo king for work These are all examples of how the government can subsidize desirable values and behaviors. Politics also includes efforts to regulate or even prohibit values or behaviors that are considered undesirable Public policies control idleness, t obacco use, alcohol consumption, gambling prostitution, pornography, abortion, and hate crimes just to mention a few behaviors that are considered undesirable for reasons of health or morals P olitics also includes the processes by which decisions about a llocating scarce resources and subsidizing or regulating values are made. After all, democracy is the process of self government. So politics includes c ampaigns and elections, public opinion formation, voting behavior, in terest groups lobbying, and government decision making the behavior of local government officials (school boards, city councils, and county commissions), legislators (state legislators and members of Congress) members of the


executive branch (governors, t he President, and members of the bureaucracy) and judges. The following provides basic definitions and explanations of some of the terms that are essential to understanding American government and politics. 1.42 | What is Political Science? Political Science is the branch of the social scienc es that systematically studies the theory and practice of government. Political scientists descri be, analyze, explain, and predict 1) the political behavior o f individuals and organizations such as politi cal parties and interest groups; and 2) the workings of political systems. As an academic discipline, political science has historical roots in moral philosophy, political philosophy, political economy, and ev en history. The historical or traditional roots in moral and political philosophy in cluded making normative or value based statements about how individuals should live good and meaningful liv e s in good and meaningful societ ies However, m odern political science strives to be less political and more scientific, less prescriptive and more descriptive, less normative and more empirical. As a result, contemporary political science values gathering empirical evidence about politics and governme nt in order to further understanding of the way things work more than making arguments about how political things ought to work 1.5 | Political Values Politics and government are not limited to material values or valuables such as money, property, or other forms of wealth and possessions. Government and politics are also con cerned with important political values including individual freedom social order, equality, public safety, ethics and morality and justice. 1.51 | Individual Liberty One of the most important changes in American politics since the founding era is the increased emphasis on individual liberty se arch for religious freedom. T he Revolutionary War is remembered as the fight fo r the natural rights mentioned in the Declaration of Independence nd the Constitution is remembered as a document inspired by the need to protect individual liberty principally in the Bill of Rig hts However, the politics of the colonial era emph asized the need to obey authority figures in order to maintain good moral order and the Constitutional Convention was called in 1787 in order to give the federal government more power to create and mainta in order. During the founding era, individual obedience was relatively more important than individual freedom Over time, individual liberty became a more important value in American political culture. Today, individual liberty seems to be the paramount po litical value defined a right to make decisions about his or her own life without some authority figure limiting, restricting, o r interfering with their freedom of choice. Individual liberty is considered an aspect of personal autonomy or self determination. This conception of individual liberty as the absence of external constraints is sometimes called the negative concept ion of l iberty because it defines freedom as the absen ce of government limits t There is,


however, a positive concept ion of liberty that defines freedom as the right to personal development rather than the absence of external limits. In this sense, negative means the absence of legal limits and positive means the opportunity to do something Isaiah Berlin elaborated on the distinction between positive and negative liberty i n Two Concepts of Liberty Negative liberty refers to the condition where an individual is protected from (usually) government limits on freedom Positive liberty refers to having the means the resources, or the opportunity to do what one wants to do, to become what one wants to become, and to develop abilities and interests and identities T he American political and legal tradition reflects the negative conception of liberty as the absence of government limits. The negative conception is evident in the Bill of Righ ts. T freedom of religion, speech, or press. Th e Fifth Amendment prohibits the government jurisdiction the equal protection of the law s. In fact, the courts have read the provisions of the Bill of Rights to apply only to the way government treats individuals. The se c ivil liberties guaranteed in the Constitution do not, as a rule, give individuals right s as much as they limit government p ower to limit individual freedom. Figure 15.1 below describes how in the U.S. civil liberties defined here to mean the constitutional protections of rights apply only to the way the government treats individuals. This is the public sector. Civil liberties do not apply to the way individuals treat other individuals. This is the private sector. Figure 1 .5 1: The Negative and Positive Conceptions of Liberty The Public Sector The Private Sector The fact that the U.S. Constitution reflects the negative conception of liberty is o ne reason why the U.S. Constitution has fallen out of favor as a model for other countries to follow when they write new constitutions. Contemporary political cultures value individual liberties more than they did over 200 years ago when the U.S. Constitution was written. The negative conception of liberty seems old fashioned or even outdated. Government Individuals Individuals


Modern expectations of justice include c onstitutions that guarantee positive rights and liberties. 6 Section 2 of The Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms provides th at e Consti tution human dignity the right to life, and freedom from all forms of violence and torture. Article 1(1) of nstitution conceptions of individual rights that are not stated negatively as the absence of government limits. They ass ert positive rights that also apply to the way that individuals (and organizations such as businesses) treat other individuals. 1.52 | Social Order Order is an important political value because one of the major responsibilities of government is to create and maintain good social order. The public expects government to fight crime, manage public demonstrations and protests, and prevent social unrest i ncluding civic disturbances, riots, or even domestic rebellions, and national security from foreign threats The or conditions is less controversial than its role in providing good social orde r as it relates to standards of moral, e thical, or religious behavior. Moral regulatory policy can be very controversial because it involves values about which people may strongly disagree. The term culture wars refers to ideological battles over v alues re lated to public policies concerning issues such as abortion, gay rights, the definition of marriage, welfare, religion in public life, and patriotism 1.53 | Justice Justice is a basic concept that is central to most assessments of the legitimacy of a society. While it is hard to precisely define justice or a just society or political order, the concept of justice as fair treatment is a universal value shared by peopl e everywhere. for doing well or sanctions for inappropriate behavior or punishment for illegal behavior. 1.54 | Equality Equality is an important value in democ ratic political systems. Equality is an essential element of democracy. However, equality is actually a complicated and controversial concept whose meaning and significance has been debated from the founding era until today. Equality does not mean that Think About It! Should the U.S. C onstitution guarantee positive liberty?


e veryone must be treated the same, or that it would be a good thing if everyone were treated the same. The words of the Declaration of Independence assert that we are all created equal and endowed by our creator with certain unalienable rights. But this h as never been understood to mean that everyone is the same (in terms of abilities, for example) and should be treated the same as everyone else (regardless of merit). The natural inequality of age and ability, for instance, are contrasted with the politic al in the Fourteenth Amendment, which prohibits the state governments fro m denying to Amendment was initially intended to prohibit racial discrimination, but its scop e has been broadened to include prohibition against legal discrimination o n the basis of gender or age. Government can treat people differently, but it cannot discriminate against individuals, which means inappropriately treating individuals differently. 1.55 | Political Power, Authority, and Legitimacy Power, authority, and legitimacy are important concepts that are central to the study of politics and government Power is the ability to make another person do what you want, to force o thers to do what you want. It is the use of coercion or force to m ake someone comply with a demand This definition of power is value neutral. It does not say whether p ower is good or bad, proper or improper, legal or il legal, legitimate or illegitimate. A uthority is the right to make other people do what you want. A pers on who is authorized to issue orders that require others to comply with or obey demands has authority to require obedience or compliance with the order The authority could be al. The word authority derives from the Latin w ord type of power : po wer which is recognized as legitimate justified, and proper. The difference between authority and power is often illustrated by the example of a gunman who has power to make a person comply with an order to give up a wallet or open the safe. S u ch commands, while powerful, are not legitimate. The sociologist Max Weber identified three types of authority : traditional, charismatic, and rational legal. Traditional authority is based on l ong established customs, practices, and social structures and relationships. Tradition means the way things have always been done. Power that is passed from o ne generation to another is traditional authority. Traditional authority historically included the hereditary right to rule, the claim of hereditary monarchs that they had a right to rule by either blood lines (a ruling family) or divine right. The concept of a ruling family is based on traditional authority. The rise of social contract theory, where government is based on the consent of the governe d, has undermined traditional authority and challenged its legitimacy. Democracies generally people. / The second type of authority is charismatic authority. Charis ma refers to special qualities, great personal magnetism, or the distinct ability to inspire loyalty or confidence in the ability to lead. Charismatic authority is therefore personal. In politics, charismatic authority is often based on a popular percept ion that an individual is a strong leader. The


Spanish word caudillo refers to a dynamic political military leader, a strong man. Charismatic leadership is sometimes associated with the cult of personality, where neither tradition nor laws determine powe r. The third type of authority is rational (or legal) authority. Rational legal authority depends on formal laws for its legitimacy. A constitution or other kind of law gives an individual or an institution power. A government official has power by virt ue of being duly elected or appointed to office. Most m odern societies rely upon this kind of legal rational authority to determine whether power is legitimate. In the U.S., for example, the power of the presidency is vested in the office, not the indivi dual who happens to be president. Legitimacy refers to the appropriate ability to make others do what you want, the legal right to make others comply with demands. It is a normative or value based word that indicates something is approved of. Political le gitimacy is the foundation of governmental authority as based on the consent of the governed. The basis of government power is often subject to challenges to its legitimacy, the sense that the action is authorized and appropriate. Authority remains a con tested concept because, while the conceptual difference between authority and power is clear, the practical differences may be hard to identify because of disagreements about whether a law is legitimate. In the U.S., the tradition of civil disobedience re cognizes that individuals have some leeway to refuse to comply with a law that they consider illegitimate. 1.6 | Citizenship A citizen is a member of the political community Citizenship confers c ertain rights duties, and obligations Citizenship can be bestowed in a va riety of ways. In some countries a person becomes a citizen by being born on the territory of the country or being born to parents who are citizens. The U.S. has this jus soli citizenship The other way to become a citizen is by naturalization. This involves passing a basic test about the U.S. politic al system, meeting a residency requirement, and taking an oath. Other countries have different rules about citizenship. In Germany, citizenship was by blood (or parents had to be ethnically German to receive citizenship, and t here was no method by which a non German could become a citizen until the late 199 0s, when the law was changed to allow naturalization. Other cou ntries require citizens to pass certain economic requ irements to become citizens. C itizens have responsibilities as full members of a country U.S. c itizens are expected to obey the laws, pay taxes, vote, serve on juries and if required submit to military service Government actions are binding on all residents whether citizens or not Citize ns also have rights Rights are what differentiate between citizens and subjects Subjects do not have rights; it is their duty to do what the government tells them t o do to obey the law without the right to make it or to control the government Controlling government is important because government has the power to s life liberty, and property. Criminal law powers include the power to sentence convicted offenders to prison or to civil justice powers include the power property by fines, eminent domain, or withdrawal of business or occupational licenses In


democratic systems, the sense of civic responsibility to participate in public affairs is one way that the citizenry controls government. 1. 7 | Forms of Government One subject of interest to political science is the different forms of government. A simple description of the different forms of government is that there is government of the one, the few, and the many. Each of these three forms of government has a good variation and a bad variation. Table 1.7 Forms of Government Form of Government Good Variation Bad Variation The One Monarchy Tyranny/Autocracy The Few Aristocracy Oligarchy (rich or powerful) The Many Republic / Representative Democracy Direct Democracy Mob Rule/Ochlocracy (tyranny of majority) The three forms of government refer to the basic system of government, the government institutions that are established by a political community. The U.S. system of government was intended by its founders to be a mixed form of government because it includ es elements of all three forms: monarchy (the p residency); aristocracy ( the Senate, the Electoral College, and the Supreme C ourt); and democracy ( the House of Representatives; elections). The founders created a mixed form of government as part of the ins titutional system of checks and balances. T he syste m of checks and balances was design ed to create a political system where institutions and political organizations provided a measure of pr otection against corruption and abuse of power. The Founde rs though t that the mixed form of government was the best way to avoid what historical experience seemed to indicate was inevitable: the tendency of a political system to become corrupt. The Founders were acutely aware of the problem of corruption and the tendency of political systems to become corrupt over time. Their worries about centralizing power were succinctly expressed by the 19 th Century Italian British figure, Lord Acton (1834 1902), whose aphorism is still widely quoted today The Founders believed the power problem of corruption could be avoided by dividing power so that no one person or insti tution had complete power. But they also realized th e tendency of all form s of government to become corrupt o r decay over time. Monarchy the good form of government of one tended to decay into tyranny the bad form of government of one Aristocracy the good form of government of the few ( best and brightest) tended to decay into oligarchy government o f the rich or powerful And democracy the good form of government of, by, and for the many tended to decay into mobocracy, tyranny of the majority, ochlocracy, or rule by King Numbers So t hey created a mixed form of government with element s of each to guar d against the bad forms


The roots of American thinking about democracy can be traced to Classical Greece and the Roman Republic; the Age of Enlightenmen t; the Protestant Reformation, and colonial experiences under the British E mpire. The ancient Greeks in the city state Athens created the ide a of the democratic government and practiced a kind of democracy. The Romans developed the concept of th e representative democracy or republican government where citizens elect representatives to act on their behalf T he United States is a republic or representative democracy The diagram below describes the difference between direct and representative democracy. In a republic, i ndividuals do not directly govern themselves. Voters elect representatives who, as government officials, make laws for the people. This contrasts with a direct democracy where voters choose public policies themselves. Today however, the term democracy is used generically to include direct and indirect democracy (or republican systems of government). T he Constitution provide d for only limited democracy in the way the national government worked. The members of the House of Representatives were directly elected by the people, but the members of the Senate were selected by state legislators, the president was chosen by the Electoral College (not by popular v ote of the people), and federal judges were nominated by the president and confirmed by the Senate to serve life terms. And only a small percentage of citizens (white male property owners) were originally allowed to vote in elections. The Constitution pr ovided only limited popular control over government because the Founders were skeptical of direct d emocracy Over time, the Constitution, the government, and politics beca me more democratic with the development of political parties, the direct election of senators and an expansion of the right to vote. Think About It! In the past, direct democracy was considered impractical and undesirable because of geographical constraints, limited forms of travel and communications, and an uneducated and ill informed public. Technology and public policy have changed these conditions Should the U.S. now use technology to expand direct democracy by having the voters directly vote in referenda on national issues?


1.8 | Summary: Why government and politics ? Politics occur s almost everywhere Governments exist almost everywhere. This is because they are ways that individuals organize themselves to more effectively achieve their individual goals such as public safety, good public order, education, health care, and economic prosperity and income security Government and politics are also ways to achieve social goals such as a sense of belonging to a community, national or cultural identity, protection of national security, and the establishment of a just society. Governments are created to be one of the ways to provide and maintain t hese material and non mat erial goals. But governments can also threaten or even take these things away from people The Fifth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution prohib its the government from taking without due process of law. Is this a limit on government power? Yes. Is it a grant of government power? Yes because it means that the Constitution gives the government power to take life liberty, and property IF it provides due process of law before doing so. The fact that government can protect or threaten important values is one of the reasons why government and politics are almost continually debated and sometimes even fought over. I ndividuals and groups have different ideas about what government should be doing, and are willing to fight for control of government so that their ideas and beliefs can be acted upon or implemented in public policy. 1.9 | Other Resources 1.9 1 | Internet The Library of Congress: For more information on the political theory of Thomas Hobbes and John Locke : http:// and The Declaration of Independence : The U.S. Constitution: U.S. Government: http: // The Center for Voting and Democracy has links to articles related to elections and de mocracy, and l inks to organizations and ideas related to reforming the electoral system, and analysis of electoral returns. 1. 9 2 | In the Library Berlin Isaiah 1958. Two Concepts of Liberty Oxford: Clarendon Press.


Hobbes, Thomas. 1996. Leviathan. Richard Tuck (E d. ) New York: Cambridge University Press. Locke John. 1773. An essay concerning the true original extent and end of civil government. Boston: Edes and Gil l. Locke, John. 1988. Two Treatises of Government Peter Laslett (E d. ) New York, Cambridge University Press. Mill, John Stuart. 1869. On Liberty London: Longman, Roberts & Green Plato. 1995. The Last Days of Socrates Hugh Tredennick (E d. ) New York: Penguin. Rawls, John. 1971. A Theory of Justice Cambridge, MA: Belknap Press. Rousseau, Jean Jacques. 1762. The Social Contract Berkeley Publications in Society and Institutions 4 (1): 1 11. Translated by Hans Gerth. Xenophon. 1990. Conversations of Socrates Hugh Tredennick (E d. ) New York: Penguin.


| 1.) What are the basic questions to be asked about American (or any other) government? 2.) Why do governments exist everywhere if governments everywhere are widely criticized? 3.) What is politics? 4.) What is meant by power? 5.) What is political power? 6.) Explain the concepts authority, legitimacy, justic e, and democracy. 7.) Distinguish among the three concepts of democracy mentioned in the chapter, explaining in which of these senses the textbook refers to American government as democratic. 1 widely support paid family and medical leave but differ over specific policies/ 2 John Rawls. 1971. A Theory of Justice Cambridge, MA: Belknap Press of Harvard University Press. 3 Locke, John. 1689. Second Treatise of Civil Government. 4 Harold Dwight Lasswell 1935. Politics Who Gets What, When and How Gloucester, M A.: Peter Smith Publisher Inc. 5 The Political System 1953. New York: Knopf, p.65. 6 New York University Law Review 3(June):762 858. Available at Public Good Power Authority Legitimacy Government Politics Citizen Justice Social Contract Direct Democracy Representative Democracy Oligarchy Monarchy Polity Tyranny Aristocracy Personal Liberty


2.0 | The Constitution and Constitutional Government American support for the Constitution is so strong that it has been described as reverence for a sacred text that is along with t he Declaration of Independence the foundation of American civil religion that treats these founding documents as American Scripture 1 Americans are also very critical of politics, political parties, government in general. Is the Constitution, which created the political system, at least partly to blame for the modern system of government and politics ? This chapter examines the Constitution an d the system of government that it created. The primary goals are to D escribe the origin and the development of t he c o nstitution al system of government ; E xplain the functions of a constitution; and A ssess how the system of constitutional government works today This includes comparing how it was intended to work with how it actually works today, and comparing the Constitution with the constitutions of other countries. Image courtesy of The signing of the Constitution of the United States


T he main theme of the chapter is that there is tension between the exceptionally strong commitment to the Constitution as a sacred political text and the strong, almost constant pressures to change a nd adapt to the modern world in a country whose national identity is defined by political, economic, social, technologica l, and scientific change. The t ension s between continuity remaining true to basic founding principles and political ideals and values and change the need to adapt to meet contemporary needs and desires and conditions e xist in all political systems. But the tension between desiring to stay true to founding values while responding to a dynamic, changing world is especi ally strong in the U.S. because of the strong commitment to the Constitution and the values it embodies The commitment to founding values is a kind of legal fundamentalism It gets stronger during times of great change challenges, and crises. In fact, a recurring theme in American politics is the belief that contemporary problems can and the original understand ing of how government and politics were intended to work The i m age below is variation of 1817 painting Declaration of Independence T he original painting which was commissioned by Congress, di d not have the Christ figure. Declaration of Independence (The Bridgeman Art Library) 2.1 | The Constitution and Constitutional Government A constitution is a governing document that set s forth rules of politics a nd government Constitutions are today almost universally recognized as an appr opriate foundation for a political system therefore m ost countries have constitution s The expectation that a modern political system will have a constitution originates from a Constitution but the Constitution is what the Court Charles Evans Hughes absolute governments the king is law, so in free countries the law ought to be king; and there ought to be no Thomas Paine, Common Sense (1776) Talk About It! 1


t he political belief that constitutional government is a good form of government that constitutional government is a legitimate, rightful, or appropriate form of go vernment. C onstitutions are today considered essential for good government because they promote the rule of law government accountability, and political legitimacy As a basic law, a constitution provides the foundation for t he rule of law the expectation that government power must be based on law. The rule of law makes it possible to hold government officials legally accountable for their actions The rule of law thereby fosters the sense of p olitical legitimacy the public acceptance of government as the appropriate authority. Political l egitimacy is important in a democracy because p eople are more likely to accept government and obey law if it is considered legitimate. C onstit utional government is government according to the rule of a basic or fundamental law C onstitutional government is not merely government based on the rule of la w I t is government based on a particular kind of the rule of law : the rule of a basic or fundamental law The constitution provides the foundation for the system of government. Political systems based on constitutional government have a legal hierarchy o f laws. In the U.S. system of c onstitutional government the hierarchy of laws includes c onstitution al law legislati ve or statutory law and administrative or regulatory law. The legal hierarchy means that not all laws are created equal. Constitutional law trumps the other kinds of laws. Legislation statutes that are passed by Congress or state legislature s cannot conflict with the C onstitution. A dministrative law the rules and regulations that are created by administrative or bureaucrati c agencies cannot conflict wi th the legislation that created an d authorized the administrative agency or the Constitution. The Constitution is the basic or fundamental law: it establishes the basic framework of government, allocates government powers, and guarantees individ ual rights. T he Constitution cannot be changed by majority vote. Statutes can be passed by majority vote. Statutes are considered ordinary laws because they can be created or changed by simply majority vote The Constitutional law is ba sic or fundamental law: constitutional amendments require super majority votes : two thirds vote to propose an amendment and three quarters vote to ratify an amendment Diagram 2.1 b elow il lustrates th e hierarchy of laws in the U.S. Diagram 2.1 The U.S. Hierarchy of Law


2.2 | Rule of Law The rule of law (ROL) is defined as the principle that governmental authority is exercised o nly in accordance with public laws that are adopted and enforced accord ing to established procedure s The principle is intended to be a safeguard against arbitrary governance by requiring that those who make and enforce the law are also bound by the law Government based on t he rule of law is contrasted with government according to the rule of man The rule of man describes a political system where gove rnment officials determine their own powers without reference to pre existing laws. T he idea of governmen t according to the rule of law has ancient roots. One source is classical Greek and Roman political thought. The writings of the ancient Greek political philosophers Plato and Aristotle described and analyzed different forms of good and bad government. P l ato believed that the best form of government was the rule of man, specifically rule by a philosopher king. He described a philosopher king as a wise and good ruler thin k of someone like Solomon, a wise person who not only knew what to do but was a good person who could be trusted to do what is right. Plato believed that rule by such a philosopher king was the best form of government because the wise and good leader would be free to do what was right without being limited by laws or other government inst itutions with which power was shared A ristotle described a good form of government as one with institutions and laws His description of a good form of government is more closely identified with the modern concept of government according to the rule of la w For example, government was cter He described a system of government that did not depend on getting a leader as good and wise as Solomon Aristotle made government power less personal and more institut was based on the authority of the office held rather than personal attributes such as physical strength, charismatic leadership, heredity or blood lines, or some other personal attribute. Western thinking about the rule of law also includes English and French political philosophers. The English political philosopher Lex, Rex (1644) advocated using law ( Lex ) to control the power of a monarch or other ruler ( Rex ). The English political struggles to bring the king un der the law influenced American thinking about good government. The French polit The Spirit of the Laws (1748) provided the American Founders with specific ideas about how to create a system of government that guard ed against the abuse of power. main contribution to the U.S. system of constitutional government is the princ iple of the separation of powers dividing government into three branches ( the legislative, the executive, and the judicial branches ) D u ring the colonial and revolutionary era s Thomas Paine Common Sense (1776) drew upon these sources for inspiration about how law could be used to control the power of the king, and indeed all governm ent power In this sense, Pai reflected the development of t he rule of law to displace the rule of man. According to Paine, . the world may know, that so far as we approve of monarchy, that in America THE LAW IS KING. For as in absolute governments the King is law, so in free countries the law OUGHT to be King; and there ought to be no other


This was an extremely bold asserti on Paine earned his reputation as a radical for claiming that the ki ng was not the sovereign ruler that the king was not above th e law but rather subject to the law. This claim could be considered treason, for which the penalty was death. It was also revolutionary because it challeng to the divine right to rule. One of the best The Constitution of the Commonwealth of Massachuset ts : Support for the rule of law continued to develop during the 19 th century The legal scholar Law of the Constitution (1895) how it meant that everyone was under the law and no one was above it: 2.3 | Is the Rule of Law Part of an American Creed? The rule of law has become so important in American thinking about government that it is consid ered part of an American Creed A creed i s a statement of basic beliefs. T he American C reed refers to the widely shared set of political beliefs about b asic governing principles : the rule of law; po pular sovereignty; checks and balances ( principally the separ ation of powers and federalism); individual rights; and judicial review. legislative department shall never exercise the executive and judicial powers or either of them: the executive shall never exercise the legislative and judicial powers, or either of them: the judicial shall never exercise the legislative and executive powers, or either of them: to the end it may be a government of ( The Constitution of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts Part The First; Art. XXX) table or a collector of taxes, is under the same responsibility for every act done without legal justification as any other citizen. The Reports abound with cases in which officials have been brought before the courts, and made, in their personal capacity, liable to punishment, or to the payment of damages, for acts done in their official character but in excess of their lawful authority. [Appointed government officials and politicians, alike] ... and all subordinates, though carrying out the commands of th eir official superiors, are as responsible for any act which the law does not authorise as


M ost governments today are at least officia lly committed to the ROL even if they do not live up to the ideal. T he importan ce of the ROL is reflected in the fact that non governmental organizations (NGOs) such as the Worl d Bank consider it an essential condition for political, social, and economic development. Law & Development/Law and Justice Institutions Programs link the ROL with national development. The almost worldwide acceptance of the ROL as a basic principle of governing has made law one of the factors determining whether a gov ernment is legitimate. ROL values make government action authority rather than power The ROL gives government action legitimacy In Western political development is closely related to the development of l aw as an alt ernative to the traditional sources of power and authority : heredity or family blood lines; the divine right to rule; or personal charisma (the strongman appeal) 2.3 1 | Constitutional Democracy T he U.S. is commonly called a democracy or a republic but it is actually a constitutional democracy or constitutional republic. The constitutional limits the democracy The C onstitution limits democracy as defined as majority rule. C ongress may p ass popular laws that ban flag burning or punish radical political speech or prohibit certain religious practices but even laws that have widespread public support can be declared unconstitutional In the U.S. legal hierarchy, the Constitution trumps statu es (even if they are popular). Democratic p olitics may be about popularity contests and majority rule but constitutiona l law The Bill of Rig hts protects individual rights from majority rule. In fact, the Constitution is a counter majoritarian document in the sense that it cannot be chan ged by a simple majority vote. Changing the Constitution r equire s extra ordinary majorities A constitutional amendment requires a two thirds vote to propose an amendment and a thre e quarters vote to ratify it 2.3 2 | Three Eras of Development American government can be divided into three eras or stages of political development : the founding era; the development of t he system of government; and the emergence of the modern system of government. The founding era includ es the colonial experience culminating with the Declaration of Independence and the Revolutionary War ; the Articles of Confederation which was the first form of government; and the creation of the republican system of govern ment in1787. The development era is much longer and not as clearly defined as the founding era. It includes the early 1800s when the Marshall Court (1801 1 835) issued landmark rulings that broadly interpreted the pow ers of the national gove rnment; t he post Civil War constitutional ame ndments that abolished slavery, prohibited denial of the right to vote on account of race, and prohibited states from denying equal protection and due process of law ; and the Progressive Era (from 1890 to around the end of WWI) policies regulating monopoli es and working conditions (e.g. enacting child labor laws, workplace safety laws, and minimum wage and


maximum hours laws ) These developments change d the system of government and politics Political parties were organized. The national government was expanded. And t he political culture changed There was an increased expectation of the right to participate in politics and greater popular control over govern ment. T he modern era of American government is usually traced to the 1930s response to the Great Depression The Great Depression was a n ational indeed, a global economic crisis that the American public expected the national governmen t to address. The development of a national economy further strengthened public expectations that the national government was responsible for managing the economy The public began to look to the federal government for sol utions to problems. Organized crim e was perceived as a national problem that required federal action. World War I I and the subsequent Cold War also increased the power of the national government, which h as primary responsibility for foreign affairs and national defense. The creation of a s ocial welfare state and a national security or warfare state changed politics and governance. It changed the distribution of power between the national and state governments, it expan ded the power of the presidency contributed to the rise of the admini str ative state the federal bureaucracy that Americans love to hate The following sections examine the founding era. The development and modern eras are examined in greater detail in the chapters on congress, the president, the judiciary, and federalism. 2.4 | Founding Era 2.41 | Colonial Era P eople came to the new world primarily from England and Europe for a variety of reasons. Some came looking for greater political freedom. Some came for economic opportunity with t he promise of free land Some were entrepreneurs who saw the New World as a place to make mo ney. Some were seeking a new start in life. Some fled religious persecution in their home land a nd were searching for freedom to practice their religion In the 16 th and 17 th centuries, English joint stock companies were formed under charters from the crown to promote commercial and territorial expansion i n North America. T he Virginia Company of London founded the Jamestown settlement in 1607. In New England, the Massachuset ts Bay Company charter described explicitly religious political purposes The F irst Charter of Virginia (1606), The Mayflower Compact (1620) and T he Charter of Massachusetts Bay (1629) are documentary evidence of the coloni al era belief that politics and government had explicitly religious purposes. 2 The colonial experience with charters creating communities also provided colonists with personal experiences ernments. These experience s are one reason why the social contract theory of government has been so influential in shaping American thinking about government


2.42 | Spirit of Independence Several factors fostered a spirit of independence in the colonies. The first factor is the character n the seventeenth century crossing the Atlantic Ocean was a long, difficult, and dangerous undertaking. The pe ople who made the trip tended to be the hardier, more adventurous, or more desperate individuals, so the colonies were populated with people who had an independent streak. A second factor is geography The large ocean between the rulers and the ruled creat ed conditions that allowed a sense of colonial identity to develop. King James I (1600 1625) increased the independent spirit by allowing the colonists to establish assemblies such as the Virginia House of Burgesses. Each of the 13 colonies had a con stitut ion The se conditions fostered expectations of individual liberty in self government, religious practices, and economic activity. By the mid 1700s, local traditions and distance weakened colonial tie s to the Crown. A third factor is ideas The political philosophy of the Age of Enlightenment included an emphasis on reason, self government, liberty, and imperial power in the New World. A fourth factor is economics The c olonial economies differed from the British economy. C hanges in the economic ties between England and the colonies increased support for political independence. During the colonial era t he British economic policy was mercantilist Mercantilism is the theor y that the government controls and directs econom ic activity, particularly foreign trade, in order The British controlled colonial industries and trad e to increase imperial wealth. The British prohibited their colonies from trading with other imperial powers lik e the Dutch to ensure that British colon ial gold and silver stayed within the empire. T he American colonies initially benefited economically from this mercantilist arrangement. They had a buyer for the raw materials an d other goods produced by the colonies The American colonies produced wood for ships for the British fleet as well as tobacco, cotton, rice, an d sugar for export In return, the colonists could buy finished products like ships and rum. Mercantilism was responsible for the triangle trade : slaves were brought to America from Africa; sugar, cotton, and tobacco were exported to En gland; and manufactured goods, textiles, and rum were sent to Africa to pay for slaves. T his mercantilist arrangement changed as the colonial economy developed. T he colonies starte d chafing against mercantilis t policies as they believed they were no longer receiving competitive price s for their goods. Furthermore, as the New England economy devel oped into a manufacturing and trade economy, New England started taking in the trade triangle, thereby reducing t he need for the British Empire.


2.43 | Trade and Taxation Despite the complaints about trade policies, the colonists were generally content with British governance until the Seven Years War (1756 1763). T he long and expensive war with the French and Indians ended with the British in c ontrol of most of North America. The colonists thought this would open u p even more cheap frontier land for them to settle but t he British had other ideas. The Crown decreed in 1763 that there would be no further westward movement of British subjects because the Crown did not want to pay to defend settlers against Indians. The B ritish Parliament taxed the colonists to pay for the very expen sive war The Sugar Act of 1764 taxed sugar, wine, coffee, and other products commonly exported to the colonies. The colonists resented these taxes and began to cry no t axation without represe P arliament further angered the colonists by passing the Stamp Act in 1765 which require d all printed documents to bear a stamp. The printer had to pay for the stamp. In the same year, the Parliament passed the Mutiny (Quartering) Act that forced colonists to either provide barracks for British soldiers or house them in their homes. T he colonists who were already mad about paying taxes, started protesting that they have to pay for soldiers to live in their homes. The Sons of Liberty which were organized by S amuel Adams and Patrick Henry to act against the Crown, looted the Boston tax collectors home V iolence spread th roughout the colonies and the stamp act became virtually unenforceable. I n 1767, Parliament enacted the Townshend Acts that imposed duties on many products including tea. The Sons of Liberty started a boycott which prompted t he British to send troops to Boston When British soldiers fired on a crowd of protesters, killing five people, the event was depicted as the Boston Massacre Paul Revere portray al of the British captain ordering the troops to fire on the crowd inflamed colonial passions


In 1772, still upset by the tea tax Samuel Adams suggested the creation of Committees of Correspondence to improve communication among colonists. By 1774, twelve colonies had formed such committees which organized protests prior to the revolution and coordinat ed actions during the r evoluti on. Despite colonial opposition, Parliament pa ssed another tax on tea in 1773 and, consistent with mercantilist economic policy, granted a monopoly to the East India Company. The colonists responded by dumping tea into Boston Harbor The Boston Tea Party enraged King George, who declared that it was time to force the colonies to fall into line. The King persuaded Parliament to pass the Coercive Acts or the Intolerable Acts which allowed Br itain to blockade Boston harbor and placed 4,000 mo re soldiers in Boston. These act ion s increased resentment on both sides of the Atlantic. All but one colony (Georgia) agreed to send delegates to a new continental congress to present a united message to the King 2.44 | First and Second Continental Congr ess es The First Continental Congress that met in Philadelphia in September and October 1774 consisted of 56 delegates from eve ry colony except Georgia. They adopted a statement of right s and principles including colonial rights of petition and assembly, trial by peers, freedom from a standing army, and the selection of representative councils to levy taxes. The statement provided that the Congress would meet again in May 1775 if the King did not agree with their requests King George refused the request of the Continental Congress. A second Continental Congress called a meeting in May of 1775, but before the delegates could meet fighting broke out at Lexington and Concord, Mas sachusetts. When t he delegates at the Second Continental Co ngress convened on May 10, 1775 the atmosphere was more hostile toward Britain. King George sent 20,000 more troops. T he Revolutionary War had begun in earnest. Think About It! Anti war moveme nts in the Revolutionary Era? Not everyone in the colonies supported the Revolutionary War. And not everyone in Britain thought it was a good idea to send troops to put down colonial rebellions. See the British political cartoon from 1775 describing Kin g d by obstinacy and pride:


2.4 5 | The Declaration of Independence (1776) The Declaration of Indepen dence was written to justify taking up arms to overthrow an existing political system. It is a philosophical defense of the right of revolution. Thomas Jefferson a Virginia farmer and lawyer was the main author of the Declaration of Indep endence. The language that words and ideas ab out natural or God given rights, popular sovereignty, the social contract th eory of government based on the consent of the governed and even to revolt against an unjust government The following language from the Declaration of Independence explains these ideas: The Declaration acknowledges that people should not be quick to revolt against a government It is only a fter a long train of abuses intended to reduce the people to despotism that it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such government, and to provide new guards for their future security. .. The Declaration declared That these the political bands whi ch have connected them with another, and to assume among the powers of the earth, the separate and equal station to which the laws of nature and of nature's God entitle them, a decent respect to the opinions of mankind requires that they should declare the causes which impel them to the separation. We hold these truths to be self evident: That all men are created equal; that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable rights; that among these are life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness; that, to secure these rights, governments are instituted among men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed; that whenever any form of government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the right of the people to alter or to abolish i


United Colonies are, and of right ought to be, FREE AND INDEPENDENT STATES ; that they are absolved from all allegiance to the British crown and that all political connection between them and the state of Great Britain is, and ought to be, totally dissolved 2.5 | Articles of Confederation T he first American form of government was the Articles of C onfederation The Continental Congress approved the Article s of Confederation and they took effect in 1781 upon ratification by all thirteen stat es. A confederation is a loose association of sovereign states that agree to cooperate The Second its sovereignty, freedom, and independence, and ever y power, jurisdiction, and right, which is not by this Confederation expressly delegated to the United States, in of friendship with each othe r, for their common defense, the security of their liberties, and their mutual and general welfare, binding themselves to assist each other, against all force offered to, or attacks made upon them, or any of them, on account of religion, sovereignty, trade I n a confederation, political power is decentralized because the central (or national) government is weak and the state or r egional governments are strong. The Articles of Confederation had major defects which were expos e d during the Revolutionary War. The d efects became more apparent after th e Revolutionary War when the states no longer felt the need to work together to face the threat of the common enemy The Articles had five major defects relate d to taxing power an executive official commerce, amendment, and the power to maintain domestic order. Taxing T he national government did not have the power to tax, which meant that congress (the main institution of the national government) had to beg the states to pay for the war and other government functions. It is hard today to imagine a government without the power to tax. Executive T he Articles did not provide a chief executive. T he Revolutionary War was fought against a monarchy (an executive figure) and the natur al reaction of the Founders was to create a new political system which did not have a single leader or executive figure who could become a monarch. The Declaration of Think about it! Does the spirit of the Decla ration of Independence give Americans the right to revolt against the government?


Independence he Revolutionary War was fought against a monarch who was accused of tyrannical abuse of power. It was logical for the Founders to create a form of go vernment where a representative body, a legislative institution more closely identified with democratic government, had the mos t power. Commerce T he Articles did not give the national government power much economic power. The states had power to regulate interstate and foreign commerce. Some s tates enacted laws which benefited economic interests in the ir state and discriminated against out of state or foreign business interests. These kinds of economic protectionist legislation limited trade. States could also coin money. Critics eventually saw state power over commerce and economics as a barrier to the development of a national economy and advocated giving the national government power over interstate and foreign commerce. Amendment One of the most important challenges facing any political system is how to provide for change i n response to different economic, social, or politic al circumstances. T he Articles could be amended only by unanimous consent of congress and the state legislatures. This made it very difficult if not impossible for the government to adapt to circumstances that it faced Domestic Order Because power was decentralized, t he national government did not have power to act to ensure domestic tranquility and order Maintaining good public order is one of basic responsibilities of any government. The national Rebellion and secessionist movements in some parts of the country exposed the weakness of the national government under the Articles The most famous of these domestic threats to public order were armed marches in Mass achusetts. In the fall of 1786 and winter of 1787, Daniel Shays, a Revolutionary War veteran, lead around 1500 supporters on an armed march to stop mortgage foreclosures. Economic conditions were bad. H igh state taxes and high interest rates caused farme rs to face bankruptcy and mortgage foreclosures Shays and his supporters marched on the government to demand that it provide them with some relief from the bad economic conditions. The S tate of Massachusetts appealed to the national government for help in putting down but the national government could not act without the consent of the other states which rejected the request for money to establish a national army. Order was finally r estored when the governor of Massachusetts called out the state militia.


A scene at Springfield, during Shay's Rebellion, when the mob attempted to prevent the ho lding of the Courts of Justice E. Benjamin Andrews, 1895 ebellion alarmed government officials and political leaders who believed the national government needed to be given more pow er to respond to such threats to good public order A constitutional convention was held in the summer of 1787 to Articles of Confederation to correct its defects. However, the delegates to the convention decided to abolish the Articles of Confederation and create a new form of government After lively debate, the delegates draft ed a new constitution whi ch created a new system of government, a federal republic with a stronger national government. Modern Americans tend to forget played in the creation of the republic. (Holton 2007) R adical popula r action has been a part of the American political experience and tradition from the founding of the rep ublic through the civil war fought to preserve the union, to modern efforts to create a government that is responsive to the people.


2.5 | U.S. C onstitution A lthough the delegates to the Constitutional Convention met in secret, the records of the convention debates reveal lively debates about what form of government to create. The convention debates and the subsequent debates over ratification of the new constitutio n were generally organized as a debate between the Federalists and the Anti federalists. The Federalists supported ratification because they believed that the country needed a stronger national government. Their arguments for ratificatio n were made in a series of famous essays written by James Madison, Alexander Hamilton, and John Jay called The Federalist Papers The Anti federalists opposed ratification of the Constitution because they believed that it gave the national government too much power They preferred a political union where the states had more power. The Anti federalists tend to be overlooked because they lost the argument. The Constitution was ratifi ed. But the Anti federalist Papers are worth reading in an era when American politics includes criticism of the size of the federal government. The Declaration of Independence and the Constit ution were written for two very different purposes. The Declaration is a philosophical defense government. The Constitution is a practical, working document that was written to create a more effective form of gov ernment. The Preamble of the


the Constitution tranquility, provide for the common defense, promote the general welfare, and sec ure the blessings of liberty to ou The Constitution creat e d a new form of government that was more capable of accomplishing the things that the people expect gover nment to do Alexander Hamilton explained th is purpose in Federalist Number One : AFTER an unequivocal experience of the inefficiency of the subsisting federal government, you are called upon to deliberate on a new Constitution for the United States of America. The subject speaks its own importance; comprehending in its consequences nothing less than the existence of the UNION, the safety and welfare of the parts of which it is composed, the fate of an empire in many respects the most interesting in the world. Considering the passionate m otives of those who support ed or oppose d the new Constitutio n, Hamilton worried that a spirit of self righteous passion would make compromise and cooperation difficult, and that the intolerant spirit would tempt one side to attempt to dominate the other si de by physical force rather than the force of argument. In To Secure These Rights: The Declaration of Independence and Constitutional Interpretation (1995), Douglas Gerber argues that the purpose of the Con stitution was to effectuate or make possible the Lockean liberal principles that were asserted in the Declaration of Independence T he Declaration asserted the existence of certain unalienable or natural rights ; the Constitution c reated a system of constitutional government that provided the means to ac hieve the rights and protect them T he main body of the Constitution establishes th e basic framework of government. It provides for a republican system of government; elections and representation; and it grants and limits the powers of government. Articl e I provides the powers of the legislative branch. Article II provides the powers of the executive branch. Article III provides the powers of the judicia l branch. T he first ten amendments to the Constitution, commonly referred to as the Bill of Rights, provide for individual rights The Bill of Rights includes important limits on the powers of government. 2.5 1 | Three Functions of the Constitution The U.S. Constitution d oes three things. It establishes the basic framework of the governme nt; it allocates government powers; and it declares or guarantees individual rights. Establish the basic framework of government The Constitution creat es a republic an form of government, a federal system of government, and a system of government with the separ ation of powers A republic is a type of democracy It is an indirect democracy E lected representatives make public policy for the people. The people control government by electing government officials. A federal system is a two tiered system of governme nt where power is divide d between a central government the national or federal government and the regional or state governments. Federalism is a geographic division of power between the national government and the state governments. The actual division of powers is specific in some


areas of public policy For instance, the national government has exclusive power over interstate commerce, c oining money, foreign affairs and de claring war. But there are other areas of public policy where both the national and state governments m ake policy. These include crime, education, the environment and tax es T he division has also changed over time as the federal government became involve d with more and more are as of public policy. Federalism is part of the system of institutional checks and balances whereby the national and state governm ents T he separation of powers is the functional division of power among the legislative, executive, and judicial branches of government. The separation of powers was created for two reasons. The first reason is the system of institutional checks and b alances Dividing power among three branches was intended to prevent the concentration of power in the hands of one individual or one institution T he separation of powers is often cited as evidence that the Founders intended to create an inefficient system of government. T he three branches were not intended to be completely independent of one another. The French polit ical philosopher Montesquieu, who was the main inspiration for t he tripartite separation of powers, believed that each branch had to be sufficiently independent of the others so that one branch could not create, or abolish, any other branch, but not completely separate of each another. T he system of institutional jealousy depends on some overlap so that each branch will guard against anot her branch poaching on its turf. power to enact l The can be overridden by a two thirds majority vote in both houses of congress. The president is delegated power as c ommander in chief but only congress has the power to declare war and to raise and sup port an army The president has the power to nominate federal judges, ambassadors, and other high government officials, but the nominations must be confirmed by the Senate. And the Supr eme Court has final authority to strike down both legislative and presidential acts as unconstitutional. The president nominates federal judges but they must be confirmed by the Senate. Congress n of the federal court system. Over time, t he president has become such an important partici pant in the legislative process that it is common today to refer to or the or even presidential legislation (e.g., executive orders). In order to understand how government works today, it is necessary to understand p residential legislation and judicial policy mak ing, two terms that the separation of powers did not originally provide for T he second reason for the sepa ration of powers is that it contribut es to good governance. The Founders considered the separation of powers a modern, innovative, political scientific contribution to good government. In Federalist 47 Madison praised Each of the three branches is designed with a special institutional competence that make s a unique contribution to good government. Congress is designed as a representative institution that makes laws. The presidency is designed for both decisive action in emergencies and to fairly implement the laws passed by Congress. The judiciary is well designed to decide conflicts involving the interpretatio n of the laws. The instit utional competence is representation of di stricts, states, and interests, deliberation, negotiation, and ultimately compromise to make laws for the


nation The e institutional competence is action the abi lity to act swiftly when needed, a nd the just adm inistration of the laws passed by C ongress The executive is to ensure that the laws passed by Congress are uniformly applied, not enforced selectively against the minority party, racial or ethnic minorities, or the political opponents of th e people who made the laws. institutional competence is dispute resolution This includes both conduct ing trials and interpret ing the laws when there are legal disputes about what the laws mean. T he Founders intended the legislative branch to make laws, the executive to carry them out, and the jud icial branch to interpret the laws. But th is is not exactly the way the system work s T he modern national government does have three separate institution s but they actually share law making power For instance, t he terms presidential legislation and legislating from the bench ar e commonly used to describe what the modern presidency and judiciary actually do Descriptions of how the modern government works typically include legislative policymaking, executive policymak ing, and judicial policymaking. T he study of comparativ e government and politics reveals that the separation of powers is not essential for democracy. Modern democracies include presidential government and parliamentary government. The separation of powers is more common to presidential systems than p arliamen tary systems Parliamentary systems typically fus e the leg islative and executive powers by making the prime minister the executive governing officer an elected member of the legislative body or parliament. In parliamentary systems, one institution, the el ected legislature or parliament, is the supreme governing body; the other institutions (the prime minister or the courts) are inferior to it. In separation of powers, each branch is largely independent of the other branches in the sense that the other bra nches are not created by, or dependent on, another branch for its existence. Congress cannot abolish the judiciary; the president cannot abolish congress. In parliamentary systems where the legislative and execu tive powers are fused, the people typically elect the members of the representative assembly (i.e., the parliament), who then select the prime minister The fact that a prime minister is selected by the legislative body, and is an elected me mber of that body, fuse s rat her than separates institutional power In the U.S., Congress does not select the president, and the president is not a member of congress. Th e president is selected independent of Congress. In a parliamentary system, the tenure of a prime minister select ed by a legislature is likely to end when the t erm of the legislature ends and a new parliament selects a new executive In a presidential system the executive s term may or may not coincide with the legislature s term. The l egislative and executive powers can be informally fused by party loyalty. Party loyalty means that members of Congress may be more loyal to a president of their Think About It! Was the separation of powers intended to make government inefficient or was it intended t o make government better ?


party than to Congress. Party loyalty can undermine the system of institutional checks and balances Allocate Power The seco nd function of a Constitution is to allocate po wer. The Constitution both grants and limits government powers. The main grants of power to the national government are provided in Article I (legislative), Article II (executive), and Article III (judicial). Article one I, Section 8 provides a list of powers delegated to Congress. The main limits on the pow er of the national government are provided in the Bill of Rights. The challenge when writing a constitution is to strike the right balance between granting and limiting government pow er : a government that is too weak can be ineffectual or result in a fail ed state; a government that is too strong can threaten individual liberty Guarantee Individual Rights (or F reedoms) The third function of a constitution is to provide for individual rights. The U.S. Constitution, the 50 s tate constitutions and the con stitutions of other countries include provisions declaring or guaranteeing rights. In the U.S. Constitution, the Bill of Rights provides for freedom of speech, religion, and press, as well as providing protection against unreasonable search and seizure, d ue process of law, the right to a trial by jury, and protection against cruel and unusual punishment. These constitutionally protected rights are sometimes called civil liberties. Civil liberties are distinct from civil rights, which is a term that usual ly refers to individual rights that are provided in legislation rather than the Constitution. Civil Liberties are the constitutional rights that limit the restrict individual freedom. Civil liberties are often called individual right s or individual liberties because they limit government power over individuals Civil liberties include the First Amendment guarantees of freedom of religion, speech, and press; the Second Amendment right to keep and bear arms; the Fourth Amendment right against unreasonable search and seizure; the Fifth Amendment guarantee of due process of law; the Eighth Amendment prohibition against cruel and unusual punishment; and the Fourteenth Amendment guarantee of equal pr otection of the laws. S ome of the most i mportant civil liberties provisions are described in very general language : the protection against unre asonable search and seizure; the guarantee of due process of law ; and the prohibition against cruel and unusual punishment. The meanings of these vague w ords are not precise. People disagree about their meaning. As a result, conflicts between individuals who claim a civil liberties freedom from government restriction and government claims that they have the power to restrict the freedom are often decided by the Supreme Court. T he term civil rights is often used generically to refer to individual rights and individual liberties. But there are two significant differences between civil liberties and civil rights. First, civil rights are sta tutory rights They are provided in legislation, not the Constitution. Second, civil rights protect indiv iduals against discrimination. Civil rights laws promote equality by prohibiting discrimination on the basis of ra ce, gender, religion, ethnicity, or s ome other status or characteristic. Two e xamples of landmark civil rights laws are the 1964 Civil Rights and the 1965 Voting Rights Act


2.5 2 | Bill of Rights W hen the Constitution was submitted to the states for ratification, it did not include a provision declaring or guaranteeing individual rights. The Federalist s who supported the Constitution argued that a bill of rights was unnecessary because the powers of the newly formed national government were so carefully limited that individual rights did not have to be specifically mentioned in the Constitution In fact, some Federalists argued that adding a bill of rights could actually be dangerous bec ause listing specific individual rights that the government could not limit would inevitably be interpreted to mean that the government could limit any rights that were not actually mentioned in the bill of rights Nevertheless, l egislators in some s tates threatened to withhold ratification of the Constitution unless a bill of rights was added t o the document. The Anti federalist George Mason, a constitutional convention delegate from Virginia, opposed the new constitution because it did not include a bill of rights. The Anti federalist worries that the new constitution created a stronger national government but did not include a bill of rights threatened the ratification of the Constitution. In order to ease Anti federalist worries, a bill of rights was pro posed to limit the power of the Virginia Declaration of Rights I n 1789, the First Congress of the United States adopted the first ten amendmen ts to the Constitution These amendments were ratified by the required number of states in 1791. The following is an edited version of the first ten amendments to the Constitution (the Bill of Rights) : Fir st Amendment: Second Amendment: regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, Fourth Amendment: Fifth Amendment: jeopardy of l ife or limb, nor shall be compelled in any criminal case to be a witness against himself, nor be deprived of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor shall Sixth Amen dment: and public trial, by an impartial jury of the State and district wherein the crime shall have Sev enth Amendment: Eighth Amendment: cruel and unus


Ninth Amendment: Tenth Amendment: nited States by the Constitution, nor Until 2008, the Supreme Court had interpreted th e Second A mendment as guaranteeing the states the power to main tain a well reg ulated militia As such, the Second Amendment was read as a federalism amendment : it protected the states from the federal government particularly its military power I n District of Colum bia v. Heller the Supreme Court ruled that the Second Amendment guaranteed an individual right to keep and bear arms As a result, the right to keep and bear arms has now been added to the list of civil liberties that individuals and organizations, such as the National Rifle Association, can use to challenge gun control and other regulatory policies enacted by the federal, state, or local governments M ost of the provisions in the Bill of Rights apply to criminal justice. They list specific rights. T he Ninth Amendment is different. It was added to the bill of rights to ease Anti federalist worries that not list ing a right mean that the right did not exist. What if the men who made up the list forgot to include a basic right? What if a future generatio n consider ed a right a fundamental right? The Ninth Amendment was intended as a statement that the Bill of R ights should not be read as an exhaustive list. 2.5 3 | Civil Rights and Civil Liberties T he relationship between religion and politics is o ne of the most controvers ial issues in American politics During the colonial era, government and politics had explicitly religious purposes. T he First Charter of Virginia (1606), the Mayflower Compact (1620), and The Book of the General Lawes and Libertyes Concerning the Inhabitants of the Massachusetts (1648), for example, describe government and politics as organized efforts to make people moral as defined by organized religious beliefs. Some colonies had an established church an officially recognized and government supported church Massachusetts established the Congregational Church as the official church and some southern colonies established the Anglican Church as the official religion. Over time, the colonies moved away from establishing an official d enomination and toward establishing Christianity or Protestantism. T he Constitution changed the relat ionship between church and state or at least the relationship between religion and the federal government. Article VI of the Constitution religious Test shall ever be required as a Qualification to any Office or More important the First Amendment prohibits free ex includes the right of individuals and organizations to actively participate in politics, but it limits government support for religion. Political and constitutional debates invo lve providing public aid to religious schools, policies allowing or requiring organized prayer in public schools, religious displays of the Ten Commandments or crches in public places, laws related to the teaching of evolution or creation science a nd leg islating morality. Civil liberties claims have been made to challenge the constitutionality of using


law to promote mo rality by regulating obscenity to prohibit certain sexual behavior and to define marriage as a relationship between one man and one woma n 2. 6 | Constitutionalism T his chapter began with an acknowledgement that having a constitution is today almost universally accepted as the best form of government. But having a document called a constitution does not mean that a political system is co mmitted to constitutional government. Constitutionalism refers to the public and government officials commitment to the values that are expressed in the Constitution. Without the commitment, a constitution is merely paper or words without much to back them up With the commitment, a con stitution acquires real political and legal force. American s have an especially strong commitment to the Constitution. Support for the Constitution remains strong even in tough times of economic hard shi ps domestic disorder, or national security threats In contrast, p ublic support for the government varies a great deal, and in fact support for government institutions has declined over time. The enduring appeal of the Constitution and the belief in th e founding values that are embodied in it (e.g., freedom; limited government; equality) remain a political constant even in times of great political change conflict, and even turmoil. What explains the enduring appeal of the Constitution? O ne explanation is that the enduring public support reflects a general commitment to the Constitution or to constitutional government rather than support for specific provisions of the Constitution or particular interpretations of them This explanation is supported by s tudies o f public opinion that reveal consistently low levels of knowledge about what is actually in the Constitution. A public opinion survey conducted by the Constitution Center revealed surprisingly low levels of public kno wledge about the Constitution: l ess than five percent of the American public could correctly answer even basic questions about the constitution. T he consistently high levels of public support for the Constitution do not mean there is general consensus about what specific provisions of the Constitution actually mean In fact, the general consensus supporting the Constitution masks political conflict about what specific provisions of the Constitution mean and how to interpret them For instance, both c onservatives and liberals profess support for the Constitution and the values embodied in it. But they consistently justice powers, its economic regulatory powers, its m oral regulatory powers, and its war powers. For instance, b oth sides in the debate s about the role of religion in American government and politics appeal to the C onstitution as supp orting their side of the debate about school prayer L iberals and conserva tives also disagree about how the Cons titution should be interpreted A Pew Research survey of public opinion about t he Constitution revealed major differences bet ween conservatives and liberals, an ideological divide that was so wide that it was described as a chasm. Conservatives believe the Constitution should be interpreted according to the original meaning of the wo rds or the original intentions of those who wrote them. Liberals believe that the Constitution should be interpreted according to contemporary societal expectations. T he se differences reflect the tension between continuity and change, between adhering to c ertain beliefs and changing with


the times. P articularly during hard times or times of crisis, conservatives are apt to blame political problems on departing values and to call for a return to them as the solution to the problems 2.61 | Relationship between the Constitution and the Political System The relationship between the political system that was established by the Constitution and modern governance is both interesting and complicated Public o pinion reflects such strong suppor t for the Constitution and such strong critic ism of the government that i t could be said that Americans love the Constitution but hate the government (tha t it created). Although it may seem surprising, venerating the Const i tution can create governance problems. Reverence for the Constitution can create problems. Take, for example, constitutionalists. Constitutionalists believe the Constitution should be strictly or literally interpreted. Some religious constitutionalists believe that the Constitution was a divinely inspired document. The belief that a document is divinely inspired makes reasoned political analysis, including assessment of the problems of modern governance, difficult. Secular constitutionalists merely belie ve that the Constitution should be strictly interpreted. Some of the individuals who call themselves constitutionalists are advocates of the Tenth Amendment. The motto of these The Constitution. Every Issue. Every Time. No Exceptions, no Ex cuses These constitutionalists believe the original Constitution, not the Constitution as it has com e to be understood. This is one of the main points of the Tea Party movement. P olitical and legal scholars disagree about whe the r the s problems can be solved by returning to the original understanding of the Constitution and how the government was int ended to work Founders views are misleading insofar as it presumes that there was one, single, unified voice. At a minimum there were basic differences between the Federalists and the Anti federalists The b icentennial of the Constitution in 1987 produced a number of scholarly works that identified governance problems that could be traced to the Constitution, and 3 Constitutionalists and some conservatives reject the argument that the consti tutional design of government i s flawed or that modern challenges require modernizing the Constitution. Those who advocate change write in the Jeffersonian tradition. 2.62 | Should Laws, Like Food Products, Have Expiration Dates? T homas Jefferson argued that laws, including the Constitution, should have sunset provisions. He thought that laws should last only twenty years the lifespan of a generation becau se one generation should not bind a succeeding generation. No society can make a perpetual constitution, or even a perpetual law just as the earth of their own persons, and consequen tly may govern them as they pl expire at the end of 19 years Laws that are enforced longer Jefferson did not think that the pr oblem of one generation binding another could be solved by claiming that each succeeding was tacit consent to it. This tacit consent might


apply if the form of government were so perfectly contrived that the will of the majority could always be obtained fairly and without impediment. no form of government is perfect. R epresentation is unequal and vicious checks limit proposed legislation, factions control government bodies and bribery c orrupts them, and p ersonal interests the general interests of their constituents a law of limited duration is much more manageable repeal ed. 4 This chapter began by describing references to the Constitution as a sacred text. Sanford Levinson is a legal scholar who is very critic al of the constitu tional design of American government. He also thinks that venerati n g the founding era and the system o f government created by the Constitution is, ironically, not in keeping with the founding values of the republic Our Imbecilic Constitution reminds us that the authors of t he Federalist Papers advocated ratification of the new Constitution by t of the weak central government created by the Articles of Confederation. Levinson scolds those who call the modern American political system dysfunctional, even pathological to even mention the Constitution in generating the pathology. According to Levinson, s lavery, the Senate system of providing equal representation to North Dakota and California, the Electoral College, and the separation of powers, all created problems b the worst sing le part of the is surely Article V, which has made our Constitution among the most difficult to amend of any i n the world mend ment is so difficult that the mere discussion of possible reforms is considered a waste of time. He considers it unfortunate that lost the seriously in near religious veneration L evinson blames the modern dysfu nctional government on the decision to make the Constitution so hard to amend. Most of the 50 state constitutions are much e asier to amend fourteen states give the voters the opportunity call a constitutional convention at regular interval s; t h ere have been more than 230 s tate constitutional conventions, and each state has had an average Levinson describes the willingness to critique, indeed junk admirable, and he thinks that we are long overdue for a serious discussion about [the own role in creating the depressed (and depressing) state of American politics. 5 2.6 3 | Continuity and Change T he U.S. C onstitution is the oldest continuing governing document and it is a very brief document. The longevity is related to its b revity The Constitution has lasted as long as it has partly because it is such a short document It is a short document that is filled with gen eral phrases describing government and politics Congress power to use whatever means ac complish the things that Congress has power to do. The Bill of Rights has especially memorable but flowery phrases. T he 5 th Amendment prohibits government from deny ing any person due process of law T he 4 th Amen dment prohibits unreasonable searches and sei zures T he 8 th Amendment


prohibits cruel and unusual punishment These general provisions of the Constitution al low for or perhaps require, interpretation to give them concrete meaning interpretation to determine how they are to be applied in specific instances Interpretation is a way to informally change the meaning of the Constitution to accommodate change wit hout requiring formal amendment or an entirely new constitution. The short and general Constitution has endured for more than 200 years with on ly 27 ame ndments and the first ten amendments were adopt ed as the bill of rights in 1791 T h is means that th e Constitution has undergone only minimal formal changes despite more than two centuries of major political, economic, social, technol ogical, and s cientific changes. Which raises a question: I s the Constitution, an Eighteenth Century document still relevant to Twenty first Century government an d politics? It is. B ut the informal accommodation to reflect change means that it is no longer possible to read the Constitution to understand how modern American government and politics actually work. The following are just some of the major political developments that are not even mentioned in the Constitution. Political Parties The Constitution does not s ay anything about political parties even though parties play a central role in politics and government. Parties have also changed the way the Electoral College works. Corporations The Constitution does not say anything about corporations even though they are important economic organizations that the Supreme Court has T he Fed The Constitution does not say anything about the Federal Reserve rnment body with control over monetary policy. The Fourth Branch The Constitution creates three branches of government but the development of the federal bureaucracy has created a fourth branch of government. Presidential Government The Founders created a system based on legislative government but presidential power expanded over time and the system developed in to presidential government Presidential L egislation This term applies to, among other things, executive orders and executive agreements as forms of presidential lawmaking. Judicial Review The Constitution does not explicitly give courts the power of judicial review, but this implied power to review the acts of other government officials to determine whether they are constitutional has greatly expanded the power of courts The Congressional Committee System It is impossible to understand how Congress works without describing the committee system and the party leadership s ystem The Sole Organ Doctrine This doctrine is one of the key concepts for policy. A National centered S ystem The Founders created a state centered political system, but the government has developed into a national centered system.


2.7 | Comparative Constitutional Law One way to better understand the U.S. Constitution is to compa re it to other constitutions. The constitutions of the 50 states are very different than the U. S. Constitution. Among other things, the state constitutions are much younger, longer and more detailed t han the U.S. Constitution. T he constitutions of other countries are even more varied. The ready electronic access to the constitutions of other countries makes it easy to compare the what form of government the country has, and to determine what civil ri ghts and liberties it includes, provides insights into the political history of a nation. It is especially interesting to compare the civil rights and liberties provisions in the newer constitutions with those of older constitution s such as the U.S. Consti tution because th e U.S. played an important role in writing the constitutions of Germany and Japan after World War I and, more recently, the constitutions of Iraq and Afghanistan. 2. 8 | Summary This chapter examines the origins and development of the U.S. system of constitutional government. It includes the various factors that fostered colonial independence and the subsequent development of Am erican government and politics, and the system of civil liberties and civ il rights. Two main themes are the tension in American political culture between granting and limiting power, and the tension between continuity (preserving the original understanding of the Constitution and the founding era values) and change (adapting to the political, social, economic, and technological conditions of the times). One aspect of self government is thinking about the system of government and politics so that the general public, as informed citizens, can answer two basic questions. How is it working for us? How can we hel Think About It! Can a person read the Constitution to get a good understanding of how American government and politics work today? Act on It! Contact a local, state, or national government official (e.g., your member of Congress), and ask them whether they support any constitutional amendments.


2 9 | Additional Resources Primar y documents are available at Montesquieu. The Spirit of the Laws Paine, Thomas. 1776. Common Sense Rutherford, Samu e l. 1644. Lex Rex: Law Is King, or The Law & The Prince. The Constitution of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts The First Charter of Virginia (1606) fcv.htm The Mayflower Compact (1620) Th e Charter of Massachusetts Bay ( 1629 ) The Lawes and Li bertyes of Massachusetts ( 1648) The National Constitution Center: T he constitutions of countries of the world : 2. 92 | Amar, Akhil Reed. 2005. New York: Random House. Beard, Charles. 1913. An Economic In terpretation of the Constitution of the United States. New York: Macmillan. Berkin. Carol. 2003. A Brilliant Solution: Inventing the Americ an Constitution New York : Harcourt.


Constitutions Rule of Law Mercantilism The triangle trade Seven Years War The Sugar Act The Stamp Act Mutiny Act The Townshend Acts The Coercive Acts Confederation A republican system of government Federalism Separation of powers Checks and balances The Bill of Rights Bowler, Shaun and Todd Donovan. 2001. Demanding Choices and Direct Democracy Ann Arbor, MI: University of Michigan Press. Breyer, Stephen 2006. Active Liberty: Interpreting our Democratic Constitution Dicey, Robert A. and Albert Venn 1895. Law of the Constitution 9 th Edition, 1950. London: MacMillan. Gerber Douglas 1995. To Secure These Rights: The Declaration of Independence and Constitutional Interpretation New York: New York University Press. Holton, Woody Holton. 2007. Unruly Americans and the Origins of the Constitution New York: Hill and Wang Ketcham Ralph. 2003. The Anti Federalist Papers and the Constitutional Convention Debates. Signet Classics. Kyvig, David E. 1998. Explicit and Authentic Acts: Amending the U.S. Constitution, 1776 1995 University Press of Kansas Maier, Pauline. 1997. American Scripture: Making the Declaration of Independence. New York: Knopf.


1 God in America (2010). PBS Frontline. scripture/ 2 A repository of these historical documents is available at 3 See, for example, A Workabl e Government? The Constitution a fter 200 Years 1987. Ed. by Burke Marshall. New York: W.W. Nor ton & Company; Reforming American Government: The Bicentennial Papers of the Committee on the Constitutional System 1985. Ed. by Donald L. Robinson. Boulder, CO: Westview Press. 4 The Papers of Thomas Jeffe rson Edited by Julian P. Boyd, et al. Princeton: Princeton University Press. 1950. http://press 5 The New York Times (May 8, 2012). Accessed at


3.0 | Congress Congress has been called the broken branch of government. Public opinion polls that consistently indicate lower levels of confidence in Congress than almost all other government and non government institutions are evidence the Congress is an institution that everyone loves to hate Congress is ca lled the broken branch of government because not hing seems to make Congress less capable of action than the need for action. The only reason there are more lawyer jokes than congressmen jokes is there are so many more lawyers than members of Congress. Why does the modern Congress get so little respect? During the early years of the republic, representative institutions such as Congress were considered part of the modern trend toward democracy as a progressive


alternative to monarchy. T he 19 th Century Sena te was considered the greatest deliberat ive body in the world! What changed? Congress still sometimes debates important issues but the rhetoric rarely rises to the level of greatnes s C ongressional speeches are usually delivered to an almost empty chamber where the speaker talks to a came ra that delivers the message to The televised congressional hearings that attract public attention more closely resemble K abuki theatre than good lawmaking. Kabuki t heatre is highly stylized stage drama performed by actors wearing elaborate make up and costumes. Calling televised congressional hearings Kabuki theatre, because the hearings are posturing and posing rather than substantive lawmaking, is actually an insul t to Kabuki theatre, an ancient stage tradition. Former Attorney General Loretta Lynch began her career in the 1990s as an Assistant U.S. A ttorney in Brooklyn Speaking at a dinner for alums of that office, Lynch said that her priorities as Attorney Gene ral came from ideals shaped by her experiences in rooklyn in interview rooms, talking to murderers and 1 Why is testifying before Congress compared unfavorably with interviewing or interrogating murderers? Why can Congress be insulted by complimenting it for being a perfectly good 19 th Century i nstitution Did Congress decline and public opinion merely reflect its decline? Or did changes in public opinion cause Co ngress to change? The argument presented in this chapter explains the fact of congressional decline as primarily caused by a major, long term shift in thinking about government a shift away from legislative governance toward executive (presidential) gover nance The chapter focuses on the following issues : The Power Problem with Congress. Individual members of Congress and Congress as an institution are more accountable than effective. As a result, power has flowed to institutions that are generally consi dered more effective for governance. The Functions of Congress. The political development of the American system of government includes major changes in C ongr The O rganiz ation of Congress. The internal organization of Congress particularly bica meralism, the committee syste m, and the party structure affect s what Congress does well and what it does not do very well 3.1 | The Power Problem The power problem is the need to grant government enough power to effectively address the problems that people expect government to solve, while also limiting power so that it can be held accountable. A successful government is one that strikes the right balance between granting and limiting power. The main power problem with Congress is effectiveness : Congress is often unable to get anything done Congress has been called and many political scientists consider it an inefficient or ineffec tive institution. Congress has plenty of critics Public opinion polls generally reflect that the public does not hold Congress in very high regard


problems. Congress r anks low in measures of p ubl ic confidence in institutional e ffectiveness. This is not surprising because Congress is not d esigned to be an especially effective institution. It is designed as a representative institution where different interests and pers pectives are represented, and decision making requires negotiating, bargaining, and compromise. These democratic values (representation, bargaining, and compromise) are sometimes at odds with effective or decisive action. A re members of Congress smarter than tenth graders? A study of congressional speeches on the floor of the House and Senate concluded that the level of speech was at the tenth grade level and declining D not instill public confiden ce in Congress 3.2 | Change over Time changed a great deal over time. Congress does not play the same role that it did d uring the founding era The Founders American society. Please tell me how much confidence you yourself, have in each one a great deal, quite a lot, some, or a little. T hink a bout It! Are members of C ongress sophomoric? Are they smarter than a 5 th grader? Analysis of speech patterns indicates that they talk like 10 th graders members of congress talk like 10th grade rs analysis shows


made Congress the law making branch of the federal government. Article I Section I of Congress of the United States, which shall consist of a Senate and House of ongress was intended to be the first branch of government in the sense that it w as intended to be the primary branch of the federal government. Congress was the most powerful (and therefore also the most dangerous) branch of government. T he political expe riences of the Founders made it logical for them to create a political system where the legislative branch was most powerful. T he Revolutionary War was fought against a monarchy M any of the Founders remained wary of executive power And the Founders bel ieved that the legislative branch was more democratic that it was a republican or representative institution during a time when republican or representative government seemed to be the wave of the future. Representative government was considered modern one of the then recent advance s T he Founders did not create three branches of government with equal power. T he legislative, executive, and judicial branches were created equal in the sense that they have the same cons titutional status The Founders c reate d a system of legislative government, not executive government or judicial government. But a s the U.S. political system developed, the presidency accumulated a great deal of power in absolute terms and relative to Con gress Congress is still the first branch but it is not necessarily the primary branch of government T he modern system has developed into a political system based on executive governance rathe r than legislative governance. T his change has occurred over time. The 19 th Century was the golden age of representative assemblies as governing bodies The 20 th Century was not kind to representative assemblies which lo st favor to executive government particularly parliamentary systems headed by prime ministers i n most countries of the world. The decline of congressional power relative to the president is certainly one of the most importance changes in the way the U.S. system of government works. Congress is no government. 2 Congress is still a powerful institution. Compared to the representative assemblies in many other countries, Congress is a powerful institution because it plays both a lawmaking and a representative role. In most modern parliamentary system s, the representative body (the parliament) is largely limited to representation with a prime m inister who actually governs the country and makes policy for the nation. C ongress still performs many important functions, but its primary role to be the lawm aker for the nation has diminished. T he modern Congress focuses less on making laws for the nation and more on representation and oversight of the administration. Representation of constituents (i.e., individuals in the district or state) and organized i nterests is a very important function of individual members of Congress and Congress as an institution The importance of l egislative oversight of the administration (and the bureaucracy) has increased a s Congress has delegated more and more power to the p resident and the size of the federal bureaucracy has increased. B ut the president has taken the lead in many areas of public policy making particularly global affairs such as national defense and foreign policy but also areas of domestic policy such as fis cal policy ( the setting of budget priorities ) C ongress lost power relative to the executive for a broad range of reasons. One of the general reasons is related to the nature of power in the U.S. system of government.


Power is dynamic, not static. It is not a solid or fixed quantity. It is more like a liquid that flows to wherever it seems t o be most effective. Power will flow to whichever level or government (national or state) seems more effective at addressing the prob lems facing the nation. And power will flow to whichever branch of government (legislative, executive, or judicial) which seems most effective. Or power will flow to the private sector if the public considers the private sector more effective at solving a problem than the public sector. Today, t he general public sees the p resident as t because the p residency seems to be a more effective institution. 3.3 | The Separation of Powers In order to describe t he way Congress works today it is necessary to understand how the separation of powers works today The separation of powers doctrine does not provide for a watertight separation of legislative, executive, and judicial powers. Although the Constitution delegates to Congress all legislat ive powers, Con gress is not the only government body that makes laws According to the Congress website legislative branch is the law making branch of the government made up of th e Senate, the Congress is the only source of federal statutes or legislation b ut there are other kinds of law, including executive orders, executive agreements, administrative regulations, and even case law. Presidents make law when they si gn executive orders The Supreme Court makes law when it interprets when police officer s are investigating individuals who are suspected of crimes And administrative agencies such as the Federal Communications Commission and the Internal Revenue Service make laws through rulemaking actions that define indecency or determine whether a religious organization should be granted tax exempt status. J ust as the executive and judicial branches have some lawmaking po wers, Congress also has powers over the other branches. The House of Representatives controls appropriations or the budget. Without funding, the other branches particularly the executive branch are hamstringed in their ability to act. The House also ha s the power of impeachment or the formal charging of a government official with treason, bribery, other high crimes and misdemeanors. The Senate then acts as a court for the impeachment, with the Chief Justice of the Supreme Court presiding. The Senate al so has the power to approve (or fail to approve) the most important of the presidential appointments, including federal judgeships, ambassadorships, and cabinet level posts. The Senate also approves all treaties. Congress also has the power to declare war. 3.4 | Constitutional Powers Congress has two types of constitutional power s : enumerated powers and implied powers. E numerated powers are those that are specifically mentioned. Enumerated powers are sometimes called delegated powers because they are powers that the Constitution actually delegates to government. Implied powers are those that are not specifically mentioned but which can be logically implied to flow from th ose that are enumerated 3.41 | Enumerated P owers


T he foll owing are some of the enumerated powers granted in Article I, Section 8: The Congress shall have power to lay and collect taxes, duties, imposts and excises, to pay the debts and provide for the common defense and general welfare of the United States; but all duties, imposts and excises shall be uniform throughout the United States; To borrow money on the credit of the United States ; T o regulate commerce with foreign nations, and among th e several states, and with the Indian tribes; T o establish a uniform rule of naturalization and uniform laws on the subject of bankruptcies throughout the United States ; T o coin money regulate the v alue thereof, and of foreign coin, and fix the standard of weights and measures ; T o establish post offices and post roads; T o promote the progress of science and useful arts, by securing for limited times to authors and inventors the exclusive right to their respective writings and discoveries; T o constitute tribunals inferior to the Supreme Court ; T o define and punish piracies and felonies committed on the high seas and offens es against the law of nations ; T o declare war, grant letters of marque a nd reprisal and make rules concerning captures on land and water ; T o raise and support armies but no appropriation of money to that use shall be for a longer term than two years; To provide and maintain a navy ; T o make rules for the g overnment and regulation of the land and naval forces; T o provide for calling forth the militia to execute the laws of the union, suppress insurrections and repel invasions ; And To make all laws which shall be necessary and proper for carrying into execution the foregoing powers, and all other powers vested by this Constitution in the government of the United States, 3.42 | Implied Powers Article I Section 8 is a list of T he list of specifically mentioned powers ends with the necessary and proper clause (See above) The necessary and proper clause has been interpreted to mean that Congress can laws which shall enumerated power s. In effect, the necessary and proper clause gives Congress power to choose the means it considers T hink about I t! The Senate must confirm p re sidential nominees. When did time the Senate last reject a presidential nominee to head an executive department? Or a Supreme Court nominee? htm


necessary to achieve its legislative ends. F or example, Congress has the enumerated power to raise an army, and the implied power to use a military draft t o raise the army. Congress has enumerated power to r egulate commerce and coin money, and the implied power to create the Federal Reserve System and the Department of the Treasury to perform these functions. T he necessary and proper clause is sometimes cal led the elastic clause because it has been interpreted very broadly to allow Congress to choose the best means to accomplish its specifically mentioned powers. Supreme Court established the precedent for broadly interpreting the necessary and proper clause to give Congress implied powers in McCulloch v. Maryland ( 1819). This landmark case involved a legal Congr ess created a national bank. Maryland taxed the Baltimore branch of the national bank. The Supreme Court was asked to decide whether Congress had the power to create a national bank and whether a state could tax a branch of the bank. Chief Justice John Ma rshall ruled that the delegated powers, including the power to regulate commerce. Congress could decide mmerce. Marshall, incidentally, was a prominent member of the Federalist Party which supported a strong national government to promote economic development. Th e McCulloch ruling established a precedent that the Court would broadly interpret the powers of Congress. As a result, Congress today legislates on many areas of public policy that are not actually mentioned in the Constitution as grants of power. 3.5 | What Does Congress Do ? Congress has four main roles or functions: Lawmaking for the nation (l egislati n g ) Representation (of c onstituents and i nterests) Legislative Oversight ( overseeing the administration and i nvestigati n g sca ndals ) Constituency s ervice (solving constituent p roblems) 3.51 | Law making for the nation T he Constitution delegates all legislative power to Congress. It therefore is the only B oth t he House and the Senate must pas s a bill for it to become a law but the y have different roles in the law making process. For instance, tax bills must originate in the House of Representatives. This provision of the Constitution with the government institution that was closest to the people. The members of the House a re closer to the people than members of the Senate. Members of the House are dir ectly elected by the people to serve two year terms. The members of the Senate were originally chosen by state legislatures and served six year terms.


3.52 | Representation C ongress is a representative institution. The m embers of the House and Senate are elected representatives of the people. Congress is institutionally designed to represent geographic districts. In the House of Representatives, the legislative districts are 435 geographic areas with about 650,000 people in each district In the Senate, the districts are the 50 states. Representation is not limited to geography. Members of Congress also represent individuals and organized interests. In a large, populous nation such as the Unit ed States, representative institutions increase political efficacy Political efficacy is the belief that it is possible for a person to participate effectively in government and politics. Representative institutions are one of the w ays that government is designed to be responsive to public demands and interests. Efficacy is related to the belief that individuals and organizations can have an impact on government. In the U.S. system of rep ublican government, congress is the instituti on that is designed to represent the people deliberate on public policy options, and enact make laws for the nation T here are three theories of representation : the delegate theory ; the truste e theory ; and the politico theory The delegate theory is that members of Congress should act as instructed delegates of the ir constituents. According to this theory, elected representatives are not free agents : representatives have a political obligation to do what their constituents want. A legislator who votes on bills based strictly on public opinion polls from the district, for example, is acting as a delegate. The trustee theory is that me mbers of Congress should do what they think is in the best interest of the ir constituents According to this theory, electe d representatives are free agents: they can vote according to what they think is right or best regardless of public opinion in the district. A trustee us es his or her judgment when deciding how to vote on a bill, for example. A trustee do es not feel obli gated to vote based on public opinion polls from the district S tudies of Congress indicate that legislators are not typically either delegates or trustees. T he politico theory of representation suggests that representatives are rational actors whose voting behavior reflects the delegate or trustee theory of representation depending on the situation. M embers of Congress are expected to represent their districts. The representation of districts includes repre senting individuals and organ ized constituen ts such as business interests that are located in the district. Members from agricultural districts are expected to represent agricultural interests. Members from urban districts are expected to represent urban interests. Members from man ufacturing districts are expected to represent manufacturing interests and m embers from di stricts where mining, forestry, or other natural resource interests are located are expected to represent those interests. Where one industry is especially importan t to a district, particularly in the House of When one interest is the dominant interest in a districts a representative may be strongly identified with that single interest For example, Congressman Norm Dicks represents th Congressional District. The 6 th district, the Puget Sound Naval Yard and other military installations, and a number of defense contractors One of the companies, Boeing aerospace manufacturer, was headquartered in Washington State until it relocated to C hicago. R epresentative Dicks serves on three key House Appropriations Subcommittees deal ing with defense, Interior and the Environment, and Military Construction/Veterans.


Act on It! Contact one of your member of congress (a representative or one of your two senators) and ask them abou t a political issue of concern to you. How can you find a member of Congress? Go to the Click on Government Agencies and Elected Officials Select Branches of Government; then Legislative Branch; Select House of Representatives or Senate. The Representative from Boeing because of his strong advocacy for Boeing. H is representation of American Defense Contractors i decision to award a major defense contract to build the new generatio n of airplane refueling tankers to a Europ ean and American consortium of airplane builders. 3.53 | Constituency Service T he third congressional role is related to r epresentation Constituency service is helping constituents solve problems that they may have with the government. All the Web sites of the members of the House of Representatives prominently list constituency service as one of the things that the member of congress does for the individuals or organizations in the district. Members of Congress maintain offices in their districts to he lp solve constituent problems : getting government benefits such as Social Security ch ecks; getting services; problems with government regulations of business; or who have kinds of problems or issues that constituents have with t he government This constituency casewo rk often involves helping individuals or organizations cut through government red ta pe or bureaucratic procedures. 3.54 | Legislative Oversight T he fourth c o ngressional role is oversight. oversight role co nsists of two primary functions: Oversight of the Laws Investigation of Scandals T he first ove rsight function is overseeing the way the laws are being administered by the p resident and the bureaucracy. The oversi ght of the laws is important because Congress makes the


laws but t he exec utive branch administer s or implements the laws. Congress oversees the administration of the laws by conducting hearings to determine how public policy is being implemented, to determine whether the president is implementing the laws the way Congress intended, or to determine whether the law needs to be changed based on information about how it is working especially whether it is working well or not The primary method of l eg islative oversight is congressional hearings at which members of the executive branch or independent regulatory agencies may be called to testify about how they are carrying out the laws that Congress passed C ongressional hearings are the principal formal method by which committees collect and analyze information in the early stages of legislative policymaking. But there are other kinds of hearings as well: confirmation hearings (for the Senate, not the House), legislative hearings, oversight hearings, i nvestigative hearings, or a combination of the m Hearings usually include oral testimony from witnesses, and questioning of the witnesses by members of Congress. T here are several types of congressional hearings. Congress ional Standing (or Policy) c ommittees regularly hold legislative hearings on measures or policy issues that may become public law. Agriculture committees hold hearings on proposed legislation related to agriculture policy. Banking and financial services committ ees hold hearings on b ills related to the financial services sector of the economy. The armed services committees hold hearings on legislative proposals related to national defense and the military. The health, education, and labor committees hold hearings on bills related to these aspects of domestic policy. Sometimes a committee holds hearings on several bills before deciding on one bill for further committee and chamber action. Hearings provide a forum where witnesses from a broad range of backgrounds can appear to provide facts and opinions to the committee members. The witnesses include members of Congress, other government officials, representatives of interest groups, academics or other experts, as well as individuals directl y or indirectly affected by a proposed bill M ost congressional hearings are h eld in Washington, but field hearings are held ou tside Washington. O versight hearings are intended to review or study a law, a public policy issue, or an activity. Such hearings often focus o n the quality of federal programs and the performance of government officials. Hearings are also one way for Congress to ensure that executive branch is implementing laws consistent with legislative intent A significant part of a congressional committee oversight. Committee oversight hearings might include examination of gasoline price increases, lead paint on toys imported from China, the safety of the food supply in the wake of e. coli contamination, indecent program ming broadcast over the television or M edicare or M edicaid spending or access to health care, or matters related to crime policy. T he second oversight function is inve stigation of scandals. I nvestigative hearings are similar to l egislative hearings and oversight hearings but they are specifically convened to investigate when there is suspicion of wrongdoing on the part of public officials acting in their official capa city, or suspicion of


private citizens whose activities or behavior may warrant a legislative remedy. Congress might conduct investigate hearings to get additional information about use of steroids in professional sports such as baseball, or to determine whether tobacco companies are or whether tobacco company executives think nicotine is addictive Congress has broad power to investigate. Some of its mo st famous investigative hearings are benchmarks in American political history: T he Teapot Dome Scandal in the 1920s T he Army McCarthy Hearings during the Red Scare in the 1950s The Watergate scandal in the 1970s T he Church Committee H earings on the CIA and illegal intelligence gathering in the 1970s T he Iran Contra Affair Hearings in 1987 The National Commission investigating the 9/11 terrorist attacks The National Commission investigating the financial crisis The investigation of Trump cam financial relationships with Russian officials. Investigative hearings gather information and issue reports that are often used to pass legislation to address the problems that the hearings examined. The Na tional Commission wa s used to increase coordination of intelligence about terrorism. The Financial Crisis Inquiry Report submitted by the National Commission on the Causes of the Financial and Economic Cr isis in the United States in January 2011 included among its recommendations regulation of certain financial transactions. C onfirmation hearings on presidential nominations are held in fulfil lment of the advise and consent S enate committee s h old confirmation hearings on presidential nominations to executive and judicial positions within their jurisdiction. When the President nominates the head of an executive agency such as the Secretary of State, Interior, Department o f Homeland Security, or Defense the Senate must confirm the nomination. The Senate also must confirm the Confirmation hearings offer an opportunity for oversight into the activities of the or agency. The vast majority of confirmation hearings are routine, but some are controversial. The Senate may use the confirmation hearing of a nominee for Attorney General to examine how the Administration has been running the Department of Justice and provide some guidance on how the Senate would like the Department to function The Constitution also requires that the Senate consent to the ratification of treaties negotiated by the executive branch with foreign governments. Arms control treaties have historically been controversial. Recently, the Senate used the ratification of the Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty between the U.S. and Russia to exert power over the executive branch and to influence the foreign policy choices of the President. 3 Therefore hearings provide an opportunity for different points of view to be expressed as a matter of public record. So conf irmation hearings are one of the ways that the Senate performs its constitutional responsibilities in an important area of public policy.


Roger Clemens, to House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform was indicted on August 19 th 2010, by the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform for lying about using performance enhancing drugs during his long powers by the House of Representatives. In response, the support I have been getting. I am happy to A jury ultimately found Mr. Clemens not guilty of criminal charges. Mr. Clemens and his lawyers before the House Committee: O ubpoenas and to hold individuals in contempt of Congress for not complying with demands to testify or provide requested information. Most of the time individuals welcome an invitation to testify before Congress because it can be a val uable opportunity to communicate, publicize, and advocate their positions on important public policy issues. However, if a person declines an invitation, a committee or subcommittee may require an appearance by issuing a sub poena. Committees also may subpoena correspondence, books, papers, and other documents. Subpoenas are issued infrequently, and most often i n the course of investigative hearings. The subpoena power is an implied power of Congress. Congress has the enumerated power to legislate, and hearings and subpoenas are implied powers that are logically to legislation it is considering. But when Congress requests records from the executive branch, the president cite executive privilege as a constitutional power to refuse to give Congress the information it requests during an oversight investigation. In 20 12, the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives sting operation that was intended to track illegal gun running on the Mexican border. The operation lost track of guns that it had provided, and the guns ended up in the possession of a Mexican drug cartel. Congress demanded information about the program a nd how it went wrong.


3.55 | Lawmaking, Representation or Oversight? Today, Congress devotes more time to representation and oversight and less time ma king laws for the nation. This shift has occurred more in some areas of public policy than in others. In foreign affairs and national security for example, Congress generally follows the In domestic affairs, Congress typically exert s more influence over public policy A s individual member s of Congress pay more attention to representation oversight, and constituency service they pay less att ention to law making for the nation. As a result, Congress as an institution also focuses less on its traditional lawmaking role. This change is reflected in the congressional work schedule. resting perspective by a member of the House of Representatives who left Congress and then returned after 33 Minnesota) thoughts about why Congress no longer works (well). 3. 6 | The Internal Organization of Congress How an institution is organized affects what it does. The three most important aspects of the way Congress is organized are bicameralism, the committee system and the party system. 3.6 1 | Bicameralism C ongress is a bicameral or two house body. Bicameralism is part of the system of checks and balances and part of the functional differences in legislative governance. T he House of Representatives and the Senate have different sizes, roles, and rules of operation. The House is larger and therefore has more formal rules of operation to govern debate The Senate is smaller and relies more on informal rules, a tradition of open debate (including Think About It! How does Cong ress work? returning after 33 years says congress works and coopera tes less now Mexican border. dept gives congress documents on fast and furious/ releases fast furious report obstruction congress department justice/


the infamous filibuster) and personal relationships. In order for a bill to become a law it must pass both houses of Congress a fact that makes lawmaking in bicameral bodies much more complicated than in unicameral bodies. 3.6 2 | The Committee System T he key to understan ding how Congress works is the c ommittee system. Congress does most of its work in committees. The committee system is a form of division of labor. Most modern organizations operate with a system of division of l abor where individuals are assigned different tasks in order to take advantage of specialization or expertise. The standing committees in Congress are an exampl e of specialization The jurisdiction of congressional committees such as the House of Represen tatives committee on agriculture, the committee on education and labor, the committee on financial services, and the committee on foreign affairs reflects their area of legislative expertise and authority. There are four basic kinds of committees: standing committees, joint committees, conference committee, and select or special committees. The House of Representatives committee system and the Senate committee system are similar but each body creates its own committee system. Standing committees are the most promine nt of the committees These are the permanent committees that focus on specific area of legislation, such as the House Committee on Homeland Security or the Senate Committee on Armed Forces. The majority of the day to day work in Congress occurs in these standing committees. Generally, sixteen to twenty members serve on each committee in Sena te and thirty one members serve on committees in the House. The majority party determines the number of committee members from each party on each committee which ensures that the majority party will have the majority of committee members. Standing committ ees also have a variety of subcommittees that cover more precise subsections of the legislative issues addressed by the committee. Generally, subcommittee members have considerable leeway in shaping the content of legislation. Joint committees have member s from the House and the Senate and are concerned with specific policy areas. These committees are set up as a way to expedite business between the houses, particularly when pressing issues require quick action by Congress. C onference committee s are creat ed to reconcil e differences between the House and Senate versions of a bill. The conference committee is made up of members from both the House and the Senate who work to reach compromises between similar pieces of legislation passed by the House and the S enate. Select or special committees are temporary committees that serve only for a very specific purpose. These committees conduct special investigations or studies and report back to whichever chamber established the committee.


Senate Committee Hearing on the Banking Industry Subprime Mortgage Crisis Russian interference in the 2016 elections became a major issue late in the 2016 campaign season and the n became one of the major stories during the Trump administration. The investigations expande d in scope after President Trump fired James Comey, the Director of the FBI. The non criminal investigations included intelligence agency reports on Russian interference that led to House and Senate Intelligence Committee investigative hearings, Senate Jud iciary Committee hearings, and House Oversight hearings. Evidence that President Trump tried to get the FBI counterespionage investigations resulted in criminal investigations for obstruction of justice and the appointment of a special co unsel (Robert Mueller) to investigate the affair. T he Senate Judiciary Committee Subcommittee on Crime and Terrorism held hearings on video of the May 8, 2017 hearings provide a good example of Congress performing its investigatory role. The two witnesses appearing before the Subcommittee are Sally Q. Yates, former Acting Attorney General, and Ja mes Clapper, former Director of National Intelligence.


Senate Judiciary Committee Subcommittee on Crime and Terrorism, Hearings on Russian Interference in the 2016 United States Election (May 8, 2017). Senator Graham (R South Car olina), Chair, and Sen ator Whitehouse (D Rhode Island ) The special counsel has some independence from the White House and can therefore conduct an investigation that follows all leads which is w hy the appointment of a special counsel is such a serious threat to the Trump administration. The investigation can examine Russian interference with the election. It can investigate to determine whether Trump campaign officials, such as the digital campai gn director, helped the interference by providing useful information so that the Russian s could deploy armies of Twitter bots that targeted specific Congressional districts in swing states. The special counsel can also follow its investigative leads to Tru mp campaign and Trump family business relationships, particularly financial dealings with Russian oligarchs, banks, and other individuals and entities. The original focus of the oversight Russian interference in the elections is probably a less serious thr eat to the Trump administration that the risks of financial disclosures resulting from criminal investigations that followed the money. The Trump June Tweetstorms After 7 months of investigations & committee hearings about my "collusion with the Russians," nobody has been able to show any proof. Sad! I am being investigated for firing the FBI Director by the man who told me to fire the FBI Director! Witch Hunt You are witnessing the single greatest WITCH HUNT in American poli tical history led by some very bad and conflicted people!


3.6 3 | The Political Party System The third organization characteristic that is e ssential for understanding how C ongress operates is the party system. The Hou se and the Senate are organized differently but both houses have party leadership structures. The majority party is the party with the most seats; the minority party is the party with second number of seats. The majority party in each house organizes the sessi ons of Congress and selects its leadership The majority party in the House of Representatives selects the Speaker of the House and the majority party in the Senate choses the Majority L eader. The House of Representatives leaders ar e chosen by the members of the House. The Senate leaders are chosen by the members of the Senate. The House is a much l arge r body than the Senate therefore the House relies more heav ily on formal rules to function. Loyalty to the party organization, party leadership, and voting along party lines are also all more common in the House than in the Senate. The most powerful position in the House of Representatives is the Speaker of the House, which is the only leadership position in the House that is created by the Constitution. The Speaker is a member of the majority party and is elected by their party to oversee House business, interact with the Senate and the President, and is the second in line of p residential succession. In addition to t he Speaker, t he House leadership includes majority and minority leade rs; majority and minority whips; party policy committees that the Republican s call a Steering Committee and Democrats call a Democratic Policy Committee; Republican and Democratic co ngressional campaign committees; and the Republican Conference and Democra tic Caucus. Leadership in the House of Representatives


the vice president of the United States is the ranking officer of the Senate. The vice president is not a member of the Senate, so he votes only in the cas e of a tie. The president pro tempore or the official chair of the Senate, is a largely honorary position awarded to the most senior senator of the majority party. The leader with power in the Senate is the majority leader, who is elected to their positio n by their party. The Senate, with far fewer members than the House, is a more causal organization that relies much less on formal structures of power for organization. As such, the majority party leader in the Senate has less power than the Speaker of the House. The Senate also lacks a rule committee, but has a largely similar structure to the House, in terms of the positions of power within each party. Party Leadership in Congress Historical: The House: History, Art & Archives The Senate: Art & History Current: Who is the current Speaker of the House? Who is the current Majority Le ader in the House? Who is the current Majority Leader in the Senate? Who is the current Minority Leader in the Senate?


3.64 | How a Bill Becomes a Law The process by which Congress makes legislation is complex and drawn out, involving a series of procedural steps that have been institutionalized overtime. The first formal step in either the House of Representatives or the Senate is to introduce the bill for consideration in the legislative body. The bill is introduced and assigned to a committee for consideration; once in the committee, the bill is assigned to an appropriate subcommittee. The subcommittee will study the bill, hold hearings for those indiv iduals and interest groups concerned with the bill, and debate and edit provisions of the bill. The


subcommittee sends the bill back to the full committee, who votes on whether to send the bill to the full House or Senate for consideration. In the House (a nd only in the House), the bill is then sent to the House Rules committee, where the rules governing debate and amendments on the bill are decided. Both the House and the Senate debate and vote on the bill. If the bills considered by the House and Senate d iffer, the bills are sent to a Conference committee, which crafts a single bill that both houses of Congress will find acceptable. The bill from the Conference committee is then sent back to both the House and the Senate for a final vote. If the bill passe s both houses, the legislation is sent to the p resident for either approval (thro ugh signing) or a veto. If the p resident vetoes a bill, a two third vote by both the House and the Senate can override the veto. 3.65 | Sessions of Congress A term of Congress is divided into two sessions, one for e ach year Congress has occasionally also been called into an extra or special session. A new session commences on January 3 (or another date, if Congress so chooses) each year. 3.7 | Summary T he power problem with Congress effective governance explained the diminished and changed roles. The modern Congress pays less attention to legislating for the nation and more attention to its other functions particularly representation and administrative o versight Congressional scholars Ornstein and Mann (2012) attribute the low regard for Congress to a mismatch between constitutional design the separation of powers and its modern parliamentary form ideologically distinct parties where one is th e majority and has power to enact its policies. According to this analysis, the separation of powers model requires negotiating, bargaining, and compromise to enact legislation. But p artisanship has introduced a parliamentary element without the capacity f or majoritarian power to legislate The result is gridlock perceived as ineffective leadership. Ornstein and Mann also blame congressional dysfunction on the modern Republican Party which has become so ideo logically extremist that it refuses t o compromise Senate history, art, and political cartoons are available at the Senate website: th_teasers/exhibits.htm Think About It! The British Parliamentary a way form members of parliament to ask the prime minister questions. Would this tradition help presidential congressional relations in the U.S? https://www.c


is a coalition whose elements are members of movements or causes such as the anti tax movement, the religious right (pro life), national security, and crime control The se causes motivate voters such as members of the Tea Party movement that have made Republicans see themselves as insurgents fighting the established political norms in and out of Congress. By contrast, the modern Democratic Party (at least since the c ivil rights era) has functioned more like a collection of interests who are merely trying to get something from government rather than mobilizing a movement to change politics and government Th e resul succe s sful insurgency campaign has created an opportunity to t est the theory that Congress deserves its reputation as the broken branch of government because it is institutionally unable to act decisively on issues of national political interest. 3.9 | Additional Resources provides information about Congress: of government https:/ / In order to get a sense of how important constituency service is to members of Congress, visit the website of your congressional representative or the site of another member of the House of Representative: C https://www.c A user friendly web site for information about Congress is Want to find a federal law? Congress legislates on an extremely broad range of subjects ranging from domestic policy (clean air, clean water, obscenity or indecency on radio or television or the Internet, crime, health care) to foreign affairs (international trade, defense policy). One way to find a federal law is through Select Multiple Previous Congresses; select Bill Summary Status; select Congress (of your choice ); select Advance Search; type in search phrase (e.g. Venezuela, for legislation related to that country; or terrorism for legislation related to national security); select date, or date range; and hit search. The Washington Post Today in Congress sect ion including committee hearings and votes.


1) Discuss the powers of Congress and the differences between the House and Senate. 2) What are the constitutional powers of Congress? 3) What roles do political parties play in the organization of Congress? 4) To what extent do the various leadership positions in the House and Senate make some leaders more powerful than others? 5) Describe a typical day of a member of Congress. 6) How representat ive is Congress? Discuss both the theories of representation and the demographic make up of Congress. How has this changed over time? 7) What is the traditional process by which a bill becomes a law? 8) How can Congress exercise oversight of the TERMS: Appropriations Impeachment E numerated powers I mplied powers N ecessary and proper clause D elegate T rustee P olitico M ajority party M inority party Speaker of the House P resident pro tempore S tanding committees J oint committees C onference committee S elect or special committees Legislative o versight Constituency service Arnold, R. Douglas 2006. Congress, the Press, and Public Accountability Princeton University Press. Dodd, Lawrence a nd Bruce Oppenheimer (E ds). 2001. Congress Reconsidered 7 th ed Washington, D.C.: Congressional Quarterly. Mayhew David. 2000. New Haven: Yale University Press. Karen (E d). 2002. Women and Congress: Running, Winning, Ruling Haworth Ornstein, Norman, and Mann, Thomas E. 2012. New York: Basic Books. Tate, Katherine 2003. Black Faces in the Mirror: African Americans and their Representatives in the U.S. Congress Princeton University Press. 1 Quoted in Jeffrey Toobin The New Yorker ( February 27, 2017 ). Accessed at lynchs ideal of justice 2 Theodore J. Lowi and Ginsberg, Benjamin (1996). American Government Fourth Edition. New York: W.W. Norton & Company. p. 153. 3 1.htm


4.0 | Introduction When the American public thinks of the presidency, they think of the presiden t the person whose name, face, character, and personality are prominently featured during the presidential campaign, and the person who upon taking office dominates media coverage of the federal government. T he p resident personif ies the federal government. T he media r eport on the Trump administration, the Obama administration the Bush 41 administration, and so on. Political scientists reinforce the personal perspective by emphasizing the importance of pr esidential character and style. In one sense, Article II of the Constitution created a personal presidency by providing that The executive Power shall be vested in a President of the United S tates of America. In contrast with the legislative and judicial branches, one individual has all the executi ve powe r The modern president personifies the federal government, but the presidency is actually a vast institution that consists of a large number of offices, executive departments, and agencies. So t he presidency consists of an individual and an office Understanding the CHAPTER 4 : The Presidency


Chapter 4: The Presidency | 77 presidential role in government and politi cs requires learning about the person who is president and the presidency the individual who happens to occupy the Office of the President of the United States and the institution. This chapter examines three main issues that are central to the presidency: T he power problem : Accountability. The i ncrease in presidential power : Presidential government? M anagement of the executive branch : Controlling the bureaucracy The accountability problem is directly raised by the question whether a president can be indicted for a crime. During the 2016 campaign, Donald Trump claimed that his supporters were so smart and so loyal to him that he could stand in the middle of 5th avenue and shoot someone and not lose any of his voters. This political claim was surprising and debatable. What may be even more surprising and debatable is the legal claim that a president cannot be indi cted for a crime. W hether a sitting president has immunity from prosecution for a crime is an open question in the sense that the U.S. Supreme Court has never decided the question. Presidents have claim ed that the y are immune from prosecution And legal scholars have explai ned the constitutional theory justifying immunity but the Court has not yet agreed with them. The claim seems to be incompatible with what is taught in American government 101 and civics about the American commitment to the rule of law (rather than the ru le of man) and the belief that no one, not even the president, is above the law. 4.1 | The Unprecedented President Political scientists describe change elections as elections when voters want different public policies and therefore put a different par ty in control of government. The desire for change also applies to presidential character and style. President George W. Bush had an informal style that relied on gut instincts more than careful analysis of the issues. President Obamas rational character sometimes made him seem too cool for school too rational and too aloof to enjoy or engage in the bac k slapping give and take of legislative politics No drama Obama was a Spockian rationalist. S pock was the hyper rational character in Star Wars (196669), the s cience fiction television series that became a cult phenomenon, wh o described human behavior with the catch phrase highly illogical. President Trump is a political phenomenon who has swun g the pendulum back toward drama. H is character and style thrive on drama even high political melo drama. Did the presidential pendulum swing from too cool to too hot ? The T rump presidency is unprecedented in many ways During the presidential campaign he broke all the conventional r ules and established norms but he still survived and even thrived as an unconventional candidate to become an unconventional president. He denigrated and bullied individual opponents even breaking Ronald Reagans Eleventh Comma ndment, Thou Shalt Not Speak I ll of Another Republican, by insulting virtually all of the Republican candidates during the primary He i s a mas ter practitioner of political jiu jitsu J iu jitsu is using an opponents strength or momentum, or ones own wea kness against the opponent. Trump accused Hillary Clinton of being a liar, of being corrupt, of being plagued by scandals, and of being in the pocket of Wall Street because these were his own political weaknesses. He accused the news media of being fake news because he had a record of playing fast and loose with the facts. He very effectively used his weaknesses against his opponent to throw them off balance This is not easy to do.


78 | Chapter 4: The Presidency He criticized individual governm ent officials including judges. He criticized government and politics in general Scandals involving bad personal behavior that probably would have ended most presidential campaign s did not end his His first 100 days in office included a major scandal in volving his and his associates relations with Russia. He did not keep his word about releasing his income tax records. He is the only president to have never held a prior elective office or served in the military. He is the first real estate developer pre sident. And t he legal and ethical questions about the conflict s of interest between his official duties as president and his and his family s business interests, are unprecedented. President Trumps son Erics casual comment that in his business world [ n] epotism is kind of a factor of life s eems an affront to basic American belief s about meritocracy as well as norms and laws against using public office for private profit The Trump administrations blurring of the line between private profit and public interest is unprecedented. This is particularly the case with his and his associates business and political relations Russia. A military re port prepared for President elect Trump named Russia the greatest threat to U.S. national security interests President Trumps flattering description of Vladimir Putin as a strong leader, and Trumps campaign and administration officials with financial ties to Putin, raised concerns and prompted counter intelligence investigations by the Federal Bureau of Investigation and intelligence agencies Against this background, President Trumps strong criticism of U.S. intelligence agencies and his remarks at CIA headquarters the day after his inauguration were particularly unprecedented President Trump began his presidency with an unprecedented low public opinion approval rating. And t he Trump administrations rocky relationship with the media ha s also been unprecedented. 4.11 | The Personal Presidency In other ways, however, the Trump president is not unprecedented as much as it takes normal to the extremes. It is the culmination of the long term trend toward the personal presidency Th e personal presidency may be the most significant development in the American system of Donald Trump the 45 th President of the United States


Chapter 4: The Presidency | 79 government. The term personal presidency or iginates with works such as Lowis The Personal President (1985) It refers to a presidency whose political legitimacy is based on popular support and whose power is characterized by executive discretion. The political legitimacy is refl ected in presidential claims of electoral mandates that support their agendas T he executive discretion is evident in claims that the pres ident has the power to do whatever he or she thinks is necessary and appropriate and statutes that actually give presidents that power T aken together, t he personal power and the executive discretionary power make it hard to hold presidents legally ac cou ntable for their actions In fact, both features of the modern presidency are part of the shift away from the model of legal accountability toward the model of political accountability. The model of legal accountability relies on rule of law values to hold presidents and other government officials a ccountable. T he model of political accountability relies on elections as referenda on presidential actions The classic defense of the politic al model of accountability is former President Richard Nixons argume nt that if a president orders something that is plainly illegal to be done for example, a burglary a forgery, a robbery, perhaps even a murder then it is not illegal. The term personal presidency also refers to power that is personal rather than institutional. Personal bases of power increase a president s independence from institution al checks and balances by C ongress the courts, or the political parties The deregulat ion of campaign finance makes it easier for candidates to run self financed campaigns that are not dependent political parties for fund raising and campaign work ers. The increase in the percentage of voters who consider themselves Independents rather than Republicans or Democrats makes it easier for candidates to be more independent of partisan support. Party loyalty strengthens congress ional creates stronger ties to the president and weaker institutional loyal ty The diminished public confidence in Congress and the declining party identification have created a void that the personal presidency is occupying Presiden t Obamas eight years in office provided eviden ce of the personal presidency. Obamas support was personal more than partisan. Democratic voter turnout was higher w hen he was on the ballot in the 2008 and 2012 elections tha n when he was not on the ballot. Democrats lost 69 congressional seats in the m i dterm elections in 2010 and 22 seats in 2014, and Hillary Clinton lost the 2016 presidential election 4.12| The Postmodern Presidency T he personal nature of the presidency requires scholars to reassess presidential theories with each new president in order to determine whether the new president confirms theories or signals the beginning of a new presidential era. P residential scholars have identified the traditional presidency of the 19th Century and the modern presidency that began in 1932 with Frankl in Think About It! Is this claim consistent with the American commitment to the rule of law? If the president does it, that means it is not illegal. (The NixonFrost Interviews April 6, 1977) Former President Nixon, in his own words


80 | Chapter 4: The Presidency Roosevelt. The main difference between the two is the modern presidency s activism with a popular electoral base. Some scholars think the era of the modern presidency ended with President Nixon, who resigned the presidency rather than face impeachment and removal from office. The se scholars maintain that the personal presidency enabled the development of a third presidential erathe post modern presidency. The term post modern presidency was origi nally was coined to describe a new era of a diminished presidency. (Rose) Stark (1993) describes Bill Clinton as the first postmodern president. Miroff (2000: 106) defines the postmodern president as a political actor who lacks a stable identity a ssociat ed with ideological and partisan values and who is, thereby, free to move nimbly from one position to another as politica l fashion dictates. Ironically, t he post modern presidency is the result of a governin g style that increasingly depends on public approval as a base of support It is ironic because the popular support was originally considered solely a strength of the modern presidency. Public approval dependency creates an incentive for presidents to stage manage s pectacles in order to create and reinfo rce presidential images Daniel Boorstins The Image: A Guide to PseudoEvents in America ( 1962) describes how spectacles became part of managing the presidents image P residential debates and press conferences have become public performance even ts that are staged for the media to report rather than regularly scheduled opportunities for the general publi c to gain information about candidates, parties, or presidential administration s The images and events are staged reality. President Trump began his tenure in office as a new kind of postmodern president The first reason he is a new postmodern president is his effective appropriation of the original meaning of postmodern. Postmodernism began as a primarily liberal belief that f acts, values, and reality are relative or subjective because they are almost entirely dependent upon an individuals or a cultures perspective. This academic belief in subjectivity provided the foundation for the popular cultural belief that most of the news media and muc h of science (e.g., theories of evolution and climate change) is biased. This conditioning enabled President Trump to call media criticism of him or his administration fake news In fact, conservative Republicans ca lled CBS News correspondent and anchor Da n Rather Dan Rather Biased for his liberal bias in covering Presidents Reagan and presidential candidate George W. Bush. Th e second reason Trump is a new kind of postmodern president is because his ideology seems a mash up of conventional ideas, and political base of support reflects ideological and partisan cross cutting. This creates the opportunity to form a new presidential coalition that realigns the political system. These unconventional developments in presidential politics are hard to explain using conventi onal political science literature about political systems, government institution s, and scholarship on the presidency Ther efore the following analysis looks at these developments and the postmodern presidency of Donald Trump through the lens of popular culture 4.13| The Popular Culture Lens Julian Barnes is an award winning English writer. His satirical postmodern novel England, England (1998) is about a rich entrepreneur with a big ego, Sir Jack Pitman, who decides to create a theme park called England England that is filled with all the things and figures that tourists consider quintessentially or stereotypical ly English Big Ben, Harrods, the Queen, pubs, the White Cliffs of Dover, etc. The Disneyland style theme park Englan d England becomes tremendously popular and successful because all things English are so conveniently located, so


Chapter 4: The Presidency | 81 clean, and so well run So many p eople leave the real old England to live in the fake England England that the real England suffers a great decline. S poiler alert: the sa tire ends in a sex scandal! Was the appeal of Donald Trumps campaign promise to Make Am erica Great Ag ain based on the desire to recreate an America America where al l the things that are part of the distinctive American national identity were preserved? The campaign slogan did echo Patrick Buchanan s call for a culture war in his Culture Wars A ddress at the Repu blican Party Convention in 1992. Buchanan called upon his fellow conservative Republican s to fight to take back our cities, our culture, and our country. The audience an overwhelmingly white, upper class, older Americaenthusiastically supported his call because they felt that they were still losing their country despite having elected Presidents Reagan and George H. W. Bush in 1980, 1984, and 1988. Donald Trump renewed this call to take back t he country but for a different, more populist demographic Donald Trumps character and style complement t he postmodern variation of the per sonal presidency. His p ersonality centric politics accelerated the political systems momentum away from institutio ncentric politics and toward personality politics. Trumps personal campaign style then became a personal style of governance. As President, he spends a great deal of time every day watching television to see how the media are portraying him and his adm in istration. Media reports about him, his family, and his administration produce Tweet storms All presidents pay close attentio n to grooming their image in the media The Reagan administration was famously attuned to how television visuals conveyed images because it brought Madison Avenue advertising and Hollywood Boulevard sensibilities to managing the presidents image. Michael Deaver, Reagans Deputy Chief of Staff responsible media relations and Dick Darman, a presidential aide responsible for budget issues among other, realized that the master ful use of pictures particularly presidential photo ops reinfo rced in the publics mind favorable image s of President Reagan Deaver was one of the White House officials whose backgrounds in Hollywood entertainme nt and Madison Avenue marketing taught them that good visuals could trump critical words. A case study is a 1984 story that CBS aired on the evening news. The report by Lesley Stahls exposed the apparent hypocrisy of President Reagan speaking at a nursin g home and a Special Olympics event while his administration s budget reduced spending on disabled children an d health care. Stahl worried that the critical story would hurt her access to the White House, but Dick Darman called her to say Great story, kiddo. He explained, You guys in Televisionland havent figured it out, have you? ....Nobody heard you.1 [Emphasis added.] Powerful emotional pictures or images of the president being presidential by getting on or off Air Force One are more important than the critical words accompanying the story. Michael Deaver reinforced this point by explaining that he did not care if a news reporters voiceover was critical of P resident Reagans policy as long as the news report had good visuals because the eye trumps the ear every time . Good pictures were more important than bad words. The Reagan ad ministration was innovative because it applied Madison Avenue marketing strateg ies to politics. T he voting public was considered consumers of political information the way customers were considered consumers of commercial information. President Trump has used commercial po pular culture his reputation as a dealmaker and added elements of entertainment popular culture celebrity status to politics and governance. This combination of commercial and entertainment appeal i s apparent in an A ssocia ted Press interview where he repeated ly claims that he gets great ratings whenever he is on television whether it is the


82 | Chapter 4: The Presidency inauguration, an address to Congress, a news program, or a press conference. Exaggerating the size of crowd s and audience s re inforce s his supporters belief that the mainstream or Fake News media are biased against both him and them Insulting the CBS news program Face the Nation by calling it Deface the N ation similarly plays to a conservative Republican base that has been referring to the lame stream media for years 4.14 | Framing Theory Me dia scholars deve loped framing theory to descri be and explain the mass medias influence on public opinion. According to framing theory, the way the news media present an issue to the audiencethe way facts and stories are fram e dinfluences w hat people think about the subject Framing theory also appl ied to fiction For example, legal fiction is a universally popular genre for television and film. How police procedura l s fram e their crime stories shapes w h at people think about criminal justice officials the causes of crime, and the appropriate public policies to prevent crime and to punish offenders. Print and electronic news stories similarly influence thinking about public affairs. Framing theory is crucial to understanding both the Trump presidency and the news medias reporting and analysis of the administration. Understanding the unconventional Trump campaign and presidency requires thinking outside the conventional political frames provide by presidential scholars. It requires looking at popular culture. Terry Gross the host of the NPR radio pr ogram Fresh Air describes President Trump as living and working at the intersection of politics an d popular culture. A real estate developer who became a television celebrity on The Apprentice Trump greatly accelerated the speed with which politics was becoming popular culture by bringing a reality show sensibility to the office . It is not surprising that the popular cultural obsession with movie st ars and other celebrities brought a celebrity figure to the White House What unsettling is how he got there by conspicuousl y breaking all the rule s and then he continued to break the rules about presidential conduct Frank Rich a writer for New York magazine, describes Trump as brilliant at creating the drama that all good showmen master to get and keep the audiences a ttention. According to Rich, Trump makes outrageous statements and then contradicts them with more outrageous statements two hours later; streams the public from all media platforms and angles including television and Twitter; and continually gins up the suspense and the drama in order to keep the spotlight and all the eyeballs focused on him and what he is doing.2 He used one form of entertainment reality television to get to the White House then continued to use it in the White House and then added drama by changing the location to Mar a Lago, the National Historic Landmark in Palm Beach, Florida that is an e ven more exotic setting than the White House. Reality television was a popular culture stop along the way. Television does not merely mirror society, politics, or culture. It provides insightful commentary that tells us a great deal about modern American culture. Accordingly, The Apprentice is as revealing about Donald Trump as it is revealing about us 4.15 | Political Personalities or Personas Professional wrestling is another popular cul ture phenomenon that provides a useful alternative frame for understanding President Trump and his loyal base of support. President Trump has


Chapter 4: The Presidency | 83 used his long relationship with profess ional wrestling to develop his larger than life persona In fact, wrestling explains conservative personalities such a s Alex Jones and Donald Trump.3 Pro fessional wrestling fans kn ow that the contests are not real athletic contests even though the wrestlers are athletes performing in the ring. The fans get genuine emotional feeli ngs from matches that are elaborated staged contests between characters portrayed as heroes and villains. This may help explain why as a candidate and as president, Trump is not expected to state facts or tell the truth. The conventional wisdom is that politicians and government officials ar e expected to tell the truth, to state facts, and to stand firm by not flip flop ping on the issues Donald Trumps pattern of not telling the truth, not stating facts, and flipflopping on major issues has kept fact checkers busy but it has not been as politically damaging as expected of a conventional candidate or p resident. His unconventional behavior seems to violate the civic moral of the story about young George Washington and the cherry tree! It is also hard to reconcile with President John Adams s blessing that is carved into the fireplace in the State Dining Room: I pray God to bestow May none but an honest and wise men rule under this roof. Presidential scholars pay a great deal of attention to p residential character and style. Occasionally, this includes the touchy study of mental h ealth. Americans believe that the process fo r selecting a president is well designed to weed out individuals who are politically or psychologically uns uited for the job. This faith might be shaken by the results of a Duke University study of 37 presidents from Washington to Nixon. The results were published in the Journal of Nervous and Mental Disease in 2006. Almost half of the 37 presidents studied met the criteria for a psychiatric disorder at some time in their lives mostly depression, nervousness, and substance abuse. Presidents have often obscured disease and disorder. President John F. Kennedys obvious tan was called a sign of vigor when it actually was a symptom of Addisons disease. In Landslide (1988), Jane Mayer and D oyle McManus describes White House concerns about President Reagan h ealth. Reagan was 76 years old in 1987 during the stress of the Iran Contra scandal. When Howard Baker became Reagans Chief of Staff he was so worried about a dysfunctional White House that he asked an aide to gather information about the President. The staff reported that Reagan did not want to workhe just wanted to stay in the residence and watch movies and television. Subsequent studies of Reagan s speech patterns reveal changes th at are linked with Alzheimers d isease, with which he was diagnosed four years after leaving office. Think About It! An early civics lesson? One of the most enduring and endearing stories about George Washington is the cherry tree story Young George Washington used a hatchet that he received as a gift to damage a cherry tree. Confronted by his father who angrily asked whether he had damaged the tree, young George admitted it saying I cannot tell a lie. His father was overjoyed because his sons honesty was worth more than a thousand trees. The moral of the story is part of the American national myth about private virtue being the foundation for political character.


84 | Chapter 4: The Presidency Have the civics rules changed ? Or is Trump just a special case to whom the rules about probity do not apply ? T here is another explanation one that ties Trumps character and style to his political constituency Popular culture once again provides good insights. Alex Jones is the host of a right wing radio program and contributor to the w ebsite In a custody hearing, h is ex wi fe claimed that his statements denying the 2012 mass shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School, and his claims that Hillary Clinton was running a sex trafficking operation out of a pizza parlor were evidence that he was unstable and therefore an unfit parent. Jones replied that his outrageous comments are a ll just for entertainment value Joness claim that h is conservative persona was just an act will not likely hurt his standing in the radical right community because the audience know s that the persona is artifice. They don t expect or even want factual truth. Jones s rhetoric and persona, like President Trump s rhetoric and persona validate basic political feelings and perhaps even provide a cathartic release of pent up frustrat ions with politics Spectacle or political theater is a hallmark of the postmodern pre sidency Profession al wrestling presents fake matches that are treated as real matches so that audience s can experience genuine emoti on. This allows the real and the fake to coexist side by side i n the minds of the wrestlers and the fans. The wrestlers genuinely care about the fans experience. B oth the wrestlers and the fans care more about the emotional f idelity of the matches the me aning of the dramatic conflict than the facts . President Trumps political success is an indication that the aesthetic of World Wrestling Entertainment has spread outside the ring into the real world of political conflict. Taking the fight outside is familiar to anyone who has seen professional wrestling matches. S ome of the most dramatic matches have one wrestler throwing his opponent out of the ring where the fighting continues among the fans Donald Trumps repeated promise to build a big, high, strong and beautiful wall along the southern border is not necessarily intended to be taken literally The political significance of the promise is catharsis : the promise to take concrete action releases the anger and sense of betrayal some of his supporters feel about the loss of control over immigration policy, southe rn border anxiety, and worries about the loss of American national identity aft er a period of increased and uncontrolled immigration T he repeated pledge s to repeal Obamacare can be similarly explained as political catharsis as much as literal descriptions of promised actions This rhetorical style has worked well for Donald Trump because he is such a good showman capable of producing high drama Think About It! Read the DSM criteria for the Narcissistic Personality Disorder conditions/narcissistic personalitydisorder/basics/symptoms/con 20025568 Is it relevant to politics? battle over diagnosingdonaldtrump Read About It! The Tweeter in Chief? President Trumps Tweeting habits have be en a major source of political drama


Chapter 4: The Presidency | 85 George Washington 1st President of the United States (17891797) Source: C SPAN Survey of Historians on Presidential Leadership 4.2 | The Power Problem The power problem is the difficulty striking the right balance between granting government enough power to be effective wh ile also limiting power so that government can be held accountable. The power problem with C ongress is effectiveness C ongress is institutionally designed for representation and deliberation rather than effective or decisive action The powe r problem for the presidency is accountability The executive power was vested in the hands of one individual to promote effectiveness. T he discretionary nature of modern presidential power makes it hard to hold a president legal ly accountable for the use of government power 4.21 | Is the Presidency Imperial or Imperiled ? Best Presidents Worst Presidents 1. Abraham Lincoln 1. James Buchanan 2. Franklin D. Roosevelt 2. Andrew Johnson 3. George Washington 3. Franklin Pierce 4. Teddy Roosevelt 4. Warren Harding 5. Harry Truman 5. William Harrison T he power of the president has greatly increased over time and that the increased power of the president has presented some challenges The modern presidency is much more powerful than the Founders intended it to be In the early decades of the 19th Century, great political figures including Henry Clay, Daniel Webster, and John C. Calhoun, served in the Senate, a body that was described as the greatest deliberative body in the world. Abraham Lincol n did not aspire to be president. H is ambition was to serve in the Senate. The antebellum presidency was by contrast a mundane administrative job that offered little to a man of Lincolns oratorical abilities.4 T he modern president is not only more powe rful than the president was in the early years of the republic but the modern president is more powerful relative to C ongress. The Founders crea ted a system of legislative governance in the sense that Presidents John Adams Thomas Jefferson James Madison


86 | Chapter 4: The Presidency Ronald Reagan, 40 th President of the United States C ongress was intended to be the primary branch of gove rnment B ut the system has develope d into presidential government. T he presidency has become the primary branch of government the most powerful branch of government the first among equals. P resident s accumulated power f or a var iety of reasons but the main reason is crises Domestic and foreign crises, wars and other threats to national security and hostage rescue missions have concentrated power in the branch of government that was designed to act quickly T he personal nature of the presidency has caused presidential scholars to regularly tak e the pulse of the presidency to determine wh ether it is too strong too weak, or just about right. The term Imperial Presidency describes presidents who are too strong too powerful for their and our own good. The term Imperiled Presidency describes presidents who are too weak to govern effectively. The term Imperial Presidency was coined to describe a presidency that had grown too powerful and resembled a monarchy insofar as it was becoming hard to control .5 The i mperial label was initially applied to the presidencies of Lyndon Johnson (19631968) and Richard Nixon (19691974) T he Imperiled Presidency label was initially applied to the presidencies of Gerald Ford (19731976) and Jimmy Carter (19771980) President Ford seemed incapable of responding effectively t o a domestic e conomic cris is The Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) oil embargo shocked the economy with gas shortages and inflation.6 The Ford administrations response to the threat included distributing WIN buttons but the Whip Inflation N ow buttons seemed a pathetically weak response to the economic threat of gas shortages. President Carter seemed incapable of responding effectively to either the domestic or foreign crises The Soviet invasion of Afghanistan in 1978, an anti American Iranian Revolution in 1979 that included holding American s hostage in Teheran, created the impression that the presidency had become too we ak Ronald Reagan campaigned for the presidency pledging to return to a stronger presidency, and his election as president (1981 1988) mark ed a return to a strong presidency with confidence in American leadership in foreign affairs and national security. However, Reagans successor George H. W. Bush (Bush the Elder or 1), who served from 1989 to 1992, revived worries about an imperiled presidency. Bill Clintons presidency (1 993 2000) w as described as both imperial and imperiled. The presidency of George W. Bush (or Bush 43) revived worries about an imperial presidency. Conservatives and Republicans criticized Presid ent Obama for being b oth imperial and imperiled, both too strong and too weak! The dynamic nature of presidential power, the fact that it fluctuates greatly from one president to the next, makes it hard to take the pulse of the presidency to see whether it is too weak or too strong The whole government is so identified in the minds of the people with his personality that they make him.responsi ble for society itself. William H. Taft 27th President of the United States All the president is, is a glorified public relations man who spends his time flattering, kissing, and kicking people to get them to do what they are supposed to do anyway. Harry S. Truman 33rd President of the United States


Chapter 4: The Presidency|87 4.21 | Presidential Power The delegates at the constitutional convention of 1787 extensively debated whether the new government should have a single executive. The opponents of a single execu tive worried that it would betray the Revolutionary War had been fought against monarchy. But the constitutional convention was called to remedy defects in the Artic les of Confederation, and it was agreed that the lack of an executive figure was one of the defects. The extended debate over executive power concluded with the creation of a unitary executive with both considerable powers and considerable checks and balances. The following diagram shows the president’s formal (or legal ) and informal (or political ) powers. The formal powers are provided in the Constitu tion, statutes, and case law. The president’s constitutional powers are set forth in Article II Article II is a short article that only generally mentions presidential power. It is much shor ter than Article I, which specifically lists congressional powers. The Article II statement that “the executiv e Power shall be vested in a President” is followed by brief descriptions of how the president is selected, eligibility to serve as president, a statement that the president is commander-in-chief, and a description of the president’s appointment and treaty making powers. The president’s statutory powers are very extensive. From the earliest years of the repub lic, Congress has delegate d broad powers to the president. These statutory delegations have grea tly increased presidential power. The president’s case law powers come from court rulings, primaril y Supreme Court decisions interpreting the law. The president’s formal constitutional powers have changed very litt le since the founding of the republic, but presidential power has increased a great deal. This is one of the reasons why presidential scholars refer to the development of the personal presidency. The major changes have occurred in the president’s statutory, case law, and political powers. The rule of law is so widely a ccepted as an essential element of good government that it can be considered the successor doctrine to democracy as the measure of good government. The rule of Presidential Power Formal (Legal) Informal (Political) Constitution Statutes Case Law Party Leader Public O p inion Events/ Circumstance Public Addresses Media Enumerated Implied Inherent? Delegated Precedent Personal Skills


88 | Chapter 4: The Presidency law principle is considered part of the American creed. Courses on Introduction to American government and civics education contrast political systems based on the rule of law with those based on the rule of man, and describe the rule of law as the good form of government and the rule of man as the bad form of government. The rule of law is t he principle that gove rnment authority is legitimately exercised only in accordance with written, publicly disclosed laws that are adopted in accordance with established procedure. The rule of law is a safeguard against arbitra ry governance by requiring those who ma ke and enforce the law to be bound by the law The modern presidency is difficult to reconcile with this principle. 4.3 | Legal Sources In order to understand the presidency, it is very important to recognize the difference between legal and political power s In fact, the difference is one of the keys to explaining the modern presidency. T he presidents constitutio nal powers have remained surprisingly constant (or steady) for more than 200 years. In fact, the major amendment affecting presidential power is the 22nd Amen dment and it actually reduced presidential power by limiting a president to serving two full terms in office thereby making a p resident a lame duck as soon as the second term begins. But presidential power has increased a great deal since the founding of the republic, and presidential power fluctuates considerably from one pr esident to another. The presidents constitutional powers have been static, but presidential power has been ver y dynamic : it has increased over time, and it varies from one president to the next with some presidents considered strong and others weak. The fact that presidential power changes while the constitution remains the same means that t he key to understanding presidential power is not the Constitution but statutory law, case law and politics. 1789 1851 1910 1951 2010Presidential Power Less Power More PowerConstitutional Power of the President


Chapter 4: The Presidency | 89 4.31 | The Article II Cons titutional Power Presidents claim three kinds of constitutional powers: enumerated, implied, and inherent powers. The en umerated powers are those that are actually mentioned in Article II: T he chief executive; The commander in chief; The v eto power (to veto legislation ); The pardon power; The power to make treaties ; The power to appoint ambassadors and other government officials including Supreme Court justices; The power to from time to time report to Congress on the state of the union; and The power (or duty) to take Care that the Laws be faithfully exec uted. Some of these enumerated powers are shared with Congress. For instance, th e S enate must ratify treaties and confirm the appointment of federal judges, high ranking administrators such as the secretaries of the executive departments and the commissioners of the independent agencies such as the Federal Reserve Board Implied powers are powers that are not actually mentioned in the Constitution, but which are logically related to them. The president is not limited to those powers that are specifically granted. The following are implied powers of the president. Firing Officials The power to hire implies the power to fire. If the p resident has the enumerated power to appoint an officia l, then it is implied that the p resident has the power to fire that official because the power to fire is logically related to the presi dents responsibility as chief executive to manage the executive branch. Executive Privilege. Executive p rivilege is a president s power to refuse to disclose to Congress, the courts, or the public certain communications with advisors or other individuals The Supreme Cour t has held that the president needs executive privilege to ensure that the president can get candid advice about public policy matters. Executive privilege limits the power of Congress or the courts to compel the president or his subordinates or advisors to disclose communications. Executive Agreements. Executive Agreements are international agreements between the leaders of countries Executive agreements function like treaties but they do not require S enate ratification Therefore the president has more control over executive agreements than treaties The Supreme Court has held that the presidents constitutional power over foreign affairs implies the power to enter into executive agreements. Executive Orders. An executive order is a presidential dire ctive, usually issued to an executive branch official, which provides specific guidelines on how a policy is to be implemented. Executive orders are a way for the president to manage the executive branch. E xecutive orders are a form of presidential legislation Inherent power is t he most controversia l kind of presidential power The Supreme Court has never official recognized inherent powers, but presidents regularly claim they have inherent


90 | Chapter 4: The Presidency powers. Inherent powers a re powers that p residents claim as inh eren t in the office, powers that the p r esident has simply because the president is the president. Presidents have historically claimed that they have the power to do something (e.g., use military force) simply because they are P resident. The argument for inherent powers is that certain powers are inherent in the office and therefore do not require any specific legal authorization.7 The inherent powers doctrine is controversial because it is practically impossible to hold P resident s legally acco untable if the y can claim that the ir actions do not need legal authorization. 4.32 | Statutory Powers The president also has powers that are conferred by statutes Congress has delegated a broad range of powers to the p resident to act in domestic policy and globa l affairs. In fact, Congress has delegated so much policy maki ng power to the president that political scientists refer to presidential legislation and call the modern president the chief legislator The following is just a short list o f statutory delegations of broad discretionary power to the president. The H ostage Act of 1868. This 19th Century A ct authorized the president to take all actions necessary and proper, not amounting to war, to secure the release of hostages. It provided that the p resident may act quickly to secure the release of any citizen of the United States has been unjustly deprived of his liberty by or under the authority of any foreign government . Furthermore, the president has the duty to attempt to secure the release of any hostage and can use such means, not amounting to acts of war, as he may think necessary and proper to obtain or effectuate the release; and all the facts and proceedings relative thereto shall as soon as practicable be communicated by the p resident to Congress. 8 Employment Act of 1946. This Act d eclared that it was the federal governments responsibility to manage the economy It also delegated to the president the power to foster and promote free competitive enterprise, to avoid economic fluctuations or to diminish the effects thereof, and to maintain employment, productivity, and purchasing power. 9 The Act was passed because of the significant increase in unemployment in the early 1930s and the perceived planlessness of economic polic y. Gulf of Tonkin Resolution (1964) This Act authorized the president to take all necessary measures to repel any armed attack against the forces of the United States and to prevent further aggression. Congress gave the president a blank check to fi ght the war in Vietnam. 10 Economic Stabilization Act of 1970. This Act a uthorized the president to stabilize prices, rents, wages, and salaries by issuing orders and regulations he deems appropriate. 11 Emergency Economic Stabilization Act of 2008. This A ct authorized the president, acting through the secretary of the treasury, to spend up to $700 billion dollars to rescue or bailout distressed financial institutions. 12 Authorizations for the Use of Military Force in Afghanistan and Iraq (2002) In response to the terrorist attacks on September 11, 2001, Congress authorized the president to use all means that he deems appropriate, including the use of military force, in order to enforce the UN resolutions,


Chapter 4: The Presidency | 91 defend the national security interests of the United States against the threat posed by Iraq, and restore international peace and security in the region. 13 The cumulative effect of all these congressional delegations has been a great increase in the statutory powers of the president. Modern presidents have much more statutory power than early presidents. The chart below, Statutory Powers of the President Over Time, describes the statutory powers of the president over time The stepped increases indicate the statutory delegations of power. 4.33 | Case Law Sources of Presidential Power Case law is the third source of formal power. The Supreme Court s ruli ngs in cases involving war, national security foreign affairs, and emergency powers are an especially important source of presidential power T he Court has generally supported an expansive reading of presidential power in these areas of law so there is a large bod y of case law that supports presidential power. U.S. v. Curtiss Wright Export Corporation (1936) is one of the most important cases. Curtiss Wright Export Corporation was a major U.S. company that, among other things, was an 1789 1851 1910 1951 2010Presidential Power Less Power More PowerStatutory Power of the President Think About It1 Is it a good idea for Congress to give the president power to do whatever the president deems necessary and proper to solve a problem?


92 | Chapter 4: The Presidency international arms dealer. The company challenged the p residents power to issue an executive order banning companies f rom selling arms to two South American countries that were fighting over a border region. T he Court upheld the presidents power, saying that the Sole Organ doctrine gave the president power complete power over foreign a ffairs. The Sole Organ doctrine originates from a statement that Represen tative John Marshall made in the House of Representatives in 1799: The President is the sole organ of the nation in its external relations, and its sole representative with foreign nations.14 P residents have relied on this and other expansive reading s of presidential power in national security and foreign affairs. World War II the Cold War, and the War on Terror provided presidents with many opport unities to use the S ol e O rgan doctrine to assert control over foreign affairs particularly when challeng ed b y Congress or in court. For example, President George W. Bush claimed that the president, not Congress or the Supreme Court, had the power to decide how to treat the unlawful enemy combatants that were detained in the war on terror. The enemy c ombatant cases that the Supreme Court decided in 2002, 2004, and 2008 were exceptions to the general rule that the courts defer to presidential power over national security affairs because they established constitutional limits on the p residents power as comm ander in chief to decide how best to wage the war on terror. 4.4 | Political Sources of Presidential Power Presidents also have a variety of informal or political sources of power. In contrast with the legal sources, which have remained fairly constant over time, the political sources change a great deal. 4.41| Party Leader The emergence of political parties fundamentally changed politics and government. P olitical parties changed government by making the p resident the de facto leader of the presidents party The Republican and Democratic Parties have official leaders, but the president is the most politically visible me mber of the party and its hig hest elected official Presidents use the parties to build public support for their policies to build pol itical support in Congress for their policies and to organize support for electoral campaigns. P resident Andrew Jackson was the first p resident to use a mass membership party as a base of political support H e served during the time when political parties changed from legislative caucuses m eetings of like minded members of Congress to mass membership organizations parties with whom membe r s of the public identified T he development of mass political parties created a new source of presidential power. In the past, presidents were not always willing to use the party as a base of support. President Rutherford B. Hayes was a Republican but he did not consider himself beholden to either public opinion or the Republican Party Is President Trump Jacksonian? Is he channeling Andrew Jackson, populist with a reputation for bein g a fighter and a strong leader? Trump may find Jackson appealing, but his identification with Jackson comes from his advisor, Steve Bannon, who called Trumps election Jacksonian. Since then, President Trump has on numerous occasions identified himself with Jackson as, for example, a strong leader who might have prevented the Civil War in the way that being a strong leader today may prevent political violence.


Chapter 4: The Presidency | 93 Partisanship has undermined the system of institutional checks and balances. T he separation of powers was supposed to help solve the problem of corruption. Congress would protect its power from the executive or judicial branch; the p resident would protect executive power from encroachment by the congress or the courts ; a nd the courts would protect their power from Congress or the president. P arty loyalty has undermine d the system of institutional checks because party loyalty often trump s institutional loyalty. Members o f Congress may support a president of their party and oppose a president of the other party, more than they support Congress as an institution. The voting records of Supreme Court Justic e also indicate strong support f or the views of the political party of the pr esident who nominated them. The congressional investigations of President Trumps firing of Michael Flynn ( President Trumps National Security Advisor ) FBI counter terrorism investigations of Russian interference in the 2016 elections intended to help Trump, and congressional investigation of President Trumps firing of the Director of the FBI, illustrate how partisanship has eroded institutional checks and balances. The Chair of the House of Representatives Permanent Select Committee on Intelligen ce, Devin Nunes (R California) seemed more loyal to President Trump than to congressional investigative and oversight powers. The expansion of presidential power was enabled by the diminished institutional loyalty of members of Congress 4.42 | Personal Skills The fact that the Constitution vests the executive power in one person means that a president s power will depend on personal skills, native intelligence, experience, character, leadership and management styles. P resident ial manage skil ls have become more important because the executive branch has become so large and complex. P resident s cannot assume that government bureaucrats particularly the professional or career civil service employees, will automatically do what the President want s or even tells them what to do. P residential political skills can also be effective by using powers of persuasion to get members of Congress to support them The fact that p ersonal skills vary from one incumbent to another is one reason why presidential power fluctuates even while formal power remains the same Think About It! Is President Trumps suggestion that he could have done a deal to prevent the Civil War a sign of developing narcissism ? Some presidential scholars think that the man makes the off ice, while others think that the office makes the person? Robert Caros study of Lyndon Johnson, Master of the Senate writes that power reveals possessing power reveals a persons character and even exaggerates their characteristics.

PAGE 100

94 | Chapter 4: The Presidency Annual State of the Union Address 4.43 | Inaugural Addresses and Annual Messages T he P resident has formal occasions to communicate with Congress the American people, and the rest of the world. The Inaugural A ddress is a n opportunity to state goals and set the national agenda. The State of the Union address originates from the c onstitution al requirement that the P resident shall from time to time give to the Congress Infor mation of the State of the Union, and recommend to th eir Consideration such Measures as he shall judge necessary and expedient. President Obamas 2013 Inaugural Address described globalism as a positive development that moved politics forward to a future world without borders. Present Trumps 2017 Inaugural Address was very different in tone and substance. It promised a new nationalism that would end the American carnage caused by globalism.15 The State of the U nion address an annual occasion to recount highlights of the past year and announce goals for the upcoming year 4.44 | Events, Circumstances, Conditions Presidential power is also affected by the political events, circumstances, and conditions facing the nation. A president whose political party also controls Congress is usually in a better position than one who has to deal with a Congress controlled by the other party. Divided control of the federal government sometimes produces gridlock, an inability of the House of Representative, the Senate, and the p resident to agree on public policies. Crises have historically result ed in an increase in presidential power. In times of crisis, the public and other government officials look to the president for leadership and give him leeway to select the appropriate policy responses to the crisis Wars and other threats to national security, economic crises and other emergency conditions have also tended to increase pres idential power. T he Great Depression of the 1930s created an expectation that t he national government respond to a na tional economic emergency. The p resident became the person held responsible for maintaining economic prosperity. The modern president who does not appear to be acti ng decisively to address problems is likely to suffer a loss of political support or public approval. P ublic opinion polling records the effects of events or circumsta nces on public approval of the p resident. George W. Bush is a good example of the impact of events on presidential popularity. He began his tenure in office with approval ratings of around 50%. His approval rating soared to nearly 90% immediately after the 9/11 terrorist attacks, his approval rating soar ed to nearly 90%. Then it sank to historic lows as the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq dragged

PAGE 101

Chapter 4: The Presidency | 95 on and the Great Recession began. H is approval rating was around 34 % when he left office. President Obamas approval rating increased as the eco nomy recovered. Another reason why President Trump is unprecedented is because he began office with unprecedented low public approval ratings. 4.45 | Public Opinion I n a democracy public opinion can serve as an important source of presidential power or an important limit on it. Strong public support adds to a presidents formal powers, while weak public support subtracts from it. One of the most widely reported measures of public opinion about the president is the regular survey of job approval ratings. The p residents popularity as measured by job approval is regularly measured and widely reported as a kind of presidential report card .16 Unlike the constitutional and statutory powers, which are fairly const ant, public opinion is dynamic. 0 20 40 60 80 100Jan-89 Jan-90 Jan-91 Jan-92 Jan-93 Jan-94 Jan-95 Jan-96 Jan-97 Jan-98 Jan-99 Jan-00 Jan-01 Jan-02 Jan-03 Jan-04 Jan-05 Jan-06 Jan-07 Jan-08 Jan-09 Jan-10Approve and Disapprove Rates Approve Disapprove Approve Disapprove 0 10 20 30 40 50 60 70 80 Apr 2009 May 2009 Jul 2009 Aug 2009 Sep 2009 Nov 2009 Dec 2009 Jan 2010 Mar 2010 Apr 2010 Jun 2010 Jul 2010 Aug 2010 Oct 2010 Nov 2010Obama's approval rating % Approve % Disapprove GHW Bush Clinton GW Bush Obama

PAGE 102

96 | Chapter 4: The Presidency President Obamas approval ratings followed the familiar pattern of high initial approval, with eventu al declines in approval ratings. Approval ratings are considered important indicators of a presidents ability to get their agenda enacted into law 4.46 | Media P residents typically have a love hate relationship with the media. Presidents love to use the media to get their message out, and p residents love favorable coverage of themselves and their administration. But p residents also hate bad press which they tend to define as any critical media coverage of them or their administration. The love side of the relationship is evident in the eagerness of any administration to provide favorabl e photo opportunities that reinforce the image of presidential leadership. The hate side of the relationship is apparent in statements by presidents from Thomas Jefferson to Richard Nixon. President Jeffersons S econd Inaugural Address ( March 4, 1805) included strong criticism of press coverage of his administration: During this course of administration, and in order to disturb it, the artillery of the press has been levelled against us, charged with whatsoever its licentiousness could devise or dare. These abuses of an institution so important to freedom and science, are deeply to be regretted, inasmuch as they tend to lessen its usefulness[T]hey might, indeed, have been corrected by the wholesome punishments reserved and provided by the laws of the several States against falsehood and defamation; but public duties more urgent press on the time of public servants, and the offenders have therefore been left to find th eir punishment in the public indignation..No inference is here intended, that the laws, provided by the State against false and defamatory publications, should not be enforced; he who has time, renders a service to public morals and public tranquility in reforming these abuses by the salutary coercions of the law; but the experiment is noted, to prove that, since truth and reason have maintained their ground against false opinions in league with false facts, the press, confined to truth, needs no other le gal restraint; the public judgment will correct false reasonings and opinions, on a full hearing of all parties; and no other definite line can be drawn between the inestimable liberty of the press and its demoralizing licentiousness. If there be still imp roprieties which this rule would not restrain, its supplement must be sought in the censorship of public opinion. (Courtesy of The American Presidency Project John Woolley and Gerhard Peters .) Richard Nixon had a famously difficult relationship with th e media during his entire political career. President Nixons relationship with the press became es pecially difficult when the press began investigating criminal activity related to Watergate and then reported on the widening scandal. The following excerpt from President Nixons News Conference on Oct. 26th 1973 reveals his disdain for the press corps : Q. Mr. President, you have lambasted the television networks pretty well. Could I ask you, at the risk of reopening an obvious wound, you say after you have put on a lot of heat that you don't blame anyone. I find that a little puzzling. What is it about t he television coverage of you in these past weeks and months that has so aroused your anger? THE PRESIDENT [to Robert C. Pierpoint, CBS News]. Dont get the impression that you arouse my anger. [Laughter] Q. Im afraid, sir, that I have that impression. [L aughter] THE PRESIDENT. You see, one can only be angry with those he respects.

PAGE 103

Chapter 4: The Presidency | 97 (Courtesy of T he American Presidency Project: ) 4.5 | The Office: The Organization of the Executive Branch The executive b ranch is organized around the various functions of the office of the presidency The p resident is the head of the executive b ranch with the vice president and the white house staff under his direct supervision. The Executive Office of the President consists of the individuals who serve as the presidents policy advisors. These individuals also manage the various policy offices that are located in the executiv e bran ch. The final component of the presidents circle of advisors is the c abinet The cabinet is an informal name for the h eads of the fifteen executives departments e.g., the Secretaries of State, Defense, Treasury and so on. T he growth of the executive branch has included what is commonly called the bureaucracy or the administrative state. As the chief executive officer, the president has a great deal of control over the administrative apparatus that produces regulations. Department Head Year Responsibilities Secretary of State 1789 Foreign policy Secretary of the Treasury 1789 Government funds and regulation of alcohol, firearms, and tobacco Secretary of Defense 1789 National defense, overseeing military Attorney General 1870 Represents the U.S. government in federal court; investigates and prosecutes violations of federal law Secretary of the Interior 1849 Natural resources Secretary of Agriculture 1889 Farmers, food quality, food stamps and food security Secretary of Commerce 1903 Business assistance and conducts the Census Secretary of Labor 1913 Labor programs, labor statistics, enforcement of labor laws Secretary of Health and Human Services 1953 Health and income security Secretary of Housing and Urban Development 1965 Urban and housing programs Secretary of Transportation 1966 Transportation and highway programs Secretary of Energy 1977 Energy policy and research Secretary of Education 1979 Federal education programs Secretary of Veterans Affairs 1989 Programs for veterans assistance Secretary of Homeland Security 2002 Issues relating homeland security

PAGE 104

98 | Chapter 4: The Presidency 4.51 | The Origins of the Office of the Presidency The Treaty of Paris (1783) end ed the Revolutionary W ar T he United States emerged from the war as an independent country with the governmental stru cture that the Second Continental Congress drew up in 1777. The Articles of Confederation was a voluntary league of friendship among the states. The Articles go vernment had inherent problems that became increasingly apparent with the end of the war and the defeat of the common enemy (Great Britain). During the economic depression that followed the revolutionary war, the viability of the American government was threatened by political unrest in several states, most notably Shays R ebellion in Massachusetts. The Articles had created a weak federal government one that consisted of a Congress but no president. The lack of an executive offic e was one of the perceived weaknesses of the Articles of Confederation. Individuals who presided over the Continental Congress during the Revolutionary period and under the Articles of Confederation had the title President of the United States of America in Congress Assembled. This title was often shortened to President of the United States . But these individuals had no important executive power. The Congress appeared institutionally incapable of functioning as a lawmaker for the nation, which was a barrier to the nation wide development of commerce and economic development. The Constitutional Convention of 1787 was convened to reform the Articles of Confederation, but the delegates decided to create an enti rely new system of government. T he long and lively debates about the nature and power of the presidency addressed the power problem of giving the president enough power to be effective while also limiting power so that the president could be held accountable. The creation of the execut ive was shaped both the colonial experiences under the British monarchy, which made delegates wary of executive power, and the weakness of the Articles of Confederation, which made delegates think that execu tive power was necessary. They ultimately created an executive with both considerable power and substantial limits with in a legislative centered system of government They believed that this was how the executive was made safe for republican government 4.52 | Washington Averts a Threat At the close of the Revolutionary War, officers of the Continental Army met in Newburgh, New York, to discuss grievances and consider a possible i nsurrection against Congress. The army officers were angry about Congress s failure to honor its promises to provide salaries bounties and life pensions. The

PAGE 105

Chapter 4: The Presidency | 99 offic ers heard rumors that the y might not receive any compensation because the American governme nt was going broke O n March 10, 1783, an anonymous letter was circulated among the officers addressing those worries and calling for an unauthorized meeting of officers to be held the next day to consider possible military solutions to the problems of the civilian government and its financial woes. General Washington forbade the officers to attend the unauthorized meeting and suggested they meet a few days later, on March 15th, at the regular meeting of his officers. Meanwhile, another anonymous l etter was circulated that suggested Washington was sympathetic to the claims of the disgruntled officers. On March 15, 1783, Washingtons officers gathered in a church building in Newburg h. General Washington unexpectedly showed up, personally addressed the officers, and appealed to their sense of responsibility to protect the young republic. See the Appendix, George Washington Prevents the Revolt of the Officers. Washington helped the U.S. avoid having a political military and a political commander in chief as president. 4.6 | The [S]election of the President The constitutional qualifications to become president include being a natural born citizen of the United States, at least thirty five years old, and a resident in the United States for at least fourteen years. The Twenty second Amendment also limits a president to serving two terms in office. Th e natural born qualification means that some prominent individuals and successful politicians such as California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger are not eligible to be p resident. And members of the birther movement question President Barack Obamas eligibility to serve as president. There is some discussion today of whether the requirement that a president be a natural born citizen should be changed so that naturalized citizens who have lived in the country for a long time would be eligible to become president. T he informal, political requirements include having some government experience. The majority of presidents had prior experience as vice presidents, members of Congress, governors, or genera ls T hirty one of forty two presidents served in the military. President Ulysses Grant s Civil War service as General in Chief and President Eisenhower s distinguished military career as Allied Commander during WWII are examples of how military service is seen as a political qualification for the presidency. D uring presidential campaigns government experience, or in an anti government political climate, the lack of government experience is presented as a political qualification for office. Membership in one of the two major political parties is also an informal political qualification. Candidates usually must receive the backing of either the Republican Party or the Democratic Party because the U. S. has a two party system that makes it hard for third or minor party candidates to be successful. In 1992, t hird party candidate Ross Perot received nearly 19% of th e popular vote.

PAGE 106

100 | Chapter 4: The Presidency From L to R: Ronald Reagan (40st), Gerald Ford (38th), Jimmy Carter (39th), and Richard Nixon (37th) 4.61 | Is This Any Way to [S]elect the President ? P eople commonly refer to the election of the president, but the Electoral College officially selects the president. The process of choosing the president is complicated It involves both election popular votes cast in the elections in fifty states and selection Electoral College votes T he United States is a republic or indirect democracy but the voters do not directly elect the President. Presidents are chosen indirectly by the Electoral College This process is complicated and has been criticized for years 4 61 | Elections Elections take place every four years on the Tuesday after the first Monday in November. Many states do provide early and absentee voting several weeks before the day of the election The U.S. does not have a sin gle, national election for P resident. Presidential e lections are a ctually 50 separate elections because each state conducts an election for P resident. 4.62 | The Campaign P residential campaign s begin well before primary elections A p rimary election is an election to determine party candidate s for office. The two major political parties use primary elections to reduce the number of candidates in advance of their national nominating conventions There was no incumbent in the 2016 presidential campaign, so there was an unusually large number of Republicans and Democrats running for their party nominations. There was an especially large number of Republicans running for the Republican nomination. T he Republican Party held primary elections and cau cuses to determine who would be the Republican Party s nominee Each partys nominating convention formally selects the party nominee for president. The party s presidential candidate chooses a vice presi dential nominee and this choice is rubber stamped by the convention. T he party also establishes a platform on which to base its campaign. Although nominating conventions have a long history in the United States, their importance in the political process has greatly diminished.

PAGE 107

Chapter 4: The Presidency | 101 The fact that primaries determine which candidate has the mos t delegates to the party convention means that modern conventions usually merely ratify the results of the primary elections, rather than actually choosing the partys nominee. However, the national party conventions remain important for focusing public a ttention on the nominees and for energizing the parties for th e general election Party n ominees participate in nationally televised debates that are sponsored by the Commission on Presidential Debates T he Commissio n negotiates the terms of presidential debates, including determining the number of debates and the rules determining which candidates are allowed to participate in the debates. The rules typically exclude candidates other than the nominee s of the two majo r parties. Ross Perot was a third party candidate who was allowed to participate in the 1992 debates, but the Libertarian Party candidates Gary Johnson and William Weld were excluded from the 2016 debates. Modern presidential campaigns rely heavily on the media. Campaigns rely on a variety of communications media to communicate their messages. Radio and television ads package and sell candidates and parties to the general public. The Museum of the Moving Image shows campaign ads from the 1952 presidential campaign between Republican Dwight Eisenhower and Democrat Adlai Stevenson until today. These ads show how campaigns have changed over time. Changes in technology change campaign strategies. The devel opment of social media has been incorporated into campaigns. President Obamas campaigns relied heavily on new technologies to reach younger voters. Donald Trumps campaign strategy incorporated traditional campaign events, the free media coverage he attra cted, and direct or unfiltered communication s using Twitter. Trumps style made t he 2016 presidential election unusua l. He ran as an outsider who defeated both the Republican Party establishment and the Democratic Party establishment As a wealthy busines sman, he claimed the financial resources to be independent of special interests by self funding his campaign. A savvy m arketer, Trump attracted media attention that he did not have to pay for. He mastered the social media style of sending out short but punchy comment s about ot her candidates. T his unorthodox unfiltered style of communication exposed his political inexperien ce and revealed his strategy to appeal to voters by being politically incorrect rather than being controlled by professional campaig n handlers and message massagers. 4.63 | Working the Refs One of Donald Trumps political strategies i s working the refs This phrase describes players or coaches who complain about, or complain to, the referees in order to get more calls to go their te ams way. Trump worked the refs during his presidential campaign and continues to do so for governing. During a campaign, the refs are the media and campaign analysts who report on who is ahead and who is behind, who has failed to meet expectations, met ex pectations, or exceeded expectations. As president, Trump famously worked the refs by calling some of the news media the fake news media. Working the refs also includes challenging the objectivity and credibility of the intelligence agencies (most promin ently, the Central Intelligence Agency and the FBI ), the Federal Reserve Board, the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the Environmental Protection Agency (on climate change), and the Congressional Budget Office, the nonpartisan office responsible for assessing t he impact that the Republican replacement of Obamacare would h ave on the budget deficit. Challenging the objectivity of individual officials and agencies questions their legitimacy This is different than saying that the FBI tends to be conservative beca use it is biased toward law enforcement, or that the Environmental Protection Agency or the Department

PAGE 108

102 | Chapter 4: The Presidency of Education tend to be liberal because they support environmental protection and education. Working the refs obviously applies to the courts, who ultima tely decide the legality of many government policies. But working the refs also applies to the public and the press. President Trumps social media strategy is intended to work around the mainstream or institutional press to communicate unfiltered with Twitter followers. 4.64 | The End of the Gaffe The traditional expectation that presidents will be articulate and wellspoken individuals who can use language to clearly communicate ideas and arguments, supported by evidence, is weakening. These are less important components of what it means to be pres idential. President Ronald Reagan earned his reputation as the great communicator Presidents George H. W. Bush and George W. Bush earned their reputations as not gifted communicators because of their tendency to mangle syntax. After leaving office, Geor ge W. Bush jokingly acknowledged his reputation for malapropisms and making up words such as strategery. Technology changes the way people communicate. Electronic communications such as email and social media such as Twitter have made communication less formal and more casual. Traditionally, public communication from presidents meant th at the president was speaking. Speaking meant a formal address as distinct from casual and personal communication. Donald Trumps campaign rhetoric and his unconventional T weeting presidency have been effective because the populist, anti establishment mood made t he official, formal speaking style seem contrived verbiage written by speech writers and political advisors. His casual speaking style and even bad English come acro ss to his core supporters as talking straight from the heart rather than speaking. (McWhorter) Stephen Waynes 10th edition of The Road to the White House 2016 describes the ways to get t o the White House. It is now apparent that Madison Avenue and Hollywood Boulevard can take y ou to 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue The PBS program American Experience: Reagan (1998) describes how President Reagans road to the White House included Hollywood Boulevardhis experience in film and television and the public image of him and Madison Avenue his advisors application of advertising and marketing skills to politics, particularly duri ng the 1984 reelection campaign. The entertainment business and the advertising industry understood the political importance of creating and burnishing i mage s Reagan explained his appeal to voters : T hey look at me and the y see themselves. President Reagans fixation on imagery did have a cost. During hi s se cond t erm Reagan functioned more like a master of the ceremonial p residency than the chief executive although this was partly due to medical problems such as Alzheimers rather than a political strategy. Donald Trumps road to the White House also relied on celebrity status for name recognition He then use d the mainstream media to keep the media spotlight on him P residential campaigns are long and getting longer. D o the long campaigns contribute to voter fatigue ? Do the long campaigns contribute to the comparatively low turnout in presidential elections ? The large audiences for the Republican primary debates and the general election debates between Trump and Clinton can be interpreted as evidence of voter interest, not voter fatigue. The U.S. has by far the longest campaign season for selecting the head of government Senator Te d Cruz announced that he was running on March 23, 2015 s o the presidential campaign lasted 597 days. Duri ng that time, there could have been four Mexican elections seven Canadian elections 14 British elections 14 Australian elections or 41 French elections.

PAGE 109

Chapter 4: The Presidency | 103 4.65 | The Electoral College With the possible exception of the Federal Reserve Board, t he Electoral College may be th e least known government institution. The Founders disagreed on the way to select the president. S ome favored a nati onal popular vote; others wanted Congress to choose the president. The Electoral College was created because the Founders did not trust people enough to allow them to di rectly elect the president. In a time of limited public education, limited communication, and a fear of sectionalism in American politics, the Founders believed that the a verage voter could not be trusted to judge which of the presidential candidates would be best for the country. T he Electoral College was intended to be a council of wise elders who would choose the best person from among those who received the most popular votes in the presidential election. The College would review the peoples choices and then decide for itself which of their preferences would be best. T he Electoral Co llege no longer performs this role because of the development of political parties. A lthough the Constitution would allow state legislators to select the members of the Electoral College, t he states have provided for the members of the Electoral College to be chosen by popular vote. At state party conventions, the state political parties choose party loyalists to serve as members of the Electoral College. Whichever partys candidate wins the most popular votes in the state gets to have its members cast th e states Electoral C ollege votes. T he members of the E lectoral C ollege almost always cast their vote for their partys candidate because the members of the Electoral College are chosen by the political party whose candidate received the most popular votes in that state V oters in each of the 50 states actually cast their votes for a slate of Electors chosen by the candidates political parties. T he Electoral College actually selects the President. Each state has the same number of E lectoral C ollege votes as it has members in the Congress There are 535 members of Congress, so the Electoral College consists of 535 members plus three for the District of Columbia so there is a total of 538 members of the Electoral College When citizens cast their votes, th e names of the presidential and vice presidential candidates are shown on the ballot T he vote however, is actually cast for a slate of E lectors chosen by the candidate s political party. In most states, the ticket (the candidates for president and vice president) that wins the most popular votes in a state wins all of that state s Electoral College votes Maine and Nebraska are the two exceptions to the winner take all rule. They give two electoral votes to the statewide winner and one electoral vote to the winner of each c ongressional district.

PAGE 110

104 | Chapter 4: The Presidency From L to R: George H.W. Bush (41st), Barack Obama (44th), George W. Bush (43rd), William (Bill) Clinton (42nd), and Jimmy Carter (39th) T he winning set of electors meets at their state s capital on the first Monday after the second Wednesday in December, a few weeks after the election, to vote, and sends a vote count to Congress. The vote count is opened by the sitting vice president, acting in his capacity as President of the Senate and read aloud to a joint session of the incoming Congress, which was elected at the same time as the president. Members of Congress can object to any state's vote count, provided that the objection is supported by at least one member of each house of Congress. A successful objection will be followed by debate; however, objections to the electoral vote count are rarely raised. I n the event that no candidate receives a majority of the electoral vote, the House of Representatives chooses the president from among the top three contenders. However, e ach state delegation is given only one vote which reduces the power of the more populous states 4.64 | Is I t Time for a Change? T he Constitution originally provided that the U.S. Electoral College would elect both the President and the Vice President in a single election T he person wit h a majority would become President and the runner up would become Vice President. The elections of 1796 and 1800 exposed the problems with this system. In 1800 t he Democratic Republican plan to have one elector vote for Jefferson and not Aaron Burr did not work; the result was a tie in the electoral votes between Jefferson and Burr. The election was then sent to the House of Representatives, which was controlled by the Federalist Party Most Federalists voted for Burr in order to block Jefferson from the presidency T he result was a week of deadlock. Jefferson, largely as a result of Hamiltons support, ultimately won. The Twelfth Amendment (ratified in 18 04) required electors to cast two distinct votes: one for president and another for vice president. It e xplicitly precluded from being vice p r esident those ineligible to be president: people under thirty five years of age, those who have not inhabited the United States for at least fourteen years, and those who are not natural born citizens T he Elector al College remains controversial today bec ause it is inconsistent with basic democratic principles. In a democracy, voters should have the right to choose their leaders. In a Think about it! This satirical news re port on the Electoral College is accurate. Is this any way to select a President? atch?v=BkqEdlRDKfo Think About It! What is the best way to choose a leader? Are there differences between insiders who are promoted up through the organizational ranks and outsiders? Is it a good idea to roll the dice with an outsider? 5/163626172/decisiontime why do some leadersleavea mark

PAGE 111

Chapter 4: The Presidency | 105 democracy, t he candidate who gets the most popular votes should win the office. I n 2000, the Democratic candidate Al Gore received the most popular votes but Republican George Bush became president because he received the most Electoral College votes In 2016, Democrat Hillary Clinton won the popular vote by almost three million vote s, but Republican Donald Trump won the presidency by receiving the most Electoral College votes. T he Electoral College also distorts representation because it is biased in favor of less populous states and against more populous states. T he most populous s tate California only has one electoral vote for every 660,000 residents, while the least populous state Wyoming has one electoral vote for about every 170,000 residents This means that a vote cast in one state is worth much more than a vote cast in another state. So how much is a vote for president worth? It varies a great deal depending on the state. The New York Times story How Much is Your Vote Worth? provides a chart describing the different vote values in the 50 states .17 O ne of the more innovative ways use technology to make the selection of the p resident more democratic is the creation of an electronic national primary election. The America ns Elect organization describes the current political system for choosing leaders as lacking democratic legitimacy and failing to serve the people very well. Their solution is to create an electronic, national primary election that gives voters more contro l over the selection of candidates and the political parties less control. What do you think of the idea? Or perhaps we could create an Assembly of Experts for the Leadership? 4.7 | The Bureaucracy Americans love to hate the government bureaucracy particularly the federal bureaucracy. Much of the federal bureaucracy is located within the executive branch, so it is the part of the federal government that the president as Chief Executive is responsible for managing. The following provides a brief definition of bureaucracy, a description of the federal bureaucracy, and explanation of who controls the federal bureaucracy. Think about it! FYE(njoyment) Is this any way to (s)elect a president? Woul d it help to have .The Assembly of Experts for the Leadership Check It Out! 270towin is a website that provides interactive maps of national elections, information about historical and current presidential and other elections, and other basic information about U.S. politics.

PAGE 112

106 | Chapter 4: The Presidency 4.71 | What is a Bureaucracy? A bureaucracy is a large organi zation whose mission is to pe rform a specific function or functions. Bureaucracies are organizations with three distinctive characteristics: Hierarchy. A bureaucracy structur ed hierarchically. It has a chain of command. At the top of the hierarchy are the policy makers. At the bottom of the hier archy are the policy followers. Individuals in organizations have supervisors with higher ranks within the chain of command. Division of Labor. A bureaucracy is based on the division of labor. Individuals perform specific tasks rather than having everyone do everything the organization does. The division of labor allows organi zations to develop expertise. Rules. A bureaucracy works according to writ ten rules and regulations that determine what tasks individuals are as signed. An organization that is overly bureaucratic, which has too many strict rules and regulations, is so metimes said to have too much “red tape.” Too many rules and regulations can limit an organization’s performance of its mission. It is important to note that this definition of a bureaucrac y is not limited to government. Bureaucracy is the most common way of organi zing individuals to perform functions in the private sector and the public sect or. Corporations in the for-prof it sector and the non-profit sector are bureaucracies. Political par ties and interest groups are pr ivate sector bureaucracies. In the public sector (i.e., government), the bureaucracy is the term for some of the officials who are responsible for administering th e laws. The elected officials (the president and members of Congress) are not c onsidered members of the fede ral bureaucracy. The political appointees that run the 15 ex ecutive departments (e.g., the de partments of state, treasury, commerce, defense, and justice) are not the bureaucracy. The federal bureaucracy is the professionals or career officials who work in th e mid and lower tiers of an organization. These individuals are not electe d or appointed: they typically receive their jobs base d on civil service tests. The federal bureaucracy consists of th e people who carry out the organization’s policies that are made by the upper management levels are the political appointees. Click on the organizational chart of any of the 15 executive departments to see the bureaucratic structure of the department. The following figure represents a typical ex ecutive department bureaucratic organization. Executive Department Political Appointees (Secretaries, Under-secretaries) Policy makers Professionals (Career Civil Servants)

PAGE 113

Chapter 4: The Presidency|107 Policy followers 4.72 | Controlling the Bureaucracy There are several reasons why it is important to control the bureaucracy. The most important reason for controlling the bureaucracy is becaus e it is an unelected “fourth branch” of government with a great deal of policymaking (or rule making) power. The bureaucracy does not fit easily into the tripartite separation of powe rs into the legislative, executive, and judicial branches. The bureaucracy makes “laws.” Gove rnment agencies such as the Federal Communications Commission do not make l egislation but administrative agencies do issue legally binding rules that have the same legal effect as laws passed by Congress. So control of the bureaucracy is very impo rtant in a democracy. Congress creates the bureaucracy—the departments and agencies an d commissions—therefore Congress can abolish it. Congress also uses its budget pow er to control agencies. The Sena te exerts some control over the bureaucracy because presidential nominations for upper-level management positions require Senate confirmation. The president’s power as chief executive includes the power of appointment, which is the main tool for managing the federal bureaucracy. It is also increasingly impor tant to control the bureaucracy because of its size and complexity. The federal bureaucracy epitomizes the idea of big government! The U.S. still has only one president. The size of Congress has been fixed at 535 for more than a century. And the number of states has remained at 50 since Hawaii joined the union in 1959. But the federal government is now much bigger than it was a centu ry ago because of the increase in the number of executive departments, agencies, bureaus, an d independent regulatory commissions—and the regulations they produce. In organi zational theory, the saying that personnel is power describes the importance of using the appointment power to staff the government in order to steer the government, staffing to control public policy. A president who is gifted with the ability to give great speeches can inspire support, but effectiv e leadership requires payi ng attention to personnel policy, including the appointment of administrative officials. Legislative Judicial Bureaucratic Executive

PAGE 114

108 | Chapter 4: The Presidency 4.8 | Summary The development of the U.S. system of government from a congress centered system to a president centered system is one of the most important changes that have occurred over the more than 200 years of the existence of the republic. The increased power of t he president, and the personal nature of modern presidential power, makes the power problem with the presidency even more important. The challenge is to f ind ways to hold executive power accountable. The personal and political nature of presidential power and its roots in events, character, personal skills, and public opinion, present s a challenge for a system of government committed to the rule of law. 4.8 | Additional Resources 4.81 | Internet Resources provides information about the federa l government, including the executive branch: of government#Executive_Departments C SPANs The Executive Branch provides information about t he president and the presidency: https://www.c The official Website of the White House is Brief biographies of y our favorite or least favorite p resident and first lady are available at The American Presidency Project hosted at the University of California, Santa Barbara, provides a great deal of useful information and original documents related to the presidency: The Avalon Project at Yale provides a broad range of documents, including the Annual Mes sages to Congress and Inaugural Addresses: 4.82 | In the Library Abbott Philip 2008. Accidental Presidents: Death, Assassination, Resignation, and Democratic Succession (The Evolving American Presidency). Palgrave Macmillian Boorstin, Daniel. 1962. The Image: A Guide to PseudoEvents in America Vintage. Bradley Richard 2000. American Political Mythology from Kennedy to Nixon. Peter Lang Publishing.

PAGE 115

Chapter 4: The Presidency | 109 Dionne E.J. and William Kristol (E ds). 2001. Bush v. Gore: The Court Cases and the Commentary Brookings Instituti on. Mayer, Jane and Doyle McManus. 1988. Landslide: The Unmaking of the President, 19841988. Boston: Houghton Mifflin Company. Lowi, Theodore. 1985. The Personal President Ithaca, NY: Cornell University Press. McWhorter, Jan. How to Listen to Donald Trump Every Day for Years. The New York Times (January 21, 2017). Accessed at Miroff, Bruce. 2000. Courting the Public: Bill Clintons Postmodern Education, In The Postmodern Presidency: Bill Clintons Legacy in U.S. Politics Pittsburgh: University of Pittsburgh Press. Pika, Joseph A. and John Anthony Maltese (Eds). 2006. The Politics of the Presidency. Sixth Edition. Washington, DC: CQ Press. Rose, Richard. 1988. The Postmodern President Chatham, NJ: Chatham House Publishers. Sauer, Patrick. 2000. The Complete Idiots Guide to the American Presidents Alpha Books. Schlesinger, Ar thur M. 2004. War and the American Presidency New York: W. W. Norton & Company Stark, Steven. The First Postmodern Presidency. The Atlantic (April 1993). Accessed at ht tps:// Taranto, James and Leonardo Leo (E ds). 2004. Presidential Leadership: Rating the Best and the Worst in the White House New York: The Free Press. Woodward, Bob. 2002. Bush at War New York: Simon and Schuster.

PAGE 116

110 | Chapter 4: The Presidency Terms T he rule of law Imperial Presidency Delegated powers Implied powers Electoral College Primary elections Study Questions 1. H ow has the power of the president changed relative to Congre ss? 2. What is the role of the president in the legislative process? 3. W hat factors caused the expansion of presidential power ? 4. How has the presidents role as commander in chief of the military changed over time? 5. How do the presidents c abinet and staff assist the president in exercising his duties and achieving his goals? 6. How does public opinion affect the presidency? How does the president use public opinion to achieve his policy goals? 7. If you were redesigning the Constitution from scratch, what existing presidential powers would you retain, which would you get rid of, and which would you modify? Why? 1 Quoted in Jay Rosen, Pressthink, A Project of the Arthur L. Carter Journalism Institution at New York University Accessed at 2 Quoted in NPR Fresh Air interview with Terry Gross (April 26, 2017). Accessed at ep executive producer on makinga show about the craven desire for power 3 Nick Rogers, How Wrestling Explains Alex Jones and Donald Trump, The New York Times (April 25, 2017). 4 Stephen B. Oates, 1994. Abraham Lincoln: The Man Behind the Myths New Yor k: HarperPerennial, p.76. 5 Arthur M. Schlesinger, Jr. 1973. The Imperial Presidency. Boston and New York: Houghton Mifflin. 6 7 Louis Fisher pr ovides an excellent description of presidential claims of inherent powers. See March07.pdf 8 Quoted in Dames & Moore v. Regan, 453 U.S. 654 (1981). The Hostage Act was codified at 22 U.S.C. Sect. 1732 (1976). 9 10 g.asp 11 12 13 http://www.g 107publ243/content detail.html

PAGE 117

Chapter 4: The Presidency | 111 14 See U.S. v. CurtissWright Export Corp., 299 U.S. 304, 319 (1936). 15 president trumps inaugurationceremony 16 See 17 How Much is Your Vote Worth? The New York Times (November 2, 2008). Accessed at

PAGE 118

5.0 | The Courts The above image is a picture of the U.S. Supreme Court Building. What does the building remind you of? It is intended to remind you of a temple of justice The design of the building and the black robes that the Justices wear are intended to instill reverence for the courts and the law All countries have courts. Courts are considered an essential element of good governmen t because they administer justice and uphold the rule of law.

PAGE 119

But c ourts do not have t he same role in all c ountries. Courts have a very limited role in some countries and a very bro ad role in others Courts play a broad role in modern Am erican government politics and society. T hey rule on (abortion (zoning and zoos and zygotes ). In fact, the broad role that courts play in the U.S. political system explains why courts are considered essential for goo d government and the administration of justice, but they are also frequent targets of strong criticism. This chapter ex plains the complicated thinking about courts by ex amin ing three main issues related to the role courts play in the U.S. system of governm ent and politics : The Power Problem for the Federal Courts; The Increased Power of the Judiciary; and The R elationship b etween Law and Politics T he power problem for the federal courts is legitimacy In a democracy, there is a preference for policymakin g by elected government officials. Federal judges are appointed to life terms. The tensions between democratic values and rule of law values are evident in court rulings. The increased power of the judiciary is a source of criticism because the courts hav e over time become much more powerful than originally intended. T he judiciary was originally called the of government Today, court critics talk about an The charge that the courts have become imperial is base d on claims that judges have assumed powers previously held by the political branches of government. The issue of courts as government institutions is ultimately about the relationship between law and politics the legal system and the political system Th e Constitution created a political system where three separate institutions share power, and the courts are not immune from political criticism any more than Congress and the president. abortion, the death penal ty, school praye r, obscenity and indecency, sexual behavior and marriage have made the Court one of the primary targets in the culture wars T he term culture wars refer s to political fights over values rather than valuables, but the fights are also legal conflicts The primary foc us is the U.S. Supreme Court but some attention is paid to organization and operation of the federal court system and the state court systems The American legal system also provides a prominent role for juries, so so me attention is paid to jury justice. 5.1 | The Power Problem For the Federal Courts Previous chapters examined t he power p roblem for C ongress ( effectiveness ) and the presidency ( accountability ). The power problem for the federal c ourts is legitimacy The problem is rooted in a basic democratic principle: the preference for policy making by elected government officials F ederal judges are appointed to life terms. This makes the federal judiciary an undemocratic or even counter majoritarian government i nstitution Th e legitimacy problem arises when individual judges or the courts as an institution make decisions that affect or in effect make public policy The federal courts are not the only non elected gov ernment institution with policy making power. Th e Federal Reserve Board i s not elected and it has substantial Presidents come and go, but the Supreme Court goes on President William Howard Taft It is emphatically the province and duty of the judicial department to say what the law is. Chief Justice John Marshall in Marbury v. Madison

PAGE 120

power to make economic policy related to inflation and employment T he U.S. is not a pure democracy; it is a constitutional democracy. The Constitution actually places a number of very importan t limits on majority rule. In fact, t he Constitution (particularly the Bill of Rights) is a counter majoritarian document. T he fact that courts interpret the Constitution means that courts sometime perform a counter majoritarian role in the constitutional democracy Much of the controversy surrounding the role of the courts in the U.S. system of government and politics is about the legitimacy of courts making policy. Judicial policymaking or legislating from the bench is considered inappropriate in a politi cal system where the elected branches of government are expected to have the primary pol icymaking power. The power problem for the courts is about the boundaries between the political system and the legal system, the separation of politics and law. Keeping law and politics separate is complicated by the fact that the judiciary is expected to have some degree of independence from the political system so that courts can perform one of their most important roles: enforcing basic rule of law values in a constit utional democracy 5.2 | Political History of the Supreme Court Judicial power is also controversia l because courts have historically taken sides in many of the most important and controversial i ssues facing the nation. The Supreme Court h as had four distinct eras based on the kinds of issues the Court decided during the era : the Founding Era (1790 1865); the D evelopment Era (1865 1937); t he Liberal Nationalism Era ( 1937 1970); and the Conserv ative Counter revolution ( 1970 ). T he specific issues that the Cour t decided during these four eras changed, but the Court consistently addressed many of the major political controversies and issues of the day. The Supreme Court Tim eline mark s some of these eras and issues 5. 2 1 | The Founding Era (1790 1865) During the Founding Era the Court issued major rulings explaining how the new system of government worked. Its federalism rulings broadly interpreted the powers of the nati onal government. The Marshall Co urt (1801 1835) established the power of judicial review in Marbury v. Madison (1803). It ruled that Congress had complete power over interstate commerce in Gibbons v. Ogden (1824). And it broadly inte rpreted s power under the Necessary and Proper Clause i n McCulloch v. Maryl and (1819). Think About It! C SPAN presents Constitutional Role of Judges in the American republic and democratic systems, and Legal Scholars Exami ne Role of Courts in Democracy : https://www.c 1/constitutional role judges https://www.c 1/role courts us democracy

PAGE 121

Chief Justice Roger B. Taney replaced Marshall The Taney Court (1836 1864) was less concerned about establishing the new powers of the national government, so it issued a number of rulings upho ld ing the powers of the states using the doctri ne of dual federalism Dual federalism is the idea that both levels of government are supreme in their respective field s T he national government is supreme in matters of foreign affairs and interstate commerce. T he state s are supr eme in int r a state polici es such as commerce, education, the regulation of moral ity, and criminal justice. ling in Dred Scott v. Sandford (1857) s power to limit the spread of slaver y, thereby contributing to the inevitability of the Civil War. The Dred Scott ruling struck down the Missouri Compromise of 1820 a law passed by Congress to limit the s pread of slavery in the territories 5. 22 | Development and Economic Regulation (1865 1937) During this era the Court decided cases challenging the governmen the economy Government regulation of the economy increased during t he Progressive Era (roughly 1890 to WWI) and the New Deal Era (1930s) in order to ease some of the problems created by the Industrial Revolution The government regulations included a nti trust laws child labor law s, minimum wage and maximum hour laws, and workplace safety regulations. However, t he Court saw its role as protecting business from government regulation so it used its power of judicial review to strike down many of these laws I n 19 34 and 1935 it declar e unconstitutional many of the major provisions of This exposed a major conflict between the political system and the legal system. The political system supported government regulation of business and social welfare policies t hat were intended t o end the G reat Depression and provide more income security. But the Court saw its role as protecting business from government regulation. One reason for the New Deal era conflict between the political branches and the Court was an accident of history. President Franklin D. Roosevelt was unlucky in that he did not have the opportunity to appoint a member of the Supreme Court during his entire first term in office. Political change occurs regularly with the election calenda r: e very two years. But the Justices are appointed to life terms so vacancies occur irregularly with retirements or death President Roosevelt and congressional Democrats saw the election of 1932 as a critical election that gave them a mandate to govern. They became increasingly frustrated with Supreme Court rulings where a conservative majority ( oft en by 6 3 or 5 4 margins) struck down major New Deal programs in 1935 and 1936. Roosevelt eventually proposed legislation to add another member to the Court for eve ry sitting justice over the age of seventy, up to a maximum of six more members which would have increased the size of the Court from nine to 15 members. This proposal was very controversial because it was a ourt with new J ustices who would support his New Deal policies down New Deal policies were unpopular, was consi dered an inappropriate attempt to exert politic a l control over the Court. The proposal died in Congress. But i n 1937 the Court seemed to get the political message. It abruptly changed its rulings on economic regulation and began to uphold New Deal legisla tion. The Court announced that it would no longer be interested in hearing cases challenging the

PAGE 122

nomy. The Court indicated that it would regul ations matters for the political branches of government to decide. The Court also announced that in the future it was going to take a special interest in cases involving laws that affected the political liberties of individuals. In effect, the Court annou nced that it would use judicial restraint when laws affected economic liberties but judicial activism when laws affected political liberties. The Court further explained that it was especially inorities. This 1937 change is called the constitutional revolution of 1937 because it was such an abrupt, major change in the Court system of government and politics. 5. 23 | The Era of Liberal Nationalism (1937 1970) In the middle years of the 20 th Century, the Court participated in debates about civil liberties a nd civil rights by assuming a new role : 1) protector of individual liberties ; and 2) supporter of equality. interest in civil liberties cases marks the be ginning of the third era It began protecting civil liberties in cases involving freedom of expression (including freedom of religion, speech, and press); the rights of suspects and criminals in the cr iminal justice system; racial and ethnic minorities to equal protection of the laws; and the right to privacy. The Warren Court (19 53 1969) is remembered for its judicial activism on behalf of civil liberties. Chief Justice Earl Warren presided over the civil law and criminal law. ordering school desegregation put the Court in the middle of debates about ra cial equality. The civil law rulings included the landmark sc hool desegregation case Brown v. Board of Education (1954), and landmark right to privacy cases such as Griswold v. Connecticut (1965). In Griswold v. Connecticut the Court held that the U.S. Constitution included an implied right to privacy that prohibited states from passing laws that made it a criminal offense to disseminate information about birth con trol devic es and by implication, the implied right to privacy limited government power to regulate other aspects of sexual behavior. The Warren Court also issued rulings that affected the freedom of religion. In Engel v. Vitale (1962), the Court ruled that it was u nconstitutional for government officials to compose a prayer and require that it be recited in public Abington School District v. Schempp (1963) the Court held that mandatory Bible reading in public schools was unconstitutional. T criminal law rulings were no less controversial than its civil law rulings. The Court broadened the rights of suspect s and convicted offenders in the state criminal justice systems Gideon v. Wainwright (1963) broadened the right to the assistance of counsel by holding that anyone charged with a felony had a right to be provided an attorney if he or she could not afford to pay for one. Mapp v. Ohio (1961) held that the Exclusionary Rule applied to state courts. The Exclusionary Rule prohibited the use of evidence seized in violation of the Constitution in order to obtain a conviction. Miranda v. Arizona (1966) may be the most famous of the Warren Court rulings on

PAGE 123

criminal justice. It required police officers to notify suspect of their c onstitutional rights before questioning them. These rights include the right to remain silent, the right to have the assistance of counsel, and notified that anything said can be used in a court of law against them. These Warren Court rulings, and the Bu Roe v. Wade (1973) that the right to privacy included the right to an abortion, put the Court in the middle of the political conflicts over value as opposed to economics. Judicial decisions about state laws defini ng marriage continue the tradition of judicial participation in the leading controversies of the day 5. 24 | The Conservative Counter Revolution One indication that the era of liberal nationalism has ended is the fact that has a different agend a than the Warren Court The conservatives have had working majorities on the Burger, Rehnquist, and now the Roberts Courts. They are in terested in different issues than the Warren Court beginning of the political direction. His appointment of legal direction. Crime became a national issue in t he 1968 presidential campaigns Richard Nixon portrayed j udges as being soft on crime and ple dged to appoint judges who would get tough on crime. President Nixon appointe d four members of the Court, i ncluding Chief Justice Warren Burger. The Burger Court (1969 1986) conservatism was first evident in criminal law. Crime fighting is a core function of government. All levels of government participate in making and implementing crime policy The elect ion of conservative Republican p residents (Nixon, Ford, Reagan Bush 41 and Bush 43) and even the election of D emocratic P residents Carter and Clinton who came from the conservative wing of the Democratic Party solidified the Court rightward movement. Federal judges are appointed by political figures through a political process: the president nominates and t he Se nate confirms. So it is not surprising that political chan ges are reflected in the judiciary because the selection of federal judges is an obvious contact point between law and politic, between the legal system and the political system. The Rehnquist Co urt (1986 200 5) had a conservative working majority. It reviv ed federalism n U.S. v. Lopez (1995) and it struck down the Gun Free School Zones Act of 1990. In U.S. v. Morrison (2004), the Court struck down prov isions of the Violen ce Against Women Act of 2000. The Roberts Court (2005 present) has also generally been a conse rvative Court. Chief Justice Roberts and Justice Samuel Alito were nominated in part because the ir lower court rulings supported business inte rests Business issues had been ov ershadowed by higher profile issues such as abortion, school prayer, affirmative action, and the death penalty. But the Roberts Court has issued a number of rulings that are favorable to business interests A 2010 ruling struck down provisions of federal law regulating independent campaign contributions The Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission ) ruling eased restrictions on corporate campaign c ontributions. The Roberts C o urt has also adopted the A ccommodationist interpretation of the Establishment Clause of the Fir st Amendment. It allows much more government support for, or accommodation of, religion than the Wall of Separation interpretation A nd on matters of national security

PAGE 124

and counterterrorism policy the conservative working majority on the current Court support power as Commander in Chief. 5.3 | The Increased Power of the Courts: Going from Thi rd to First? T he judiciary is called the third branch of government f or two reasons. First, the judiciary is provided for in Article III of the Constitution S econd and more important, the legislat ive and executive branch es were intended to be more power ful than the judiciary. The judiciary w as intended to be the weakest of the three branch es of government. In Federalist No. 78 ), Al exander Hamilton described the judiciary as t government because the courts had neither the pow er of the purse (Congress controlled the budget) nor the power of the sword (the executive branch enforced the laws). The following describes ho But c ourts have always played an important role in American society. In Democracy In America Alexis de Tocqu e ville (1835) famously said, There is hardly a political question in the United States which does not sooner or later turn into a judicial Today, critics call the courts an imperial judiciary. 5.31 | The Early Years In the early years of the repub lic the Court initially lacked power or prestige. Early presid ents had a hard time finding people who were willing to serve on the Court because it was not considered an impor included travel to th e circuit courts and a time when frontier travel was very d ifficult The Supreme Court first met in February 1790 at the Merchants Exchange Building in New York City, which then was the national capital. When Philadelphia became the capital city later in 1790 t he Court followed Congress and the President there After Washington, D.C., became the capital in 1800 the Court occupied various spaces in the U.S. Capitol building u ntil 1935, when it moved into its own building. The Court acquired prestigious d u ring the Marshall C ourt Era. Chief Justice John Marshall Marbury v. Madison (1803) established the doctrine of judicial review. T he Marshall Court also ended the practice of each judge issuing his or her own opinion in a case and began the trad ition of having the Court announce a single decision for the Court. This change created the impression that there was one Court with one view of what the Constitution meant, rather than a Court that merely consisted of individuals with differing points of view. T authoritative body with special competence to interpret the Constitution when disputes arose over its meaning. But t he main reason for the expansion of the power of the courts is the power of ju dicial review.

PAGE 125

Statute of John Marshall in the foreground, shadowed, quotation from Marbury v. Madison (written by Marshall) engraved into the wall. United States Supreme Court Building. 5.3 2 | Judicial Review Judicial review is the power of courts to review the actions of government officials to determine whether they are constitutional. It is a power that all courts have, not just the Supreme Court, and it is a pow er to review the actions of any government official: laws passed by Congress; presidential actions or executive orders; regulations promulgated by administrative agencies; laws passed by state legislatures; actions of governors; county commission decisions ; school board policies; city regulations; and the rulings of lower courts. The Constitution does not explicitly grant the courts the power of j udicial review. Judicial review was established as an implied power of the courts in the landmark case Marbury v. Madison (1803), where the Court for the first time ruled that a law passed by Congress was unconstitutional. The case was a minor dispute. President John Adams signed a judicial appointmen t for William Marbury. His commission was signed but not delivered when a new President (Thomas Jefferson) took office. When the new administration did not give Marbury his appointment, Marbury used the Judiciary Act of 1789 to go to the Supreme Court as king for an order to deliver his commission as judge. Chief ruling in Marbury v. Madison used syllogistic reasoning to explain why it was logical to read the Constitution as implying that courts have the power to review laws and dec lare them unconstitutional if they conflicted with the Constitution. Syllogistic logic is a form of reasoning that allows inferring true Marshall structured the logica l argument for judicial review as follow s: [If] the Constitution is a law, [and if] the courts interpret the laws, [then] the courts interpret the Constitution. Marshall further reasoned that c ourt s have the power to declare a law unconstitutional: [If the] Constitution is the supreme law of the land, [and if] a law in this case the Judiciary Act of 1789 conflicts with the Constitution [then ] that law is unconstitutional. Judicial review to review and declare unconstitutional la ws passed by Congress, executive orders or other actions of the President, administrative

PAGE 126

regulations enacted by bureaucracies, lower court judges, laws passed by state legislatures, or the actions of state governors, county commissioners, city officials, and school board policies. Judges have used judicial review to declare unconstitutional a federal income tax law, presidential regulations of the econ omy, state laws requiring that b lack children be educated separate from white children in public schools, school board policies requiring the recitation of organized prayer in public schools, and laws making flag burning a crime. Some of the Founding Fathers, particularly Federalists such as Alexander Hamilton, accepted the notion of judicial review. In Fed eralist No. 78 Hamilton wrote: therefore belongs to them to ascertain its meaning, as well as the meaning of any particular act proceeding from the legislative body. If there should happen to be an irreconcilable variance between the two, that which has the superior obligation and validity ought, of course, to be preferred; or, in other words, the Constitution ought to be The Antifederalists (e.g., Brutus in Antifederalist #XV) feared and superior even to Congress. Nevertheless, judicial review has become a well established power of the courts. 5.33 | Limits on J udicial Power Does judicial review make the courts more powerful than the legislative and executive branches of governme nt because the courts can rule presidential and c ongressional actions unconstitutional? The courts do have the power to strike down p residential and congressional actions. Does this make the judiciary the most powerful, not the least powerful, branch of government? There are limits on judicial power. The courts cannot directly enforce their rulings. Judges rely on individuals or other government officials to enforce their rulings. And j udges cannot expect automatic compliance with their rulings. Opposition to desegregation of public schools after the 1954 Brown v. Board of Education was widespread. I n 1957 the Florida Legislature pas sed an Interposition Resolution that asserted that the U.S. Supreme Court did not have the authority to order states to desegregate public schools therefore Florida government official s did not have to comply with the Brown ruling. Interposition is a doctrine that asserts the power of a state to refuse to comply with a federal law or judicial decision that the state considers unconstitutional. ing organized prayer in public schools has also been mixed. And police officer compliance with Court rulings on search and seizure is not automatic. The courts depend on compliance by executive branch officials, such as school board members, teaching, an d police officers. 5. 34 | Judicial Restraint and Judicial Activism The legitimacy of judicial power is usually described in terms of two concepts of the appropriate rule for the judiciary: judicial restraint and judicial activism. Judicial restraint is defined as a belief that it is appropriate for courts to play a limited role in the government, that judges should be very hesitant to overturn decisions of the political branches of government, and that judges should wherever possible defer to legisla tive

PAGE 127

and executive actions. Judicial activism is defined as a belief that it is appropriate for courts to play a broad role in the government that judges should be willing to enforce their view of what the law means regardless of political opposition in the le gislative or executive branches. There are three main elements of judicial restraint. Deference to the Political Branches of Government. Judicial deference to legislative and executive actions is a hallmark of judicial restraint When judges are rel uctan t to overturn the decisions of the political branches of government they ar e exercising judicial restraint Judges who bend over backwards t o uphold government actions are exercising judicial restraint. Judicial activists are less deferential to the polit ical branches of government Activist judges are more willing to rule that the actions of go vernment officials whether the p resident, the Congress, lower court judges, the bureaucracy, or state government officials are unconstitutional. Uphold Precedent Precedent is a legal system where judges are expected to use past decisions as guides when dec iding issues that are before the court. Precedent means that judges should decide a case the same way that they have decided similar cases that have previously come before the court. When judges decide cases based on established precedent, they are exercising judicial restraint. committed to uphold precedent. T hey are more will ing to overturn precedents or create new ones that reflect changes in contemporary societal attitudes or values Activist judges are less bound by Only Legal Issues Courts are institutions that are des ig ned to settle legal disputes. Advocates of judicial restraint believe that courts should only decide legal questions, that courts should not become involved with political, economic, social, or moral issues One indicator of judicial restraint is w hen a co urt limit s its cases and rulings to legal dis putes It is not always clear, however, whether an issue is a legal or a political issue Cases that address campaigns, voting, and elections, for instance, involve both law and politics because voting is consid ered a right, rather than merely a political privilege. Judicial a ctivists are less concerned about getting the courts involved with cases or issues that affect politics, economics, or social issues. They are willing to issue rulings that affect politics see a bright dividing line between politics and law. 5. 35 | Ideology and Roles T he ab ove definitions of restraint and activism do not mention ideology even though restraint is commonly considered conservative and activism is commonly considered liberal. J udicial restraint and activism are not intrinsically conservative or liberal. For most of the history, its activism has been conservative T he Marshall Court was a conservative activist court. During the 19 30s the Court was a conservative activist court the period

PAGE 128

1937 1970 when activism was gener ally liberal Since then, the Court has once again become a primarily conservative activist Co urt. The Rehnquist Court used federalism and the separation of powers to strike down federal legislation such as the Violence Against Women Act the Gun Free School Zones Act and provisions of the Brady Handgun Control Act. The Rehnquist Court ruling in Bush v. Gore (2000) ensure d that George W. Bush became President despite receiving fewer votes than Al Gore. The Roberts Court has continued the trend toward conservative ac tivism by striking down campaign finance regulations Its rulings have most notably ignored established precedent to overturn existing campaign finance laws and to create a new individual right to keep and bear arms. 5.4 | Courts as Government Institutio ns A court can be defined as a government body designed for settling legal disputes according to law. In the U.S. courts have two primary functions: dispute resolution and law interpretation 5.41 | Dispute Resolution The dispute resolution function of c ourts is to settle disputes according to law. This is a universal function associated with courts. Courts provide a place and a method for peaceably settling the kinds of disputes or conflicts that inevitably arise in a society. These disputes or c onflicts could be settled in other ways, such as violence ( vendettas, feuds, d uels, fights, war, or vigilantism) or political power One justice problem with these methods of dispute resolution is that the physically strong or the more numerous, or the mo re politically powerful will generally prevail over the physically weak er, the less numerous, or the less politically power ful These alternative methods of dispute resolution tend to work according to the old maxim that Might M ak es R ight. The modern prefe rence for settling disputes peaceably according to law rather than violence or political power has made the dispute resolution function of courts a non controversial function because they are associated with justice Dispute resolution is the primary func tion of trial courts A trial is a fact finding process for determining who did what to whom. In a civil trial, the court might determine whether one individual (the respondent) did violate the terms of a contract to provide another individual (the plain treatment of a patient constituted medical malpractice, or whether a manufacturer violated product liability laws. In a criminal trial, the court might determine whether an individual (the defe ndant) did what the government (the prosec ution) has accused him of doing The dispute resolution function of courts is familiar to most people as a courtroom trial where the lawyers who represent the two sides in a case try to convince a neutral third p arty (usually a jury) that they are right. In one sense, a trial is nothing more than a decision making process, a set of rules for making a decision. But a trial is a distinctive decision making process because it relies so heavily on very elaborate proce dural rules. The rules of evidence (what physical or testimonial evidence can and cannot be introduced) are very complicated. The rules of evidence are important because

PAGE 129

the decision (the trial verdict) is supposed to be based solely on the evidence introd uced at trial. Trials have captured the political and cultural imagination so much so that famous trials are an important part of the political culture of many countries including the U.S. 5.42 | Law Interpretation The second function of courts is law interpre tation. Courts decide what the law means when the re is a disagreement about the meaning of words or when two provisions of law conflict. C violation of the Fourth Ame rch and ourts dec ide whether imposing the death penalty on children or mentally handicapped persons with an I.Q. below 70 violates the Eighth Amendment prohibition Courts interpret the meaning of due process of law. Law interpretation is primarily the function of appellate courts Appeals courts do not conduct trials to determine facts; they decide the correct interpretation of the law when a party appeals th e decision of a trial court. Law interpretation is a much more controversial function than dispute resolution because it involves judges making decides whether police prac tices related to search and seizure or questioning suspects are consistent with the Fourth Amendment warrant requirements or the Fifth Amendment due process of law. It makes legal policy when it decides whether the death penalty constitutes cruel or unusua l punishment. It makes policy when it decides whether laws restricting abortion violate the right to privacy. It makes policy when it reads the makes policy when it dec ides whether the traditional definition of marriage as the union of one man and one woman deprives gays and lesbians of the Equal Protection of the laws. The law interpretation function is often political and often controversial because it gets the courts involved with making policy. The dispute resolution function is not very controversial. There is broad public support for the idea of government creating courts to peaceably settle conflicts according to law. Law interpretation is the controversial func tion of courts because it gets courts involved with policy making. 5.43 | The U.S. Court System s The U.S. has a federal system of government that consists of one national government and fifty state governmen ts. T he U.S. has two court systems: the federal court system and the state court systems. But it can also be said that the U.S. has 51 courts systems and 51 systems of law because each sta te has substantial autonomy to create its own court system and its own system of criminal and civil laws.

PAGE 130

5. 44 | The Organization of the Federal Court System The main federal court s ystem consists of one Supreme Court, 13 Courts of Appeals, and 94 District Courts. These are the Article III courts with general jurisdiction over all criminal and civil cases ra ises questions federal law. But they are not the only federal courts. There also are special or legislative courts that Congress has created with jurisdiction over special kinds of cases: the U.S. Court of Fed eral Claims ; the U.S. Court of Appeals for V eterans Claims ; the Foreign I ntelligence Surveillance Courts ; and Immigration Courts 5. 45 | The 50 State Court Syst em s The U.S. system of federalism gives each state substantive power to establish its own court systems and its own system of civil and criminal laws. Therefore the U.S. does not have two court systems (one federal and one state). It has fifty one syst ems: one federal and 50 separate state court systems. The Florida Supreme C ourt administers or manages the entire state court s ystem. This i nclude s budgeting and allocation of judicia l resources. It also hear s appeals from death penalty sentences, case s in which a defendant receives capital punishment. 5. 46 | The Supreme Court of the United States T he Supreme Court (SCOTUS) is the highest court in the United States. It is also the head of the judicial branch of the federal government and as s uch has administrative and legal responsibilities for managing the entire federal court system. The Supreme Court consists of nine Justices: the Chief Justice and eight Associate Justices. The Justices are nominated by the President and confirmed with the removed only by resignation, or by impeachment and subsequent conviction. Find Out Abou t It! The National Center for State Courts provides a great deal of valuable information about courts in the 50 states. Check out the court system in your state.

PAGE 131

The judicial Power of the United States, shall be vest ed in one supreme Court, and in such inferior Courts as the Congress may from time to time ordain and establish. The Judges, both of the supreme and inferior Courts, shall hold their Offices during good Behavior, and shall, at stated Times, receive for the ir Services a Compensation which shall not be diminished during their Continuance in Office. The Supreme Court is the only court established by the Con stitution. All other federal courts are created by Congress. Article III of the Constitution provides that: 5.47 | Supreme Court Jurisdiction T he term j urisdiction jurisdiction is provi ded in the Constitution, statutes, and case law precedents. Constitutional Article III T he Court has both original and appellate jurisdiction, but the Court is primarily an hearing a case for the first time, as a kind o affecting Ambassadors, othe r public Ministers and Consuls, and those in which a State sha ll be states are parties in order to remove the case from the geographic jurisdiction of a state. They believe d it served the interests of justice to have a legal dispute between two states be decided by a federal court that was not physically located in a state. In all other cases, the Court has appellate jurisdiction; that is, it reviews the decisions of lower c ourts. S tatu tory Congress also has statutory authority to determ ine the jurisdiction of federal courts Landmark Judicial Legislation o the organization and jurisdiction of the federal courts from the Judiciary Act of 1789 to the creation of the federal circuit in 1982. Congress has attempted to prohibit the courts from hearing c ontroversial issues by passing court stripping laws that pr ohibit federal courts from hearing cases involving flag burning or school prayer for instance. The Detainee Treatment Act limited the jurisdiction of courts to hear cases involving habeas corpus application of a Guantanamo Bay detainee. 1 The Constitution s pecifies that the Supreme Court may exercise original jurisdiction in cases affecting ambassadors and other diplomats, and in cases in which a state is a party. In all other cases, however, the Supreme Court has only appellate jurisdiction. The Supreme Cou rt considers cases based on its original jurisdiction very rarely; almost all cases are brought to the Supreme Court on appeal. In practice, the only original jurisdiction cases heard by the Court are disputes between two or more states. T he Judiciary Act of 1789 gave the Supreme Court jurisdiction over appeals from state courts. Article III of the U.S. Constitution gives federal courts jurisdiction over all arising under federal law. This means that federal courts do not have jurisdiction to hear hypothetical disputes or to give advisory opinions about whether a proposed law would be constitutional.

PAGE 132

Case Law Precedents The Supreme Court also has authority to determine the jurisdiction of the federal courts. Its case law rulings and its administrative rules describe the kinds of cases or issues that federal court s petition for certiorari should be granted only for is to resolve lower court conflict s. A lower court conflict occurs when different courts int erpret the same law differently An example of lower court conflict is the rulings upholding and striking down the Affordable Care Act Other compelling reasons to accept an appeal are to correct a clear departure from judicial procedures or to address an impo rtant question of law. A writ of certiorari is a request to a higher court to review the decision of a lower court. The C ourt receives around 7,000 petitions each year, but issues only 75 or so decisions each year, so the Court has an elaborate screening process for determining which writs will be accepted. After the Court grants the writ of certiorari, the parties file writ ten briefs and the case is scheduled for oral argument. If the parties consent and the Court approves, interested individuals or organizations may file amicus curiae or friend of the court briefs which provide the Court with additional information about th e issues presented in a case. 5.48 | The Supreme Court Term The Supreme Court meets in the United States Supreme Court building in Washington D.C. Its annual term starts on the first Monday in October and finishes sometime during the following June or July. Each t erm consists of alternating two week intervals. During interval, the court is recessed to consider and write opinions on cases it has heard. The Cour t holds two week oral argument sessions each month from October through April. Each side has half an hour to present its argument but the Justices often interrupt them as you can tell when listening to the Oyez audio recordings. After oral argument, the Justices schedule conferences to deliberate and then take a preliminary vote. Cases are decided by majority vote of the Justices. The most senior opi nions, circulate among the Justices until the Court is prepared to announce the ruling. 2 5.5 | The Selection of Federal Judges Article II grants the p resident power to nominate federal judges, whose appointments must be confirmed by the Senate. The in dividual Justices and the Court as an institution are political, but judicial politics is different than the politics of members of Congress or the p resident. The politics is less overt; partisan politics i s less apparent. But individual Justices and the C ourt are described in political terms primarily as conservative, moderate, or liberal rather than as members of a political party. Media accounts of the Court refer to the right wing, the left wing, and the swing or moderate Justices. Presidents nominate individ uals who share their ideology and usually their party identification. Senators also consider party and ideology when considering whether to ratify a nominee. Presidents generally get Justices who vote the way they were expected

PAGE 133

to vote but there are some prominent exceptions to the rule that p resident s get what they expected from their nominees: Oliver Wendell Holmes disappointed President Theodore Roosevelt; Chief Justice Earl Warren disappointed President Eisenhower who expected Warren to be a tra ditional conservative but he presided over the most liberal Court in the Court's history; Justice Harry Blackmun became more liberal tha n President Nixon expected him to be; and H. W. Bush expected. The Constitution does not provide any qualifications for federal judges. A Supreme Court Justice does not even have to be a lawyer. The President may nominate anyone to serve and the Senate can reject a nominee for any reason. But mos t members of the Court have been graduates of prestigious law schools and in recent years presidents have nominated individuals with prior judicial experience. 5. 5 1 | Demographics I n addition to political factors such as party and ideology, and legal fa ctors such as legal training, legal scholars examine demographic factors such as race, ethnicity, age, gender, and religion. The Supreme Court is not a representative institution. For the first 180 ale Protestant. In 1967 Thur good Marshall became the first b lack member of the Court. In 1981, Sandra Day male member of the Court. I t is interesting that the first black Justice was a liberal who was replaced by a conservati ve black Justice (Clarence Thomas) and the first female Justice wa s a conservative who was succeeded by a liberal (Ruth Bader Ginsburg) Justice Brandeis became the first Jewish Justice in 1916. In 2006 Samuel Alito became the fifth sitting Catholic Just ice, which gave the Court a Catholic majority. This is significant because the conservative majorities on the Burger, Rehnquist, and Roberts Courts have changed First Amendment freedom of religion law by relying less on the Wall of Separation doctrine when deciding church and state cases, and relying more on the Accommodation doctrine, which allows much more government accommodation of and support for religion. 5.5 2 | Senate Hearings As the courts have played a broader role in our system of government and politics, the confirmation process has attracted more attention from interest groups, the media, political p arties, and the general public. The nomination of Supreme Court Justices is now an opportunity to participate in the political process The Senate Judicia ry Committee conducts hearings where nominees are questioned to determine their suitability. At the close of confirmation hearings, the Committee votes on whether the nomination should go to the full Senate with a positive, negative or neutral repor t. The practice of a judicial nominee being questioned by the Senate Judiciary Committee began in the 1920s as efforts by the nominees to respond to critics or to answer specific concerns. The modern Senate practice of questioning nominees on their

PAGE 134

judic ial views began in the 1950s, after the Supreme Court had become a controversial institution after the Brown v. Board of Education decision and other controversial rulings. After the Senate Judiciary Committee hearings and vote, the whole Senate considers the nominee. A simple majority vote is required to confirm or to reject a nominee. Although the Senate can reject a nominee for any reason, even reasons not related to professional qualifications, it is by tradition that a vote against a nominee is for c ause. It is assumed against the nominee. And so rejections are relatively rare. The most recent rejection of a nominee by vote of the full Senate came in 1987, when the Senate refused to confirm Robert Bork. A President who thinks that his nominee has little chance of being confirmed is likely to withdraw the nomination. 5.5 3 | Vacancies T A Justice may be removed by impeachment and conviction by congre ssional vote. In 1805, Justice Samuel Chase became the only Justice to have been impeached by the House he was acquitted by the Senate e partisan political struggles between the Federalists and Jeffersonian Republicans. As a result, impeachment gained a bad reputation as a partisan measure to inappropriately control the Court rather than as a legitimate way to hold judges accountable as public officials. Court vacancies do not occur regularly. There are times when retirement, death, or resignations produce vacancies in fairly quick succession. In the early 1970s, for example, Hugo Black and John Marshall Harlan II retired within a week o f each other because of health problems. There have been other lengthy periods when there have been no Court vacancies. Eleven years passed between 1994 and retirement in 2005. Only four p residents have be en unable to appoint a Justice: William H. Harrison, Zachary Taylor, Andrew Johnson, and Jimmy Carter. T he Chief Justice can give retired Supreme Court Justices temporary assignments to sit with U.S. Courts of Appeals. These assignments are similar to th e senior status, the semi retired status of other federal court judges. Justices typically plan their retirements so that a president who shares their ideological and partisan ties will appoi nt their successor 5.5 4 | Republicans Playing Hardball Justic e Antonin Scalia died on February 13, 2016. Shortly after his death, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R American people should have a voice in the selection of their next Supreme Court Justice. Therefor March 16, President Obama nominated Merrick Garland, the Chief Judge of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia, to fill the vacancy. The Republican majority in the Sena te refused to even consider the Garland nomination. The R epublican strategy was to stone wall the nomination. Majority Leader walk Obama nomination game w ould over with the 2016 elections The refusal to act on the

PAGE 135

Supreme Court nomination and the slowing of the confirmation process were a political gamble that a Republican wo uld win the presidency. The gamb le paid off. During the campaign, Donald Trump consulted with two very prominent conservative organizations, The Federalist Society and the Heritage Foundation, to create a list of people from whom he promised to select judicial nominees if elected. The campaign strategy worked: it became one of the r easons for conservatives and republicans to vote for Trump because the names on the list were supporters of gun rights and critics of the constitutional right to abortion. President Trump nominated and the Senate confirmed Neil Gor such to the Supreme Court President Trump described Gorsuch as a judge in the Scalia model: a lega l conservative who believed that O riginalism i s the appropriate method of deciding cases. The strategy to run out the clock greatly reduced the number of Obama appointees to the fede ral courts. Compare the judicial appointments for the followi ng presidents who faced a Senate controlled by the other party during their last two years in office : Table 5.541: Number of Judges Appointed During Last Two Years of Term with Opposition Party Controlling Senate Number of Judges Appointed President During Last Two Years With Opposition Party Reagan 83 Clinton 72 George W. Bush 68 Obama 20 The Republican slow walk strategy resulted in more than 1 20 judicial vacancies when Presi dent Trump took office, which was a great opportunity for President Trump to have a significant, long term impact on legal policy. President Obama appointed a total of 329 Article III judges. Article II judges are those that are nominated by the presid ent and confirmed by the Senate. Table 5.542 : Total Number of Obama Judicial Appointments to Article III Courts Obama Appointments 2 Supreme Court Justices 55 Court of Appeals Judges 268 District Court Judges 4 U.S. Cour t of International Trade Judges 329 Total In addition to these Article III courts, President Obama appointed judges to Article I ( or legislative courts ) : Tax Court ; Court of Appeals for Veterans Claims; Court of Military Commission Review; Court of Federal Claims; and Court of Appeals for the Armed Forces He also appointed Immigration Court Judges.

PAGE 136

5 .5 5 | The Size of the Supreme Court The Constitution does not specify the size of the Supreme Court. Congress determines the number of Justices. The Judiciary Act of 1789 set the number of Justices at six. President Wa shington appointed six Justices but the first session of the Supreme Court in January 1790 was adjourned because of a lack of a quorum. The size of the Court was expanded to seven membe rs in 1807, nine in 1837, and ten in 1863. In Judicial Circuits Act of 1866 provided that the next three Court vacancies would not be filled. The Act was passed to deny President Johnson the opportunity to appoint Justices. The Circuit Judges Act of 1869 s et the number at nine again where it has remained ever since. In February of 1937 President Franklin D. Roosevelt proposed the Judiciary Reorganization Bill to expand the Court by allowing an additional Justice for every sitting Justice who reached the age of seventy but did not retire (up to a maximum Court size of fifteen). The Bill failed because members of Congress saw it as a court packing plan. Roosevelt was in office so long that was able to appoint eight Justices and promote one Associate Justice t o Chief Justice. The New Supreme Court (2017) 5. 6 | Deciding Cases: Is it Law or Politics? One of the most frequently asked questions about the courts is whet her judges decide cases based on law or politics This question goes to the heart of the l egitimacy problem. Supreme Court has almost complete control over the cases that it hears. The Supreme Court controls its docket It decides only 80 90 of the approximately 10,000 cases it is

PAGE 137

asked to decide each year. This means that the Court decides which issues to decide and which issues not to decide. This is, in a sense, political power. The role direct interest. Legal scholars identify a variety of influences or factors that explain judicial decisions. But there are two general models of judicial decision making: a legal mo del and a political (or extra legal) model. The legal model of deciding cases explains judicial decisions as based on legal factors (the law and the facts of the case) The political model explains decisions as based on behavioral factors (demographics s uch as race, gender, religion, ethnicity, age), attitudinal factors (political, ideological, or partisan), or public opinion. T he legal methods include the plain meaning of the words, the intentions of the framers, and precedent. The most political metho d is interpretation, where judges decide cases based on their own beliefs about what the law is o r should be, or contemporary societ al expectations of justice 5.6 1 | T he Methods of Deciding Cases The U.S. is a system of government based on the rule of law. Judges are expected to decide cases based on the written law: the Constitution, statutes, and administrative law. The following is the logical order in which judges decide cases, beginning with the most legal method (the plain meaning of the words) an d ending with the most political method (interpretation). 5. 6 2 | Plain M eaning of the Words A judge reads the law to determine whether the case can be decided by the plain meaning of the words. Sometimes the mean ing of the law is plain. T he Constitution requires that a President be 35 years old and a native born citizen. But some provisions of the Constitutio n are ambiguous. T deprived of life, liberty, or property, wit he Eighth cruel a nd unusual punishments phrases at a plain meaning of the words. Judges must use other methods to determine the meaning of these general provisions of the Constitution. 1. Plain Meaning of Words (What the law says) 2. Intentions of Framers (What the words mean) 3. Precedent (Stare decisis) 4. Inter pretation Method Most Legal Most Political

PAGE 138

Statutes can present a similar problem. The Communication Decency Act of messages to a per son under age 18. It is easy to determine whether a person who was sent a message was under age 18; it is virtually impossible to define with any pre cision herefore judges use the second method: they try to determine what the p eople who wrote the law intended the words to mean 5.6 3 | Intentions of the Framers Judges have several ways to determine the intention of the framers of the law. In order to determine what a provision of the Constitution was intended to mean judge s examine the Records of the Constitutional Convention, the writings or letters of the delegates to the Constitutional Convention of 1787, the Federalist Papers (a series of essays by James Madison, Alexander Hamilton, and John Jay supporting the adoption of the new Constitution), or the writings of the Anti federalists (authors who opposed the ratification of the new constitution). In order to determine the meaning of the words in a constitutional amendment, judge examine the Congressional Record for evidenc e of the intentions of the framers. The congressional debates surrounding the adoption of the 13th, 14th, and 15th Amendments, for example, can help understand what these three post Civil War Amendments were intended to mean 5. 6 4 | Precedent The U.S. l egal system is based on precedent or stare decisis Stare decisis is Latin for decide a current issue the way a previous issue was decided. Although precedent may se em like a legalistic way to decide cases, it is actually based on a common sense expectation of justice: an expectation that an individual will be treated the way other similarly situated individuals were treated. In this sense, precedent is a basic eleme nt of fairness. Precedent is a system where the past guides the present. But courts cannot always decide a case by looking backward at how other courts decided a question or legal issue. Sometimes a judge may think it is inappropriate to decide a curre nt question the same way it was decided in the past. Attitudes toward equality and the treatment of women for example may have changed. Or attitudes toward corporal punishment may have changed. Rigidly adhering to precedent does not readily allow for l egal change. And sometimes courts are presented with new issues for which there is no clearly established precedent. Advances in science and technology, for instance, presented the courts with new issues such as patenting new life forms created in the lab oratory or the property rights to discoveries from the Human Genome Project. When the plain meaning of the words, the intentions of the framers, and precedent do not determine the outcome of a case, then judges sometimes turn to another method: interpretat ion. 5. 6 5 | Interpretation I nterpretation is defined as a judge deciding a case based on 1) her or his own understanding of what the law should mean; or 2) modern societal expectations of what

PAGE 139

the law sh ould mean. Determining the meaning of the Eighth Amendment prohibition it mean what people considered cruel and unusual punishment in the 18th Century? Or should judges refer to the standards of modern or civilized s ociety when determining what punishments the Eighth Amendment prohibits? Interpretation is controversial because it gives judges power to decide what the law means. This is why interpretation is called political decision making, legislating from the bench, or judicial activism. Judicial restraint usually means judicial deference to the other branches of government, upholding precedent, and deciding only legal (not economic, social, or political) issues. Interpretation raises the power problem with the cour ts. In a democracy, the legitimacy of judicial interpretation of the laws is controversial. 5.6 6 | Two Models of Decision Making The following flow charts depict two models of legal decision making: the Classical or Legal Model and the Legal Realist (or Political) Model. Which do you think describes how judges and jurors decide cases? Which do you think describes how judges and jurors should decide cases? The Classical or Legal Model The Legal Realist (or Political) Model The Law The Facts of a Case The Verdict (or Sentence) The Law Attitudes Values Ideology Political Party The Facts Of a Case The Verdict (or Sentence)

PAGE 140

134|Chapter 5: The Courts 5.67 | Three Models of Legal Systems The methods that judges use to decide cases and the role that juries play in the administration of justice, reflect different beliefs about the relationship between the political system and the legal system. A Responsive Legal System is one where the legal system is almost completely responsive to politics so that law and politics are basically the same thing. At the other end of the spectrum, an Autonomous Legal System is one where law and politics are almost completely se parate: politics does not affect law. The Politico-Legal System is one where legal institutions are separate from political institutions but isolated from political institut ions—for example, politicians select judges but they have lifetime tenur e and cannot be removed exce pt for cause. Politics often involves debates about the merits of an issue AND debates about whether the issue should be decided by politics or by law, by the legal system (courts) or by the political system. Responsive Legal System Politico-Legal System Autonomous Legal System 5.68 | The Crime Control Model of Justice and The Due Process Model of Justice One useful way to understand liberal and cons ervative thinking about crime policy is the two models of justice described by Herbert Packer The Limits of the Criminal Sanction (1968). The models describe two ways of thinking about how best to achieve or administer justice. The two models represent the ends of a spectrum or a range of views not two categories. Liberals and conser vatives tend to locate themselves toward one or the other value in the following five sets of paired values related to thinking about justice. Four of the pairs are familiar. The Individual Rights v. Government Power pair is the familiar civil liberties conflict between individual freedom and government power. Think about it! Should judges make policy? What does Justice Antonin Scalia say about reading the law? hour/bb/law/july-dec 12/scalia_08-09.html Politics and Law Law Politics Law Politics

PAGE 141

Rehabilitation v. Punishment reflects the preference for criminal sentencing policy that emphasizes rehabilitation or punishment. Sentencing law looks very different depending on which value is emphasized. The Justice with Law v. Justice without Law pair reflects describes the difference between thinking that law (e.g., elaborate rules of evidence and procedure) is the best way to achieve justice and thinking that jus tice is best achieved without law (e.g., executive discretion rather). Legal Autonomy v. Responsive Law describe s legal systems that are relatively separate from the political system or fairly responsive to it. In responsive legal systems, sheriffs, prose cutors, and judges are elected officials who are held politically accountable rather than legally accountable. The fifth pair of values Law and Order Due Process (Liberal) M odel Crime Control (Conservative) Model Law Order Individual Rights Government Powers Justice with Law Justice without Law Rehabilitation Punishment Legal Autonomy: Responsive Law: 5.6 9 | Popular Legal Culture Most Americans have fairly strong opinions about crime. Where does the general public get information about the legal system? Some people have direct personal experience : they are arrested and tried for a felony for example or they have sue d someone or they have been sued. S ome people have serve d on juries. P eople also get indirect information from family, friends, and colleagues. The media are also an important source of public thinking about crime. The media effe ct applies to the news media and legal fiction Trials trials of the century Fictional TV judges are familiar figures in the public imagination: ; Judge Judy ; Judge Joe Brown; Judge Mathis; Judge Animal Court Police procedurals are staples of television programming. Th e media frame crime stories in terms of the crime control and due process models of justice. 5.7 | Jury Justice The relationship between law and politics is co mplicated in the U.S. because of political c ulture (democratic theory); legal culture ( the str ong commitment to popular justice as the will of the people); and c onstitutionalism (limits on popular justice)

PAGE 142

5.7 1 | The Jury as a Political Institution The founders intended juries to function as a political institution The jury was intended to be part of the elaborate system of institut ional checks and balances. Juries were co mposed of lay people who could check government power. The Trial of John Peter Zenger (1735 ) established the tradition of jurors refusing to convict a defendant despite the ju The Declaration of Independence consists of a list of charge s accusing the King of violating the rights of colonists including the right to trial by jury. Article III, Section 2 of the Constitution, t he Sixth Amendment and t he S eventh Amendment provide for the right to trial by jury in criminal and civil cases. In Democracy in America political institution, and it must be regarded in this light in order to be duly ap the culture of rights and responsibilities. Individual jurors are also political in the sense that their attitude s and values influence decision making. T his is why so much attention is paid to the demographics of a jury its racial, ethnic, gender, age, income, religion, and other demographic composition. Juror selection is an extremely important stage of the legal process because empirical evidence of dec ision making indicates that demographic and attitudinal factors influence decisions. This is why jury consulting has become a profession. It is also one of the reasons why the Black Lives Matter movement put police accountability for the use of force on th e agendas of the national government and local government. 5.7 2 | Trials as Fact finding processes A trial is a fact finding process with elaborate procedural rules governing the kinds of evidence that can be considered The U.S. uses th e adversarial s ystem of justice. Each side the two adversaries p resents its side of the story to a neutral third party decision maker judge or jury. The adversarial system is based on the belief that the best way to is to have each s ide tell its story to a neutral third party which then determines which set of facts is most believable. The burden of proof in a criminal trial is proving that the accused did what they were accused of. There is a lower burden of proof in a civil trial: Determining the facts can be hard. In Courts on Trial: Myth and Reality in American Justi ce Judge Jerome Frank explains that fact finding is hard because acts are This seems an astonishing statement because it means that the question whether a defendant is guilty of murder is a guess. The fact is that a person was killed; th e guess is whether the killing was murder. Why is it so hard for jurors to determine what happened after a lengthy trial where both sides have presented evidence and made arguments? Why is it so hard to determine who did what to whom, or why they did it? There are several reasons. % of criminal cases are settled by plea bargains.

PAGE 143

The adversarial process. The adversarial process itself may contribute to the difficulty of determining who is telling the truth. Each side in a trial has an incentive to exaggerate its version of what ha ppened rather than to tell the truth, each attorney has an incentive to portray their client as a regular Mother Theresa and the opponent as a r egular Ted Bundy. The prosecution and the defense may hire expert witnesses who are paid to testify in support o f their side. After listening to conflicting/competing expert witnesses, a jury is left to decide what happened. Is the adversarial system the best way to design a fact finding process? Many other countries do not use the adversarial system. Most European countries, for example, use the inquisitorial system: judges play an active role in investigating, questioning, and determining what happened rather than just presiding over a trial where the two lawyers tell their sides of the story. Eyewitness testimon y. Even one of the most compelling types of testimony eyewitness testimony is notoriously faulty. And research indicates that p olice line ups have structural flaws that produce false positive identifications that result in wrongful convictions. Human ps ychology. The study of how people make decisions indicat es that fact finding is intertwined with value j udgments. Jurors tend to accept as fact evidence that supports their beliefs. This is confirmation bias. In criminal trials, jurors believe or give cr edibility to witnesses that supp ort their predisposition to support the police or the accused. That is, jurors use the crime control or due process model of justice to frame the question of guilt or innocence. In civil cases, confirmation bias means that j urors who think that people need to assume more personal responsibility for their injuries and jurors who think that people need to be compensated for their injuries will accept evidence that supports their predisposition and discount evidence that chall enges their predisposi tion The concept of cognitive dissonance helps explain juror decisions. Cognitive dissonance occurs when a person faces ideas or information or evidence that conflict with their strongly held belief s The conflict/contradiction creat es discomfort and is unsettling. Logically, one might expect that a rational person would adjust their beliefs to fit the facts/evidence But the evidence indicates that this is not always what happens. When faced with cognitive dissonance, people often co ntort the facts, interpret the facts, or construct the facts to fit into (confirm or conform to) their belief system. This means that jurors affirm their own group identity (including ideology) when confronted with a different identity. This produces bias in the administration of justice What do these aspects of human psycholog evidence presented at trial? How does a juror weigh the testimony of a defendant, a character witness, a child who testifies, an eyewitness, or an expert? These psychological questions are central to the story line s and theme of legal fiction, including the classic film 12 Angry Men (1957) and many television police proc edurals.

PAGE 144

5.7 3 | Demographics: You think who you are? The belief that juries are political institutions and the belief that legal facts are guesses means that the composition of the jury is central to the administration of justice! What you think about t he facts of a case involving the use of deadly force, for example, depends to a great extent on who you are This is why scientific or social scientific jury selection (jury consulting) has grown as a profession. 5.7 4 | Race In the early decades of the 20 th Century, the U.S. Supreme Court began to intervene in state and local criminal justice to remedy racial discrimination in the administration of justice. This included the problem all white juries. The Scottsboro Boys (1931 1937). The story of the Scottsboro Boys case is also told in the PBS article Click on the link for defense counsel Samue l Liebowitz to get a sense of the difference between the world of a northern, Jewish New York lawyer and the s outhern political culture of the day. Why did the U.S. Supreme Court intervene in the local po litical/legal culture? The book and film To Kill a Mockingbird which are legal fiction based loosely on the Scottsboro Boys case, expose the problem of racial discrimination in the administration of local jury justice. Smith v. Texas 311 U.S. 128, 130 (1940). The Court mentioned the need to make the jury to a representative jury. The Men Accused of Murdering Emmett Till (1955). The white sheriffs did not seem worried about being accused of a crime because they believed the local political legal system would not convict them. R epresentation, plur alism, and diversity have become important factors in determining whether political decisions are legitimate. They have also become important factors determining the legitimacy of legal decisions. At one time, laws stole prohibited wome n f rom serving on j uries. Today, it is unconstitutional to exclude women from jury duty. The representative ideal does not mean that juries must have the same number of women and men; it simply means that the jury pool must not systematically exclude or be biased against wom en. The jury pool must include a r cross The original ideal of trial by a jury of peers did not mean trial by an impartial jury. In fact, it meant trial by a part ial jury. A jury of peers was partial in the sense that the ju rors would be familiar with the community its values, and maybe even the defendant and the victim Th Professionals run the criminal justice system: the police; the prosecutors; the judges; and the l awyers. Jurors provide the lay perspective on the administration of justice. Juries do have a different perspective than judges: jurors do justice while judges do law.

PAGE 145

5.7 5 | Trials as Morality Plays Trials are not just fact finding processes T rials are also morality plays In a morality play, the characters represent values that are in dramatic conflict: good versus evil ; heroes versus villains; freedom versus order; law versus violence; and even law versus justice. These are the themes of t he dramatic conflicts in the famous trials of Socrates, Jesus, Peter Zenger, John Brown, Timothy McVeigh, and O.J. Simpson or any of the other more contemporary Famous Trial s These dramatic conflicts explain why some trials become media spectacles that attract national attention as the trial of the century, decade, or year. Fictional trials also serve as morality plays that teach us about law and justice. Legal fiction is s uch a universally popular form of fiction that it can be considered a form of world literature. 5.8 | Summary All countries have courts. In the U.S. courts decide legal disputes and interpret the laws. Interpretation is often controversial because it me ans that judges are deciding what the law means in ways that are often considered judicial policymaking or legislating from the bench. The legitimacy of judicial policymaking is questionable in a democracy where laws are supposed to be made by the elected representatives of the people. As judicial power has expanded over time, the legitima cy of judicial power has become even more contentious. The controversy is at root a controversy about the appropriate relationship between politics and law, between the po litical system and the legal system. The chapter focused on the role of the courts in the administration of justice, but it also described some aspects of jury justice because the jury is an i mportant institution in the administration of justice. 5. 9 | Add itional Resources 5.9 1 | Internet Resources Information about the Supreme Court is available at Information about the federal court system is available at and the Federal Judicial Center Information about t he organization and functions of the federal court system, including a court locator to find the federal c ourts in your area or information about serving as a juror, is available at Think About It! What should b e the goal of jury selection? The voir dire police officers fatally shoot black men? What about cases where civilians claim that

PAGE 146

T he full text and summaries of Supreme Court opinions, a s well as audio recordings of the oral arguments before t he U.S. Supreme Court are available at the Oyez Project: L andmark Supreme Court cases are available at A gallery of f amous trial s ( e.g., Socrates, Galileo, the Salem Witch Trials, John Peter Zenger, and t he Oklahoma City Bomber) are avai lable at htt :// V ideos of the Justices explaining their views on how they see their individual job as ion in their own words are available at the C SPAN Web site: http://supremecourt.c Information about the 50 state court systems is available at The National Center for State Co urts: death row, a virtual tour of a prison cell, or other information about convicted offenders on the death row roster is available at the My Florida Web site (click Government, Executive Bran ch, Department of Corrections): The link to death row fact sheets is Additional information abo ut the Supreme Court is available at an d http://www.pb Demographic information about the Supreme Court Justices is available at 5.8 2 | In the Library Ball, Ho ward. 2004. Supreme Court and the Intimate Lives of Americans: Birth, Sex, Marriage, Childrearing, and Death New York University Pre ss Bugliosi, Vincent et. al. 2001. The Betrayal of America: How the Supreme Court Undermined Our Constitution and Chose Ou r President. Breyer, Stephen. 2016. The Court and the World: American Law and the New Global Realities Knopf. Carmon, Irin, and Shana Knizhnik. 2015. Notorious RBG: The Life and Times of Ruth Bader Ginsburg Dey Street Books. Cohen, Adam. 2016. Imbeciles: The Supreme Court, American Eugenics, and the Sterilization of Carrie Buck Penguin Press. Cooper, Philip. 1999 Battles on the Bench: Conflict Inside the Supreme Court University Press o f Kansas Dworkin, Ronald (E d). 2002. Badly Flawed Election: Debating Bush v. Gore, the Supreme Court, America n Democracy The New Press

PAGE 147

Frank, Jerome. 1967. Courts on Trial: Myth and Reality in American Justi ce. New York: Athenium. Gottlieb, Stephen. 2016 Unfit for Democracy: The Roberts Court an d the Breakdown of American Politics New York University Press. Gregory, Leland H. 1998. Presumed Ignorant! Over 400 Cases of Legal Looniness, Daffy Defendants, and Bloopers from the Bench Bantam Books Hall Kermit (E d). 2000. Conscience and Belief: The Supreme Court and Religion Garland Publishers Hammond Thomas H. Chris W. Bonneau, and Reginald S. Sheehan. 2005. Strategic Behavior and Policy Choice On The U.S. Supreme Court Stanford University Press Hansford Thomas G. and James F., II Spriggs. 2 006. The Politics of Precedent on the U.S. Supreme Court Princeton University Press Hitchcock James and Robert P. George (E d). 2004. The Supreme Court and Religion in American Life: From Higher Law to Sectarian Scruples (New Forum Books Series), Vol. 2. Princeton University Press Lazarus Edward 1998. Closed Chambers: The First Eyewitness Account of the Epic Struggles Inside the Supreme Court Times Books Lipkin ,, Robert 2000. Constitutional Revolutions: Pragmatism and the Role of Judicial Review in American Constitutionalism Duke University Press Lopeman Charles S. 1999. The Activist Advocate: Policy Making in State Supreme Courts Praeger McCloskey Robert and Sanford Levinson. 2000. T he American Supreme Court Third Edition. University of Chic ago Press Noonan John T. 2002 . Univ ersity of California Press Peppers Todd C. 2006. Courtiers of the Marble Palace: The Rise and Influence of the Supreme Court Law Cl erk Stanford U niversity Press Raskin Jamin B. 2004. Overruling Democracy: The Supreme Court Versus the American People Taylor and Francis, Inc. Rehnquist William H. 2001. The Supreme Court Knopf Schwartz Herman 2002. The Rehnq uist Court Hill and Wang. Starr Ke nneth 2002. First Among Equals: The Supreme Court in American Life Warner Toobin Jeffery 2008. The Nine: Inside the Secret World of the Supreme Court Anchor Yarbrough Tinsley 2001. The Rehnquist Court and the Constitution Oxford University Press

PAGE 148

| 1. Discuss the importance of the Marshall Court. 2. Explain stare decisis and the role it plays in the American judicia l system. What did Wil liam Rehnquist mean when he called stare decisis a cornerstone of our legal system it has less power in constitut with him? 3. Describe the racial, ethnic, and gender makeup of the federal court s. Does it matter that some groups are underrepresented and other groups are overrepresented? Why? 4. Discuss the criteria for nominating Supreme Court justices and the process by which the nominees are confirmed. How has the process changed in recent years? 5. Discuss the advantages and disadvantages of judicial activism and judicial restraint. 6. Compare and contrast the attitudinal, behavioral, and strategic models of judicial decision making. Explain which of these models most accurately captures how judges ma ke their decisions. 7. What factors affect the implementation of court rulings? Should courts be given additional power to implement decisions? 1 treatment act of 2005 white.php 2 ule and docket are available at Legitimacy Judicial restraint Judicial activism Judicial review D ispute resolution L aw interpretation P recedent Jury Justice Jury of Peers

PAGE 149

Chapter Six FEDERALISM CHAPTER 6: Federalism

PAGE 150

144 | Chapter 6: Federalism 6.0 | Why Federalism? Wh at is federalism? Wh y have a federal system of government ? How does the U.S. system of federalism work today? These are some of the questions that will be answ ered in this chapter The chapter Defines federalism. E xplains the logic of the U.S. system of federalism D escribes how the U.S. system of federalism works today, and Examines the power problem with federalism. The general public does not think about federalism very much and therefore does not have much to say one way o r another about federalism itself .1 The average voter has stronger opinions about criminal justice policy, education, abortion, immigration or national security policy than opinions about federalism Federalism tends to be considered a technical matter of interest to government officials or political insiders more than the general public. Americans do, however, have strong opinions about big government and opinions about big government are often directly related to federalism because big government is a euphemism for the federal government of Washington. In fact, political opinion about public polices related to crime education ab ortion, the environment, health care, and immigration is usually related to opinions about federalism because they include opinions about whether the policies should be state or national government policies Federalism is a two tiered system of gover nment in which power is divided between a national (or central) government and the subnational units (states, provinces, or regional governments). Therefore federalism is a geographic division of power. In the U.S., power is distributed between the national government and state governments. The number of states has grown from the original 13 to 50 today with the addition of Hawaii in 1959. In other countries with federal syst ems (e.g., Argentina, Australia, Canada, Germany, and India) the regional governments are called provinces. Constitutional federalism means that neither the national nor the state governments can abolish one another because both levels of government are th e creatures of the constitution. A state such Alabama or Vermont or Wyoming is not a creature of the national government or a mere local administrative unit of the national government. In the U.S. system of federalism, both the national and state governments are sovereign political entities. Federal ism is based on the concept of dual sovereignty: both the national and state governments have sovereignty Sovereignty is defined as having the ultimate or highest authority. Is it possible to have two sovereigns with authority over the same geographic area and people? The idea of dual sovereigns does seem to conflict with the concept of sovereignty as ultimate government authority. In fact, this is the source of the power problem with federalism. The image belo w depicts political fighting over federalism in Australia, which is analogous to the 50 states fighting with one other in the U.S. The power problem wi th federal systems of government is the need to strike the right balance of power between the state gov ernments and the federal government. The Constitution provides for a federal system but with a few notable exceptions such as the power to coin money and the power to regulate interstate commerce, which a re exclusively federal powers, the Constitution doe s not specify what powers each has. As a

PAGE 151

Chapter 6: Federalism | 145 result, American politics has historically included debates about which level of government should do what and whether the federal government is getting too big Finding the right balance of powers is both a legal (or constitutional) matter and a political matter It is about law and politics. In fact, federalism is a good example of the challenge of adapting a Constitution that is more than 200 year s old to modern times the challenge of maintaining continuity with the federal system established by the Constitution while accommodating major economic, political, technological, scientific, and social changes F ederalism is not the most common type o f political system in the world. Most of the worlds approximately 190 countries have unitary systems of government (that is one unit) not federal systems. So why does the U.S. have a federal system? The answer to this question is provided in the very origins of the word federalis m The word federalism comes from the Latin foedus or covenant where individuals or groups agree to join a political union with a government body to coordinate their interests and represent them. In the American political experience, the colonists had strong attachments to their colonial governments, just as people now have attachments to their state governments. The colonists were wary of giving too much power to a central government. F ederalism was a way for government power to be divided between the states and a national government as part of the sy stem of checks and balances. Federalism serves three main purposes First, it is part of the system of institutional checks and balances that was designed to control government power by dividing it between two levels of government. Second, creates a polit ical system where interests can be represented in the national government. Members of Congress represent states and districts within states. Third, federalism creates a governance system where the states can serve as laboratories of experimentatio n. If o ne or more states try a policy (e.g., education reform or health care reform) that works, the successful policy experiment can be adopted by other states. I f one states policy experiment fails th en the costs are limited to one state unlike what happens when the national government adopts a policy that fails "The question of the relation of the States to the Federal Government is the cardinal question of our constitutional system. At every turn of our national development, we have been brought face to face with it, and no definition either of statesmen or of judges has ever quieted or decided it." Woodrow Wilson 28th President of the United States

PAGE 152

146 | Chapter 6: Federalism 6.1 | Comparing Systems of Government One way to better understand federalism is to compare it with other types of government. There are three basic types of systems of government: unitary systems, confederal systems, and federal systems. 6.11 | Unitary System s A unitary system is, as the term suggests, a political system with one level of government. P ower concentrated in one central government The central government has sovereignty or the highest governing authority. The central government may create lo cal or regional units to help govern but these units are creatures of the national or unitary government. The y are created by the national government and they can be abolished by t he national government and the national government also can determine how much power the local units have because the local units do not have sovereignty In France, for example, the national government can abolish local governments or change their bounda ries. This kind of national control over state governments does not exist in the United States, because the Constitution created a federal system where both the federal (national) government and the state governments have independent constitutional status The Constitution provides for both a national government and state governments. T he American states however, are unitary systems The states can create, alter, or abolish local governments such as cities counties school districts port authorities, as well as the other kinds of special governments that states create. Canada has a federal system that divides power between the fede ral parliament and provincial governments. Under the Constitution Act, Section 91 of the Canadian Constitution provides for federal legislative authority and Section 92 provides for provincial powers. One difference between Canadian and U.S. federalism is that the Canadian system provides that the provincial governments have specifically delegated powers and all the national government retains all residual powers. In the U.S. the national government has specifically delegated powers and the states retain all residual powers. All federal systems have political c onflict s over which level of governme nt has power over which areas of policy. Areas of Canadian con flict include legislation with respect to regulation of the economy, taxation, and natural resources. The actual distribution of powers evolves over time. The Australian system of federalism resembles the U.S. system in terms of the division of power between the national and state governments but Australia has a parliamentary system rather than the separation of powers. 6.12 | Confede r al Systems A confederal system ( or a confederation ) is a political system where the constituent units ( the states provinces, or regional governments ) are more powerful than the central (or national ) government Power is decentralized. T he central government is comparatively weak with fewer power s and governing responsibilities than the units

PAGE 153

Chapter 6: Federalism | 147 Articles of Confederation To all to whom these Presents shall come, we the undersigned Delegates of the States affixed to our Names send greeting. Articles of Confederation and perpetual Union between the states of New Hampshire, Massachusettsbay Rhode Island and Providence Plantations, Connecticut, New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Delaware, Maryland, Virginia, North Carolina, South Carolina and Georgia. I. The Stile of this Confederacy shall be The United States of America. II. Each state retains its sovereignty, freedom, and independence, and every power, jurisd iction, and right, which is not by this Confederation expressly delegated to the United States, in Congress assembled. III. The said States hereby severally enter into a firm league of friendship with each other, for their common defense, the security of their liberties, and their mutual and general welfare, binding themselves to assist each other, against all force offered to, or attacks made upon them, or any of them, on account of religion, sovereignty, trade, or any other pretense whatever. X. [Authoriz es a committee of the states to carry out the powers of Congress when Congress is in recess.] 6.13 | American F ederal ism The Founders decided to create a federal system rather than a unitary or confederal system because of their political experience. T he Revolutionary War was fought against the British monarchy a unitary system with power concentrated in the national government. And the first U.S. form of government, the Articles of Confederation, was a confederal system that was widely viewed as flawed because it left the national government with too little power to address the problems facing the new nation. They considered federalism a form of government that was between the extreme centralization of a unitary system and the extreme decentralization of a confederation. 6.2 | The Articles of Confederation The first U.S. government after the colonial era was a confederation : The Articles of Confederation. Congress adopted The Articles of Confederation in 1777 and they became effect ive upon ratification by the states in 1781. The following are some of the most important provisions of the Articles of Confederation The above language from the Articles of Confederation describes a union where most power resides with the constituent units, the states. It specifically r efers to the political system as a union of states that join together in a league of friendship. It stipulates that each state retains its sovereignty, freedom, and independence. Article X authorizes a committee of the states to act for Congress when Congress is in recess. The language of

PAGE 154

148 | Chapter 6: Federalism the Articles suggests that the each state that joined the Confederation remained free to decide whether to leave the Confederation. Slavery and t he nature of the union, specifically whether states could leave it, wer e the two main causes of the Civil War 6.21 | The Second Confederation Eleven southern s tates believed that secession was one of the powers retained by the states as sovereign and independent entities in the federal system created b y the Constitution. The Constitution created a federal system, but it did not define whether states could leave the union Political divorce was not mentioned. The N orth argued that the union was permanent that once a stat e decided to join the United Sta tes the marriage was permanent. The South argued that the states retained the power to decide to leave the union. T heir view of federalism left more power in the hands of the states which were united as these United States , a term that reflects their belief that federalism left considerable power with the states. The Confederate States of America (1861 1865), or the Confederacy was the government formed by eleven southern states. The United States of America (The Union) believed that secession was illegal and refused to recogni ze the Confederacy as a legal political entity. The North considered the South a region in rebellion. The end of the Civil War in the spring of 1865 began a decade long process known as Reconstruction This second civil war involved extensive efforts to exert federal control over the states of the confederacy. P olitical resistance against federal authority was quite strong, and t he struggle for the civil rights of newly freed slaves and Black citizens continued into the 20th Century as part of the civil rights movement. Determining the appropriate balance of power between the national and state governments remai ns a controversial political and legal issue. 6.3 | Federalism and t he Constitution The Constitution created a federal government with more power than the national government had under the Articles of C onfederation. S pecific powers were delegated to the national government. Article I, Section 8 of the Constitution lists powers granted to Congress The list of powers delegated to Congress i ncludes the power to coin money, tax, regulate interstate commerce, and raise and support armies. The Constitution also took some powers that had belonged to the states under the Articles of Confederation and gave them to the federal government The states were specifically prohibited from coining money and r egulating interstate commerce because the F ounders principally the Federalists believed that the national government had to direct the nations economic development. T he n there is the infamous Supremacy Clause, which provides that federal laws shall be the sup reme Law of the Land. The Supremacy Clause does not prohibit states from having laws that differ from the federal laws, but it does prohibit states from passing laws that conflict with federal laws. All other powers those not delegated to the national government, or prohibited to the state s were to be reserved (or left with) the states or the people. These are the reserved powers The reserved powers are dictated by the 10th Amendment : The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the states respectively, or to the people. The language of the 10th

PAGE 155

Chapter 6: Federalism | 149 Amendment reflects the fact that there was some uncertainty about exactly which powers the Constitution delegated to a stronger national government. The Anti F ederalists worried that the new Constitution betrayed the Revolutionary War cause of fighting against a monarchy or strong central government. T he Constitution did significantly increase the power of the national government. The 10th Amendment reassured the Anti f ederalists that the states retained their traditional powers. Figure 6.3: The State Powers, Federal Powers, and Shared Powers The first U.S. government after the colonial era was a confederation: The Articles of Confederation. Congress adopted The Articles of Confederation in 1777 and they became effective upon ratification by the states in 1781. The following a re some of the most issues related to federalism. The Constitution does not define or explain federalism because the states were pre existing units of government. The Constitution also did not define the nature of the union, whether the union was permanent or states could decide to secede. The Constitution also did not provide specifics on the actual division of power between the national and state governments. The balance of power between the national and state governments was left to be determined by politics and by subsequent generations In fact, the balance of power between the natio nal and state governments has historically been Federal Powers : Interstate Commerce; War; Foreign Affairs; Coining Money State Powers : Intrastate Commerce; Creating Local Governments Shared Powers : Taxation; Public Safety; Social Welfare; Economics; Education; Environment

PAGE 156

150 | Chapter 6: Federalism determined more by politic s than by the actual language of the Constitution. This is apparent in the way that federalism has been an important aspect of political events throughout the history of the United States Federalism was a central element of the Civil War; the Civil Rights movements; the expansion of the rights of suspects and prisoners in the criminal justice system; the controversy over the right to privacy as it applies to abortion policy; and mos t recently, federalism has been an underlying issue involving the controversy over the definition of marriage. 6.4 | Why Federalism? Federalism is part of the Madisonian system of institutional checks and balances. In Federalist No 51, Hamilton explained how dividing power between two levels of gover nment in a compound republic checked government power : In a single republic, all the power surrendered by the people is submitted to the administration of a single government; and the usurpations are guarded against by a division of the government into distinct and separate departments. In the compound republic of America, the power surrendered by the people is first divided between two distinct governments, and then the portion allotte d to each subdivided among distinct and separate departments. Hence a double security arises to the rights of the people. The different gove rnments will control each other at the same time that each will be controlled by itself. Hamilton was an ardent Federalist. He believed that one of the lessons of history was that threats to good public order came from a government that was too strong to hold government officials accountable and from government that was too weak to create or maintain good public order Hamilton believed that federalism solved some of the problems of a weak national government under the Articles of Confederation, weaknesses that were exposed by Shays Rebellion and other domestic disturbances by creating a stronger national government Federalists also supported a strong national government to direct economic development. In Federalist Number Nine Hamilton wrote: A FIRM Union will be of the utmost moment to the peace and l iberty of the States, as a barrier against domestic faction and insurrection. It is impossible to read the history of the petty republics of Greece and Italy without feeling sensations of horror and disgust at the distractions with which they were continua lly agitated, and at the rapid succession of revolutions by which they were kept in a state of perpetual vibration between the e xtremes of tyranny and

PAGE 157

Chapter 6: Federalism | 151 anarchy....[T he critics of republican gov ernment] have decried all free government as inconsistent with the order o f society The science of politics, however, like most other sciences, has received great improvement. The efficacy of various principles is now well understood, which were either not known at all, or imperfectly known to the ancients. The regul ar distribution of power into distinct departments; the introduction of legislative balances and checks; the institution of courts composed of judges holding their offices during good behavior; the representation of the people in the legislature by deputies of their own election: these are wholly new discoveries, or have made their principal progress towards perfection in modern times. Hamiltons call for a national government with enough power to create and maintain good public order a s well as to promote economic development stands in sharp contrast with the Antifederalists. The Anti federalists were a loosely organized group of individuals who advocated f or what would today be called states rights. They believed that the powers of the nationa l government should be limited and that the states should be the primary political unit within the American system of federalism. 6.5 | The Political Effect s of Federalism Federalism has two principal effects on government and polit ics. First, it creates a large number of governments. Second, complicates government and politics. 6.51 | The Surprisingly Large Number of Governments Although f ederalism is a two tiered system of government, the U.S. actually has a large number of governments : one national government; 50 state governments; and thousands of local governments Think About It! Do you agree with Hamiltons analysis of the threats to freedom in Federalist No.8, The Consequences of Hostilities Between the States?

PAGE 158

152 | Chapter 6: Federalism The Number of Governments in the United States Type Number Federal Government 1 States 50 Counties 3,043 Municipalities 19,372 Townships or Towns 16,629 School districts 13,726 Special Districts Mosquito Control Child Protective Services Port Authority Airport Beach Taxing Health Care F.I.N.D (Florida Inland Navigation District) TOTA L NUMBER OF GOVERNMENT UNITS : *Examples of Special Districts in Palm Beach County, Florida 34,683 87,504 Source: U.S. Department of Commerce, Statistical Abstract of the United States, 2003 (Washington, D.C.: U.S. Government Printing Office, 2003), 261 Think About It! Whats in a name? Does it matter whether a municipality is a city or a town? Yes, it does. Niagara Falls in Danger of Losing Status as City, Aid 3653935/niagara falls in danger of losingcity statusaid Act on it! One good thing about having a large number of governments is the increased access to government. Contact a local government official and ask a question about a public policy issue of interest to you.

PAGE 159

Chapter 6: Federalism | 153 6.52 | Complicated Government and Politics Federalism also complicates American government and politics. In unitary political systems, political debates focus on the substance of public policy. The debates focus on what public policy should be concerning foreign affairs, economics, crime, education, the environment, moral regulatory policy, or religion. All countries debate public policy on these controversial issues. In the U.S., federalism means that political debates are about what public policy should be and about who should be making public policy. We debate whether abortion should be legal, whether there a right to die, whether global warming exists and what public policy should be, whether the death penalty should be used for sentencing, whether organized prayer be allowed in public schools. We also debate w ho should make the policy whether it should be made by th e national government or state governments. F ederalism makes American politics doubly complicated: we debate what policy should be and who should make it. T he distribution of power between the nati onal and state governments has been part of many of the nations most important political developments: the Civil War; the Progressive Era ; the Gre at Depression of the 1930s; and the 20th Century Civil Rights movements. Federalism also inspired the modern conservative movement beginning in the latter 1960s as a backlash against the New Deal and Great Society expansions of national governm ent power Debates about federalism are debates about one aspect of the power problem : how much power to centralize in the national government and how much power to leave decentralized with the states. The Constitution does not solve the power problem in the sense that it does not specify, except for certain areas such as coining money and regulating interstate commerce, whether the national government or the state governments have power to act in an area of public policy. The federalism dimension of the power problem has been dynamic. The actual distribution of power between the national and state governments changes depending on conditions and circumstances. Crises usually result in centralization of power in the national government. Shays Rebellion, the Great Depression; World War II and the Cold War, and terrorist threats to national security were all crises that resulted in increased power for the national government. 6.6 | Federalism is Dynamic The balance of power between the national and state governments is dynamic It is always changing, with the balance sometimes tilting toward the national government and sometime s tilting t oward the states. But modern federalism does not work the way the Founders intended. The Founders created a political syst em where most gover nment power was left in the hands of the state s and t he national governments powers were limited. It was a statecentered system. Over time, however, the powers of the national government expanded, and expanded relative to the states. The following descr ibes the major historical changes in federalism.

PAGE 160

154 | Chapter 6: Federalism 6.61 | Dual Federalism The first era of federalism is described as dual federalism. Dual federalism is a theory of federalism that describes both the federal government and the state governments as co equ al sovereigns. Each is sovereign in its respective areas of policymaking. The Supreme Court endorsed this understanding of federalism in an early case Cooley v. Board of Port Wardens (1851). The question in this case was whether a state government could require that ships entering or leaving the Philadelphia harbor hire a local pilot. The Constitution gives the national government exclusive power to regulate commerce among the states The Philadelphia Port traffic involved more than one state, so it was interstate co mmerce. The Court developed the Cooley Doctrine to decide whether a matter was for local or nat ional regulation. According to the Cooley Doctrine, subjects that are in their nature national, or admit only of one uniform system, or plan of regulation, may justly be said to...require exclusive legislation by Congress. S ubjects that are not national and require local diversity of regulation are left to the states. The Cooley Doctrine assumes that the national and st ate governments have separate areas of responsibility. For example, the national government would have exclusive power over interstate commerce, national security, and foreign affairs, while the state governmen ts would have exclusive power over schools, law enforcement, and road building. The Cooley Doctrine still s erves as a guide for determining whether the national or state governments have power to regulate, but it does not provide specific answers to quest ions about whether something required a single, uniform system of regulation. In fact, as both the national and state governments shared responsibility over more areas of public policy, debates about highway speed limits, legal drinking ages, educational policy, the regulation of airports, and immigration issues have challenged the idea that each level of government is supreme in it respective field. 6.62 | Cooperative Federalism Cooperative federalism describes the national and state governments as shari ng powe r over areas of public policy. D ual federalism is an outdated concept in the sense that there are so few areas of public policy that are exclus ively either state or national, and so many areas of public policy where the federal government now acts For example, all levels of government are involved in education, economics, transportation, crime, and environmental policy. The t erm intergovernmental relations is useful for understanding how modern federalism works because it captures how the nationa l state, and local governments interact with one another to make and administer policy. One way to better understand the forces of change in the American political system is to examine economics. Economic changes have prompted the expansi on of the federal government The Industrial Revolution in the mid 19th Century fundamentally changed the American economy. The emergence of large national corporations created support for national government action to regulate these new centers of private power Durin g the Progressive Era (1890s until the World War I ) the national governm e nt began to regulate industries such as the railroads, steel, banking, and mining. The federal government also passed s ocial w elfare legislation including c hild labor laws and minimu m wage and max imum hour laws In fact, today the federal government redistributes resources from wealthier states to poorer states. In todays economy,

PAGE 161

Chapter 6: Federalism | 155 population mobility, the ability to relocate to states where the jobs are is an important economic indi cator. 6.63 | Expansion of Federal Power One measure of big government is the increased size and influence of the national government relative to the state governments. As the country changed from a local economy to a national economy, where businesses made and sold products and services across the co untry, public opinion shifted toward seeing the national government as the appropriate level of government to regulate business. During the 20th Century the power of the national government continued to expand rel ative to the states. T he modern era of the U.S. political system began in the 1930s partly in response to an economic crisis. The Great Depression created popular support for national government activism to remedy the problem of the econ omic depression. The trend toward centralizing power and responsibility for maintaining material prosperity has accelerated with the further development of a global economy, where businesses buy and sell in a world economy. A second source of expansion of federal power is civil rights. The Civil War Amendments the 13th, 14th, and 15th Amendments expanded the federal governments role in promoting racial equality. The Fourteenth Amendment which was ratified in 1868, prohibits a state from de nying to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws. This Amendme nt was intended to protect the rights of newly freed slaves from state law s that discriminated against them on account of race. The Fourteenth Amendment gave Congress power to pass appropriate legislation to enforce the provisions of the Amendment Congress used this power to pass civil rights legislation such as the Civil Rights Act of 1875 which outlawed racial discrimination in public accommodations. However, in the Civil Rights Cases (1883), the Supreme Court declared the law unconstitutional because it regulated private behavior the decisions of owners of hotels and restaurants not to serve Black customers According to the Court, the The PEW Research Centers Economic Mobility Project Provides data on economic mobility in the U.S. and in the states: visualizations/2012/economic mobility of the states

PAGE 162

156 | Chapter 6: Federalism Fourteenth Amendment, which was the basis for the Act, prohibited state action. T he Courts landmark ruling in Plessy v. Ferguson (1896) also limited the scope of federal civil rights laws by upho ld ing state laws that required racial segregation. The Civil Rights Movement of the 1950s and 1960s also relied on federal efforts to secure the civil rights of individuals who were the victims of discrimination. Some of these efforts relied on Congress, which passed laws such as the 1964 Civil Rights Act and the 1965 Voting Rights Act. Some of the efforts relied on the United States Supreme Court. Decisions in landmark cases such as Brown v. Board of Education (1954) made state actions supporting racial discrimination in public schools unconstitutional. In many parts of the country the use of federal power to enforce equal protection of the laws prompted strong resistance. The constitutional argument against this use of federal power to promote equality, particularly racial equality, was the states rights argument. Federalism was part of the background of the civil rights movement. The U.S. Supreme Court rulings in cases such as Brown v. Board of Education, in which they outlawed racial segregation in public schools, prompted a political backlash in the states, particularly in the South. The principal reason for the backlash was opposition to integration. However, there was also a strong states rights opposition to inte gration. States rights can be defined as a belief that a policy is the responsibility of a state government not the national or federal government. Florida was one of the southern states that cited states rights reasons for opposing cour t ordered desegregation. In 1957, the Florida Legislature passed an Interposition Resolution in response to Brown v. Board of Education. Interposition is a political doctrine that a state can interpose itself between the people of the state and the federal government when the federal government exceeds its authority. The Interposition Resolution declared that the U.S. Supreme Court exceeded its power when it declared racially segregated public schools unconstitutional. Advocates of states rights opposed the use of federal power to achieve greater racial equality in state politics, government, and society George Wallace is an important political figure in the states rights movemen t He was a precursor of the modern conservative movements criticism of big government by which he meant a federal government with the power to order states to change their laws regarding race relations. He is a good example of how thinking about federal ism is interwoven with thinking about civil rights in the U.S. Wallace was a forceful and articulate spokesperson for the conservative belief that the federal governments powers were limited to those specifically enumerated. He gave impassioned campaign speech es defending states rights against a civil rights movement that relied heavily on outside agitators to bring

PAGE 163

Chapter 6: Federalism | 157 about change. The outsiders were the federal government in general and the courts in particular. A third reason for the expansion of federal power is criminal justice policy. The development of a national economy made state borders less relevant for legitimate business and economic activity because goods were no longer made, marketed, and sold entire ly within one state. Illegitimate businesses were also organized nationally. Organized crime, in particular, did not operate exclusively within a single state. The rise of organized crime presented a challenge to law enforcement which was historically stat e and local law enforcement. The rise of nationally organized criminal enterprises provided one of the just ifications for the creation of the Federal Bu reau of Investigation (FBI). The FBI has jurisdiction across the country, unlike local law enforcement w hose juri sdiction (or legal authority) i s geographically limited Historically, criminal justice has been one of the areas of public policy reserved to the states under the U.S. system of federalism The rise of organized crime, the war on crime, and the war on drugs made crime and policing a national political issue to be addressed by the federal government. Congress responded by passing more and m ore anti crime legislation a trend toward federaliz i ng crime that continued throughout the 20th Century and into the 21st Century T hink about it! Why does the U.S. have a federal law enforcement agency? The FBI tells the story of its creation and expansion in A Brief History of the FBI. http :// us/history/brief history A fourth reason for the expansion of federal power is national security, national defense, and foreign policy. World War II and the Cold War increased the power of the national government. Threats to nationa l security have historically been considered the primary responsibility of the federal government. The war on terror has continued to shift power to the national government relative to the states. For instance, the federal government increasingly uses the resources and information on local governments to find and track terrorist suspects. T errorism is often an international threat its support networks, funding and training involve other countries and terrorists seek to move easily across national borders therefore the threat of terrorism typically increases the power to the federal government. Think About It! Listen to one of Gove rnor George Wallaces states rights speech against the civil rights movement: ure=endscreen&NR=1

PAGE 164

158 | Chapter 6: Federalism The economy, civil rights, national security, and crime are not the only reasons for the expansion of federal power. In environmental policy, Congress has passed m ajor legislation such as the Clean Air Act and the Clean Water Act and establish ed bureaucratic agencies the Environmental Protection Agency to implement the new federal environmental policies In educational policy, Congress passed the No Child Left Behi nd Act. The Act increased the federal governments role in an area of public policy that was traditionally left to the states. In health care, President Obama signed the Patient Protection and Affordable Health Care Act on March 23, 2010. Twenty eight stat es filed lawsu its claiming that parts of the Act, which critics called Obamacare, were unconstitutional because they exceeded the federal governments power. T he Supreme Court upheld most provisions of the Act, including the mandate that individuals buy he alth insurance or pay a penalty/tax, in National Federation of Independent Business v. Sebelius (2012), but ruled that state sovereignty protected the states from certain provisions of the law that required states to adopt certain health care policies or lose federal Medicaid funding. 6.7 | The Conservative Backlash: New Federalism Beginning in the latter 1960s, conservatives began criticizing the expansion of the federal government and the idea of cooperative federalism. Their criticism of big government included calls for returning some power to the states Their advocacy of states rights was intende d primarily as a check on the expansion of the national governments power in domestic affairs T he Nixon a dministration s policies to support returning some powers to the states were called New Federalism T he political support for New F ederalism was also reflected in changes in the Supreme Court s rulings The Court began to limit the powers of the federal government. F rom 1938 until 1995, the Court did not invalidate any federal statute on the grounds that the law exceeded Congress power under the Inte rstate Commerce Clause But in United States v. Lopez (1995), the Court ruled that some provisions of the Gun Free School Zones Act a federal law enacted in 1990 to curb gun violence exceeded Congresss commerce powers and infringed on the states reserved powers to provide safe schools. A conservative majority on the Rehnquis t Court issued a number of important rulings that enforce constitutional provisions that limit co ngressional power in fields of public policy where the states have power to act. These ruling s are based on the political conservative belief that federalism is a legal arrangement that protects the states and is part of the system of checks and balances that protects individual freedom. The challenge is to adapt a more than 200 year old system of federalism to a modern environment that has experienced a great deal of political, economic technological, and social change Take, for example, economic change. The U.S. e conomy has changed from local to state to national and now, with globalism, international trade. How does a global economy affect the distribution of power between Think about it! Do we still need states? In a global economy, are political boundaries such as states merely an additional business expense?

PAGE 165

Chapter 6: Federalism | 159 the national and state governments? How has the U.S. assumption of the role as the worlds policeman, the Cold War, and t he war on terror affected the distribution of power between the national and state governments? These economic and national security developments have increased federal power an increase that sometimes, but not always, means a decrease in state powers Federalism is one aspect of t he conservative backlash against the liberal centralization of power that occurred during the New Deal and Great Society eras The backlash ha s not been inspired by opposition to big government in ge neral Conservatives supported big government for national security purposes, getting tough o n crime, and moral regulatory purposes (e.g., sexual behavior, marriage, obscenity and indecency and the definition of marriage ) Even in economic policy, b usine ss groups with ties to conservative and Republican politics such as the U.S. Chamber of Commerce and the National Associatio n of Manufacturers lobbied for the passage of federal laws that explicitly preempt state tort laws Tort laws govern wrongful injury lawsuits such as product liability and medical malpractice litigation The states traditionally had primary responsibility for tort laws as part of their reserved powers. The tort reform movement, of which the Chamber of Commerce and the National Association of Manufacturers are prominent supporters, advocates taking cases ou t of the state cou rts and into th e federal courts This is evidence that liberal and conservative attitudes toward federalism tend to be strategic rather than principled A principled position is one that is taken regardless of whether it produces a prefe rred outcome. A strategic position is one that is taken because it produces a preferred outcome. L iberals tend to think that policies should be decided in the states when they think the state political systems will produce liberal policy outcomes. C onserv atives tend to think that policies should be decided in the states when they think the state political systems will produce conservative policy outcomes. If a liberal (or a conservative) thinks the federal government will produce a preferred policy outcome they are likely to think that the policy should be decided by the federal government rather than the states. 6.71 | Immigration Policy Immigration is one of the issues that illustrate the potential conflict between national and state policy. Controllin g undocumented immigrants is a pressing issue in some states particularly states bordering Mexico and states with large numbers of undocumented immigrants. The key constitutional doctrine for understanding whether states have the power to act in an area o r policy field is preemption Federal law can preempt or trump state law. The preemption doctrine is based on the Supremacy Clause Article VI of the Constitution, which provides that the Constitution, federal laws, and treaties shall be the supreme Law of the Land. The Supremacy Clause guarantees national union. When deciding whether a state law conflicts with a federal law the Co urt does a preemption analysis consisting of three questions. Did Congress expressly state that federal law preempted state law? Does the state law conflict with federal law? Has Congress so extensively regulated the area of policy to have occupied the field? If Congress has enacted a comprehensive and unified federal policy in a field then Congress has assumed responsibility for that field and left little or no room for state action. States can experiment with health care reform, education reform, and many other reforms in other areas of public policy.

PAGE 166

160 | Chapter 6: Federalism Immigration policy is a special case because it has national security implications. I llega l immigration became a political issue when some states thought the federal government was unwilling or unable to enforce immigration laws. S tate s adopted a variety of laws that were intended to discourage illegal entry and to discourage employment of illegal immigrants or undocumented aliens Arizona which shares a border with Mexico, is one such state. In 2010 it passed SB1070 an immigration con trol law that, among things, required Arizona police officers to determine the citizenship or immigration status of a person who was lawfully detained. SB1070 served as a model f or other states including Alabama, Georgia, Indiana, South Carolina, and Utah. The Arizona law was challenged on the grounds that it was preempted by federal law. In Arizona v. U.S. (2012), the Supreme Court upheld one provision of the law and struck down three pr ovisions. The stated purpose of SB1070 was to use state resources to help the federal government enforce its immigration laws. The law 1) required law enforcement officers to check the immigration status of persons who they have a reasonable suspicion a re in the country illegally ; 2) require d the warrantless arrest of individuals that law enforcement official have probable cause to believe h ave committed a crime for which the person could be deported; 3) made it a crime to not carry immigration papers in the state ; and 4) made it a crime for illegal immigrants to seek a job or to work in the state. The Court upheld provision number one but struck down the other three The Court explained that the federal government s broad power over immigration and alien status is based on 1) its enumerated power in Art I, Sect. 8 cl. 4 to establish an uniform Rule of Naturalization; 2) its inherent sovereign power to control and conduct foreign relations; and 3) the Supremacy clause. The fact that Congress has created a single sovereign responsible for maintaining a comprehensive and unified system to keep track of aliens within the nation limits state soverei gnty to legislate in a policy field that Congress has occupied The dissenting Justices argued that the states have their own inherent sovereignty and can legislate on immigration matters of great concern to them. Think About It! What should public policy regarding undocumented aliens be? Who should make the policy?

PAGE 167

Chapter 6: Federalism | 161 6.7 | How Do States Still Matter? 6.8 | Summary This chapter described federalism, explained the origins of the U.S. system of federa lism, and described its development over time. The division of powers between the national and state governments has been controversial throughout the nations history. Federalism has proven to be a dynamic form of government in the sense that the actual distribution of power between the national and state governments has varied a great deal over time. The Constitution provides for a federal system but, with the notable exception of foreign affairs and interstate commerce, it does not specify exactly what each level of government has power to do. As a result, the actual balance of power between the national and state governments changes. In this sense, federalism is dynamic. The federal governments power has increased, and it has increased relative to the state governments for a variety of reasons, including the development of a global economy. Because of the Rick Meyerowitz is an artist best known for his work for National Lampoon This is his interpretation of U.S. political cultural geography.

PAGE 168

162 | Chapter 6: Federalism central role federalism plays in the system of checks and balances, changes in federalism raise important questions about where to strike the right b alance between state and federal power. 6.9 | Additional Resources 6.91 | Internet Resources One valuable resource for information about the states is th e PEW Center On the States which describes and analyzes state policy trends, for example. See The Tenth Amendment Center provides a contemporary view on states rights : T he Urban Institutes publication Assessing the New Fe deralism is an informative look at the place for cities in the U.S. system of federalism: Publius: The Journal of Federalism is an academic journal dedicated to the investigation of issues related to federalism : The National Co uncil of State Legislators provides a variet y of information about state legislatures, including ideas about the relationship between the state and federal governments : 6.92 | In t he Library Berman, David. 2003. Local Governments and the States: Autonomy, Politics, and Policy ME Sharpe. Burgess, Michael. 2006. Comparative Federalism: Theory and Practice. Routledge Butler, Henry N. 1996. Using Federalism to Improve Environmental Policy American Enterprise Institute Press Cornell, Saul. 1999. The Other Founders: Anti Federalism and the Dissenting Tradition in America, 17881828. Universi ty of North Carolina Press Doernberg, Donald. 2005. Sovereign Immunity And/Or the Rule of Law: The New Federalism Caroli na Academic Press. Donahue, John. 1997. Disunited States Basic Books. Elkins, Stanley and Eric McKitrick. 1995. The Age of Federalism: The Early American Republic, 17881800. Oxford University Press. Gerston, Larry N. 2007. American Federalism: A Concis e Introduction. M.E. Sharpe. Karmis, Dimitrios. 2005. Theories of Federalism: A Reader London: Palgrave Macmillan.

PAGE 169

Chapter 6: Federalism | 163 TERMS: Federalism Unitary system Confederation Delegated powers Reserved powers The power problem Dual federalism Cooley Doctrine Cooperative federalism States rights I nterposition 6.93| Study Questions Why have a federal system of government? Discuss the allocation of federal and state powers Explain how the allocation of federal and state powers has changed over time. Describe four areas where federal powers have grown into areas traditionally reserved for the states. D iscuss the current state of federalism in the United States. What role did the civil rights movement play in the expansion of federal powers? How is federalism dynamic? Why did the Federalists believe that a strong federal government was necessary? Nagel, Robert F. 2002. The Implosion of American Federalis m Oxford University Press Noonan, Jr. John T. 2002. Narrowing the Nations Power : The Supreme Court Sides with the States University of California Press, 2002. Schrag, Peter. 1999. Paradise Lost: Californias Experience, Americas Future University of California Press. Tarr, G. Alan, Robert F. Williams, Josef Marko (E ds.). 2004. Federalism, Subnational Constitutions, and Minority Rights Praeger. Twight, Charlotte. 2002. Dependent on D.C.: The Rise of Federal Control over Ordinary Lives Palgrave. Zimmerman, Joseph. 2002. Interstate Cooperation: Compacts and Administrative Agreements Praeger 1 Larry N. Gerston. 2007. American Federalism: A Concise Introduction. New York: M.E. Sharpe, Inc., p.87.

PAGE 170

7.0 | The M edia and Democracy about the relationship between democracy and freedom of the press changes in the media communication landscape, and the power problem with the media specifically the problem of media bias. Freedom of the press is considered essen tial for democracy. Freedom House is a non governm ent organization that issues annual repo rt s on the state of global democracy. Its 2017 report on freedom in the world Populists and Autocrats: the Dual Threat to Global Democracy th consecutive year of decline in global s an important component of measure of how democratic a country is. The Rep ort explains that scores on freedom of expression are dete rmined by, among othe r things, the following factors:

PAGE 171

T he existence of a edia and other forms of cultural expression ; P rotection for s using social media platforms; M edia freedom to report on government corruption; and The existence of free and fair elections that provide candidates for office access to the media to communicate with the electorate 7.1 | The Media Roles In the U.S., t he media have four main roles. The economic role is to provide consumers with goods and services. In this sense, the media are just like any other for profit c ompanies in the business sector : some make cars or household appliance like toasters ; some create intellectual property like films or television programming ; some provide legal, financial, or medical services; all offer their products to the public for pur chase But the media are a special kind of business. The press is the only business that is given constitutional protection. The First Amendment g uarantees freedom of the press because of the belief that democracy self government requires a n informed and e ducated citi zenry Th educative role The media are expected to provide information about public affairs and current events so that voters can make good political decisions. Reporters report politics. The television and radio broadcast media are even required by law to perform this educative role as one of the conditions for the government to issue broadcast licenses. The media also play a watchdog role The institutional media are part of the system of checks and balances. The media coverage of public affairs includes investigat ive reporting on government affairs The mass media also play a socialization role Their news and public affairs programming and their entertainment programming shape the way me dia consumers think about politics and government This is why television is watched so on the psychosocial development of children and youth; how family values are portrayed; how religion is portrayed; how the criminal justice system is portrayed; and the portrayal of wars and threats to national security. decide whether we should have a government without newspapers or newspapers without a government, I should not hesitate a moment to prefer the Thomas Jefferson nothing at all is better educated than the man who reads nothing but newspapers. The press is the toxin of Thomas Jefferson government which believes it is doing right allow itself to be criticized. It would not allow opposition by l ethal weapons. Ideas are much more fatal Nikolai Lenin (1920) and I am not going to take this UBS Evening News Anchor Howard Beale in the film Network (USA 1976)

PAGE 172

7.2 | The Power Problem with the Media : Bias Mass c ommunication scholars have developed framing theory Framing refers to the context that the media provide for the information that they provide or the topic. T he media effect is central to the power problem with the media The power problem with the media is bias. The solution is not free press because a free press is not necessaril y a fair press. Determining the media effect is important because the media play such a large and growing role in American life. The media are integrated into American society in the sense that they occupy a significant share of an individual The media are an important sector of the American economy. The media are an important source of information about and analysis of politics The media also report on govern ment The media are frequently charged with bias. The media have bias es. One media bias is economic: the pursuit of profits. Most media are private, for profit corporations whose business model depends on profitability to be successful. They make money by providing entertainment and information (news) programming that the publi c and advertisers will pay for. Therefore, the economic role is the primary function of most media and the educative watchdog, and socialization roles are secondary. A second media bias is ideological. This is the most frequent charge of media bias and t he media are most frequently charged with having a liberal progressive, or left wing bias This is reflected in the promotion of values such as equality, tolerance, and pluralism or diversity. A third bias is the bias toward action and conflict and drama. Stories about nothing happening are not compelling and therefore do not attract eyeballs, ears, or money. The action bias is reflected in the slogan that when it comes to news The conflict and drama bias is reflected in negative political campaign coverage but also feel good news stories about individuals overcoming hardship or kittens being rescued from trees. A fourth bias is partisanship. Media partisanship has changed a great deal over time. During the founding era, t he press was not just political; it was an overtly partisan press. Handbills and flyers and papers were distributed to convince readers to support candidates, government officials, and political parties. Over time, however, political culture changed with t he development of journalism as a profession. The media kept their distance from political part ies partly because an overtly partisan medi a seemed to conflict with the American belief in the free market of ideas from which the public could choose. Professi onalism, technology changes in mass communications law have changed the way we communicate but claims of media bias have remained fairly constant There are, however, periods of heightened concern about bias. The emergence of large corporations in the ra ilroad, banking, manufacturing, and oil sectors of the economy resulted in Progressive Era support for big government to act as a countervailing force to big business. T he institutional press was also assigned an investigative or watchdog role to report on both big business role in the system of institutional checks and balances. T echnological developments are changing this role Technology has increased opportunities for unfiltered political communica tion. Compared to the mass media, the new social media provide greater opportunities for unfiltered communication between the public, candidates for office, and

PAGE 173

government officials. The media mediate less than they used to. This technological changed has diminished t New technologies have enabled film and television producers to target a niche audience with edgier or more ideological programming rather than offering middle of the road programming that appeals to the large st national audience. This is related to a third change. Although t he mainstream media and professional journalism have b een l ess overtly committed to specific movements or political parties th an when the country was founded, t his is changing as advocacy journalism enters the media mainstream. Conservatives and Republicans have been supporting economic deregulation of the broadcast media since the 1980s when the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) abolished the F airness Doct rine. Since then the FCC has allowed more concentrations of corporate media ownership in local media markets. Most recently, the FCC has begun deregulating the Internet by ending net neutrality rules an d privacy rule that prohibited I nternet service provid ers (ISPs) from selling an individual The se professional, technological, and legal changes have resulted in more i deological and partisan perspectives in coverage of public affairs Fox News is a company that is closely aligned with the Republican Party. The Sinclair Group is closely aligned with conservative perspectives on public affairs, and and satellite television network MSNBC presents a liberal perspective or framing of public affairs. Taken together, th ese profession al technological and legal developments make the power problem even more central to understanding the media effect on politics and government. One of the politically interesting developments in television business is the emergence of ideological and part isan television networks and media companies. Fox News and the Sinclair Broadcast Group are competitors, but they both are right leaning companies. Fox News is the established company. Roger Ailes, the former head of Fox News, realized that there was a la rge audience of conservatives and Republicans who wanted more ideological (i.e., conservative) and partisan (i.e., Republican) news. He built the network into an extremely successful political business model. Sinclair has 72 local TV stations and plans to add 42 more by acquiring Tribune Media. Sinclair requires its local stations to air its conservative content such as Terrorism Alert Desk updates and criticism of Democrats. Fox News is best understood as partisan rather than ideological because it consis tentl y supports Republican positions rather than conserva tive views or principles. This is evident in how the network frames budget deficits and presidential power. Budget deficits, and an imperial president are framed as problems when a Democrat is in the White House but not when a Republican is in the White House. D uring the Obama administration a recurring theme of Fox News stories was the threat of an imperial president and a weak president who compromised national security. Fox ended this media frame w hen President Trump was i naugurated. The coverage of the Russia Trump scandal also reveals partisanship rather than ideology. Its coverage frames the story as Democratic hysteria rather than whether Russia was u ndermining democracy and U.S. natio nal security. 7. 21 | A Love Hate Relationship T he media may be essen tial for democracy but Americans do not have a love affair with the press. The relationship with the press is more of a love hate relationship. Which of

PAGE 174

the two Thomas Jefferson quotes about the press do you think was made before he became president and which do you think was made after he became president? A ttitudes t oward the press do seem to depend on whether a person is in office or not. When Donald Trump Tweeted that elements of the media he was running a familiar play in the playbook of conservative s and Republican s. 1 T he Ni xon administration had strained relations with the press. In the latter 1960s, Presid ent Nixon and Vice president Spiro Agnew attacked the Buchana n still delights in charging the mainstream media with bias. C onservative organizations such as Human Events still echo these complaints about media bias. After the 2008 presidential election, a senior adviser for John McCain, the Republican presidential candidate, said that th e New York Times is today not by any standard a journalistic organization 7.2 2 | The F ounding Era Freedom of the press played an important role in the founding of the American republic The Trial of John Peter Zenger accountable. In 1735, Zenger, the editor and publisher of a new spaper called The New York Weekly Journal was arrested for sedition and libel for publishing article s that criticized William Cosby the governor of New York. The outcome of the case strengthened the important concepts in American political culture: The first concept is that trial by jury is an important check on government power; the second concept is that the media are an important check on government power The First Amendment provides that ess shall make no law.... abri dging the This special status is why the press is a reference to the fact that the press is a political institution like C ongress, the president, and the judicia ry The early press focused on scandals and salacious s tories in order to sell papers The early press which was the papers were very cheap, was both political and partisan. A paper was identified with a parti cular point of view: it openly and explicitly and strongly either supported or opposed a political part y; it took strong stands on political issue s candidates, or government officials. Neither the reading public nor public officials expect ed a newspaper to s trive for objectivity or neutrality One of the insights that made Fox News so successful was the realization that there was a large conservative market for more opinion and less reporting. Its marketing slogan, B alanced slyly references ob jectivity

PAGE 175

7.23 | L ibel Laws Despite the absolutist language of the First Amendment prohibiting Congress from passing any law restricting freedom of speech or press the First Amendment has never been interpreted to m ean people can sa y or write whatever they want I n the early days of the republic, t he free press was not even expected to be a fair press I nflue ntial or prominent individuals and government officials who were upset by newspaper stories about them could sue for defamation. Libel an d slander are false spoken or written statements that injure a person T he Alien and Sedition Acts of 1798 made it a crime (seditious libel) to publish false or scandalous statements that tend ed to br ing government into disrepute. The Federalist Party was the majority in Congress. Members of the F ederalist Party did not like what Thomas Jefferson and other a nti fed eralists were saying about them, so they passed the Acts. The Sedition A ct was repealed w hen Jefferson became presiden t and the Democratic Republican P arty became th e dominant political party The Acts are evidence that American political culture supporting a press that was free to criticize government officials was accompanie d by criticism of the press for not being fair. 7.24 | Commercial Media In the 1830s the partisan press changed to a commercial press with the emergence of came to be called the penny press. Advances in p rinting technology allowed n ewspapers to be produced at a far cheaper rate (one cent rather than 6 cents ). The reduced cost of producing newspapers made news profitable Papers made money by printing sensationalized accounts of crimes and disasters and scandals. This was yellow journalism a pejorat ive reference to j ournalism that features scandal mongering, sensationalism, jingoism or other unprofessional practices and coverage s New York World and s New York Journal produced sensational stories about rising tensions in Cuba which was a Spanish colony. When the U.S. ship The Maine exploded in Havana harbor Hearst an d Pulitzer blamed the Spani sh and urged military retaliation. The Spanish American war is consider ed t he first press driven war.

PAGE 176

7.25 | Professional Press T he development of a professional press began around 1900 when Joseph Pulitzer started a school of jo urnalism at Columbia University. Journalism schools trained journal ists to be objective, to separate facts from of opinion and to avoid biased coverage of public affairs The idea of an objective press was based on a belief that facts were distinct from v alues: objective facts va lues ; objective journalists should segregate facts and opinions/values 2 This professional ethic encouraged j ournalists to consider the reporter separate from the news they reported and take pride in presenting the news (the facts) as objective ly or neutrally as possible. The ideal of an objective professional press contributed to the belief that the insti tutional press should assume a watchdog role investigatin g and pu blicizing wrongdoing in business and government The New York Times investigative reporting on T he Pentagon Papers in 1971 and the Washington Post investigation reporting on the Watergate Scandal in 1972 are two prominent examples of the press watchdogging the government. The investigate reporting sharpened already famous press hostility Listen to the following audio recording of a December 14, 1972 conversation between President Nixon and Henry Kissinger, his Secret ary of St advice about press relations after discussing how to handle pres s coverage of the Vietnam War reveal about his attitudes toward the press?

PAGE 177

7.3 | The M ass New, and Social Media The term m ass media refers to media that are specifically designed to reach a large (that is, mass) audience such as the entire population of a nation or state. The term was coined in the 1920s with the developme nt of nationwide radio networks and mass circulation newspapers and magazines. The classic example s of mass media are the three television networks ABC, CBS, and NBC before the emergence of cable television n etworks (CNN and ESPN began in the late 1970s) and the Internet. The programming of the three broadcast television networks was clearly intended to appeal to a national audience. The broadcast networks and the major newspapers (e.g., The New York Times Washington Post Chicago Tribune and Los Angeles Times ) are sometimes ainstream media. Conservative critics of the media adapted this term by labeling the liberal mainstream media the lamestream media Government officials, politicians, and the general public have been quite critical of the power of the mass media. In the 1976 film Network t he fi ctional character Howard Beale is the evening news anchor for the UBS network His famo us, award winning rant during a television broadcast resonated with the public. Beale told viewers to go to a window open it, and shout m not going to take it anymore! st voiced public frustration with big media in an era when three broadcast networks ABC, CBS, and NBC dominated the airwaves. T he prolifer ation of media outlets ended worries about the power problem and media b ias. Think About It! Nixon says to Kissinger: enemy. The press is the enemy. The establishment is the enemy. The professors are the enemy. The professors are the enemy. Write that on the blackboard 100 times. And http://www.y

PAGE 178

Although it seems a paradox, the media are now both more consolidated (in terms of ownership) and more fragmented ( in terms of the t ypes of media). I n 1940, 83% of newspapers were independently owne d. Now less than 20% of newspapers are not a part of a chain or media conglomerate. But there are now more ways to get information: 24 hour cable and satellite news programs and the I nternet. The increase in the number of outlets, and the fragmentation of the media, enable consumers to seek out sources that reinforce their views. 7.31 | The S ocial Media Developments in communication technology have changed the media landscape Social media present alternatives to the traditional mass media (radio, television, newspapers and magazines). The term social media describes a broad range of Web based devices for sharing information. The social media allow for more user generated content so the distinction between producers and consumers is dimini shed. This blur s the distinction between prof essional and amateur journalism It also erodes the traditional mass media role as one of the I n a mass society of 300 million people, for example, the institutional press mediated bet ween big government and the individual citizen. The effects of the social media revolution are just being assessed. As with all revolutions, there are positives and negatives. The expanded control over distribution of information is a positive development but one that also includes concerns about the changed nature of political communications. The new forms of media have had a major impact on the way people get information and the way campaigns communicate with the electorate. A survey by the Pew Center for Internet & American Life 3 found that nearly three quarters of (74%) of internet users (55% of the general population) went online in 2008 to get involved in the

PAGE 179

political process or to get news and information about the election. 45% of internet users use d the internet to watch a video related to the campaign and a third forwarded political content to others. These fin dings explain why campaigns increasingly rely on the new media to reach people 7 .32 | The End of Institutional Press? The social media contributed to long term d ecli nes in newspaper subscriptions The trend raised serious questions about the future of newspapers. In The Report on the State of the News Media in 2007, Arthur Ochs Sulzberge r Jr, the publisher and chairman of The New York Times Company, responded to questions about the impact of technological changes on print journalism He sa id, printing The Times in five years, and you know what? I don 4 This is a surpr ising statement for a newspaper man to make about the future of the print press. The Report noted that technology was transforming the media in ways that may be as important the development of the television and radio, and perhaps even as important as the development of the printing press itself. Inf ormation technology changes the way people get information, but more important, it changes the relationship that people have with institutions such as government, schools, and the media. According to the Report the role of the citizen endowing the individual with more respon sibility and command over how he or she consumes information and that new role is only beginning to be dependent on the institutional media to mediate Mediating refer s to wh at institutions in mass societies do when they function as intermediaries between big government and individuals. As the scale of government expands as government gets bigger and bigger the distance between a single individual and the government increases. Mediating institutions solve some of the problems of scale, where larger scale organizations make the individual seem less important. The owners of newspaper, Think About it! Are the social media ruining politics? election social media ruining politics 213104

PAGE 180

television, and I nternet companies, and the editors who work for them, filter, edit, or otherwis e decide what is newsworthy and merits reporting. Information technology is role less important. But eliminating the mediating institutions leaves the individual citizen or consumer with more responsibility for determini ng the accuracy of the electronic information that is now so widely available and either free or cheap. These new or non institutional media are part of trend toward 7. 33 | Journalism as a Profession The development of an independent, professional journalism began after the Civil War when newspapers were no longer as likely to be closely allied with a political party. The fact the newspapers became less partisan did not mean that the press became less political, however. Newspapers in the latter part of the 19 th Century became very political during the Progressive Era (roughly the 1890s until World War I) b ut they tended to be political in the sense that they criticize d political machines and political party bosses, or advocated on behalf of causes such as public corruption. As journalism became a profession, reporters were less partisan but still political. Investigative reporting of scandals or working conditions re defined the role of the press from a partisan press to an institutional press with the power to set the political agenda by calling public attention to an issue than needed political attention. 7.4 | Media and t he Political System The media organizations and individuals working as reporters, editors, and p roducers have a great deal of control over what the American public sees as the news. This includes what the media decide to report, how the information in framed, and what the media decide not to report. This is the essence of the power problem with the media 7. 4 1 | Reporting Political News Reporting p olitical news and public affairs information is one of the core functions of media outlets, particularly those with a national focus. Washington, D.C. has the largest concentration of news professionals in the United States. There are more than 8 000 reporters with Congressional press passes in Washington, covering pol itical news for the American public. 5 Presidents hold press conferences to shape public opinion and to explain their actions. The number of formal press conferences is actually rather low. President G. W. Bush held 210 (26 per year) and President Obama hel d 164 (21 per year). 6 However, t he White House p ress secretary generally meets the press daily. P ress conferences appear to be an opportunity fo r the media to directly ask the p resident a question and ge t an answer from the president rather than f rom advi sers or spokespeople. B ut press conferences are actually carefully staged events. G overnment offici als provide answers that they have scripted and rehearsed before the conference. As the figure below shows, presidents in the early 1900s gave many more press conferences than modern presidents. 7 Richard Nixon and Ronald Reagan gave very few press s low numbers were partially due to the fact that he had bad previous

PAGE 181

numbers were largely due to the fact that he preferred alternate venues f or communicating with the press. These included one on one interviews, answering questions on his way to or from the p residential helic opter, during a photo session or brief interviews with local or regional television stations as a way to avoid the Washington press corp. Sam Dona ldson, White House reporter for ABC News The reason we yell at Re s the only place we see him. 8 The George W. Bush administration exerted fairly strong control over information by not saying very much, by requiring p rior ap proval to make media comments, and by limiting White House leaks The limited press access frustrated the media. Obama prefer red informal, off the cuff style interaction s with the press and he l imited the number of formal press conferences. Media c overage of Congress is different than the coverage of the President. Congre ss has 535 members and is a decentralized institution. Public aware ness of what Congress is doing and how it operates is rather low. M edia coverage focus es on the leadership the Spe aker and majority and minority leaders. The chairs of committees engaged in reviewing important policies may get some attention from local stations and papers that report on local representatives T he media does cover congressional committee hearings, particularly committee hear in gs called to investigate scandals This kind of media coverage of Congress, the Administration, or business tends to be negative I t frames the story as institutional failures or inappropriate if not illegal behavior. The coverage is also often framed as partisan fights or highly ritualized theater more than serious attempts to solve a problem The negative coverage is Congress as an i neffective branch of government M edia coverage of congressional commi ttees doing their work, or federal bureaucrats doing their jobs is not usually considered newsworthy. In fact watching committees and bureaucracies at work is considered as exciting as watching paint dry This is, in fact, an example of a media bias for action or the drama of scandal rather than routine workings of government.

PAGE 182

7.5 | The M edia and Communications Law There is an extensive body of la w governing the media The legal regime includes the U.S. Constitution; statutory law (fede ral and state legislation); regulatory law (the administrative rulings and orders promulgated by agencies such as the Federal Communications Commission ) ; and case law ( primarily federal court rulings) interpreting the First Amendment 7. 5 1 | always say (or post) what you want Perhaps the most important thing to know about freedom of the press is that you are not f r ee to publish whatever you want to The Supreme Court has never sai d that the First Amendment gives an individual the right to say anything that he or she wants to say. For instance, the First Amendment does not protect l ibel and sland er Libel is writing something that is false and injures another person. A person can be held responsible (financial or otherwise) for publishing something libelous a nd the government can punish individuals who publish factual information that is deemed harmful to national security. During the World War I era the Court upheld laws that pun ished individuals for criticizing U.S. participation in the war. The Supreme Court developed the Clear and Present Danger Test as a way to explain what kinds of politica l expression can be punished without violating the First Amendment. T he government can punish individuals for saying or publishing things that raise of causing actions that the government has the power to prevent. The applicati on of this old doctrine is being challenged by counterterrorism policies that target Internet posts, terrorist websites, and blogging. 7.52 | Constitutional Law The First Amendment is the primary source of Constitutional protections for the media in the United States. It states that abridging the freedom generally interpreted this right broadly and struck down attempted by the government to regulate the media. Freedom of the press has largely taken the form of protection from prior restraint, or the government banning expression of ideas prior to their publication. The most famous case upholding the press right to publish what it thinks is newsworthy is New Yor k Times v United States (1971). Think About It! What kinds of Internet activities are terroristic? and technology/terrorist s internet/p10005

PAGE 183

This is the Pentagon Papers case. T he New York Times and the Washington Post had published excerpts of classified Department of Defense documents (the Pentagon Papers) examining the conduct of the War in Vietnam, and the pa pers planned additional publications. The Nixon administration sought an injunction against the publication of the documents, contending that the documents would prolong the war and embarrass the government. The Supreme Court explained t hat the First Amend ment freedom of the press placed a heavy burden of proof on the government (that is, an injunction that prohibiting publication) was necessary. And the Court ruled that the government had not met the burden of proof because it did not explain why publication of the documents would lead to immediate, inevitable, and irreparable harm to national security or other interests one of the freest presses in the world. The government can limit freedom of the press if publication threatens national security interests. The government can legally prevent publication of certain strategic information such as the movement of troops during wartime. It can also legally censor publication of instructions on how build nuclear bombs. However, information technology has made such efforts to prevent publication practically difficult or even impossible. Information is now freely available on the Internet even real time images of military actions. The War in Iraq illustrates how me dia technology has changed coverage of wars. The Pentagon adopted a policy of embedding journalists in military units. And soldiers with smart phones have repeatedly taken photos that exposed inappropriate or illegal behavior. 7.53 | Statutory Laws Th telecommunicatio ns policy has its roots in two c ongressional acts, the Communications Act of 1934 and the Telecommunications Act of 1996 The Communications Act of 1934 establish ed the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) The FCC is co nsidered one of the independent commissions because its members serve terms of office, can be removed only through impeachment, and no more than three of its five members can be from one political party The Communications Act went through a major overhaul when Congress passed the Telecommunications Act of 1996. The primary purpose of the Telecommunications Act was to deregulate the telecommunications industry. Prior to the 1996 Act, much of the telecommun ications industry resembled a monopoly. P eople did not have a choice as to where they purchased their telephone service. The 1996 Act also relaxed laws on media ownership. P rior to the 1996 Act, a single company could not own more than twelve television st ations or forty radio stations. The 1996 Act greatly relaxed this regulation, instead putting the cap of owne rship at 35% of the national market for television and removing the cap entirely for radio ownership. As a result, major media

PAGE 184

companies like CBS, Fox, and Clear Channel gr eatly increased their shares of the media markets. 7.54 | Administrative Regulations : The Fairness Doctrine In addition to the Constitution, statutes, and case law, the legal regime governing communications include administrative regulations promulgated by the FCC. The Federal Communications Commission is the primary source of these regulations, orders and policies These regulations include the day to day actions of the FCC and the 1,899 employees that work for the FCC. This might include the approval of a merger of two telecommunications companies, fining companies for indece ncy, licensing amateur radio operators, and regulating some aspects of the internet. The Fairness Doctrine is o ne of the rules or regulations that the Federal Communications Commission prom ulgated The Fairness D octrine required radio a nd television broadcast license holder s to present controversial issues of public importance in a fair and balanced manner. The F airness Doctrine is a good example of an generic sense that it is an official, binding policy that individuals or organizations are not to issue regulations was upheld by the Supreme Court in Red Lion Broadcasting Co. v. FCC (1969). 9 R ed Lion Broadcasting aired on a Pennsylvania radio station a 15 minute broadcast by Reverend Billy James Hargis as part of a Christian Crusade series. The broadcast accused an Lion refused. The FCC ruled that the broadcast was a personal at tack that violated the Fairness Doctrine. Red Lion challenged the Fairness Doctrine in court. The Supreme Court upheld the constitutionality of the Fairness Doctrine on the grounds that Congress had the authority to regulate broadcast media because of th e scarcity doctrine. According to the scarcity doctrine, the airwaves are public and the government can regulate them by licensing to prevent signal overlap. The scarcity doctrine is what differentiates the print media, which are not licensed by the gove rnment, from the broadcast media, which are. Cable TV is not subject to the same kinds of government licensing and regulation. According to the Court, Congress had the power to regulate the airwaves and it could authorize the FCC to issue regulations such as the Fairness Doctrine. The FCC repealed the F airness D octrine in 1987. Presidents nominate and the Senate confirms the f ive appointed commissioners who run t he FCC President Reagan appointed Republican commissioners who support ed deregulating business. President Reagan appointed Mark S. Fowler as a member of the FCC. Fowler served from 1981 until 1987, including as chair of the FCC. Fowler served as FCC commissioner from 1981 until 1987. T his was early in the modern era of government deregulati on of various sectors of the economy. President Carter began the deregulation in energy (especially natural gas) and transportation (especially the airlin es). President Reagan continued it with the deregulation of labor (e.g., collective bargaining laws) and the telecommunications industry. Fowler was a former broadca st industry lawyer who

PAGE 185

wondered why the broadcast media were treated so different than the film industry The traditional arguments included The scarcity doctrine. The re is a limited number of broadcast airwaves so the government licenses t hem t o allocate the scarce resources to bring order to the airwaves. The public service. The broadcast media were considered a private industry that served a public purpose so government regulation was neces sary. The protection and promotion of good civic v alues. The FCC regulated the was part of the social responsibility to be considered when deciding whether to issue or renew a broadcast license. Read Reason m agazine where he justifies deregulation of the broadcast media: nce. toaster Do you agree with him? to Reason magazine? Does it have an ideological perspective? What does his claim imply about government regulation of any media devices such as smart phones or platforms or the Internet ? Should government de regulate all aspects of media communication ? T he economic or business regulation currently includes anti trust law which limits media consolidation and cross ownership of pres s, television, radio in a single media market. What about Net Ne utrality? Should the government have any power to regulate mass or social media to maintain moral s, to limit violence or to police radical speech? The FCC commissioners c oncluded that the Fairness D octrine was limiting rather than enhancing public debate because the technology revolution that increased the media voices in the information marketplace made the Fairness Doctrine unnecessary In fact, conservatives argued that the Fairness Doct rine and other government regulations, such as campaign finance laws, were unconstitutional limit s on freedom of expression Ending the Fairness Doctrine gave rise to conservative radio and television programs hosted by prominent conservative figures incl uding C onservatives were taking to the airwaves using a style of ideological and partisan advocacy that would not have been possible under the regulatory schemes of the Fairness Doctrine. Fairness would have required broadc asters to provide air time for the other side to reply anytime a network took a side on a controversial matter of public interest. The current FCC continues this economic (that is, business) deregulatory policy and political (that is, ideological) deregulatory policy. It allows media mergers in the communications industry despite anti trust laws: t technology and marketplace competition is preferable to government regulation of this rapidly changing sector of the Am eri can economy. Congress reflect ed the business deregulation perspective in t he Telecommunications Act of 1996 7.6 | M ass M edia Re Media policy has traditionally divided the ideological left and r ight in American politics. It is not a matter of one side supporting government regulation and the other side opposing government regulation. The left and right are often divided over the purposes of government regulation. L iberals are generally more con cerned about violence ;

PAGE 186

conservatives are generally more concerned about sex. Dur ing the 1960s and 1970s, the liberals on the Supreme Court began deregulating morality with civil libertarian rulings. First Amendment rulings limited the governmen to sexually explicit materials or otherwise regulate behavior to promote morality The deregulation was one of the reasons for the conservative backlash called the culture war over values. The following are some of the federal statutes that attempted to re regulate communications, particularly to protect minors 7.61 | The C ommunications Decency Act of 1996 10 This law c any person who was under 18 years of age. It d efined obscene or indecent as any message The Supreme Court declared these provisions of the Act unconstitutional in Reno v. American Civil Liberties Union (1997) 11 Justice Stevens explained that the Act restricted the ability of adults to engage in communication that is appropriate for them so much that cost s o u tweighed its benefits 7.62 | The Child Online Protection Act of 1998 12 This Act required c ommercial Web site operators to take actions to prevent persons under 18 from seeing material harmful to children by demanding proof of age from computer users. The Act provided a fine of $50,000 and 6 month prison term for allowing minors to view harmful content, which it defined as harmful using emporary community standards 13 The law was challenged in court. I n Ashcroft v. American Civil Liberties Union (2004) the Supreme Court ruled that the law was unconstitutional because it unduly limited freedo m of expression In 2007, U.S Di strict Judge Lowell A. Reed explained why he thought it was not a good idea to try to protect minors by limiting their rights as adults: of this country harm if First Amendment protections, which they will with age inherit ful 14 7.63 | The 15 This Act required public libraries to and public schools to take measures to limit computer access to certain Web sites in order to protect children. The law was challenged by the American Library Association on the account that it required libraries

PAGE 187

to block access to constitutionally protected information. In United States et al. v. American Library Association (2003), the Supreme Court ruled that the law did not violate the First Amendment because the law did not req uire libraries to block access to information but simply mad e the government provision of fina ncial assistance for obtaining I nternet service dependent on compliance with the law 7.62 | The FCC Congress has authorized the FCC to enforce federal laws concerning obscenity, indecency, and profanity as well as a broa d range of illegal actions by 16 to 17 The Enforcement Bureau reviews public complaints and investigates to determine whether the facts warrant government action. 18 These investigations can result in fines, other sanctions, or even the loss of broadcast license. The difficulty determining what constitutes programming that warrants fines or other legal actions is illustrated by Michael Powell, the former Chair of the F CC, television network broadcast of the popular film, Saving Private Ryan without censoring In response to public complaints about the primetime broadcast, and in an attempt to ease broadcasting co mpany concerns about whether they would be subject to FCC disciplinary actions (fines or broadcast licensure revocation), Powell provided the following explanation of FCC policy

PAGE 188

STATEMENT OF MICHAEL K. POWELL, CHAIR FEDERAL COMMUNICATION COMMISSION Re: Complaints Against Various Licensees Regarding Their Broadcast on Today, we reaffirm that content cannot be evaluated without careful consideration of cont ext. Saving Private Ryan is filled with expletives and material arguably unsuitable for some audiences, but it is not indecent in the unanimous view of the Commission. This film is a critically acclaimed artwork that tells a gritty story one of bloody b attles and supreme heroism. The horror of war and the enormous personal sacrifice it draws on cannot be painted in airy pastels. The true colors are muddy brown and fire red and any accurate depiction of this significant historical tale could not be told properly without bringing that sense to the screen. It is for these reasons that the FCC has previously declined to rule this film indecent. This, of course, is not to suggest that legal content is not otherwise objectionable to many Americans. Recogni zing that fact, it is the responsible broadcaster that will provide full and wide disclosure of what viewers are likely to see and hear, to allow individuals and families to make their own well informed decisions whether to watch or not. I believe ABC and its affiliated stations made a responsible effort to do just that in this case. Fair warning is appropriately an important consideration in indecency cases. In complaints you often find that Americans are not excessively prudish, only that they are fe d up with being ambushed with content at times and places they least expect it. It is dependent on the element of surprise. This is particularly true in broadcast television, where viewers are accustomed and encouraged to order their viewing by parts of the day morning shows, daytime TV and late night have long been the zones in which expectations are set. When those lines are blurred, the consumer loses a degree of control, a degree of choice. Context remains vital to any consideration of whether profanity or sexual content constitutes legally actionable indecency. The Commission must stay faithful to considering complaints within their setting and temper any mo vement toward stricter liability if it hopes to give full effect to the confines of the First Amendment.

PAGE 189

7. 7 | Wh ich Way Are We Going ? Since the 1980s, c ommunication law and polic y leads have been moving in two different directions at the same time. One di rection supported by conservatives and Republicans is toward deregulation of the business side of communications. They support less g overnment. But they also support m ore regulation to protect traditional social or moral values and national security. This is a good example of how ideological debates are usually about the use of government power not the size of government. Conservatives worry more about sex over the airwaves while liberals worry more about violence. The conflict between economic deregulation and social re regulati on/regulation is apparent in a proposal made by the Chair of the FCC to e xtend regulatory authority to cable television. Interest groups such as the Parents Television Council support the proposal to give the FCC authority to regulate explicit sex and violence and indecency. Tim Winter, t he President of the PTC tried to put telecom munications in proper perspective when he stated that, except for the Pentagon, His argument echoed some of the earliest founding statements about the relationship between the media and democracy, parti cularly his claim that t he way we communicate (the public airwaves, electronic Advocates of expanding FCC authority over the communications sector by authorizing it to regulate cable as well as broadcast companies have encountered strong opposition. O pponents of expand regulatory authority include t he national Cable and Telecommunications Association The Association believes th at the best way to regulate the indus try is to rely on the intensely competitive marketplace not government intervention. In fact, despite the politics supporting increased government regulation of programming, the law is likely to present a significant hurdle. Blair Levin the former chief of staff to former FCC Chairman Reed Hundt, thinks th at th e effort to extend the reach to include cable companies would ultimately lose in the courts He also wryly comments that efforts to adopt a la carte servi ce subscriptions to protect family va lues was likely doomed : Every chairman of the FCC comes to realize there is a conflict between family values and market values 19 7. 71 | Media Bias the perception tha t journalism is not living up to the high standards of professional objectivity ; 2) the proliferation of media forms and o utlets; and 3 ) the importance in daily personal, work, and ent ertainment lives. The increase in media consumption attracts scrutiny of the media effec t on values, attitudes, behavior and American culture This includes stud ying ideological and partisan bias in the coverage of public affairs 20 Think about it! Has communications technology made it possible for almost anyone to claim to be a journalist?

PAGE 190

7.7 2 | Sitcom TV Family Values Television families provide popular cultural commentary on contemporary American values. Father Knows Best (1954 1960) was about the idealized American domestic life: a father with a stable, upper middle class white collar job and a stay at home mother par enting their children. Subsequent television family sitcoms showed realistic blue collar working class families that were ideologically divided by current events such as the Vietnam War ( All in the Family ) and struggling to make ends meet during a recessio n ( Roseanne ). Roseanne Barr described Roseanne as a sitcom with an economic populist The Simpsons brought a punk music sensibility to an animated satire that poked mostly gentle fun at almost a ll conventional American values. Good satire is taken seriously. The Simpsons was actually got into the heads in the White House. In a 1990 People magazine interview, First Lady Barbara Bush called The Simpsons writers had the character Marge Simpson write a letter to the First Lady defending her television family. The First Lady wrote back with a pleasant letter conceding she may have been too critical of the fictional family. But then things got serious. The Re publican Party was the party of traditional family values. Republican President George Herbert Walker Bush pledged at a Convention of Religious Broadcasters to continue working to strengthen American families, to make American families more like The Walton s and less like The Simpsons and forth into episodes. Jim Brooks, one of the co developers and executive producers of The Simpsons explains the running dialogue in the clip, Bush v. Simpsons Finally, the mockumentary style sitcom Modern Family (2009 present) could have been titled Postmodern Family I acceptance of his gay son, husba nd, and adopted Asian child is a commentary on who seems to have won the culture wars over homosexuality and diversity. Those who are in positions of power are likely to think the media are bias ed because the institutional press has historically played a watchdog role. The press does investigative reporting on those in positions of power. This includes the private for profit sec tor (e.g., corporate CEOs and union officials), the private not for profit sector (e.g., the management of charities such as the Red Cross or Wounded Warriors), and the public sector ( government officials) The gover nment watchdog role makes it the opposition in the sense that journalists investigate whatever administration is in control of government in order to hold public power accountable Societies have multi ple power centers. They include business (of which the media is one part ), education, religion, and government. Government is not the only power center. I t is merely the elected power center. The relationship between the media, as a business, and politics has always been complicated but the digital revolution has raised Think About It! The Simpsons Predicted President Trump?

PAGE 191

new pr omises and threats for political communication. In a 2009 TED talk Clay Shirky, a scholar of interactive telecommunications, desc ribed three ways the digital revolution has changed communication. The fi rst change was the interactive form s of mass communication. T he telephone expanded one to one communication. Then television and radio expanded one to many communication. Now t he Internet has expanded the many to many communications as new interactive form of mass communications. The se cond change is the digitization of all media Digitization makes the Internet a platform for all other media as telephone calls newspapers and m agazines and television and film all migrate to the Internet. The fact that consumers can now access information at any of the ir linked platforms is transforming the medi a from businesses that produced information or content into sites that coordinate the distribution of information. This technology ma y ultimately enrich politics by enabling more people to access more information and to interact with others to discuss it. However, the current concern is that it has enabled individuals to self select infor mation and interactions that reinforce preconceived ideas and beliefs thereby creating even louder political echo chambers. The third effect of the digital revolution is to make it easier for consumers or audiences to also be producers and speakers. This can increase civic engagement in ways that are good for the health of a democracy. But i t can also increase cynicism in ways that undermine the health of a democracy. Digital technology and technological convergence make democratic politics vulnerable in t he same way the globalism makes people, animals and plants more vulnerable to viruses Information and misinformation can go viral because technology has made the information landscape open and fluid while also weakening the links between ns and reality precisely at a time when the news we c onsume is based on emotion and identi ty as much as it is based on facts. 7. 8 | Summary The media have played an important role in American politics and government since the founding of the republic. T oday, the media have an economic, educative, watchdog and socialization role. The power problem with the mass media in particular is media bias. Knowledge is power, and the general public traditionally relied heavily on the mass media for information abou t government and politics. The digital revolution has changed power relations. Social media, for example, have created new capabilities for direct and interactive relations among the general public and between citizens and government officials. 7.9 | Addi tional Resources The Center for Media and Public Affairs at provides information about the public role of the media. and the Inter net & American Life Project provides interesting perspectives on the cultural effects of th e reliance on the Internet: http://www.pewintern

PAGE 192

One useful source of information about the modern media is One example of the new media is the fake news shows have blurred some of the distinctions between news and entertainment (Infotainment) colbert report videos/252013/october 08 2009/bend it like beck The An nenberg Public Policy Ce nter at the University of Pennsylvania conducts content anal ysis on TV coverage of politics: Newseum .org provides information about the history of news and media. Topics include coverage of the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001, war correspondents, editorial cartoonists, women photographers, and front page stories from around the country. 7.9 1 | In the Library Baker C. Edwin 2006. Media Concentration and Democracy: Why Ownership Matters Cambridge University Press. Bennett W. Lance 2004. News: The Politics of Illusion Longman. Bennett W. Lance Regina G. L awrence, and Steven Livingston. 2007. When the Press Fails : Political Power and the News Media from Iraq to Katrina U niversity of Chicago Press Cook Timothy 1998. Governing with the News U niversity of Chicago Press Eshbaugh Soha Matthew American Journal of Political Science 47 (2):348 353 Fritz, Ben et al. 2004. Truth Simon and Schuster Trade. Goldberg Bernard 2001. Bias: A CBS Insider Exposes How the Media Disto rt the News Regnery Press Grab er Doris A. ( E d). 1998. The Politics of News: The News of Politics Con gressional Quarterly Books Jamieson Kathleen Hall 2000. Why Basic Books Kovach Bill and Tom Rosenstiel. 2007. Elements of Journalism: What Newspeople Should Know and the Public Shoul d Expect Crown Publishing

PAGE 193

1. When covering Congress, who tends to be the focus of media coverage? Why? 2. Leonard Downie, Jr., the former executive editor of the Washington Post, does not vote because he thinks voting might lead to questions about his neutrality. Explain whether you t hink journalists can be neutral and also vote in el ections? 3. Compare and contrast the print press and electronic media. 4. How much confidence does the public have in the media? Is this level of confidence sufficient to ensure a vibrant democracy? 5. What are the major periods of the media? 6. president? Lieberman Trudy 2000. Slanting the Story: The Forces that Shape the News New Press Prior Markus 2007. Post Broadcast Democracy: How Media Choice Incre ases Inequality in Political Involvement and Polarizes Elections Cambridge University Press Schechter Danny 2003. Media Wars: News at a Time of Terror Rowman a nd Littlefield Publishers, Inc Shogun Robert 2001. Bad News: Where the Press Go Wrong in the Making of the President Ivan Dee Press Summerville John 1999. How the News Makes U s Dumb Intervarsity Press 1 2 Schudson, Michael. 1981 Discovering the News: A social history of American newspapers New York: Basic Books. 3 4 Quoted in The State of the News Media 2007, An Annual Report on American Journalism, http://stateofthemed 5 A congressional press pass allows reporters to sit in the House and Senate press galleries, as well as providing some access to presidential press briefings. The process to get a congressional press pass is available here: 6 Key Terms Educative Role Watchdog Role Commercial Media Framing Bias

PAGE 194

7 The American Presidency Project Ed. John T. Woolley and Gerhard Peters. Santa Barbara, CA: University of California. 1999 2010. A vailable at : ta/newsconferences.php 8 Steven V Roberts Washington Talk: The Presidency; Shouting Questions At Reagan New York Times October 21, 1987 9 1969/1968/ 1968_2_2 10 11 1999/1996/1996_96_511 12 13 14 15 16 http://www.fc 301874A1.html 17 300325A1.html 18 19 20 http://www.stateofthenewsmedia.o rg/chartland.asp?id=200&ct=col&dir=&sort=&col4_box=1

PAGE 195

8.0 | Public Opinion In an 1822 Letter to W. T. Barry James Madison applauded Kentucky for its generous appropriation for a system of public education. Madison believed that “a people who mean to be their own Governors, must arm themselves with the power “A popular government without popular information, or means of acquiring it, is but a Prologue to a Farce or a Tragedy, or perhaps both. Knowledge will forever govern ignorance, and a people who mean to be their own Governors must arm themselves with the power which knowledge gives.” James Madison Letter to W.T. Barry (Aug. 4, 1822) “A popular government without popular information, or means of acquiring it, is but a Prologue to a Farce or a Tragedy, or perhaps both. Knowledge will forever govern ignorance, and a people who mean to be their own Governors must arm themselves with the power which knowledge gives.” James Madison Letter to W.T. Barry (August 4, 1822) CHAPTER 8: Public Opinion

PAGE 196

190|Chapter 8: Public Opinion knowledge gives.” The belief that knowledge is power is still th e foundation of the belief that democracy requires an educated, informed, and ac tive citizenry. In fact many collective human endeavors are based on the belief that knowledge can overcome i gnorance, and that information can be applied to solve scientific, technologi cal, medical, and political problems. Knowledge makes self-government possible but an informed pub lic does not guarantee th at a political system will be democratic. This chapter examines public opinion. Political scientists, government officials, political party leaders, candidates running in elect ions, and interest groups of all kinds pay a great deal of attention to public opini on in order to better understand What the public thinks about i ssues, parties, and candidates; Ways to measure public opinion; How public opinion is formed so that it can be changed or even controlled; and How public opinion influences public policy. 8.1 | The Power Problem The power problem with public opinion is esse ntially the question whether public opinion is a cause or an effect—whether publ ic opinion causes public policy a nd government action, or is a result of it. Democratic theory describes public opinion as the cau se of public policy. It assumes that public opinion drives the political machin e. The relationship between public opinion and public policy is more complicated than the simple cause and effect relationship described in Figure 8.1 (Classic Democratic System Model) below. One co mplication is the fact th at the U.S. is not a pure or direct democracy. It is a constitutional democracy or constitutional republic that limits majoritarian government. The governme nt is not designed to automati cally or directly turn public opinion into public policy. A second complication is the nature of public opinion. Public opinion polls and political science research indicate that public op inion is not a static or fixed force in a political system. It is dynamic; events and circumstances change it; organized campaigns are based on the assumption that public opinion can be changed, managed, or even manufactured. Companies develop marketing campaigns to influe nce consumers’ thinking about products. They are not merely responding to consumer demands or preferences; they create consumer demands and preferences. Political campaigns are similarly designed to in fluence rather than merely respond to voters’ thinking about issues, policies, candidates, and parties. The me dia effect of such campaigns complicates democratic theory describing public opinion as the cause of government action. The fact that a political system is a democracy doe s not make the power problem with public opinion irrelevant. Figure 8.11 (Modified Democratic Syst em Model) below illustrates why so much attention is paid to the political forces that create public opinion rather than just measuring public opinion. Figure 8.1 Classical Democratic Systems Model Government Decision making Processes Public Opinion Public Policy

PAGE 197

Chapter 8: Public Opinion | 191 Figure 8.11 Modified Democratic System Model 8.11 | Presidential Approval Ratings Presidential approval ratings measur e public opinion about how the pr esident is doing. They are a measure of public opinion that refl ects thinking about conditions and event such as th e state of the economy (e.g., the unemployment rate), crime rates, and national security. Pr esidential approval ratings also reflect the public’s pe rception of responses to events su ch as terrorist attacks or other threats to national security, economic downturns, and natural disasters such as hurricanes and earthquakes. Regardless of a presid ent’s control over some of thes e politically re levant events, presidents are expected to either control them or respond effectively to th em. One of the clearest and most consistent examples of how events aff ect presidential popularity is the “rally around the flag” effect. National security threats, and presid ential responses to them, almost always provide an immediate increase in presidential approval ra tings. The size and the duration of the increase varies depending on the event and its duration. However, the rally ar ound the flag effect creates a systematic bias toward taking decisive acti on. Presidents who face domestic opposition are tempted to travel abroad where the images of th e leader of the free worl d generally bolster public approval ratings. Actions taken as commander-in-chief tend to ha ve a similar effect on public approval. The 9/11 terrorist attacks and President Geor ge W. Bush’s response to them—first, by military action in Afghanistan and th en by the military invasion of Iraq— produced a record rally effect His approval rating jumped 35 points to 86%. President George H. W. Bush’s approval jumped 18 points to 89% during the Gu lf War and Operation Desert Storm. 8.12 | Wagging the Dog? There is a saying in politics that a crisis is too important to waste. Crises create opportunities for political action because they cr eate sudden changes in public opinion. Enemies, particularly foreign enemies, can also be politically useful because they create opportun ities for action. Foreign enemies can produce the rally effect. The 1997 film Wag the Dog explored a fictional president’s use of Madison Avenue advertising experts an d Hollywood entertainment production values to produce a fake war to divert attention from a sex scandal. The film is about a president who is Government Decision making Processes Public Opinion Public Policy ? Fact Check It! Check out The American Presidency Project (Hosted at the University of California, Santa Barbara, and a collaboration of John Woolley and Gerhard Peters) charts on the presid ential approval rati ngs of president.

PAGE 198

192|Chapter 8: Public Opinion running for reelection when the pre ss uncovers a sex scandal shortly be fore the day of the election. The president is accused of gropi ng a young girl who is a member of an organization similar to the Girl Scouts. The president consults a seasoned spin-doctor who advises declaring a fake war (against Albania) to create a distraction from the sex scandal. Does art imitate life? The film seemed prescient. In early 1998, the public learned that President Clinton had oral sex in the Oval Office with a young intern. Then in the summer of 1998 he launched Tomahawk missile strikes against al-Qaeda in Afghanistan and Sudan in retaliation for August 7th attacks against the U.S. embassies in Kenya and Tanzania. President Tr ump had record low job approval ratings and problems with his domestic agenda. Then he aut horized cruise missile strikes in Syria. One prominent foreign affairs commentator, Fareed Zakaria, said of the missile strikes, “ I think Donald Trump became President of the United States…” 8.2 | Two Models of Representation Public opinion is defined as the aggregate of public attitudes or beliefs about government and politics. Popular sovereignty, the belief that the people are the ultimate source of government authority, is one of the basic principles of American government. The belief that government authority derives from the people means that pu blic policies are supposed to be based on public opinion. Responsiveness to public opinion is one measure of a political system’s legitimacy—the belief that a system of government is lawful, right, or just. The delegate model and the trustee model are two models of how government offici als rely on public opinion when making public policy. 8.21 | The Delegate Model According to the delegate model, elected government officials are obligated to do the will of the people who elected them to office. Government officials are instructed delegates in the sense that they are expected to do what the people want. The delegate model of democracy is populistic in the sense that the elected representatives of the people are obligated to enact public opinion, they are free to decide what is best for the general public or their constituents. Representatives are not free agents. 19% 76% 5%Do You Trust Public Opinion? Yes No Think About It! What lessons do presidents learn from the record of military actions producing at least short-term increas es in public approval ratings?

PAGE 199

Chapter 8: Public Opinion | 193 8.22 | The Trustee Model The trustee model allows government official s more freedom of choice to decide what is in the public interest. Government officials are not exp ected to act solely upon public opinion. Elected representatives are consid ered trustees who are trusted to use their good judgment, experience, expertise, or information to do what they think is best rather than me rely doing what the people want based on public opinion polls, for example. The trustee model provides that representatives are held accountable for their de cisions in regular elections, but they have considerable freedom to choose courses of action. The trustee model is more eliti st in the sense that elected representatives are expected to be the “better so rts” of the community, the leaders who are chosen to make good decisions about public policy without merely following public opinion. 8.23 | The Founders’ Intentions The Framers establishes an indirect demo cracy, a representative democracy, or a republic because they believed a republic was a better form of government than direct democracy. The Revolutionary War was fought against monarchy— rule by King George. They did not want to create a democracy that was rule by King Number s. While generally committed to more popular government, they did not want majority rule. Their thinking about democracy and public opinion is evident in Madison’s Federalist Papers Number 10 and Number 51 Federalist Number 51 elaborates on the ways to limit the abuse of government power that is made necessary by human nature. Popular sove reignty is the primary way to limit the abuse of power, and the system of checks and balances (f ederalism and the separation of powers) is the secondary (or “auxiliary”) limit on the abuse of power. Madison fam ously wrote that human nature makes government necessary, and makes it necessary to control government: In Federalist Number 10 Madison explained that the best form of government was one that was based on limited majority rule. The Co nstitution placed limits on the power of the people to do whatever they wanted. It protected minorities—mainly the wealthy and landowners—from majority rule. The Bill of Rights provide many im portant limits on majority rule. For example, the First Amendment protects freedom of expre ssion regardless of whether a majority of the American public supports laws prohibiting burning or otherwise desecrating the American flag. Ambition must be made to counteract ambition. The interest of the man must be connected with the constitutional rights of the place. It may be a reflection on human nature, that such devices should be necessary to control the abuses of gove rnment. But what is government itself, but the greatest of all reflec tions on human nature? If men were angels, no government would be necessary. If angels were to govern men, neither external nor internal controls on government would be necessary. In framing a government whic h is to be administered by men over men, the great difficulty lies in this: you must first enable the government to cont rol the governed; and in the next place oblige it to c ontrol itself. A dependence on th e people is, no doubt, the primary control on the government; but experience has taught mankind the necessity of auxiliary precautions.

PAGE 200

194|Chapter 8: Public Opinion 8.3 | Political Socialization The formation of political beliefs, attitudes, and ideology is one of the most important questions about public opinion. Politi cal socialization is the process by which people form ideas and develop political values. The agents of socialization incl ude family, friends, organized religion, education, life experiences, work, political parties, the media, and the government. 8.31 | Family Socialization begins early in life and continue s throughout life. Children begin to form political attitudes very early in life so family is a strong influence on thinking about government and politics. Children do not always or automatically identify with their parentsÂ’ ideology or political party, but there is a strong correlation between a personÂ’s party affiliation and their parentÂ’s party affiliation. However, some of the other agents of socializati on actually counteract the influence of the family. Many children are now raised in families where both parents work. This means that the familyÂ’s influence has decreased relative to other agents of socialization such as schools, friends, work colleagues, and the media. 8.32 | Education Education is also a major agent of socialization. Schools teach students facts and values; students learn information and values in schools. Public schools have an educational and a socialization mission. This is why school desegregation, school busing, school prayer, mandatory flag salutes or pledges of allegiance, and curriculum issues such as civics, values, tolerance, diversity, and the teaching of evolution and creationism have been so controversial. Schools ha ve been at the center of the culture wars over values because they are important agents of socialization and the transmission of political values. 8.33 | Life Experiences Not all political attitudes are fixe d early in life. Socialization occurs throughout the life span. A personÂ’s adult experiences, desires, or needs can change old beliefs and create new ones. Attitudes toward social welfare programs are influenced by a personÂ’s health or economic status, Personal experience with illness affects thinking about h ealth care policy. Wealth and poverty affect thinking about economic policy. Income and wealth are related to ideology and partisanship. Economics is one of the factors that have c onsistently divided cons ervatives and liberals, Republicans and Democrats. Economics includes how a person earns a li ving. Work experience as an entrepreneur, a business owner or manager, or as an employee influence attitudes toward the role of government, tax policies and spending po licies, government regulation of business, and social welfare policy. In fact, these economic attitudes are among the mo st important factors determining where someone is a conservative a liberal, a socia list, or a populist.

PAGE 201

Chapter 8: Public Opinion | 195 8.34 | Geography Regionalism has played an important role in so me of the country’s most significant political experiences. Early in the nation’s history, the regional divisions were the result of distinctive economic systems. The northeast had a manufacturing and shippi ng economy. The south had an agrarian and plantation economy. The interior of the country had a frontier economy. The divisions between northern industrial economies and the agri cultural, slave-holding southern economy was a major cause of the Civil War. During the 20th Century, urbanization created major differences between urban and rural areas. These regional differences were expected to decrease with the increase in communication, travel, population mobility, and the development of a national economy—which created more uniformity in langua ge, culture, and politics. National uniformity diminished the regional distinctiv eness of the South and the Northeast, but political geography is still important. The elections of 2016 revealed important political differences between rural areas and the major urban centers. The Republican candi date Donald Trump had strong support in rural counties while Democratic candidate Hillary Clin ton had strongest support in urban centers. In fact, the urban-rural differences in public opinion are now more important than regionalism. But there are still regional differences in thinking abou t politics. People in the Northeast and the West are more likely to support aborti on rights, while those in the Mi dwest and South are more likely to favor restricting access to abortions. As th e above chart shows, there are strong regional differences in thinking about social issues such as gay marriage. 8.35 | Race and Ethnicity The study of socialization is not limited to the i ndividual level. Race and ethnic identity are also important. African Americans initially identified as Republicans because Abraham Lincoln freed the slave with the Emancipation Proclamation, won the Civil War, and then Republicans passed federal civil rights legislation to protect the rights of blacks from racially discriminatory laws passed by Democrats in Southern states. Then in the 1930s, Democratic Party support for New Deal legislation to end the Great Depression attracted blacks to the Democratic Party. And Democratic support for the civil rights movement further strengthened bl ack support for liberal and Democratic policies. In the late 1800s and early 1900s, European s from countries like Italy, Ireland, Germany, and Poland immigrated in larg e numbers to the United States. These groups became a part of Franklin Delano Roosevelt’s New D eal coalition in the 1930 and they continued to be part of the Democratic Great Society coalition in the 1960s. Since then, however, white ethnic voters have changed their party identifica tion. Republican Presidents Rich ard Nixon and Ronald Reagan appealed to white ethnic voters w ho had socially conservative attit udes about issues such as school prayer, patriotism, and sexual behavior. As white ethnics became more economically well off, they were also more likely to agree with Republican efforts to reduce social welfare. Ronald Reagan was so successful in appealing to these European ethnic groups that they were called “Reagan Democrats.” In recent years, the politics of immi gration has changed. The political behavior of Latinos has attracted a great deal of attention because they are th e fastest growing ethnic group in the United States. Partisan appeals for Latino s upport are complicated by the fact that the term Latino includes such a broad range of people with different backgrounds, experiences, and attitudes. For example, Mexican-Americans and C uban-Americans have very different political beliefs partly because they have had such di fferent political and economic experiences.

PAGE 202

196|Chapter 8: Public Opinion 8.36 | Gender Gender is correlated with political attitudes and party identificati on. During the last thirty years, women have been more likely to support liberal issues and the Democratic Party, while men are more likely to support conservative issues and the Republican Part y. The gender difference in party identification is the gender gap Women are also more likely to support affirmative action policies, welfare policies, income assistance, reproductive rights (pro-choice views on abortion), and equal rights for gays and lesbians. Women have voted for the Democratic presidential candidate at a higher rate than men in every presidential election si nce Jimmy Carter’s 1980 bid against Ronald Reagan. Women also register more frequently as members of the Democratic Party. As the figure below shows, the gender gap in party registra tion fluctuates with the year, but women are consistently more likely to register as Democrats. Gender issues played an important role in the 2016 presidential election. The Democratic candidate Hillary Clinton’s campaign relied heavily on the traditional liberal and Demo cratic appeal as better on wome n’s issues, and attacked Donald Trump (and Republicans generally) as worse on women’s issues. This campaign slogan was to fight “The War on Women” by voting Democratic. The PEW Research Data reports on gender voting in presidential elections. 8.37 | The Media The media play a large and growing role in mo dern American society. In 1997, adult Americans spent around thirty hours a week watching televisi on, and children spent even more time watching television.1 Today the U.S. Department of Health a nd Human Services estimates that children spend around seven hours a day in front of some elect ronic screen. There is a great deal of research examining how this much screen time affects children. In terms of public opinion, the consensus 20% 25% 30% 35% 40% 45% 50% Percentage of the Population Registered as Democratics Women Men

PAGE 203

Chapter 8: Public Opinion | 197 that media influence public opinion does not extend to agreement about the nature of that influence. The traditional mass media played an important institutional role in “mediating” between individuals and the government. This media ting role included political socialization. The traditional mass media include the print press (especially newspapers) and the broadcast media (especially broadcast television and radio networks). One of the media effects on public opinion is setting the agenda : the media decide what issues the publ ic should be thinking about. The media decide what constitutes news—the events that are worth reporting. The way media frame stories also influences public opinion. This is at th e heart of charges that there is a media bias. 8.38 | The Government The government can influence public opinion in a variety of ways. Public schools, for example, teach civics—which included attitudes toward government politics. The government also has programs and initiatives to instil l patriotic beliefs. The government also has a great deal of power to influence thinking about national security b ecause it controls so much information about national security matters. Presidents can use their bully pulpit to build support for a policy or a cause. The government as agent of socialization is controversial. It seems to complicate the Classical Democratic Systems Model of democracy by describing the government as one of the factors that creates public opinion. One definition of propaganda is government efforts to influence public opinion. Propaganda is a normative term. Like democracy, conservative, liberal, bureaucracy, terrorism, and ideology, propaganda is a value-laden term. Pr opaganda is considered illegitimate or improper government efforts to influence individuals’ thinking about politics. Propaganda is associated with brain washing or ot her efforts of thought control usually associated with totalitarian governments. The dictionary defi nition of propaganda is that it is using words or speech intended to convince someone of a political position or point of view. This definition of propaganda as persuasion or advocacy is central to politics. Political power is usually defined as a person’s power to make others do what they want them to do. Should political power be defined more broadly as the power to make others do or think what you want? Given the importance of Information Mass Medi a Individual The Mediating Role of the Mass Media

PAGE 204

198|Chapter 8: Public Opinion public opinion, government officials and other political actors have vested interests in influencing thought and action. 8.4 | Is Public Opinion a Cause or an Effect? Rhetoric is one important mean s of political communication. Rh etoric is the art of using language—both public speaking and writing—to communi cate, to persuade, or to convince. In the 19th Century rhetoric was taught using collecti ons of memorable political speeches and even “pulpit eloquence” such as The American Orator The Orator was an influential book that trained individuals in proper public speaking techniques th e way that other books trained people in proper etiquette. Public opinion is dynamic, not stat ic. It changes. More important, it can be changed Public opinion about the president, for example, is very dynamic and responds to a broad range of factors. Public opinion about congress is more stable, but reflects general pub lic assessments of how congress is performing as a political institution. Public opinion polls such as the Gallup Poll regularly ask people for their opini on about government. Sixty-nine percent of Amer icans say they have a great deal or fair amount of confidence in the Supreme Court, compared with 50% for Congress and 43% for the president. Public conf idence in Congress and the president has been trending steadily downward for decades. In cont rast, public confidence in the Court has remained very stable.2 Political actors, such as candidates for office, gove rnment officials, party leaders, interest group leaders, and community activists are not limited to responding to public opinion. Political actors try to influence, change, and even to cont rol public opinion. In government and politics information is power. Information about how people acquire their attitudes increases understanding of socializa tion and creates the opport unity to influence it. 8.41 | The Marketplace of Ideas Understanding how people acquire their attitudes can make it possible to use that information to control what people think. This is the essence of the power proble m with public opinion. Can public opinion (ideas an d attitudes) be manufactured the wa y material products are made? Can 0 50 100 20002001200220032004200520062007200820092010Approval Ratings(% indicating approval of Institution) Congress Supreme Court President

PAGE 205

Chapter 8: Public Opinion | 199 ideas about candidates, parties, a nd issues be sold the way other products are sold to consumers? The marketplace is a familiar and powerful concep t in the United States because the U.S. is a capitalist country where people are very familia r with the idea of a marketplace of goods and services. It is not surpri sing that the logic of the economic marketplace has been applied to politics. The political marketplace of ideas refers to the ability to pick and choose from among the competing ideologies and parties the way that co nsumers are able to pick and choose from among the competing sellers of goods and services. The application of economic marketplace logi c to the political mark etplace raises some important questions about the nature of public opinion. One question is about the role of advertising. The conventional economic wisdom is that marketers and advertisers respond to consumer demands for products and services. Bu t modern advertising also creates demand. The ability to create consumer demand, rather than just respond to c onsumer demands, is one reason why the government regulates the advertising of certain goods and services. The government regulates lawyer advertising, medical advertising, and tobacco products. The Federal Trade Commission’s mission includes regulating business practices that are “deceptive or unfair” to consumers. The mission of the FTC’s Bureau of Consumer Protection is to prevent “fraud, deceptive, and unfair business practices in the ma rketplace.” It investigates complaints about advertising. 8.42 | The Government in the Marketplace of Ideas Governments try to control wh at people think—about issues, ca ndidates, political parties, government officials, and about the government it self. The pejorative term for government efforts to influence public opinion is propaganda. Pr opaganda is considered the inappropriate manipulation of public opinion—usually by totalitarian or authorita rian regimes. Therefore the terms public communication or public relations or public diplomacy are more commonly used to describe campaigns that target public opinion. In the 1930s and 1940s the government began to use new professions and methods of mass communi cation such as public relations, advertising, and film to influence public opinion. During the Great Depre ssion, the Roosevelt Administration “advertised” one of its New Deal programs, the Works Progress Administration (WPA): “ By the People, For the People: Post ers from the WPA, 1936-1943 .” The extensive archives of such public relations or propaganda campaigns include some of the short films the government produced to build popular support for military service, citizensh ip, war policies and national security actions, and others. The archives of moving images in clude government films to shape the following thinking and behavior: For appropriate behavior fo r young people in the 1950s watch “How do you do?” or “What to do on a date.” For appropriate behavior for young people in the 1950s, watch “How to be a teenage in 1950”; Watch the cartoon Private Snuffy Smith for messages about patriotism and military service; s/private_snuffy_smith Watch Sex Madness for messages about health and good sexual behavior. Compare Reefer Madness (1936) with the current movement to legalize marijuana.

PAGE 206

200|Chapter 8: Public Opinion Watch Japanese Relocation produced by the Office of War Information and the Bureau of Motion Pictures: In terms of global public opinion, the U.S. Department of State’s Undersecretary for Public Diplomacy and Public Affairs is responsible for a broad range of programs that are intended to influence worldwide thinking about issues that are related to U.S. foreign policy interests. 8.5 | Democratic Theory and Political Reality The relationship between public opinion and public policy is more complicated than simply declaring that in a democracy public opinion causes or determines public policy. In most modern, western-style democracies, there are ongoing debates about how much public opinion matters, the extent to which public opinion ac tually determines publ ic policy. One school of thought argues that groups of elites either control the political process or have more influence on it than the general public. The elites are variously described as the rich the powerful, the influential, the insiders, the special interests with more resources to influen ce public policy. The elites could be in the private sector (e.g., business interests) or the public se ctor (government officials such as bureaucrats). Political systems do not have to have complete e quality in order to be democratic. Democracies can have unequal access to poli tical power. But equality is a democratic value, so great concentrations of economic power that result in great inequality of political power raise concerns. Modern democratic theories are generally pluralis ts who believe that it is enough to have power spread around among elites so that no single set of elites can control public opinion and dominate the political process. Pluralist democrats concede that modern democracies do not uniformly distribute political power, but they maintain that groups of elites have to compete for influence over public opinion a nd public policy. 8.51 | The Premise of Democratic Theory The premise (or basic assumption) of democratic theory is that an informed public makes choices about government officials and public policies. In other words, democratic theory assumes that elections determine who governs and what policies will be enacted into law. This is the argument that democratic government is legitimate because its authority is based on the consent of the governed. Is this assumption valid? The empirical evidence indicates that the assumption of an informed public is mistaken. Public opinion polls indicate that the American public is not well informed about public affairs, candidates, or issues. Civics knowledge is rather low. The average voter has little information about public affairs, including the names of their representatives in city gove rnment, county government, state le gislature, or congress. People do not pay much attention to politics. The influen ce of popular culture is refl ected in the fact that people pay more attention to entertainment and s ports than public affairs. The low levels of information about politics are the result of apathy or disinterest. Political efficacy is the belief that political participation matters. The belief that part icipation in politics does not really matter very Think About It! “Are You Smarter Than A 5th Grader?” Is Kelly Pickler? ?v=Cey35bBWXls

PAGE 207

Chapter 8: Public Opinion | 201 much creates low levels of efficacy. People have time constraints. They are busy with families and work and other activities. People have to establish pr iorities for allocating scarce resources such as time, effort, and money. It is easier for professionals who have white-collar jobs or informationrelated jobs such as journalism or academia to k eep up with public affairs. People who have bluecollar jobs or jobs that do not involve working with information are more likely to have higher priorities than keeping up with the issues. 8.52 | Measuring Public Opinion Public opinion polling is a fact of modern life. Ga thering information and selling it is big business. Gallup polls are a familiar feature of modern politics. The widespread use of public opinion measurement around the world is ev idence of the belief that publ ic opinion is important for political and other purposes. Governments consider surveys useful for gathering information about what the public thinks, for guiding public information and propaganda campaigns, and for formulating public policies. The U.S. Department of Agriculture was one of the first government agencies to sponsor systematic, larg e-scale surveys and it st ill conducts them to ga ther information. An opinion poll is a survey of opinion from a particular sample. Opinion polls are usually designed to represent the opinions of a population by asking a small number of people a series of questions and then extrapolating the answers to the larger group within certain confidence intervals. 8.53 | Usable Knowledge? The first known example of an opinion poll was a local straw vote conducted by The Harrisburg Pennsylvanian in 1824. It showed Andrew Jackson leading John Quincy Adams by 335 votes to 169 in the contest for the presidency. This straw vote was not scientific. But straw votes became popular in lo cal elections. In 1916, the Literary Digest conducted a national survey as part of an effort to increase circulation. The straw vote correctly predicted Woodrow Wilson’s election as president. The Digest correctly called the following four presidential elections by simply mailing out millions of postcards and counting the returns. In 1936, the Digest’s 2.3 million “voters” constituted a very large sample, but the sample included more affluent Americans who tended to support the Republican Party. This biased the results. The week before the election the Digest reported that Republican Alf Landon was far more popular than Democrat Franklin D. Roosevelt. At the same time, George Gallup conducted a much smaller, but more scientifically-based survey. He polle d a demographically representative sample, and correctly predicted Roosevelt’ s landslide victory in the 1936 presidential election. The Literary Digest soon went out of business. The polling industry gained cr edibility and public opinion polling began to play a more important role in politics, particularly campaigning. Thinking about public opinion polling has cha nged a great deal over time. In a 1968 book, The Pulse of Democracy George Gallup and Saul Rae desc ribed public opinion polling as taking the pulse of democracy. By this, they meant that polling used social scientific methods to try to

PAGE 208

202|Chapter 8: Public Opinion accurately measure what the public was thinking about public affairs. T oday, polling is more likely to be conducted for the purpose of making the pulse of democracy by using social scientific methods to ultimately influence public opinion. This is the argument David W. Moore makes in The Opinion Makers (2008). The emphasis is now on usab le information. These changes in thinking about how and what people think, and how to use data, are directly related to the power problem with public opinion. 8.54 | Methods In the early days of public opi nion polling, polls were conducted ma inly by face-to-face interviews (on the street or in a person’s home). Face-to-fac e polling is still done, but telephone polls have become more popular because they can be cond ucted quickly and cheaply. However, response rates for phone surveys have been declin ing. Some polling organizations, such as YouGov and Zogby use Internet surveys, where a sample is drawn from a large panel of volunteers and the results are weighed to reflect the demographics of the population of interest. This is in contrast to popular web polls that draw on whoever wishes to par ticipate rather than a sc ientific sample of the population, and are therefore not generally considered accurate. The wording of a poll quest ion can bias the results. Th e bias can be unintentional (accidental) or intentiona l. For instance, the public is more lik ely to indicate support for a person who is described by the caller as one of the “l eading candidates.” Neglec ting to mention all the candidates is an even more subtle bias, as is lumping some candidates in an “other” category. Being last on a list affects responses. In fact, th is is one reason why el ection rules provide for listing candidates in alphabetic order or alterna ting Republican and Democratic candidates. When polling on issues, answers to a question about a bortion vary depending on whether a person is asked about a “fetus” or and “unborn baby.” All polls based on samples are subject to sampling error which reflects the effects of chance in the sampling process. The uncertainty is often expressed as a margin of error. The margin of error does not reflect other sources of error, su ch as measurement error. A poll with a random sample of 1,000 people has margin of sampling erro r of 3% for the estimated percentage of the whole population. A 3% margin of error means that 95% of the time the procedure used would give an estimate within 3% of the percentage to be estimated. Using a large sample reduces the margin of error. However if a pollster wishes to reduce the margin of error to 1% they would need a sample of around 10,000 people. In practice pollsters need to balance the co st of a large sample against the reduction in sampling error and a sample size of around 500-1,000 is a typical compromise for political polls.3 Nonresponse bias. Some people do not answer calls from strangers, or refuse to respond to polls or poll questions. As a result, a poll sample may not be a representative sample from a population. Because of this selection bias the characteristics of those who agree to be interviewed may be markedly different fr om those who decline. That is, the actual Think About It! What is a “push poll?” What does the American Association for Public Opinion Research think about push polls?

PAGE 209

Chapter 8: Public Opinion | 203 sample is a biased version of the universe the pollster wants to analyze. In these cases, bias introduces new errors that are in addition to er rors caused by sample size. Error due to bias does not become smaller with larger sample si zes. If the people who refuse to answer, or are never reached, have the same characterist ics as the people w ho do answer, the final results will be unbiased. If the people who do not answer have different opinions then there is bias in the results. In terms of election pol ls, studies suggest that bias effects are small, but each polling firm has its own formulas on how to adjust weights to minimize selection bias. Response bias. Survey results may be affected by response bias. Response bias is when a respondent gives answers that not reflect his or her actual beliefs. This occurs for a variety of reasons. One reason is that a respondent may feel pressure not to give an unpopular answer. For example, respondents might be unwilling to admit to socially unpopular attitudes such as racism, sexism, or they may feel pressure to identify with socially or politically popular atti tudes such as patriotism, civic ac tivism, or religious commitment. For these reasons, a poll might not reflect the true incidence of certain attitudes or behaviors in the population. Pollsters can engineer response bias to ge nerate a certain result or please their clients. This is one of the reasons why the term polls ter suggests huckster, or a con artist. Even respondents can manipulate the ou tcome of a poll by repo rting more extreme positions than they actually hold. The wording of surveys and the ordering of question creates response bias. Question wording The wording of the questions, the or der in which questions are asked, and the number and form of alternative answer s offered influence results of polls. Thus comparisons between polls ofte n boil down to the wording of the question. For some issues the question wording can produce pronounced differences between surveys. One way in which pollsters attempt to minimize this effect is to ask the same set of questions over time, in order to track changes in opinion. Another common technique is to rotate the order in which questions are asked. One technique is th e split-sample, where there are two versions of a question and each version pres ented to half the respondents. Coverage bias. Coverage bias is another source of error is the use of samples that are not representative of the populat ion as a consequence of the methodology used, as was the experience of the Literary Digest in 1936. For example, tele phone sampling has a built-in error because people with telephones have genera lly been richer than those without phones. Today an increased percentage of the public has only a mob ile telephone. In the United States it is illegal to make unsolicited calls to phones where the phoneÂ’s owner may be charged simply for taking a call. Because pollste rs are not supposed to call mobile phones, individuals who own only a mobile phone will often not be included in the polling sample. If the subset of the population without cell phon es differs markedly from the rest of the population, these differences can skew the result s of the poll. The relative importance of these factors remains uncertain today because polling organizations have adjusted their methodologies to achieve more accurate election predictions. 8.6 | The 2016 Presidential Election One of the big stories in the an alysis of TrumpÂ’s stunning upset victory in 2016 is the public opinion polls. Most of polls indica ted that Hillary Clinton was like ly to win the election. She did

PAGE 210

204|Chapter 8: Public Opinion not. The initial explanations for Trump’s su rprising upset victory focused on methodological problems with the polls: systematic biases; polls as flawed measures of public opinion and voting behavior; respondents who said they would not vote for Trump but did—including Trump supporters intending to mislead th e political establishment; ideologi cal biases in interpreting polls; and last minute voting decisions th at tended to go Republican. The flawed polls story is appealing for several reasons. First, the winners tend to wr ite the story about elec tions. The Trump campaign portrayed the public opinion polls as yet anothe r source of establishmen t bias that it had to overcome as an underdog. The David versus Goliath storyline appealed to Trump’s populist base because it affirmed a core political narrative. S econd, the American public has lingering suspicions about polls and pollsters and experts. Confounding the experts seems to affirm traditional democratic theory that intelligent and informed voters decide elections, not scientific or social scientific models that are used to predict (and th erefore perhaps to control?) voting behavior. Third, focusing on polling methodology and interpretation is a way to avoid some of the more complicated assessments of the successful and the unsuccessful campaign strategies and tactics— specifically reading the tea leav es to determine what was going on with the electorate. Were the polls wrong? The American Associat ion for Public Opinion Research’s Report, An Evaluation of 2016 Elect ion Polls in the U.S (May 4, 2017), describe s the outcome of the election as “jarring” and “shocki ng” even for Trump’s pollsters. But the Report also says that the national polls were “correct” and “accurate,” while some state and regional polls (in critical upperMidwest states under-stated Trump support. The Report also lists three reasons why polls understated Trump support.4 Other post-mortem analyses include the NPR story about the impact of FBI Director James Comey’s letter a bout a Hillary Clinton investigation.5 More broadly, the 2016 elections raised some fundamental questions ab out the nature of public opinion, thinking about science and social science facts in a hyper-partisan world, and the role of the media in undermining trust in information. Was the media coverage of the elections biased? Yes. There was a clear bias toward negative coverage. The Shorenstei n Center on Media, Politics a nd Public Policy’s “Research: Media Coverage of the 2016 Election” descri bes the coverage and its consequences.6 Part 2, “News Coverage of the 2016 Presidential Primarie s: Horse Race Coverage Has Consequences,” summarizes the primary coverage: Trump received much more coverage than the others, and the coverage was positive while the primary was contested and then negative after it was decided. Clinton received more negative coverage than Sanders, but Sande rs received little coverage. Character and policy received little coverage co mpared to the horserace coverage (chances of winning). Part 4, “News Coverage of the 2016 General Election: How the Press Failed the Voters,” describes the media coverage of the general election as having an overwhelmingly negative tone and being light on public policy. It also described the steady stream of criticism as having a corrosive effect that erodes trust in leaders and institutions and undermines c onfidence in government and public policy. It also noted that the media framing of cove rage was also distinctive for a false equivalency that misleads voters: the coverage of Clinton a nd Trump had a “virtually identical” negative tone despite the fact that the records of the two candidates were diff erent in relevant ways. For instance, fact-checkers concluded that candi date Trump was far more likely to state non-facts than Clinton. So the equally-negative media cove rage contributed to the environment where candidate and then

PAGE 211

Chapter 8: Public Opinion | 205 President Trump could both not state facts AND accuse the fake news media and Democrats and the intelligence community and ot hers of not stating facts! The 2016 election, Russia’s intervention in U.S. and other elections, and the Trump administration’s accusation of fake media covera ge, have contributed to the proliferation of Internet and social media conspiracy theories a nd fake news stories. Th e identification of the problem of electronic propaganda may be the first step in the organization of a political movement to minimize its negative effects on public opinion, a nd to increase confidence in information which is an essential condition fo r functioning democracies. Go ogle and Facebook are working on logarithmic formulas that can eliminate the hu man factor in assessing whether information received is good or bad informati on, or to label informa tion so that consumers know what they are dealing with. Educators and advocates of civic engagement have also developed news literacy programs to teach students and ci tizens how to differentiate the real and the fake merchandise (political information; news). The News Literacy Project is one of these programs intended to arm the public in an era where the social media ha ve been weaponized for politics, campaigns and elections, and the recruitment of terrorists. 8.7 | Comparative Public Opinion Many of the issues that political scientists have identified as most important to understanding American government and politics are not unique to the United States. The comparative study of public opinion reveals the similarities and differen ces in how the peoples of the world think about politics and government. This is increasingly im portant in a world that is economically and politically wired. 8.71 | The World Values Survey One source of comparative informa tion about public opinion is the World Values Survey The World Values Survey developed from the Eur opean Values Study (EVS) in 1981 which covered only 22 countries worldwide. Ronald Inglehart (The University of Michig an) is a leading figure in the extension of the surveys around the world. The survey was repeated after an interval of about 10 years in then again in a series of “waves” at approximately five year intervals. The WVS was designed to provide a longitudinal and cross-cultural measurement of variation of values. The European origin of the project made the early wa ves of the WVS Eurocentric and notable for their especially weak representation in Africa and Sout h-East Asia. In order to overcome this bias by “Do You Know Who Murd ered Seth Rich?” Check It Out! What do people in other countries think about President Trump?

PAGE 212

206|Chapter 8: Public Opinion becoming more representative, the WVS opened pa rticipation to academic representatives from new countries that met certain minimal survey standa rds. They could then ex change their data with the WVS in return for the data from the rest of the project. As a result the WVS expanded to 42 countries in the 2nd wave, 54 in the 3rd wave and 62 in the 4th wave. Today the WVS is an open source database of the WVS ava ilable on the Internet. The Secretariat of the WVS is based in Sweden. The official archive of the World Valu es Survey is located in [ASEP/JDS] (Madrid), Spain. The global World Values Survey consists of about 250 questi ons resulting in some 400 to 800 measurable variables. One of the variab les measured is Happiness. The comparative “Perceptions of Happiness” are wi dely quoted in the popular media. Does the U.S. get a smiley face? The popular statistics website Nationmaster also publishes a simplified world happiness scale derived from the WVS data. The WVS website allows a user to ge t a more sophisticated level of analysis such as comparison of happiness over time or across socio-economic groups. One of the most striking shifts in ha ppiness measured by the WVS was the substantial drop in happiness of Russians and some other Eastern European countries during the 1990s. 8.72 | The Inglehart Map Another result of the WVS is the Inglehart Map. A number of variables were condensed into two dimensions of cultural variation called the “traditional v. secular-rati onal” and the “survival v. self-expression” dimensions On this basis, the world's countries could be mapped into specific cultural regions because these two dimensions purportedly explain more than 70 percent of the cross-national variance. The WVS also found that trust and democracy were values that crossed most cultural boundaries. 8.73 | Religion and Economic Development The Pew Research Center’s Global Attitudes Proj ect provides data on the relationship between a country’s wealth and its religiosit y. The results s how that countries with a high per capita income tend to score low on religiosity.7 8.8 | Additional Resources One valuable source of information about Am erican public opinion, voting, and political participation is the “American National Election Studies” information available at The Inglehart Map of the World

PAGE 213

Chapter 8: Public Opinion | 207 The website provides audio and video recordings of important public speeches—including the “t op 100” American speeches. See, for example, the famous Goldwater Speech delivered at the Republican Party Convention in 1964. 8.81 | In the Library Asher, Herbert. 2001. Polling and the Public: What Every American Should Know Washington, DC: CQ Books. Clem Brooks and Jeff Manza. 2007. Why Welfare States Persist: The Importance of Public Opinion in Democracies Chicago: University of Chicago Press. Katherine Cramer Walsh. 2007. Talking About Race: Community Dialogues and the Politics of Difference Chicago: University of Chicago Press. Robert Eisinger. 2003. The Evolution of Presidential Polling Cambridge University Press. Robert Erikson, et al. 1994. Statehouse Democracy: Public Opinion and Policy in the American States Cambridge University Press. Robert Erikson, Michael Mackuen, and James Stimson. 2002. The Macro Polity Cambridge University Press. Robert S. Erikson and Kent L. Tedin. 2006. American Public Opinion: Its Origins, Content, and Impact Eighth Ed. Longman. George Gallup. The Gallup Poll Public Opinion Scholarly Resources, published annually. Gallup, George, and Saul Rae. 1968. The Pulse of Democracy New York: Greenwood Press. John Hibbing and Elizabeth Theiss-Morse. 2002. Stealth Democracy: American’s Beliefs about How Government Should Work Cambridge University Press. Darrell Huff. 1993. How to Lie With Statistics W.W. Norton. Helen Ingram, et al (Eds). 2004. Me diating Effect of Public Opin ion on Public Policy: Exploring the Realm of Health Care. State University of New York Press. Paul Lavrakas and Michael J. Traugott. 2000. Election Polls, the News Media and Democracy Chatham House. Walter Lippman. 1922. Public Opinion Accessed at Moore, David W. 1992. The Superpollsters: How They Measure and Manipulate Public Opinion in America Four Walls Eight Windows. Moore, David W. 2008. The Opinion Makers Boston: Beacon Press.

PAGE 214

208|Chapter 8: Public Opinion Willem E. Saris and Paul M. Sniderman (Eds). 2004. Studies in Public Opinion: Attitudes, Nonattitudes, Measurement Error, and Change Princeton University Press. James A. Stimson. 2004. Tides of Consent: How Public Opinion Shapes American Politics Cambridge University Press, 2004. Jeffrey Stonecash. 2003. Political Polling: Strategic Information in Campaigns Rowman and Littlefield. Keith Warren. 2001. In Defense of Public Opinion Polling Westview Press. Robert Weissberg. 2002. Polling, Policy, and Public Opinion Palgrave. 1 Statistical Abstract of the United States, 1997 (Washington, DC: Government Printing Office, 1997), 1011. 2 Survey Methods: Results are based on telephone interv iews with 1,010 national adults, aged 18 and older, conducted Sept. 14-16, 2007. For results based on the to tal sample of national adults, one can say with 95% confidence that the margin of sampling error is 3 percentage points In addition to sampling error, question wording and practical difficulties in conducting surveys can introduce error or bias into the findings of public opinion polls. 3 Note that to get 500 complete responses it may be necessary to make thousands of phone calls. 4 tion-Resources/Reports.aspx 5 Daniel Kurtzleben “Pollsters Find ‘At Best Mixed Evidence’ Comey Letter Swayed Election,” NPR (May 5, 2017). Accessed at 6 Thomas Patterson, “Research: Medi a Coverage of the 2016 Election,” Shorenstein Center on Media, Politics and Public Policy (September 7, 2016). Accessed at earch-media-coverage-2016-election/ 7

PAGE 216

9.0 | Name Have you ever been in a political discussion, debate, or perhaps even a heated argume nt where one person objected statement by responding not what I mean by conser vative (or liberal)? If so, th en join the club. G ood political discussion s often have to be paused when it becomes clear that the participants do not agree on the meanings of the terms that are central to the discuss ion. Ideologies are such conversation stoppers b ecause familiar terms su ch as conservative, liberal, populist, socialist and fascist are often used without agreeing on their meanings. This chapter has t hree main goals: E xplain ing what ideology is and what it does ; Defining the major ideologies that influence American government and politics primarily liberalism, conservatism, libertarianism socialism, and populism. Describing how ideology affects modern American government and politics. Some attention is also paid to that are closely associated with important political movements or actions. They have some of the attributes of an ideology but are typicall y focused on a specific subject : feminism; environmentalism; fundamentalism; and terrori sm 9.1 | What is an ideology An ideology is a belie f system that consists of a relatively co herent set of ideas about government and politics AND the public policies that are intended to implement the ideas or achieve the goals A n ideology is a belief system that consists of a set of ideas on a broad range of issues as opposed to a single belief about a single issue. The belief system can help people make sense of the world around them. images constitu te an ideology a way to simplify, 1 Individuals who are daily bombarded with information can use ideology to help make sense of it. When people read about a terrible cr ime or crime statistics, ideology can provide a ready made explanation for the cause of the criminal behavior as well as a predisposition to support a liberal or conservative public policy response to crime. A person who sees video of police officers beati ng someone on the streets on Los Angeles or elsewhere is apt to use ideology to provide a handy mental image of whether the use of force is "A conservative is a man with two perfectly good legs who, however, has never learned how to walk forward." Franklin Delano Roosevelt, 32 nd President of the United States liberal friends is not that they are ignorant, but that they know so much Ronald Reagan, 40 th President of the United States

PAGE 217

justified or a case of police brutality. A person who reads about the latest data on unemployment can use ideology t o provide a framework for thinking that the unemployment rate is too high or too low. A person who thinks about taxes is apt to use ideology to conclude that taxes are too high or too low without having to spend a great deal of time learning about economi c policy. And finally, individuals who view actual force. The second part of an ideolog y is its action component. Ideologies include publ ic policies that are intended to act on ideas or goals. In fact, the commitment to action differentiates an ideology from a philos ophy. For example, p olitical philosophy is the study of fundamental questio ns about human nature, politics and government, rights such as liberty and equality law justice and what constitutes a good or moral public order. P olitical philosophers examine questions about the legitimacy of government; the differe nce between power and authority; the nature of freedom and equality; civic duties and obligations; and the nature and scope of go vernment power to limit individual liberty. The adherents of an ideology are committed to specific sets of values and to acting to achieve them i n the realm of politics and government. 9.12 | A Coherent Set of Ideas: Human Nature and the Role of Government An ideology is not just a set of ideas it is a coherent set of ideas. This means that the components of an ideology should be consistent with one another. One idea should not conflict with others. For example, ideologies typically include beliefs about human nature and beliefs about the appropriate role for g overnment. In terms of human nature, an ideology can describe human nature as basically 1) good or bad; and 2) fixed or flexible. The belief that human nature is basic ally good means that people are expected to do the right thing because they have a natura l sense of right and wrong and will generally do what is right. The belief that human nature is basically bad means that people are by nature self interested, that evil is part of human nature and therefore people will often do wrong The belief that hum abilities are determined at birth: intelligence, aptitudes, and character are a matter of abilities ca n be developed by family, religion, culture, tradition, and education: intelligence, aptitudes, and character are a matter of nurture. Beliefs about the determinants of human behavior are of great political importance because they shape beliefs about the b est form of government (e.g., whether democracy will work), the Think a bo ut It! Watch the trailer for the 1938 film Angels with Dirty Faces What do you think the film says about human nature?

PAGE 218

appropriate role of government (e.g., limited or broad), and they shape public policies. For instance, they determine criminal justice policies, particularly whether sentencing policies should emphasize punishment or rehabilitation. James Madison is called the architect of the American system of government h e designed the elaborate system of institutional checks and balances He believed that people were by nature self interested and needed to have their ambitions checked. Thomas Jefferson wrote extensively about human nature, specifically about the question whether humans were self interested egoists (individuals whose actions are based solely He believed people had a natural moral sense The question was whether it was based on religion which would justify government support for religion, or a natural sense of moral obligation or conscience. These are some of the most profound questions abo ut human nature and social or political behavior In a June 13, 1814 Letter to Thomas Law discussed his thoughts on the question artist had he intended man for a social animal wi thout planting in him social interest, self love, or egoism, 2 In his First Inaugural Address (delivered March 4, 1861), President Lincoln spoke about human nature when he closed his Address with the hope that the divisiveness of the believed that without such appeals to our good nature, appeals to the worse angels of our nature would result in division, discord, and violence. An ideology is inconsistent if it includes positive and negative views of human nature, or if it includes both fixed and flexible views of human nature. It is harder to determine whether an ideology has consistent views on the role of government because ideologies include ideas about the appropriate size of government and the appropriate use of government power. S ize refers to small or big government ; u se refers to the purposes of government. With the notable exception of libertarianism, ideologies typically support small government for some purposes and big government for others. For example, modern conservatives support big government for national security morals regulation, and crime but small government for regulating business. L iberals support big government to regulate business and to expand social and economic equality but small government to regulate morality. Political debates tend to focus on the size of government: which individual, political party or ideology supports big government and which sup ports small governmen t. The focus on size overlooks the importance o f th e role of government what government power is actually being use d for Think About It! Are humans Hobbesian creatures who are violent by nature? The Myth of Violence say about human nature?

PAGE 219

9.13 | The Meaning of Terms L iberal ism and conservatism are the two labels that are most commonly attached to individuals, political parties, interest groups, the media public policies, and government of ficials including judges. T he fact that they are very familiar terms does not mean that their meanings are very clear. The absence of shared definitions of important political concepts such as freedom, order, justice, conservatism, and liberal ism is problematic. A shared political vocabulary is important in a democracy where voters are expected to make informed dec isions. Democracy works best when citizens know the meanings of the words use d to describe government and politics. Developing shared understandings of conservatism and liberalism is complicated by the fact that they have changed a great deal over time. Id eologies are dynamic, not static. W hat it means to be a conservative or a li beral changes over time. 9.14 | The Functions of Ideology In politics as in economics and sports, organization increases effectiveness. I deologies organize interests. Ideologies can increase the effectiveness of individuals and ideas by organizing them in order to maximize their impact on public policy. In this respect, ideologies serve a purpose that is similar to political parties and interest groups. But ideologies both unite people and divide them. Ideologies do bring people together to work for shared ideas but they also move people apart by dividing them into opposing camps: believers and non believers. The fact that ideologies both unite and divide, increase political coop eration and political conflict, is one reason why Americans are so ambivalent about ideology, why they have conflicting feelings about ideology. The ambivalent feelings about ideology can be traced to the earliest days of the republic when the Founders war Federalist Number 9 Hamilton Federalist Number 10 Madison described how to into competing camps that fight har d for their views rather than working to ward the common good. The later chapters feelings of efficacy, the belief that individual participation in politics matters because it can make a difference Ideology can play a similar role because it unites and organizes like minded people to work on behalf of shared ideas. 9.2 | The Major Isms The range of ideological debates in the U.S. is very limited compared to other democracies. American politics is practically limited to liberalism and conservatism. There are occasional references to other ideologies such as libertarianism, radicalism, socialism, and fascism, but these ideologies are for the most part outside the

PAGE 220

mainstream of political debate o r they are considered the more extreme elements within liberalism or conservatism. The more extremist ideologies of the left and right ends of the political spectrum are not usually part of political discourse. In this sense, the two ideology system mirro rs the two party system: both present voters with a limited range of political choices. Liberalism and conservatism have changed a great deal over time. In the early 1800s, the conservative party was the Federalist Party which advocated a stron g federal government and the liberal party was the Jeffersonian Republicans, which advocated expansion of the federal government. S ince the mid 1960s four major issues ha ve consistently divided conservatives and liberals: National Security Policy. Conservatives have generally been stronger supporters of n ational defense than liberals. This was the case during the Cold War and it has continued during the War on Terror. Cri me Policy. Conservatives have consistently supported g etting tough on crime by strengthening the police and p unishment as the main goal of sentencing Liberals have consistently supported the expansion of due process ri ghts of suspects and rehabilitation as a main goal of sentencing Moral Regulatory Policy. Conservatives have consistently support ed moral regulat ory policies related to abortion pornography, sexual behavior, marriage, and the establishment of religion. L iberals have consistently support e d moral deregulatory policies Economic Policy Conservatives have been more consistently pro business and anti tax. Liberals have generally been more pro labor and more supportive of government regulation of business. 9.30 | Conservatism: Traditional and Modern This is a conservative era in American politics. Conservatism has been the dominant, but not exclusive, force in national politics since the late 1960s T he notable exception is the reaction to the Watergate scandal in the mid 1970s. However, conservat ism is not monolithic. It might be said that wherever two or more conservatives are gathered together the discussion invariably turns to who is the real, true conserv ative. The following describes the two main strains of conservatism: traditional conservatism (during the period from the 1930s until the mid 1960s) and modern conservatism (from the mid 1960s until today). There are three main differences between traditional and modern conservatism their views on change, ideology, and the role of gove rnment. 9. 31 | Views on Change Traditional conservatism is closest to the original meaning of the word conservative, which is derived from the Latin meaning to conserve by preserving, keeping, or protecting traditional beliefs, values, customs, or ways of doing things. Traditional conservatives defend the status quo against radical or revolutionary change or the assumption that all change is reform (good change). Edmund Burke (1729 1797), the

PAGE 221

Edmund Burke, 1771 Irish British political philosopher, is considered the father of traditional conservatism. He did not oppose change. In fact, he argued that a government without a means of changing lacked the necessary means for its own survi val. Howeve r, Burke preferred slo w or incremental change and opposed radical or revolutionary chang e. M odern conservatism is a much stronger advocate for change In fact, some conservatives call themselves radical conservatives. A radical is someone who advocates ba sic, even revolutionary change. Radicals can be left wing or right wing When President Reagan called his administration a bunch of radicals he reminded voters that he was a movement conservative a person who was committed to the cause of overturning liberal social, economic, and defense policies. In contrast to traditional conservatism, which rejected radical or revolutionary change of the right or left, modern conservatism advocates major, even radical or revolutionary ch ange. However, the change is usually described as radical change from the liberal status quo, change that will bring the country back to the basics. This usually means that the solution for many of the contemporary social, economic, and political problems is to return to the recurring conservative theme is one of the main points of the Tea Party movement. icism about change is related to th e belief in the importance of order. Traditional conservatives consider order the necessary condition for achieving or maintaining other important values such as individual freedom private property, and justice and w ithout good order, these other values and valuables are unlikely to be attained. Traditional conservatives believe that order can be created and maintained by social institutions (family, schools, churches, and civic organization) as well as by government In this sense, traditional conservatives are not anti government. They believe that government has a responsibility to maintain domestic order to control crime, to preserve traditional values through moral regulatory policies, and to provide national se curity from foreign threats. But traditional conservatives believe that the primary responsibility for these activities lies with the private sector, the civil society, rather than the public sector (the government). The Burkean emphasis on order, social i nstitutions, and civic responsibility made traditional conservatism less committed to other values such as individualism, individual liberty, and equality. A leading American traditional conservative is Russell Kirk (1918 1994). The Russell Kirk Center provides a good description of traditional conservative principles. They include belief in natural law, hierarchy, the connection between property rights and freedom, faith in custom an d tradition, and skepticism of change. 9. 32 | Views on Ideology The second different between traditional and modern conservatism is that modern conservatism is much more ideological an ideology that will sol ve the problems created by liberalism. The term movement conservative refers to those conservatives who consider themselves part of an organized cause to work for conservative ideas. These conservatives are part of a cause. Traditional

PAGE 222

conservatives were t o a certain extent anti ideological. They considered ideology problematic because it was extremism rather than moderation and traditional conservatives were in the Aristotelian and Burkean traditions that emphasized conservatism as moderation rather than e xtremism. The w ord i deology was originally coined to refer to the scientific study of ideas It was originally used to describe how the systematic study of ideas could lead to a better underst anding of the political world the way that science increased understanding of the natural world. But by the middle of the 20 th Century the word ideology was used to describe the ideas that were used to get political power to shape public policy and to justify government action In fact, b eginning in the latter 1950s, sociologists including Nan Aron, S eymour M. Lipset, Edward Shils, and Daniel Bell warned that in modern societies ideology was actually assuming the role that religion play ed in traditional societies. They did not mean this as a compliment. T hey considered ideology at least partly an irrational, unthinking, and ther efore unreasonable force in a world where modern governments had become very powerful and even totalitarian Their warnings abou t the dangers presented by modern ideology came from recent political experience. It was a reaction against the ideologies of the left (Communism in the Soviet Union and China) and the right during the pe riod from the 1930s to the 1960s. These critics of ideology came to be called neoconservatives or new conservatives. 9. 33 | Views on the Role of Government The third difference between traditional and modern conservatives concerns the role of government. Modern conservative support for change and ideology has changed conservative thinking about the role of governme nt. Conservatives are not antigovernment or even advocates of small government as much as they oppose what government has been doin g. Specifically, conservatives oppose public policies that promote egalitarianism, social welfare, the due process model of justice, and the de regulation of morals. The claim that co nservatives are not anti government can be supported by examining conserva tive views on the four major policy areas that have consistently divided conservatives and liberals: national security; crime; economics; and moral regulatory policy. The conservativ e position is not anti government in these four areas. Conservatives are pr o government on national security, crime, regulation of morals, and even, to a lesser extent, economics. There a libertarian strain within conserv atism that is consistently anti government but mainstream conservatism does not take the libertarian positio n on the major policies. principles and positions taken by leading conservative organizations such as The Heritage Foundation The American C onservative Party and The American Conservative Union The Heritage Fo undation describes itself as a leading voice for conservative ideas such as individual freedom, limited government, traditional values, and strong national defense. government in the sense that they more consistentl y advocate limited government. The principles include natural rights and individual liberty, the belief that law should be used to support liberty and mediate and law e

PAGE 223

Ideologies include a commitment to acting on values. Conservatives use both the government and the private sector to achieve their goals, but they are more likely than liberals to support the private sector delivery of goods and services The free market plays a central role as a means to achieve conservative goals. In fact, the market model is often presented as an alternative to a statist or government model for organizing society. The Engl ish political philosopher Adam Smith developed the marketplace model in This book, which was published in 1776, the same year as the Declaration of Independence, is one of the most infl uential books ever written. Smith advocated an alternative to mercantilism, the conventional economic model of the day that the government should direct economic activity for the wealth of the empire. Smith described an economic system where the prices of goods were determined by the interactions of buyers and sellers in a competitive marketplace rather than the government. Over time, however, the logic of the marketplace model has been extended beyond economics to other, non economic areas of society. For example, the economic free marketplace of goods has been expanded to politics where the free market place of ideas is based on the same logic as the economic free market. This is controversial because the marketplace model assumes that goods and services should be available on the basis of the ability to pay but some things are valuable even though they are not highly valued in the economic marketplace. The philosophe r Michael Sandel worries about applying the logic of the m arketplace to more and more non economic settings. Listen to his argument about what money cannot buy and should not buy. Do you agree with him? What are some of the consequences of thinking about citizens as consumers? 9.40 | Liberalism A standard dictionary definition of a liberal is a person who believes in individua l liberty. But defining liberalism as an ideology that v alues individual liberty is not very helpful because conservatives also profess a belief in ind ividual liberty. Furth ermore, l iberals, like conservatives, value good public order. So it is more accurate to say that l iberals and conservatives place different values on individual liberty and order. In general, l iberals tend to place a higher priority on liberty than order while conservatives generally tend to place a higher priority on order more than liberty. Defining liberalism is complicated for some of the same reasons that conservatism is complicated: liberalism is a set of ideas not just one idea; the set of ideas has c hanged over time; and liberalism is not monolithic The t wo main strains of liberalism that are examined here are classical liberalism and modern liberalism PBS Newshour ( June 11, 2012 ) june12/makingsense_06 11.html

PAGE 224

9. 41 | Classical Liberalism Classical liberalism is rooted in the ideas of the English political philosopher John Locke (1632 1704) Locke the thinking of the American founders His words about the importance of life, liberty, and property found their way into t he Declaration of Independence. Locke emphasized the following five ideas: Reason. Humans should use their reasoning capacity to understand the natural and political world rather th an merely relying on faith, custom, or tradition in order to organize society. Individualism. The importance of the individual as a political actor relative to groups, classes, or institutions included an emphasis on legal equality. Liberty. Freedom is val ued more than order, or relative to obedience to authority. Social Contract Theory of Government. Individuals decide to leave the state of nature and create government based on the consent of the governed and created by a social contract. Property Rights. Economic rights (to property and contract) are related to political rights. The shift is toward a private sector economy rather than one run by the government is an aspect of the commitment to limited government. Classical liberalism originated as a pol itical theory that limited government. During much of the 20 th Century classical liberalism was actually considered conservative because it was associated with the defense of property rights and the free market and opposition to government regulation of t he economy and the expansion of the social welfare state. 9. 42 | Modern Liberalism The main difference between classical liberals and modern liberals is that modern liberals abandoned the emphasis on limited government as the best way to protect individual rights. Modern liberals us ed government to achieve greater equality liberty and income security Equality. The various c ivil rights movements of the 19 th 20 th and 21 st centuries expanded equality for racial and ethnic minorities and women. Most recently, the gay rights movement has advocated for greater legal equality under the law. Egalitarianism became a more important goal for modern liberals. Laws were used to limit discrimination. Liberty. Modern liberals also used law to protect civil liberties Radical political speech. Limits on government censorship. The right to privacy and deregulation of morals. Income Security. Modern liberals used government policies to pass social welfare programs (e.g., social security; Medicare; unemployment insurance; workers compensation). These policies were designed to increase income security for the young, the old, and the sick. Support for the creation of the social welfare state explains why modern liberals are called social welfare liberals to differentiate them from classical liberals.

PAGE 225

civilized community, against his will, is to prevent harm to others. His own good, others. But it does me no injury for my n eighbor to say there are twenty Gods or no Nolan chart, 2d political spectrum. Diagonal line indicates classical 1d left right political spectrum. One of the founders of modern liberalism is the 19 th Century English political philosopher John Stuart Mill. In On Liberty and Representative Government Mill explained a principle or rule for determining what government should be allowed to do, and what it should not be allowed to do, in a political system based on limited government. The rule has come to be called Th e Harm Principle. In fact, Mill was merely restating the liberal idea developed by Thomas Jefferson (and John Locke before him): The Harm Principle is libertarian in the sense that it limits government power over individuals. Mill accepted the basic principles of classical liberalism, part icularly individual freedom, but he was more supportive of using government power to protect liberty and to promote equality. The origins of social welfare liberalism can be traced to this shift toward greater reliance on government to provide economic and social security. In modern American politics, liberals generally support government regulation to promote equality and economic security the social welfare state while conservatives generally support government regulation to promote law and order, nation al security, and morality the national security and moral regulatory state. One indication that this is a conservative era in American politics is the fact that liberalism has become a pejorative term, a negative term. Liberalism has been stigmatized as national defense, for undermining traditional values, and for being unduly critical of capitalism. In fact, the word liberal is so out of political favor today that liberals call the mselves progressives. Progressive is a euphemism for liber al and Progressivism is a strain of liberalism. Think About It! Why are conservatives happier than liberals? dec11/makingsense_12 09.html

PAGE 226

9.50 | Libertarian Libertarianism is a simpler ideology than either conservatism or liberalism. Simply stated, libertarians value freedom and believe that individua ls and groups can organize life with only minimal government. Libertarians have a positive view of human nature. The belief tha t government threatens freedom that more government means less freedom is reflected in The Lib ertarian Party libertarian. Libertarians believe in minimal government: government should be limited to doing what is necessary to protect individuals from being harmed by others. Libertarians value freedom more than order, but they believe that order actually emerges from the competition of the marketplace. This is the basis of libertarian support for laissez faire policies in economic, poli the interaction of buyers and sellers, to operate without government intervention, regulation, or control. Libertarians rely on the private sector to produce order and prosperity. In politics, libertarians oppose using government power to promote values such as equality, patriotism, or morality. They also oppose immigration policies that limit the fr ee movement of people across national borders. This is why libertarians can be conservative on some issues (opposed to using law to promote eq uality or create social welfare or to regulate business) and liberal on others (opposed to moral regulatory policy and opposed to laws promoting patriotism). L ibertarians take seriously the ha rm principle as a guide for limited government. The harm principle is libertarian insofar as it considers the only legitimate use of g overnment power is prevent ing individuals f rom being harmed by others. Harm means physical harm to person or property or interests. The harm principle does not allow paternalistic legislation, using laws to prevention people from harming themselves by smoking, drinking alcohol or using drugs, eatin g unhealthy food, riding motorcycles without a helmet, or riding in a car without a seatbelt 9.60 | Other Isms 9.61 | Socialism and Communism Socialism is the belief that economic power is the basis of political power and that economic equality is essential for political equality. The belief that economic inequality causes political inequality provides the socialist justification for using government to actively promote equality through extensive government regulation or even government control of the economy. In order to achieve political equality, the government as redistributes resources through progressive taxation and social welfare program, at a min imum, and government control of the economy (both the means of production and the distribution of goods and services) at a maximum. Karl Marx is the most famous figure associated with socialism becaus e he developed a comprehensive, systematic analysis of the relationship between economics and politics, thereby giving earlier socialist thinking an ideology or world view. rise and fall of socialism as an econom ic model read

PAGE 227

Like conservatism and liberalism, there are many variations of socialism. In fact, in American politics the term socialist is often used in a ic Product is a measure of how socialistic the country is. Socialists do support expansive government. Bu t so do non socialists. For example, the sion included the infamous Troubled Asset Relief Program (or TARP) of 2008 and the Emergency Economic Stabilization Act of 2008 which provided government bailout s f or financial services companies and car manufacturers (GM and Chrysler) These policies were socialistic only in the sense that they increased government intervention in the private sector economy. But t he bailouts were not socialistic in the sense that they were not aimed at prom oting greater economic equality: critics called them Wall Street bailouts that Main Street would have to pay for. The key to identifying socialist policies that result in big government, as opposed to non socialist policies that resul t in big government, is the social policies promote egalitarianism: economic equality. Communism can be understood as an extreme version of socialism. It takes the econo mic, political, and social sectors to the point where there is no distinction between a private sector and the public sector. Communism is totalitarian in the sense that it advocates total government power over society. Indeed, the word totalitarian means total control with no distinction between the public sector and the private sector. In a totalitarian system, t he government is authorized to use its powers and laws to regulate individual behavior, family policy, business and labor, as well as all aspect s of social life. 9. 62 | Anarchism In terms of the size of government, anarchism is at the opposite end of the ideological spectrum from communism. The key to understanding anarchism is the fact that the Greek origin of the term m all forms of government because governments by definition have the power to coerce individuals to join a community or require obedience to laws Government use force even the force of law to ensure compliance rather than merely a llowing individuals to freely, voluntarily join a political community Anarchists believe that government is not necessary because people can use their capacity for reasoning to decide whether to freely a nd voluntarily agree to live in orderly and just societies without government requiring them to do so. Anarchists have a basically positive view of human nature which contrasts with Thomas Hobbes who believed that humans were by nature selfish, and the str ong would take advantage of the weak Anarchists believe that people will learn from experience that some rules are necessary for peaceful and prospe rous c oexistence and therefore will voluntarily accept rules that provide good order and justice without th e force of law Anarchists consider government power to compel individuals to ob ey the law illegitimate because it violates as violent radicals who oppose government policies promoting international trade and globalism. Think About It! American Sniper

PAGE 228

9. 63 | Populism identify with or advocate on behalf of the common person who they depict as being unfairly tr eated by the rich the powerful or some other privileged elites who are working against them In modern American politics, p opulist movements are essentially anti establishment protest s on behalf of the average American, the blue collar worker s, the middle class, the silent majority, the forgotten pe rson, or even the poor Charles Barkley, a member of the National Basketball Association (NBA) Hall of Fame, expressed populis t sentiment when he ople screwing poor people Some of the Founders worried a great deal about what is today called populism. In Federalist No. 1 Alexander Hamilton warned about popular leaders who, behind the then ended up a s tyrants. And Aaron Burr famously told the Senate that if the Constitution ever expired sacrilegious hands of the demagogue or the usurper agonies would be witnessed on the floor of the Senate. But American ideas about democracy and popul ar sovereignty have made populism a recurring t heme in the American political experience President Andrew Jackson was a populist who worked to bring the average person into a politic of society. In the latter 19 th and early 20 th Century agrarian populists defended rural /agrarian interests from the urbanization and industrialization that occurred with the Ind ustrial Revolution. Populism often emerges as a reaction against major social, economic, or cultural changes ( e.g., immigration) or economic crises (e.g., panics, depressions, or recessions) The cultural revolution of the 1960s spawned right wing populists such as George Wallace the Governor of Alabama and third party presidential candidate. Listen to populist campaign message makin g fun of northern urban elites including the Washington press Because populists generally promote a more equal distribution of resources and power, the growing economic inequality in the country has fueled a rise of populist sentiments. The main targets of m odern left wing populism are economic elites, principally the finance industry represented by Wall Street (e.g., ) and the multinational corporate interests that have promoted globalization and the interests of management rather than labor. immigration, or at least the demand that the feder borders and enforce immigration laws and opposition to efforts to change the traditional definition of marriage as a union between one man and one woman. T he Tea P arty ake back the Constitution is a populist protest against the establishment elites. Feminism is a social or political movement that strives for equal rights for women. It is multi faceted movement that has political, economic, social, legal, and cultural compon ents. The Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy defines feminism and describes it

PAGE 229

by paying special attention to its various dimensions F eminist theory describes and analyzes gender differences (and similarities) in order to better understand gender differences and gender inequality. From the perspective of political science, feminist theory is an attempt to explain relevant facts, include gender behavior, sexuality, and inequality. O ne relevant fact is the different gender political power relations. Feminism describes and critiques these political power relations. As such, feminist theory often objecti fication, and patriarchy is a multidisciplinary academic field that includes anthropology, communications, economics, history, philosophy, political science, and sociology. Environmentalism is a movement whose members advocate protecting the natural environment. Environmentalism is an e xample of modern issue politics advanced by individuals policy entrepreneurs who take up a cause and organizations (interest groups). The environmental movement began to have an im pact on national politics in the 1960s and 1970s when they put the environme Senator Gaylord Nelson founded Earth Day on April 22, 1970 T he Environmental Protection Agency also was created in 1970. The EPA is the primary federal government agency responsible for providing clean air and clean water. Why is the environmental movement political? Why is it controversial to provide clean air and clean water? Because doing so involves the allocation of scarce resources. Protecting the environment costs money and entails government regulation of business and consumer behavior. This explains the debate over g lobal warming Global warming is an example of an environmental issue that has become controversial because addressing it will require governmental regulation. Fundamentalism is not usually considered an ideology the way conservatism, liberalism, and libertarianism are ideologies. However, fundamentalism is an idea which has an important impact on modern American politics and the politics of other countries. Fundamentalism is usually defined as a movement within a religious denomination a moveme nt that reacts against modernity by advocating a return to the basics or the fundamentals of a particular faith. Religious fundamentalism is evident in most of the major religions of the world today Christian, Islamic and Judaic fundamentalists advocate a return to basic articles of faith, parti cularly those tenets of faith that are expressed or revealed in sacred texts such as the Bible or Koran Fundamentalism is not limited to religious movements. It can be secular as well. From a social science perspective, fundamentalism is a reaction against modernity, particularly science, secularism and value relativism. Secularism is the belief that government and politics should be separate from religion, that religion is appropriate for the private (social) sphere, not the public (governmental) sphere. In the U.S., secularism state. Relativism is the belief that values are subjective and conditiona l rather than universal and objectively true. Fundamentalists advocate restoring the traditional or

PAGE 230

Number of terrorist incidents by country, in 2009 fundamental belief that morals and values are universal truths that are not subject to evolving standards of modernity. In the U.S. political fundamentali sts advocate return ing to the founding values, political principles, and founding documents. Legal or constitutional fundamentalists adv ocate O riginalism, the belief that judges should decide cases based on the original intentions of those who wro te the words of the Constitution rather than their interpretation of the words or the modern meaning s of the words. R eligious fundamentalists and secular fundamentalists tend to be conservative insofar as they work to retu rn to or restore the values o f the founding era 9. 67 | Terrorism Terrorism is hard to define in a way that is universally accepted or which differentiates between acceptable and unacceptable uses of political violence. The old saying that one applies to contem porary analyses of political violence A basic definition of terrorism is the use of violence or the threat of violence to intimidate or coerce a people, principally for political purposes. Terrorism creates a climate of fear in a population in order to a chieve a particular political objective. U.S. law does define terrorism. Title 118 of the U.S. Code defines international 4 It defines domest ic terrorism a government by inti midation or coercion; or to affect the conduct of a government by

PAGE 231

A n extremely broad range of individuals, political organiza tions and movements have used terrorism : leftist and rightist; conservative and liberal; nationalistic and internationalist movements; religious and secular ; defenders of the status quo and revolutionaries; populist s and elitist s; and even governments (th ough state institutions such as armies, intelligence services, and the police). Since the terrorist attacks of 9/11, the government has devoted a great deal of attention to terrorism. In fact, the Federal Bureau of Investigation describes protecting against terrorism its top priority. Terrorism involves the use of political violence but not all political violence is terrorism. It is important to differentiate between legitimate and illegitim ate uses of political violence. During the colonial era, mob actions were part of the American political experience with direct, participatory democracy. The Boston Tea Party in December 1773 was direct action intended to protest against British policies a nd to Rebellion in the winter of 1786 and 1787 was an armed uprising by citizenry who demanded that the government be more responsive to the economic problems of average Americans who facing mortgage foreclosures. The Tea Party movement played an important role in the 2010 mid term elections. Conservatives and Republican candidates for national and state offices did very well. One controversy surrounding the Tea Party movement is the fact that individual members of the movement and Tea Party groups either implied or explicitly stated that the American political tradition includes demanding change through means other than the ballot box and r egular elections. These alternative methods include violence and the threat o f violence. The reminder that the American political tradition includes famous examples of when political violence w as accepted as a legitimate way to achieve political change or to oppose advocates of political change. Members of the Tea Party movement and advocates of gun rights, such as the National Rifle Association, remind the American public and government officials that the Declaration of Independence explained why indiv iduals or organizations can take up arms when the government is tyrannical, exceeds its authority, or is not responsive to demands. 5 9.60 | Why only two major ideologies in the U.S.? Individual freedom of choice is a powerful idea in American cul ture In economics, freedom of choice means a preference for a free marketplace of goods and services where consumers choose what to buy based on their preferences The government does not decide what goods and services are available in the marketplace. It is considered a good thing for economic consumers to have a broad range of options from which to choose when purchasing a car, a house, health care, an insurance pla n, or any other good or service. Having lots of consumer choice is also believed to create competition to continually improve products and services. Americans consider economic choice a good thing An d economic consumers certainly have a great variety of goods and services from which to choose. At one time, television viewers had only three broadcast networks to watch : CBS, NBC, and ABC Now there is a seemingly endless menu of viewing choices At one time, car buyers were mainly limited to the big three American automobile manufacturers: Chevrol et, Ford, and Chrysler. Today car buyers can also choose from many foreign manufacturers Why is there so much more economic

PAGE 232

consumer freedom of choice than political freedom of choice ? Why are economi c consumers presented with so many choices of goods and services but political consumers are for all practical purposes limited to choosing either a co nservative or a liberal, a Republican or Democrat? Must individuals, issues, and parties be either conservative or a liberal? In a nation of more than 300 million people, is it possible to fit ever yone i nto only two boxes? T wo dimensional frame work s for thinking about ideologies and political partie s are useful because they help organize and simplify the political world by sorting or categorizing information. But simplifying t he political world by labeling everything as either conservative or liberal can also be a simplification that distort s political reality. The political world is actually multi dimensional, not two dimensional. The limitations of the conservative and libera l framework have prompted searches for ways of thinking about ideology that provide for more than two options. One alternative framework that provides more than two categories is the cal Quiz It makes a distinction between views on economic issues and views on personal issues. Take the quiz to see which of four ideological labels best describes you. What do you think of the quiz? D o you think the results accurately label you? Do you think the quiz is biased toward a particular ideology? The Pew Research Center quiz that provide s more political colors t han red and blue. Do you think the results accurately label you? Another familiar two dimensional framework for simplifying American politics is the Red State (conservative and Republican) and Blue State (liberal and Democratic) framework It describes states and regions of the country based on voting beh avi or and public policies. T hese ideological frameworks are scientific in the sense that they are based on social science. Cognitive scientists have also made important contributions to Mora l Politics ( 2016 ) explains thinking about politics by contrasting strict father morality with feel good liberalism Individuals who identify with the strict father morality believe that hierarchical authority is important whereas individuals who identify w ith feel good liberalism value egalitarian toleration. T able 9.61 understanding of the conservative hierarchy of value preferences Lakoff who predicted Donald Trump your brain on Trump Ac cording to Lakoff, liberals (that is, progressives and Democrats) think of human behavior in terms of logi c and reason. T herefore they study political science, law, economic theory ( but not business), and public policy. Conservatives think of human behavior in terms of emotion, clear images of right and wrong, and compelling narratives. The refore conservatives study marketing. Donald Trump, the master of marketing and was more emotional and narrative than logical

PAGE 233

reasoning. But both proved to be winning campaign strategie s because their emotion and narrative appeal reinforced some conservative hierarchies of values Right over Wrong God over Man Man over Nature Strong over Weak Rich over Poor Employers over Employees America over Other Countries Western Christian Civilization over Non Western Civilizations Men over Women White over Non white 9. 70 | Is Ideology A Good Influence or A Bad Influence ? It is not easy to provide simple definitions of complex terms such as conservatism and liberalism and describe their role in American government and politics It is even harder to assess whether their role is positive or negative, whether ideologies a re go od or bad influences on government and politics. I t is hard to objectively that is, neutrally or without bias because ideologies are prescriptive rather than descriptive terms. A prescriptive term is a normative or value laden ter m. A prescriptive term is one that has a value judgment about its worth, whether it is desirable or undesirable, whether it is good or bad. A descriptive term is not a normative or value laden term. The following illustrates descriptive and prescriptive st atements that are (mostly) familiar to politics. Descriptive Statements Democracy is government of the people, by the people, and for the people. Freedom is the right to do what you want. Equality means treating everyone the same. Conservatism is an ideology that values social order more than individual liberty. Liberalism is an ideology that values individual liberty more than social order. Socialism is an ideology that values equality. Terrorism is the political use of violence. Prescriptive Statem ents Democracy is a good form of government. Freedom is preferable to slavery. Chocolate is better than vanilla. Conservatism is preferable to liberalism. Liberalism is preferable to conservatism. Capitalism is a good economic system. Socialism threatens freedom. Violence is not a legitimate means to a political end. Terrorism is unacceptable.

PAGE 234

There are too many lawyers and laws in modern American society. It is hard to objectively assess conservatism and liberalism because ideologies are commonly consid ered prescriptive rather than descriptive terms. A prescriptive term is a normative or value laden term. A descriptive term defines or explains without making a value judgment about worth. However, p eople think of conservative or liberal or socialist in prescriptive terms, as good or bad rather than merely as labels that describe different sets of beliefs and programs for acting on them. As a result, c andidates for public office government officials, public policies, and political events are viewed t hrough prescriptive, ideological lenses. Capitalism and democracy are considered good; other economic and political systems are considered bad. Similarly, the Republican and Democratic parties are not merely described, they are assessed as good or bad base d on ideological or policy preferences. Prescriptive terms are biased either for or against something This makes it harder to study them objectively This is particularly the case with terrorism. Studying terrorism is complicated because terrorism is a prescriptive, value laden term. T o call a person a terrorist, or to describe an action as terrorism, is to condemn the person or the action. A descriptive definition of democracy is that it is a political system where people control their government throug h elections or other means But democracy is commonly used in a prescriptive sense: say that democracy is a good form of government is a positive normative statement. To say that democracy is a bad fo rm of government is a negative normative statement. Attaching prescriptive labels to political terms sometimes makes it harder, not easier, to understand what is being described. T he fact that the terms liberal and conservative which are so important for understanding American politics and government, are so often used as prescriptive labels that are attached to individuals, parties, or policies can make it harder to understand American government and politics When thinking about ideology, it is importan t to try to separate the descriptive thinking about the terms from the prescriptive or normative assessment of whether the ideology is good or bad. Doing so will increase the likelihood that ideology the systems of beliefs and policies for acting on them c an increase u nder standing of government and politics and the public policies that emerge from the process. think about it! Are your Red or Blue? http://people

PAGE 235

Chapter 9: Study Questio ns 1. What is the role of religion in ideology? 2. What is ideology? 3. How do liberalism, conservatism, and libertarianism likely influence thinking about stem cell research? 4. Briefly discuss the problems with the conservative and liberal labels. 5. Is ideology good or bad? 6. Describe some of the differences between conservatism and libertarianism. 9. 80 | Summary An ideology is a set of beliefs (or values) and a plan fo r acting on them. Ideologies can be useful because they provide a way for people to try to makes sense of the political world. Ideologies can increase understand ing of politics government, and public policy by simplifying the political world For instance, individuals and ideas and public policies can be organized as either conservative or liberal This simplifies the world of politics. Ideology can also inspire or motivate people to organize to act together to achieve desirabl e goa ls. In this sense, ideologies unite individuals with shared beliefs. But ideologies can also complicate politics. Ideologies divide people and create governments are cr eated to do: solve the problems that the people put on the government agenda. Ideologies also complicate the world by strengthening the tendency to hold tightly to closely held beliefs despite empirical evidence to the contrary. Chapter 9 : Key Terms Ideology Traditional conservatism Modern conservatism Liberal Classical liberalism Terrorism Libertarianism Socialism Communism Anarchism Feminism Environmentalism Fundamentalism Think About It! One way to think about the government the size of government, and big government, is by looking at the number of government employe es. The Office of Personnel Management employment data indicate that the fe deral government has about 2.7 million civilian employees and that in 2017 there were 21.8 million total government employees. The following are the U.S. executive departments with the largest number of employees in 2014. What do they suggest about what th e federal government does? The Department of Defense 723,000 The Department of Veterans Affairs 340,000 The Department of Homeland Security 186,000 The Department of Justice 114,000

PAGE 236

9. 9 | Additional Resources The Center for Voting and Democracy has links to articles related to elections and democracy including voter turnout, links to organizations and ideas related to reforming the electoral system, and analysis of electoral returns. ten questions to place a person on the economic and social ideological spectrums. The Gallup Organiza tion provides historical and current information about American public opinion 9.9 1 | In the Library Carey, George W., et al. 1998. Freedom & Virtue: The Conservative Libertarian Debate Intercollegiate Studies Institute Erikson, Robert 2006. American Public Opinion: Its Origins, Content, and Impact Longman. Flanigan, William 2006. Political Behavior of t he American Electorate Washington, D.C.: CQ Press Goddard, Taegan D. 1998 Yo u Won Now What? How Americans Can Make Democracy Work from City Hall to the White House Scribner Lakoff, George. 2016. Moral Politics: How Liberals and Conservatives Think 3 rd Edition. Chicago: University of Chicago Press. Mara. Gerald M 2008. The Civic Conversations of Thucydides and Plato: Classical Political Philosophy and the Limits of Democracy State Un iversity of New York Press Meese. Edwin 2005. The Heritage Guide to the Constitution Regnery Publishing Stone, Deborah 2008. The Neighbor ? Nation Books Zinn, Howard 2001. Harper 1 Kenneth M. Dolbeare and Linda J. Medcalf. 1988. American Ideologies Today New York: Random House, Inc. p.3. 2 to thomas law/

PAGE 237

3 In The Emerging Republican Majority (New Rochelle, NY: Arlington House, 1969), Kevin P. Phillips predicted the rightward movement in American national politics based on his experience working with 4 5 See are sharron angles 2nd amendment remedies to reids oppression.html

PAGE 238

10.0 | Political Participation The above image of a large public demonstratio n in Washington, D.C., is part of a great tradition of mass public participation in politics that goes back to the colonial days. Do you participate in politics? If so, how have you part icipated in politics? Political participation in a democracy includes voting—but also much more than just voting. One of the ironies of modern American politics is that it is easie r than ever to particip ate in politics in the digital age, but there are also worries that the public is becoming more disengaged or CHAPTER 10: Political Participation Tea Party Protest, Washington, D.C., September 12, 2009

PAGE 239

Chapter 10: Political Participation|233 disillusioned about civi c engagement in politics as a wa y to solve the kinds of problems that people expect government to solve. Stated in the most basic terms, the powe r problem is about government authority over individuals: why can the government, the community or the majority tell someone that they can and cannot do—and pu nish them if they disobey the law? Democratic theory answers this question by descri bing democracy as a form of self-government —people agree to govern themselves as an ac t of self-restraint or self-control. Government of, by, and for the people requires the particip ation of an informed, active, and engaged citizenry. The term civics education refers to a movement to increase public information about the Constitution, the way the political system wo rks, the way government works, and civil discourse—the ways to talk a bout divisive or cont roversial issues that emphasize working toward the formulation of solutions. This chapter examines how voting, elections, and campaigns organize participation in politics a nd government. Political participation is not limited to voting in elections. It includes a br oad range of individual and collective action. The term civic engagement refers to a public that is ac tively engaged in politics and government. It includes voting, participating in campaigns, volunteerism, writing letters to editors, and contacting government officials or working with local government advisory boards. The chapter begins with voting and other forms of political participation. It concludes by providing re sources for “getting” civics edu cation and by providing examples of how to “do” civic engagement. The belief in American Exceptionalism is not limited to conservatives. The National Council for the Social Studies is an organization whose mission is “Preparing Students for College, Care er, and Civic Life.” It issued a 2007 report that seeks to perpetuate “ An Idea Called America ” by promoting civic competence, active citizenry, and participatory democracy through public education about the content, skills, and values associated with American civic engagement.1 10.1 | Voting Voting is just one form of political participa tion. There are many other ways to participate in politics: writing a letter to a newspape r; posting to a Web site; making a campaign contribution; contacting a legi slator; running for office; cam paigning for a candidate; or lobbying government. But voting is the form of po litical participation th at is most closely associated with meeting the re sponsibilities of citizenship beca use voting is an act of selfgovernment. Voters select government official s to represent them and cast votes for or against issues that are on the ballot. There are many other forms of political participation: running for office, making campaign contributi ons, working for a party or candidate or issue, lobbying, or contacting government of ficials about an issue or problem which Think About It! What does taking the electronic pulse of civic engagement i ndicate about the health of American democracy? http://www.pewinternet.or g/2013/04/25/civic-engageme nt-in-the-digital-age/

PAGE 240

234|Chapter 10: Political Participation interests you. Even non-voting— the intentional refusal to part icipate in an election as a protest against the political system or the can didate or party choice s that are available— can be a form of political participation. All these forms of particip ation are components of political science measures of how democratic a political system is. 10.11 | Expanding the right to vote One of the most important developments in the American system of government has been the expansion of the right to vote. Over time politics has become much more democratic. The Founders provided for a rather limited right to vote because they were skeptical of direct democracy and the ability of the masses to make good decisions about public policy or government leaders. In fact, the Founders were divided on how much political participation, including voting, was desirable. The Federalists generally advocated limited participation where only white male property owners could vote. A leading Federalist, Alexander Hamilton, advocated a system of representative government that resembled “a natural aristocracy” that was run by “gentlemen of fortune and ability.”2 The Anti-federalists advocated broader participation. The Anti-federalist author writing under the name The Federal Farmer defined democratic participation as full and equal representation: “full and equal representati on is that in which the interests, feelings, opinions, and views of the people are collected, in such a manner as they would be were all the people assembled.” The Anti-federalist Republicus advocated an American democracy that provided for “fair and equal representation,” wh ich he defined as a condition where “every member of the union have a freedom of suffrage and that every equal number of people have an equal number of representatives.” Over time the right to vote was greatly expanded and the political system became much more democratic. Abraham Lincoln’s Gettysburg Address is a memorable political speech because of what it said about democracy and equality. Lincoln famous ly defined democracy as government of the people, government by the people, and government for the people. He also brought equality back into American political rhetoric by emphasizing the political importance of equality that was first stated so memorably in the Declaration of Independence. The Declaration of Independence as serted that all men were created equal and endowed w ith unalienable rights. The Constitution did not include equality as a political value. It provided for slavery and allowed the states to limit the right to vote. The right to vote was expanded by constitutional amendments and by legislation. The constitutional changes included the following amendments: The 14th Amendment (1868) prohibited states fr om denying to any person with their jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws. “The vote is the most powerful instrument ever devised by man for breaking down injustice and destroying the terrible walls which imprison men because they are different from other men.” Lyndon B. Johnson “Always vote for principle, though you may vote alone, and you may cherish the sweetest reflection that your vote is never lost.” John Quincy Adams

PAGE 241

Chapter 10: Political Participation|235 The 15th Amendment (1870) prohibited states fr om denying the right to vote on the basis of race. The 17th Amendment (1913) provided for direct election of Senators. The 19th Amendment (1920) gave women the right to vote. The 24th Amendment (1964) eliminated the Poll Tax. The 26th Amendment (1971) lowered voting age to 18. One of the most important statutory expansions of the right to vote is the Voting Rights Act of 1965 It made racial discrimination in voti ng a violation of fede ral law; specifically, outlawing the use of literacy tests to qualify to register to vote, and providing for federal registration of voters in areas that had less than 50% of elig ible minority voters registered. The Act also provided for Department of Justi ce oversight of registra tion, and required the Department to approve any change in voting la w in districts that had used a “device” to limit voting and in which less than 50% of the population was registered to vote in 1964. The Civil Rights Act of 1964 is a landmark civil rights stat ute that also expanded the right to vote by limiting racial di scrimination in voting. In addition to these government actions, the political system also developed in ways that expanded the right to vote and made the system more democratic. The emergence of political parties fundamentally changed the American politi cal system. Political parties changed the way the president is chosen by effectively making the popular vote, not the Electoral College, determine who wins the pres idency. There have been notable exceptions to the rule that the candidate who receives the most popular votes wi ns the election (the presidential elections of 1824, 1876, 1888) and 2000), but modern political culture includes the expectation that the people select the president.

PAGE 242

236|Chapter 10: Political Participation 10.12 | How democratic Is the United States? Democracy is a widely accepted value in the U.S. and elsewhere in the world. As more nations adopt democratic political systems, political scientists are paying attention to whether a countryÂ’s political system is democratic as well as how democratic the political system is. Democracy is not an either/or valu e. There are degrees of democracy: a political system can be more or less democratic. Non-governmental orga nizations such as Freedom House and publications such as The Economist have developed comparative measures of how democratic a countryÂ’s political system is. The Economist ranks the U.S. as 17th in the world.3 This is a surprisingly low ranking for a nation that extols the value of democracy and promotes it worldwide. The low ranking on democracy is due to several factors: Voter Turnout. The U.S. has comparativel y low rates of voter turn-out. European countries, for example, have much higher rates of voting. A Presidential System. The U.S. has de veloped into a system of presidential governance system where executive power is dominant rather than the more democratic legislative or parliamentary systems. National Security. The U.S. has develope d extensive provisions for secrecy and national security and emergency powers which are hard to reconcile with democratic values. 10.13 | Voter Turnout Voter turnout is the proportion of the vot ing-age public that partic ipates in an election. Voter turnout is a f unction of a number of individual factors and institutional factors. Voter turnout is low in the United States. What does low mean? In many elections, less than half of the eligible voters particip ate in the election. The graph be low shows the turnout rate for presidential elections from 1960 to 2008. 63% 62% 61% 55% 54% 53% 53% 50% 55% 49% 51% 57% 57% 25% 30% 35% 40% 45% 50% 55% 60% 65% 70% 1960196419681972197619801984198819921996200020042008Turnout Rate for Voting Age PublicPresidential Elections

PAGE 243

Chapter 10: Political Participation|237 Voter turnout is also low compared to other western industrial democracies. Why is U.S. voter turnout low in absolute numbers (less than half) and comparatively? Some of the explanations focus on the individual while others focus on the electoral system. 10.14 | Individual Explanations The individual explanations focus on an individualÂ’s motivations. The two main models of individual explanations for voting behavior are the ra tional choice model and the civic duty model. The rational choice model of voting was developed by Anthony Downs, who argued that individuals are self-interested actors who use a cost-benefit analysis to determine whether it is in their self-interest to vote.4 According to the rational choice model, a personÂ’s decision whether to vote is based on an individualÂ’s assessment of whether the vote will affect the outcome of the election, th e expected benefit of voting and not voting, and the sense of civic duty (the personal gra tification or satisfaction from voting. The rational choice model is based on the assumptions in economic models of human behavior. The civic duty model describes non-material, n on-rational incentives for voting. According to the civic duty model, a person vo tes out of a sense of responsibility to the political unit, or a commitment to democra tic government and the obligations and duties as well as the rights of citizens to mainta in self-government. Patriotic values and the commitment to the community or society are familiar expressions of civic duty. In order to vote, the probabil ity of voting, times the bene fit of vote, plus the sense of duty to vote must outweigh the cost (in time, effort, and money) of voting. As the probability of a vote mattering in a federal election almost always approaches zero (because more than 100,000,000 votes are cast), duty becomes the most important element in motivating people to vote. According to the rational choice model, a person will vote if they think it is worth it; a person will not vote if they think it is not worth it. According to this cost-benefit ratio, it may be rational not to vote. An indi vidual with a greater commitment to civic duty or responsibility will weigh the relative costs differently and may conclude that voting is worth it. The concept of political efficacy is central to understanding voting behavior. Political efficacy is the belief that oneÂ’s participation matters, that oneÂ’s decision to vote really makes a difference. What is the likeli hood that one vote will matter in a presidential election where more than 100, 000,000 votes are cast? The rational choice model suggests that voter turnout in the United States is low because individuals have thought about whether or not to vote and simply concluded that it is not worth their time and effort and money to vote. Demographic factors affect whether or not someone turns out to vote. Demographic factors that are related to voter turn-out in clude income, education, race and ethnicity, gender, and age. Wealthy citizens have higher rates of voter turnou t than poor citizens. Income has an effect on voter turnout. Wealt hy citizens have higher levels of political efficacy and believe that the political works a nd their votes will count. On the other hand, people that make less money and have less wealth are less likely to believe that the political Think About It! Should the U.S. try to increase voter turnout by either paying people to vote or by fining (or otherwise sanctioning) eligible voters who do not vote?

PAGE 244

238|Chapter 10: Political Participation system will respond to their demands as expressed in elections. Race is also related to voter turnout. Whites vote at higher rates than minorities. Gender is also related to voter turnout. Women voted at lower levels than men for many years after gaining suffrage with the passage of the 19th Amendment in 1920, but today women vote at much higher levels than men do. Age is also important. There is a strong re lationship between age and voter turnout. Older people vote at higher levels than younger people do, which helps explain why candidates for office and government officials are so sensitive to issues that affect seniors (such as reducing spending on Social Security or Medicare). 10.15 | System Explanations The system explanations focus on aspects of the political system that affect voter turnout. These system factors include voter registration laws, the fact that el ections are usually held on one day during the week, the large number of elections in our federal system, and the two-party system. Eligibility A person’s eligibility for voting is provided for in the U.S. Constitution, state constitutions, and state and federal statutes. The Constitution states that suffrage cannot be denied on grounds of race or color (Fifteenth Amendment), sex (Nineteenth Amendment) or age for citizens eighteen years or older (Twentysixth Amendment). Beyond these basic qualifications, the states have a great deal of authority to determine eligibility and to run elections. Some states bar convicted criminals, especially felons, from voting for a fixed period of time or indefinitely. The National Conference of State Legislatures reports on felon voting rights in the states. The Sentencing Project reports that 5.8 million Americans are disenfranchised, denied the right to vote, because of a felony conviction. State felon voting laws have a disproportionate impact on African-Americans: one out of 13 AfricanAmericans are ineligible to vote because of a felony conviction. Voter Registration Voter registration is the requirement that a person check in with some central registry in order to be allowed to vote in an election. In the U.S., the individual is responsible for registering to vo te—sometimes well before the actual election. Furthermore, each state has different voter registration laws and moving from one state to another state requires reregistering to vote.5 These registration laws reduce voter turnout. In some countries, the government registers eligible voters and actually fines eligible voters who do not perform their civic duty to vote in an election. Voter Fatigue. Voter fatigue is the term for the ap athy that the electorate can experience when they are required to vote too often in t oo many elections. The U.S. has a large number of government units (around 90,000) and Americans elect a large number of government officials—around one for every 442 citizens. Ha ving a large number of elections—in the U.S. there is always an election somewhere—can reduce voter turnout. The Two-party System Finally, the two-part y system can contribute to low voter turnout by increasing the sense that an individual’s vot e does not matter very much. In two-party Think About It! What should you expect when you show up at the polls to vote? “What to Expect Before Heading to the Polls” es/story/story.php?storyId= 96538073

PAGE 245

Chapter 10: Political Participation|239 systems, the parties tend to be primarily inte rested in winning elections. In order to win elections, the parties tend to compete for m oderate voters with middl e-of-the-road appeals because most of the voters are by definition centr ists rather than extremists. This can be a winning electoral strategy, but it sometimes leaves voters thinking there isn’t much real difference between the two major parties which compete by “muddling in the middle.” Why vote if there is no real choice between the two candidates or parties? The two major American political parties tend to be intere sted primarily in wi nning elections, and only secondarily in advocating ideologies or issues In contrast, countries with multiple party systems are more likely to have rational political parties. As used here, a rational party is one whose primary goal is advancing ideas, is sues, or ideology; wi nning an election is secondary. Listen to Southern Democrat Huey Long’s critique of the Democratic and Republican Parties in the 1940 presidential election. George C. Wallace, the former Governor of Alabama and 1968 presidential candi date of the American Independent Party, famously said of the Democratic and Republican candidates for president: there is “not a dime’s worth of difference between them.”6 Does it matter whether one votes for a Republican or Democrat when there really isn’ t much choice in a two-party system where the major parties don’t diffe r much on the issues? Election Tuesday ? Why does the U.S. have elections on a Tuesday? The reason for Tuesday elections goes back to the days of horses and buggies when Monday elections would require traveling on the Sabbath and Wednesday was market day. So in 1845 Congress provided for Tuesday elections. Woul d changing from one-weekday elections to two-day weekend elections increase voter tu rnout by making it easier for people to fit voting into busy family and work schedules? It has in some countries. The U.S. has comparatively low rates of voter turnout but bills to change to weekend voting die in committee in Congress. Some states now allo w early voting and a si gnificant percentage of votes are now cast before prior to the da y of the election. Should technology such as electronic voting be used to increase voter turnout? 10.2 | Elections Elections are one way for people to participat e in the selection of government officials. Elections also provide a means of holding government officials accountable for the way they use their power. Participation and acc ountability are two of the main reasons why elections are a measure of whether a political system is democratic and how democratic it is. In most cases, it is not as useful to de scribe a political system as democratic or nondemocratic as it is to determine how democra tic it is. Many countries of the world have political systems that are more or less demo cratic. Some countries are more democratic than others. The existence of free, open, and competitive elections is one measure of whether a country’s political system is democratic.

PAGE 246

240|Chapter 10: Political Participation 10.21 | Three Main Purposes Elections serve three main purposes in repres entative democracies (or republics, like the U.S.): Selecting government officials The most basic purpos e of an election in a democratic system is to select government officials. Elections provide an opportunity for the people to choose thei r government officials. The fact that voters choose their representatives is one of the ways that democratic or republican systems of government solve th e power problem. Voting is part of selfgovernment. Informing government officials Elections also provide government officials with information about what the people wh at, what they exp ect, and what they think about government. Elections provide an opportunity for the voice of the people to be expressed and heard. Elections thus serv e as one of the ways to regularly measure public opinion about issu es, political parties, candidates, and the way that government offi cials are doing their jobs. Holding government accountable Elections provide re gular or periodic mechanisms for holding elected representa tives, other government officials, and even political partie s accountable for their actions while in power. The Founders of the U.S. system of republican governm ent provided for elections as part of the system of checks and balances. The political scientists who study voting and elections describe two theories of elections. One theory is the elections are forward looking in the sense that an election provides government officials with information about which direction the public wants the government to go on major issues. The second theory is th at elections are backward looking in the sense that an election provides go vernment officials with feedback about what has been done—in effect, an election is a referendum on government officials or the political party in power. 10.22 | Too Much of a Good Thing? In the U.S., voters go to the polls to elect na tional government officials at all levels of government: national, state, a nd local. Voters indirectly el ect the President (through selection by the Electoral College). Voters directly elect the members of the House of Representatives and the Senate. Voters direct ly elect state government officials such as governors, legislators, the heads of various executive departments, and in many states judges. And voters elect local government officials such as county commissioners, school board members, mayors and city council members, and members of special governing districts such as airport authorities. In a ddition, most states provide for referendums, elections where voters decide ballot issues. With more th an 90,000 total government units in the U.S., elections are bei ng held somewhere for some office or for some ballot measure almost all the time. Across the whole countr y, more than one million elected offices are filled in every electoral cycle.

PAGE 247

Chapter 10: Political Participation|241 10.23 | Initiative and Referendu m Elections are not limited to those that involve the selection of government officials. In the U. S., many state and local governments provide for ballot initiatives and referendum. A ballo t initiative is an election where the voters decide whether to support or reject a proposed law. A referendum is an election where th e voters go to the polls to approve or reject a la w that has been passed by the state legislature or a local governme nt body. The people vote for or against issues such as state constitutiona l amendments, county charters, or city charter provisions and amendments.7 The increased use of initiatives and referenda in states such as California has raised questions about whether direct democracy is preferable to indirect or representative de mocracy. In a representative democracy, the elected representatives of the people make the laws; in a dire ct democracy, the people make the laws. The recent trend toward initiatives and referendum has attract ed the attention of people who study American politics. One organi zation that monitors and reports on what is happening in the states is the Ballot Initiative Strategy Center This Center acts as a “nerve center” for “progressive” or libera l ballot initiatives in the states. The Initiative and Referendum Institute (IRI) at the University of Southern California studies ba llot initiatives and referendums in the U.S. and elsewhere in the world. Technol ogy has made it possible to use this form of direct democracy to make the political system more democratic by allowing the public more opport unities to participate in the adoption of the laws that government them. 10.24 | Regulating Elections Elections are regulated by both federal and st ate law. The U.S. Constitution provides some basic provisions for the conduct of elections in Artic les I and II. Article I, Section Four provides that “[t]he Times, Places and Manne r of holding Elections for Senators and Representatives, shall be prescribed in each State by the Legislature thereof; but the Congress may at any time by Law make or alter such Regulations, except as to the Place of Chusing Senators.” The 13th, 14th, and 15th Amendments also regulate elections by prohibiting states from discriminating on the basis of race or gender. The 15th Amendment states that the “right of citizens of the United States to vote shall not be denied or abridged by the United States or by any State on account of race, color, or previous condition of servitude.” However, most aspects of electoral la w are regulated by the states. State laws provide for the conduct of primary elections (w hich are party elections to determine who the party’s nominee will be in the general el ection); the elig ibility of voters (beyond the basic requirements established in the U.S. Constitution); the running of each state’s Electoral College; and the running of state and local elections. Think about it! Do we have too many elections?

PAGE 248

242|Chapter 10: Political Participation 10.25 | Primary and General Elections Election campaigns are organized efforts to persuade voters to choose one candidate over the other candidates who are competing for th e same office. Effective campaigns harness resources such as volunteers; money (cam paign contributions); the support of other candidates; and endorsements of other governme nt officials, intere st groups and party organizations. Effective campaigns use these resources to communicat e messages to voters. Political parties have played a central ro le in election campaigns for most of the nationÂ’s history. However, during the last 30 years there has b een an increase in candidatecentered campaigns and, more recently, independent organizations (such as super-PACS). Candidates who used to rely on political part ies for information about voter preferences and attitudes now conduct their own public opi nion polls and communicate directly with the public. Before candidates can seek election to a part isan political office, they must get the nomination of their party in the primary election A campaign for a nonpartisan office (one where the candidates run without a party designation on the ballot), does not require getting the party nomination. A primary election is an election to determine who will be the partyÂ’s nominee for office. A general electio n is the election to actually determine who wins the office. A primary election is typica lly an intra-party election: the members of a party vote to determine who gets to run with the party label in the general election. A general election is typically an inter-party election: candidates fr om different parties compete to determine who wins the office. Mo st state and local political parties in the United States use primary elections (abet with widely varying rules and regulations) to determine the slate of candidates a party will of fer in the general election. More than forty states use only primary elections to determin e the nomination of candidates, and primaries play a prominent role in all the other states. There are four basic type s of primary elections: closed primaries, open primaries modified closed primaries, and modified open primaries. Closed primaries are primary elections where voters are require d to register with a specific party before the election and are only able to vote in the partyÂ’s election for which they are registered. Open primary elections allow anyone who is e ligible to vote in the primar y election to vote for a partyÂ’s selection. In modified closed primaries, the state party decides who is allowed to vote in its primary. In modified open primaries, inde pendent voters and registered party members are allowed to vote in th e nomination contest. 10.3 | National Elections The United States has a presidential system of government. In presidential systems, the executive and the legislature are elected separately. Article I of the U.S. Constitution requires that the presidential election occur on the same da y throughout the country every four years. Elections for the House of Repr esentatives and the Senate can be held at different times. Congressional elections take pl ace every two years. The years when there are congressional and presidenti al elections are called presid ential election years. The congressional election years wh en a president is not electe d are called midterm elections. The Constitution states that members of the United States House of Representatives must be at least 25 years old, a citizen of the United States fo r at least seven years, and be

PAGE 249

Chapter 10: Political Participation|243 a (legal) inhabitant of the state they represen t. Senators must be at least 30 years old, a citizen of the United States for at least nine ye ars, and be a (legal) inhabitant of the state they represent. The president must be at le ast 35 years old, a natural born citizen of the United States and a resident in the United States for at least fourteen years. It is the responsibility of state legislatures to regulate the qualific ations for a candidate appearing on a ballot paper. “Getting on the ballot” is ba sed on candidate's perfor mances in previous elections. 2008 Presidential Ballot in Pa lm Beach County, Florida 10.31 | Presidential Elections The president and vice-president run as a team or ticket. The team typically tries for balance. A balanced ticket is one where the president and the vice-president are chosen to achieve a politically desirable balance. The political balance can be:

PAGE 250

244|Chapter 10: Political Participation Geographical. Geographical balance is wh en the President and Vice-president are selected from different regions of the country—balancing north and south, or east and west—in order to appeal to vote rs in those regions of the country. Ideological. Ideological balance is when the President and Vice-president come from different ideological wings of the party. The two major parties have liberal and conservative wings, and the ideological balance broadens the appeal of the ticket. Experience. A ticket with balanced political experience is one that includes one candidate with extensive experience in fede ral government and the other a political newcomer. Sometimes political experi ence (being a Washington insider, for instance) is considered an advantage; sometimes it is considered a handicap. Incumbency can be a plus or a minus. Balance can try to have it both ways. Demographics. Demographic balance refers to having a ticket with candidates who have different age, race, gender, or re ligion. Once again, dem ographic balance is intended to broaden the ticket’s appeal. The presidential candidate for each party is selected through a presidential primary Incumbent presidents can be challenged in their party’s primary elections, but this is rare. The last incumb ent President to not seek a second term was Lyndon B. Johnson. President Johnson was mired in the Vietnam War at a time when that war was very unpopular. The presidential primary is actually a series of sta ggered electoral contests in which members of a party choose delegates to attend the party’s na tional convention which officially nominates the party’s presidential can didate. Primary elections were first used to choose delegates in 1912. Prior to this, the delegates were ch osen by a variety of methods, including selection by party elites. The use of primaries increased in the early decades of the 20th Century then they fell out of favor until anti-war protests at the 1968 Democratic National Convention. Police attacking protestors at the 1968 Demo cratic National Convention in Chicago, IL

PAGE 251

Chapter 10: Political Participation|245 Currently, more than eighty percent of states use a primary election to determine delegates to the national convention. These el ections do not occur on one day: the primary election process takes many months. The pr imary election process is long, drawn-out, complex, and has no parallel in any other nati on in the world. The presidential candidates begin fundraising efforts, st art campaigning, and announce their candidacy months in advance of the first primary election. It is purely historical accident that New Hampshire and Iowa have the first primary elections and are thus the focus on candidate attention for months pr ior to their January elections. New Hampshire had an early primary election in 1972 and has held the place of the first primary since that time. Iowa’s pr imary is before New Hampshire, although the state uses a caucus to select delegates. Generally, th e Iowa caucus narrows the field of candidates by demonstrating a candidate’s appeal among pa rty supporters, while New Hampshire tests the appeal of the front-runne rs from each party with the general public. Dates of primary elections in 2008. The unprecedented president. The unconventi onal president. During the campaign he broke all the rules. He ignored all the conventional wisdom about what to do and not to do to have a successful campaign. He even broke the eleventh commandment—Ronald Reagan’s commandment “Thou shalt not speak ill of another Republican.” And he called Americans losers?

PAGE 252

246|Chapter 10: Political Participation 10.32 | The Electoral College The president is not directly elected by th e people. The popular vote does not actually determine who wins the presidency. When the vo ters in a state go to the polls to cast their votes for president (and vice president), they are actually voting for members of the Electoral College The winner of a presidential electi on is the candidate who receives a majority vote of the members of the Electoral College. With the possible exception of the Federal Reserve Board, the Electoral College may be the least-understood government body in the U.S. system of government. Each member of the Electoral College cast her or his vote for a presidential and vice-presidential candidate. Each state’s members of the Electoral College are chosen by the state political party at that states party conve ntion. The state parties choo se party loyalists to be the party’s members of the Electoral College if that party wins the popular vote in the state. This is why the members of the Electoral Co llege almost always vote for the presidential candidate who wins the popular vo te in that state. On rare occasion, a “faith less” Elector will not vote for the candidate who won the popul ar vote in their state. When voters in a state go to the polls to vote fo r a president, they actually each cast their votes for a slate of electors that is chosen by a party or a ca ndidate. The presidentia l and vice-presidential candidate names usually appear on the ballot rather than the names of the Electors. Until the passage of the Twelfth Am endment in 1804, the runner-up in a presidential election (the person receiving the second most number of Electoral College votes) became the vicepresident. The winner of the presidential election is the candidate who rece ives at least 270 Electoral College votes. The fact that it is possible for a ca ndidate to receive the most popular votes but lose the election by receiving fewer Electoral College votes than another candidate is hard to reconcile with democratic principles. It also do es not seem fair in modern American political cu lture which includes an expectation that voters chose government officials. Abolishing the Electoral College and replacing it with a national direct system would also prevent a candidate from receiving fewer votes nationwide than their opponent, but still winning more electoral votes, which last occurred in the 2000 Presidential election. State law regulates how the state’s Elector al College votes are cast. In all states except Maine and Nebraska, the candidate that wi ns the most votes in the state receives all its Electoral College votes (a “winner takes all” system). From 1969 in Maine, and from 1991 in Nebraska, two electoral votes are aw arded based on the winner of the statewide election, and the rest (two in Maine, three in Nebraska) go to the highest vote-winner in each of the state’s congressional districts. The Electoral College is criticized for a variety of reasons: It is undemocratic. The people do not actual ly elect a president; the president is selected by the Electoral College. It is unequal. The number of a state’s Elect ors is equal to the state’s congressional delegation. This system gives less populous states a disproportionate vote in the Electoral College because each state has tw o senators regardle ss of population (and therefore two members of the Electoral College). The minimum number of state

PAGE 253

Chapter 10: Political Participation|247 Electors is three. Wyoming and Californi a have the same number of senators. Wyoming has a population of 493,782 and 3 EC votes, 164,594 people per EC vote. California has a population of 33,871,648 and 55 EC votes, 615,848 people per EC vote. Map of Electoral College Votes It spotlights swing states. The Electoral College system distorts campaigning because the voters in swing states dete rmine the outcome of the election. As a result, voters who live in states that are not competitive are ignored by the political campaigns. Abolishing the Electoral College and treating the entire country as one district for presidential elections eliminate the campaign focus on swing states. It is biased against national candidates. The Electoral College also works against candidates whose base of support is spread around the country rather than in a state or region of the country which would enab le them to win the popular vote in one or more states. This is what happened to Ross Perot. In 1992, Perot won 18.9% of the national vote, but received no Electora l College votes because his broad appeal across the country did not include strength in one or a few state. Despite these long-standing cr iticisms of the Electoral College, abolishing it is unlikely because doing so would require a cons titutional amendment—and ratification of a constitutional amendment require s three-quarters of the state legislature to support it. The less populous states are not like ly to support an amen dment to abolish the Electoral College in favor of direct popular election of the pr esident because doing so would decrease the voting power of the less populous states. Small states such as Wyoming and North Dakota would lose power and more populous states su ch as California and New York would gain power.

PAGE 254

248|Chapter 10: Political Participation 10.33 | Congressional Elections Congressional elections take place every two years. Each member of the House of Representatives is elected for a two-year term. Each Senator is elected for a six-year term. About one-thir d of the Senate is elected in each congressional election. Until the Seventeenth Amendment to the United States Constitution in 1913, Senators were elected by st ate legislatures, not the electorate of states. 10.34 | House Elections Elections to the United States House of Repr esentatives occur every two years on the first Tuesday after November 1 in even years. If a member dies in office or resigns before the term has been completed, a special House electio n is held to fill the seat. House elections are first-past-the-post elections—meaning the can didate who gets the most votes wins the election regardless of whether that person receives a majority of the votes cast in the election. The winner is the one who receives a plurality of the votes. Plurality means the most votes. It is not necessary for the winner to receive a ma jority (50% plus one) of the votes. Every two years congressional elections coincide with presidential elections. Congressional elections that do no t coincide with presidential elections are called mid-term elections—because they occur in the middle of a President’s four-year term of office. When congressional elections occur in the same year as a presidential election, the party whose presidential candidate wins the election usually increases the number of congressional seats it holds. This is one of the unofficial linkages between presidential and congressional elections. The president and members of Congr ess are officially elected separately, but some voters go to th e polls to vote for or against Republicans and Democrats so the president’s popularity has an impact on congressional elections. There is a historical pattern that the incumbent president’s party loses seats in mid-term elec tions. In mid-term elections, the president is not on the ballot. The president’s party usually loses seats in mid-term elections. One reason for mi d-term losses is the president’s popularity In 2010, Allen West (R) challenged incumbent and Ron Klein (D) in Florida District 22. West emphasized his military experience. A neighborhood campaign supporter produced a sign which framed the choice as “The Wimp or the Warrior.” 2010 Florida Senate Campaign Debate: (From L to R: Marco Rubio, Charlie Crist, Kendrick Meek)

PAGE 255

Chapter 10: Political Participation|249 has slipped during the two years in office. Another cause of mid-term election losses is the fact that voter turnout is lower in midterm elections, and members of the president’s party are less likely to vote in an election when their president is not on the ballot. These patterns of voting behavior illustrate the partisan linkages betw een congressional and presidential elections. 10.35 | Gerrymandering Over time, congressional districts have b ecome far less competitive. Congressional districts are drawn to protect individual incumb ents and political parties. Another way to describe this is that congression al districts are drawn to create sa fe districts. A safe district is one that is not competitive; it is a safe dist rict for the Republican Party or a safe district for the Democratic Party because the district boun daries are drawn to ensu re that it contains a majority of Republicans or Democrats. One consequence of drawing safe districts is a reduction in voter choice. The Constitution requires that congressional districts be reapportioned after every census. This means th at reapportionment or redistricting is done every ten years. The reapportionment is done by each state. In most cases, the political party with a majority in the st ate legislature controls redistri cting. The fact that either one or the other major party controls the rea pportionment encourages partisan gerrymandering. Gerrymandering is drawing electoral district lines in ways that advantage one set of interests and disadvantage others. Hi storically, gerrymandering advantaged rural interests and disadvantaged urban interests. Vo ters in rural districts were over-represented and voters in urban districts were under-rep resented. Racial gerrymandering is done to advantage one race and to disadvantage others Historically, racial gerrymandering overrepresented white voters and under-represente d Black voters. Racial gerrymandering is illegal because the Fourteenth Amendment pr ohibits states from de nying people the equal protection of the laws. Partisan gerrymande ring is drawing electoral lines to benefit the majority party and hurt the minority party. It is still practiced as a way for the majority party to use its political power. One of the ways that the two major part ies cooperate is in the creation of safe electoral districts. The Democratic and Repu blican parties have a vested interest in reducing the number of competitive districts and increasing the number of safe seats. The fact that more than nine out of ten American s live in congressional districts that are not really competitive, but are safe seats for one pa rty or the other, means that elections are not really very democratic. Redist ricting to create safe seats for incumbents (those in office) gives an incumbent a great advantage over any ch allenger in House elec tions. In the typical congressional election, only a sma ll number of incumbents lose their seat. Only a small number of seats change party control in each election. Gerrymandering to create safe districts results in fewer than 10% of all House seats actually being competitive in each election cycle—competitive meaning that a candi date of either party has a good chance of winning the seat. The lack of electorally co mpetitive districts means that over 90% of House members are almost guaranteed reelection every two years.

PAGE 256

250|Chapter 10: Political Participation “The Gerry-Mander.” Boston Gazette March 26, 1812. This is a significant development because competitive elections are one measure of how democratic a political system is. The larg e number of safe districts makes a political system less democratic because there are fewer competitive elections. Creating safe seats for 1) Republicans and Democrats; and 2) incumb ents in either party, results in conditions that resemble one-party politics in a large numbe r of districts. If one party almost always wins a district, and the other party almost alwa ys loses, the value of political competitions is greatly diminished. 10.36 | A Duopoly (or Shared Monopoly) The two major parties collude to create thes e political monopolies (technically they are duopolies because the two major parties control the political marketplace). The creation of a large number of safe seats makes district s more ideologically homogeneous, thereby making negotiating, bargaining, and ultimately the need to compromise less likely. A candidate who does not have to r un for office in a politically dive rse district is less likely to have to develop campaign strategies with broad public appeal, and once in office such a legislator is less likely to have to gove rn with much concern about accommodating different interests or representing different constituents.

PAGE 257

Chapter 10: Political Participation|251 10.4 | Campaigns A political campaign is an organized effort to influence the decisions of an individual, group, organization, or government institution. Campaigns are one way that individuals, political parties, and organi zations compete for popular sup port. Campaigning is political advertising that provides the pub lic with favorable informati on about candidates, parties, and issues—this is positive campaigning—o r unfavorable information about the opposition—this is negative campaigning. Campaigns have three elements: message, money, and machine. 10.41 | The Message An effective campaign message is one that crea tes a strong brand that the public identifies with. Some examples of campai gn messages include the following: John Doe is a business man, not a politicia n. His background in finance means he can bring fiscal disciplin e to state government. Crime is increasing and education is decreasing. We need leaders like Jane Doe who will keep our streets safe and our schools educating our children. Jane Doe has missed over 50 congressiona l votes. How can you lead if you don’t show up to vote? Jane Doe is not a Washington politician. She remembers where she came from and won’t become part of th e problem in Washington. Jane Doe knows how to keep Americans safe from terrorism. John Doe is an experienced leader. Vote Yes on Number Four to Protect Traditional Marriage. Make America Great Again! The message is one of the most impor tant aspects of any political campaign, whether it is an individual’s campaign for of fice or a referendum on an issue. The media (radio, television, and now the ne w social media such as Twitt er) emphasize short, pithy, memorable phrases from campaign speeches or debates. These “sound bites” are the short campaign slogans or catchy messages that re semble bumper-stickers. Sound-bite campaigns and campaign coverage reduce po litical messages to slogans such as “ Peace through Strength ” (Ronald Reagan), “Its Morning in America” (President Reagan), and “Change We Can Believe In” (Barack Obama). The Museum of the Moving Image has archived presidential campaign ads. A memorable campaign slogan from the 1984 Democratic primary campaign was Walter Mondale’s ad dism issing his main Democratic challenger, Gary Hart, with the catch phr ase from a popular Wendy’s commercial: “Where’s the beef?” The implie d charge was that the photogen ic Hart lacked substance, particularly when compared to the dull but experienced Mondale. The mantra of Bill Clinton’s presidential campaign in 1992 was “It’s the economy stupid.” This slogan stressed the importance of keeping the campai gn focused on the state of the economy rather than other issues that sometimes distract Democrats. Candidate George W. Bush’s campaign used the slogan “compassionate conser vatism” to appeal to both conservatives and those who worried that conservatives di d not care about the poor or disadvantaged.

PAGE 258

252|Chapter 10: Political Participation Today’s national and state campaigns ar e typically professional, sophisticated, carefully crafted campaigns to develop a nd control the image of a candidate. The marketing of political campaigns has been described as the “p ackaging” of a candidate and the “selling” of a candidate—even “The Selling of a President.” The reference to selling a president is from Joe McGinniss’s The Selling of the President (1968). McGinniss described how candidate Richard Nixon used Madison Avenue marketing professionals and strategies to win the White House. At the time, the idea that a political campaign could, or should, market and sell a candidate the way that beer, deodorant, a nd bars of soap were marketed and sold other products like beer or deodorant or a ba r of soap was controversial. The idea of corporate advertising expertise bein g applied to democratic politics in order to influence what citizens thought of the presid ent seemed inappropria te and threatening. Bringing marketing values to politics seemed to demean or diminish politics by treating people as consumers rather than as citizens. Political advertising also seemed threatening in the sense that it used psychology to ma nipulate or control what people think. In the years since 1968, the marketing a nd advertising of candidates is widely accepted as the way to conduct a successful national campaign. Presidential campaigns develop a message or candidate brand. Afte r the Watergate Scandal exposed President Nixon’s dishonesty, the Jimmy Carter campaign brand was honesty: “I will not lie to you.” During the Carter Administration the Soviet Union invaded Afghanistan, Americans were taken hostages during a revolution in Iran that overthr ew the Shah of Iran who was an ally of the United States, and a hostage rescue mission failed. These events, coupled with the loss of the Vietnam War, allowed presidential candidate Ronald Reagan to portray President Carter, the Democrats, and liberal s as weak on national defense. The Reagan campaign theme “Peace through Strength” successfully branded Carter, Democrats, and liberals as weak on national defense and Reagan Republicans, and cons ervatives as strong on national defense. The comparison of campaigning and advert ising is appropriate because Madison Avenue marketing techniques and strategies ha ve entered mainstream politics. It is no longer shocking or controversial to refer to selling candidates the way products and services are sold, or to refer to voters as consumers who have to be convinced to buy the political product. In order to be successful, nationa l campaigns spend a great deal of money on gathering information about political consumer s so that candidates and parties can craft and present a message that is appealing. 10.42 | Money During the 2016 presidential Campaign, Donald Trump repeated called the political system rigged or unfair. The political system rigged or unfair in the sense that rules favor certain players and styles of play. Fo r example, the system is rigge d in favor of the two major parties—the Republican and the Democratic Parties. The system is also rigged in favor of those with money. Americans have historically been suspect of the influence of money in politics, government, and public policy. Money is associated with distorting public opinion, buying influence, and even corruption. This is why campaign finance laws are typically enacted after political scandals create political reform movements that are intended to purify politics or to inoculate politicians and government officials by regulating the amount of money in campaigns, the spending of mone y, and the disclosure of those who give it and who spend it. What is the problem with money?

PAGE 259

Chapter 10: Political Participation|253 Crime fiction is a very popular genre. Popular film and television crime stories are overwhelmingly about “ordinary” or street crime: murder, assau lt, robbery, and other violent crimes. White collar crime—crime in th e suites as opposed to crime in the streets— is less popular. White collar crime stories ar e usually limited to organized crime (e.g., The Godfather films; the television series The Sopranos ) where the main characters are compelling figures. What about other kinds of economic crime, such as political corruption or tax fraud? The New York Times article “Offshore Money, Bane of Democracy” describes the political and social damage caused by intern ational criminal operations that move money around the world, principa lly via real estate investments.8 Corporations create shell companies that make it hard fo r any single country to do anything about what it considers dirty money—money belonging to in ternational criminal enterprises involved with drugs, weapons, sex trafficking, or money laundering. Even legitimate multi-national organizations present challenges for the enfor cement of tax laws, for example. Dirty money is a rising high tide that distorts local market s and enabled international criminal organized enterprises that are legal only through the legal acc ounting. So what is the problem with money? Economic power can be used to get political power to rig the system in favor of those with the money to rig the system to further tilt th e playing field. Is there a “moneyball” strategy to level the political playing field? The term moneyball was coined to describe how a baseball team without a big budget could use big data analytics to assess the talents of baseball players rather than relying on the judgment of teams of seasoned baseball sc outs or just buy ing players by signing th em to big contracts. Michael Lewis described the strategy in Moneyball: How to win in an Unfair Game (2003). Money has always been called the mother’s milk of politics. This is why the government adopted campaign finance regulations The Supreme Court’s decision in Citizens United v. Federal Elections Commission (2010) removed almost all limits on campaign contributions. One result of this deregulation of campaign finance is the decreased influence of political parties and the increased influence of very w ealthy individuals, part icularly billionaires who invest in candidates or fund issue cam paigns. Some are liberal, and therefore Democratic, while others are conservative and therefore Republican. As wealthy individuals, they also sometimes have libertari an streaks that include belief that individual responsibility for success (or failure) rather than government social welfare programs. Campaign finance has become more importa nt as campaigns have changed from traditional retail politics to wholesale politics The term retail politics refers to campaigns where candidates actually meet voters one-on-on e, in small groups or communities, at town hall meetings, or other face-to-face settings such as walking a neighborhood. The term wholesale politics refers to campaigns wher e candidates address large audiences often using the print and electronic mass media. The change to wholesale politics has in creased the cost of campaigning by shifting from labor-intensive campaigning—where friends and neighbors and campaign workers and volunteers canvas a district or city or make personal telephone calls to individual voters—to capital-intensive campaigns where m oney is used to purch ase television air time or advertising. The change from campaigns as ground wars to air wa rs has increased the cost of campaigning. Fundraising techniques include having the candidate call or meet with large donors, sending direct mail pleas to small donors, and courting interest groups who could end up spending millions on the race if it is significant to their interests. The financing of elections

PAGE 260

254|Chapter 10: Political Participation has always been controversia l because money is often cons idered a corrupting influence on democratic politics. Th e perception is that the we althy can purchase access to government officials or pay for campaigns th at influence public opi nion. The fact that private sources of finance make up subs tantial amounts of campaign contributions, especially in federal elections, contributes to the perception that mone y creates influence. As a result, voluntary public funding for candidates willing to accept spending limits was introduced in 1974 for presidentia l primaries and elections. The Federal Elections Commission was created in the 1970s to monitor campaign finance. The FEC is responsible for monitoring the disclosure of campaign finance information, enforcing the provisions of the law such as the limits a nd prohibitions on contri butions, and overseeing the public funding of U.S. presidential elections. A good source of information about mone y matters in American campaigns and elections is The Center for Responsive Politics. The Center tracks money in politics as part of an “ open secrets project .” The recommendation to “Follo w the money” has become allpurpose slogan that is applicable to criminal investigations and investigations of political influence and campaign ads. The saying comes from the Hollywood film All the President’s Men which tells the story of how Washingt on Post reporters investigated the Watergate scandal. A secret source named D eep Throat advised the reporters to “Follow the Money.” The National Institute on Money in State Politics is still following the money trail to determine political influence in state politics. The U.S. Supreme Court’s rulings in campaign finance cases has made “Follow the money” even more relevant in today’s politics. In a series of ru lings, the Court has said that campaign contributions are speech that is protected by the First Amendment a nd that government restrictions on campaign contributions are subject to st rict scrutiny—which means that the government has to show that campaign finance laws serve a compelling interest in order to be upheld. As a result, corporations can make unlimited independent campaign expenditures. Even the existing requirements that contributions be publicly disclosed are now being challenged. The Campaign Finance Information Center ’s mission is to help jour nalist follow the campaign money trail in local, state, and national politics. 10.43 | The Machine The third part of a campaign is the machine The campaign machine is the organization, the hu man capital, the foot soldiers loyal to the cause, the true beli evers who will carry the run by volunteer activists, the professional campaign a dvisers, pollsters, voter lists, political party resour ces, and get-out-the vote resources. Individuals need organizations to campaign successfully in national campaigns. Successful campaigns usually require a campaign manager and some sta ff members who make strategic and tactical decisions while volunteers and interns canvass doorto-door and make phone calls. Campaigns use all three of the above components to create a su ccessful strategy for victory. One continuity in American politics is that conservatives and Republicans are considered tougher on national security than liberals and Democrats. Th is actually creates a perverse The War Room is a documentary that chronicles Bill Clinton’s 1992 Presidential Campaign from an inside-look at his campaign staff.

PAGE 261

Chapter 10: Political Participation|255 political incentive for Republicans to increase worries about national security threats because enemies are politically useful. Does this mean that some wars are not meant to be won? Political campaigns that are described in rhetorical terms as wa rs (e.g., culture wars) can create a sense of alarm that motivates th e public and sustains its interest. But actual wars and sustained national security threats a nd emergencies can also be politically useful. 10.5 | The Media Modern campaigns for national offices—the presidency, the Senate, and the House of Representatives—are largely media campaigns. They are conducted us ing the print media, electronic media, and social media. Communi cation technology has fundamentally altered campaigns. The development of the broadc ast media (radio and television) changed political campaigns from “ground wars” to “air” wars. The term ground war refers to a campaign that relies heavily on candidates and their campaign workers meeting voters and distributing campaign literature. The term air war refers to campaigns that rely heavily on the mass media. The following two quotes from the Museum of the Moving Image archive of presidential campaign ads illustrate the cha nge in thinking about television campaign advertising: “The idea that you can merchandise candida tes for high office like breakfast cereal is the ultimate indignity to the democratic process.” —Democratic presidential candi date Adlai Stevenson (1956) “Television is no gimmick, and nobody will ev er be elected to major office again without presenting themselves well on it.” —Television producer and Nixon campaign consultant (and later President of Fox News Channel) Roger Ailes (1968) 10.51 | Who Uses Whom? Campaign organizations have a complicated re lationship with the media. They need and use each other but they have different, sometimes conflicting needs. The media like good visuals and compelling personal interest stories wh ich capture the attention of the public and turn the general publ ic into an audience. Campaigns li ke to provide such visuals. But the media (and campaigns) also like to play “ gotcha .” The media consider it a good story to catch a candidate’s ignorance, mistake, or gaffe—or even to ask a question that might cause a candidate to make a mistake. The mistake might be Misspelling a word. Vice-presidential ca ndidate Dan Quale spelled “potato” “potatoe.” Ignorance. Not knowing the name of a foreign leader. Pres idential candidate George W. Bush did not know the na me of the leader of Pakistan. Misrepresentation. During the presidenti al primary campaign, Hillary Clinton misrepresented a trip to Kosovo as one wher e she landed at an airport under fire to convince voters that she had the expe rience to be commander in chief. Math problems. Announcing budget numbers that do not add up.

PAGE 262

256|Chapter 10: Political Participation Ignorance. Vice-presidential candidate Sara h Palin did not know the name of any Supreme Court decision th at she disagreed with. As a candidate and early in his presiden cy, Trump commanded the attention of the media: the traditional press (television and ra dio), the Internet, and the social media. He made headlines as a compelling figure, an inte rnational celebrity, a “r iveting spectacle.” He started fights with the “f ake” news media as a strate gy that relies on continuous warfare to motivate his supporters and to for ce his critics and politic al opponents to talk about his story lines. Political analysts tended to dismiss his antics as little more than drivers rubber-necking as they pass a car cr ash on the side of the road. But media spectacles are not just accidents or unforced errors or gaffes or political theater. The spectacles may be a political strategy to get pub lic attention by getting inside our heads. The erratic behavior; the unpredictable speech; the breaking of established norms; sometimes apparently almost random ideologi cal positions; the fre quency with which as strong statement is following in rather shor t order by another cont radicting the former, may be a “variable reward schedule” analogous to the slot machine payouts that keep gamblers playing the machines. The risk is that this strategic focus on getting and keeping public attention, wh ich is conventionally a mean s to public policy end, may become an end in itself. After all, presidential success is conventionally measured in terms of accomplishments, not just attention or public approval ratings. Getting “mindshare” is important because efforts to “g et inside” peoples’ heads typically have a goal in mind. Advertisers want to get insi de peoples’ heads to purchase the products being advertised. Campaigners was to get in side voters’ heads to build the support for policies. “The Attention Merchants: Th e Struggle to Get Inside Our Heads.”9 10.52 | The Social Media Communication technology has changed national campaigns from primarily ground wars (walking the neighborhoods; kissin g babies; shaking hands) to air wars (broadcast radio and television ads). Campaigns are now using social media to post material on Tumblr (videos and photos) or Spotify or Pinterest. According to Adam Fletcher, deputy press secretary for the Obama re-election ca mpaign, “It’s about authentic, two-way communication.”10 This may be true, but it may also be about a campaign strategy to try to reach people where they are: Online using social media. A presidential campaign that shares songs with the public may be less interested in actually creating two-way communication with the public than it is in establishing social conn ections with people by appearing to share tastes. Familiarity (with songs, photos and videos that are posted on Spotify, Flickr, Instagram, Twitte r, Facebook, etc.) creates trust. Socialbakers a social media analytics group, says the campaigns have to try to reach people wherever they are, and young people in particular are on-line more than readi ng newspapers or watching broadcast television networks.

PAGE 263

Chapter 10: Political Participation|257 10.53 | The Age of Digital Campaigns The digital age is fundamentally changing campaign advertising. In the age of mass media, campaign ads that aired on the major televisi on and radio networks were intended for the general audiences that were watching or lis tening to national programs. The digital age allows targeted advertising. Political intellig ence companies such as Aristotle gather large files of detailed information about a person’s behavior from commercial companies that keep track of consumption pa tterns or Internet searches, and then sell that data to campaigns. The campaigns, which then kno w where a person lives; what their demographics are; what they purchase; what they read; what their hobbies are; and other factors that might be related to how they think about politics, can tailor ads to very specific audiences. This digital inform ation is very good for campaigns, but is it good for us? See the following PBS story about “How Campaigns Amass Your Personal Information to Deliver Tailored Political Ads.” The digital campaigns are also developing ways to target “ off the grid ” voters, the voters who do not get thei r public affairs information from the traditional media sources (papers, television, and radio). Identifying such voters is one thing. Getting them to vot e is another. Having a good ground game—people in neighborhoods, cities, districts, and states w ho can actually contact voters and get them out to vote—is still an important element of a successful presidential campaign strategy. President Obama’s reelection campaign was succe ssful because it combined air wars with a solid ground game in the states that it iden tified as the key swing states in the 2012 presidential election. 10.54 | Campaign Fact Checking Candidates, parties, and or ganizations supporting or opposing a candidate, or an issue, say things which may not meet the standard of “the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth.” In an age of electronic communications, it is even more likely that Mark Twain, the American humorist, was right when he said, “A lie can travel halfway around the world while the truth is still putti ng on its shoes.” As a result, a number of organizations have developed campaign fact-checking ope rations to hol d campaigners accountable for what they claim as facts. One of these organizations is Its Web site provides running description and an alysis of inaccurate campaign statements. Some of the more interesting false statements that they fact-checked were claims that Democratic presidential candidate Barack Hussein Obama was a radical Muslim who refused to recite the Pledge of Alle giance and took the oath of office as a U.S. Senate swearing on the Koran, not the bible. Think About It! How much does a campaign know about me? See “How Campaigns Amass Your Personal Information to Deliver Tailored Political Ads.” /bb/politics/julydec12/frontline_10-29.html

PAGE 264

258|Chapter 10: Political Participation 10.55 | Political Futures Market One of the more innovative and interesting pe rspectives on the measurement of public opinion as a predictor of the outcome of an election involves the application of economic perspectives. The “political futures” markets are designed to provide an economic measure of support for a candidate as a predictor of wh ether the candidate will win an election. One example of this approach is The Iowa Electronic Markets These are real-money futures markets in which contract payoffs depend on economic and political events such as elections. These markets are operated by faculty at the University of Iowa as part of their research and teaching mission. 10.6 | How to “Do” Civic Engagement The importance of fostering civic engageme nt in higher education is described in Civic Responsibility and Higher Education (2000). Thomas Ehrlich, one of the book’s editors, works to promote including civic engagement al ong with the traditional academic learning in the mission of universities. The American Association of Colleges and Universities stresses the role that higher education plays in developing civic lear ning to ensure that students become an informed, engaged, and so cially responsible ci tizenry. These efforts emphasize the importance of connecting clas sroom learning with the community. The connection has two points: usable knowledge and workable skills. The emphasis on usable knowledge includes promoting social science research as problem solving. The term usable knowledge refers to knowledge that people a nd policy makers can apply to solve contemporary social problems. (Lindblom and Cohen) The emphasis on workable skills is even more directly related to civic engage ment. Today there are many organizations that advance the cause of linking academic study and social problem solving. One of these organizations is the W. K. Kellogg Foundation This Foundation was created by the cereal company magnate. The Foundation emphasizes th e importance of developing the practical skills that will enable individuals to realize the “inherent human capaci ty to solve their own problems.” These skills include dialogue, leadership developmen t, and the organization of effort. In effect, civic engagement develops the practical skills that can help people help themselves. How can you “do” civic engagement? Contact a government official. Contact a local, state, and national government official. Ask them what they think are the major issues or problems that are on their agenda. Contacting your member of Congress is easy. (See the Chapter on Congress.) Attend a government meeti ng. Attend the public meeting of a local government: a neighborhood association; a city council meeting; a county commission meeting; a school board meeting; a school board m eeting; or a state government meeting (of the legislature or an executive agency). Contact an organization. Contact a nongovernment organization to discuss an issue of your concern, community intere st, or the organization’s mission. These organizations, political parties, and inte rest groups represent business, labor, professional associations, or issues such as civil rights, property rights, the environment, immigration, religion, and education.

PAGE 265

Chapter 10: Political Participation|259 10.7 | Summary One aspect of the power problem is the gove rnmentÂ’s control over individuals. Laws are commands that are backed by sanctions. Indivi duals must obey the law or risk punishment. The governmentÂ’s control over individuals is legitimate if the government is based on the consent of the governed. Consent is the difference between authority and power. Democracy is a system of self-government that requires an active and engaged citizenry in order to make government control over individua ls legitimate. Political participation is one of the measures of how democra tic a political system is. Therefore, political participation is also a measure or indicator of governme nt legitimacy. Voting, elections, and campaigns provide opportunities for individuals to be active and engaged citizens. 10.8 | Additional Resources 10.81 | In the Library Campbell, Angus, Philip Converse, Warre n Miller, and Donald Stokes. 1960. The American Voter. New York: Wiley. Civic Responsibility and Higher Education 2000. Thomas Ehrlich. Editor. Downs, Anthony. 1957. An Economic Theory of Democracy New York: Harper Collins. Green, Donald P., and Alan S. Gerber. 2008. Get Out the Vote : how to increase voter turnout 2nd ed. Washington, D.C.: Brookings Institution Press. Lewis-Beck, Michael S. 2008. The American Vo ter Revisited. Ann Arbor: University of Michigan Press. Lindblom, Charles E., a nd David K. Cohen. 1979. Usable Knowledge New Haven: Yale University Press. McGinniss, Joe. 1968. The Selling of the President Schier, Steven. 2003. You Call This An Election? AmericaÂ’s Peculiar Democracy Washington, DC: Georgetown University Press. 10.82 | Online Resources Each state has primary responsibility fo r conducting and supervising elections. For information about Florida elections go to the My Florida Web site and click on government, then executive branch, then state agencies, then department of state, then Or you can learn about Florida election laws by goi ng directly to the Florida D epartment of State Web site

PAGE 266

260|Chapter 10: Political Participation which provides information about voter registration, candidates, political parties, and constitutional amendment proposals. Votesmart provides basic information about American politics and government. It is, in effect, American Government 101. C-SPAN election resources are available at /campaigns.asp The U.S. Elections Project provides data on voting. Dave Leip’s Atlas of U.S. Presidential Elections provides interesting information about presidential elections. Project Vote-Smart is a nonpartisan info rmation service funded by members and nonpartisan foundations. It offers “a wealth of facts on your political leaders, including Biographies, addresses, issue positions, voti ng records, campaign finances, evaluations by special interests.” The U.S. Census Bureau has information on voter registration and turnout statistics. C-Span produces programs that provide info rmation about the workings of Congress and elections. 1 ducation/september2007/michael-hartoonian-richardvan-scotter-and-william-e-white 10.9| Study Questions 1.What is the rational choice theory of voting? 2.What are the primary factors at the individual level that influence whether someone turns out to vote? 3.What are the institutional factors that depress voter turnout in the United States? Key Terms: voter fatigue open primaries closed primaries presidential primary caucus voter turnout rational choice model civic duty model political efficacy Individual explanations System explanations Voter registration “Air” campaigns

PAGE 267

Chapter 10: Political Participation|261 2 Alexander Hamilton, in The Records of the Federal Convention of 1787 Vol. 2, ed. Max Farrand (New Haven, CT: Yale Un iversity Press, 1937), 298-299. 3 For the methodology and results, see 4 See Anthony Downs. 1957. An Economic Theory of Democracy. New York: Harper Press. 5 Declare Yourself has information on each state and the requirements for voter registration at 6 George C. Wallace. Stand Up For Am erica. New York: Doubleday, 1976:212. 7 The National Conference of State Legislatur es provides detailed information about ballot initiatives in F 8 Oliver Bullough, “Offshore Money, Bane of Democracy, The New York Times (April 7, 2017). Accessed at 9 Tim Wu, “How Trump Wins by Losing,” New York Times (March 5, 2017), p.6 10 Quoted in “Campaigns Use Social Media to Lure Younger Voters,” Jenna Wortham, The New York Times (October 7, 2012). Accessed at

PAGE 268

11.0 | Why Parties? Why do people everywhere live, work, play, a nd even worship in groups? Why are large organizations—political parties, interest groups, corporations, churches, and national governments—the main actors in our social, economic, and political systems? Is there something natural about social organizations? And what is the role of the individual in political systems where groups are the dominant actors? These are some of the oldest and most interesting questions that are asked by the social scientists (political scientists, CHAPTER 11: Political Parties

PAGE 269

Chapter 11: Political Parties | 263 economists, sociologists, and anthropologists), political philosophers, a nd natural scientists that study human behavior. Natural scien tists study the phenomenon of grouping in the non-human animal kingdom to learn why fish birds, and elephants live in groups.1 Social scientists study economic, ideological, partisan and other groupings of the human animal. This chapter examines political parties. Political parties exist in all modern democracies. The U.S. Constitution does not sa y anything about political parties because they did not exist when the Constitution wa s written. But parties are one of the most important features of the American system of politics and government. It is impossible to understand American politic s without understanding politic al parties. The chapter examines two aspects of the power problem with parties. The first power problem is the tension between democratic theory which values individualism, and modern political reality, which is politics that is dominated by large organizations. American political culture includes a strong commitment to individualism and a healthy skepticism about large, powerful organizations. The tension be tween individualism and organization is one reason why Americans are ambivalent about poli tical parties. Political parties are stronger in other western democracies. In American pol itical culture, partie s are tolerated as a necessary evil because their influence on i ndividual voters and govern ment officials is considered suspect. Nevertheless, parties are considered essential fo r organizing public participation in politics, for organizing government officials to actually govern, and for holding government accountable. The second aspect of the power problem w ith parties is unique to the U.S. twoparty system. The Republican and Democratic Parties have a shared political monopoly— in effect, a duopoly. They are allowed to rest rict access to the ballot in ways that limit the development of other parties. If the two par ties were businesses, they would be guilty of violating anti-trust laws. Anti-trust laws prohibit businesses from colluding to limit economic competition and protect market sh are. But the Republican and Democratic Parties are allowed to control election laws in ways that protect their political market share. This chapter examines some of these aspect of party politics in the U.S. 11.1 | What is a Political Party? A political party is an organization of people with shared ideas about government and politics who try to gain control of government in order to im plement their id eas. Political parties usually try to gain control of gove rnment by nominating candidates for office who then compete in elections by running with the party label. Some political parties are very ideological and work hard to get their beliefs implemented in public policy. Other political parties are not as ideological because they are coalitions of different interests or they are more interested in gaining and holding pow er by having members win elections than strongly advocating a part icular set of beliefs. Political organizations play an important role in all sy stems of government. It is impossible to understand American government and politics without understanding the role of political parties and intere st groups. This is ironic be cause American culture values individualism, but political organi zations such as parties and in terest groups have come to play an extremely important role in our poli tical and economic life. Parties and interest

PAGE 270

264 | Chapter 11: Political Parties groups are linkage institutions Linkage institutions are sometimes called aggregating or mediating institutions. The media are also a linkage (or mediating) institution. A linkage organization is one th at links individuals to one another or the government A linkage organization aggregates and collects indivi dual interests. This is an important function in large scale (or mass) political systems because it is a way for individuals with shared interests to speak with a si ngle or louder voice. Linkage organizations are also impor tant because they mediate between individuals and government, they mediate between the lone (or small) i ndividual and (increasingly) big government. The mediating role becomes more important as a country’s population increases and as government get larger and larger. Intermediary organizations make it possible fo r individuals to think that they can have an impact on government. In this sense, political parties like other “mediating structures” actually empower people. Parties are part of civil society —the nongovernmental sector of public life Civil society includes political, economic, social, religious, cultural activities that are part of the crucial, nongovernmental foundations of a political community: the family, neighborhoods, churches, and voluntary associations such as parties an d interest groups. The Heritage Foundation is a conservative think tank that pr omotes the strengthening of these mediating structures as a way to empower individuals and to encourag e civic engagement as an alternative to depending on government action. (Berger and Neuhaus) Civic engagement promotes the development of, and maintains the viability of, these traditional mediating structures. 11.2 | Roles in Modern Democracies It is hard to imagine modern democracies wi thout political parties. The freedom to form parties and compete in the electoral process is one of the essential measures of democracy Big Government Mediating Institutions (Civil Society) The Lone or Small Individual “ I adore political parties They are the only place left to us where people don’t talk politics. ” Oscar Wilde “The old parties are husks, with no real soul within either, divided on artificial lines, bossridden and privilegecontrolled, each a jumble of incongruous elements, and neither daring to speak out wisely and fearlessly on what should be said on the vital issues of the day.” Theodore Roosevelt

PAGE 271

Chapter 11: Political Parties | 265 because parties are considered vital means of self-government. Poli tical parties perform the following functions: Recruit and nominate candidates for office. Help run campaigns and elections. Organize and mobilize voters to participate in politics. Organize and operate the government. The recruitment and nomination of candidates is one of the most important functions of political parties. In the past, party leaders exerted a great deal of control over the partyÂ’s candidate for office because party leaders and activists chose their pa rtyÂ’s nominee. Today, party control over nominees has been weakened. The increased use of primary elections allows voters to choose party candidates. The dere gulation of campaign finance has enabled candidates to fund and run their own campaigns The weakened control over nominees has weakened American political parties. Political parties also organize and mobilize voters. This function is important in large countries because it can help organize the pu blic in ways that increase an individualÂ’s sense of political efficacy. Political efficacy is the belief that a personÂ’s participation matters, that a personÂ’s vote can make a difference. In large-scale democracies such as the United States, political parties organize individuals, gather their interests in documents such as party platforms, and then present them to the voters to make their choices. In this respect, political parties perform a unifying f unction. They bring indivi duals together with other like-minded individuals who share th eir thinking on government and politics. The role of political parties is not lim ited to campaigns. Parties also play an important role in governance. Po litical parties are not officia lly part of the government, but they play an important role in organizing government action. The majority party in Congress organizes and runs Congress. The pa rty whose candidate wins the presidency works with the president to organize and s upport policy actions. In the American two-party system, the majority party is the Ins who generally advocate one set of public policies, and the Outs the minority party that presents an alternative set of public policies. Political scientists consider the above party functions vital for modern liberal democracies. But the American political tradit ion also includes str ong skepticism of parties. The fact that about one-third of vot ers consider themselves Independents rather than members of either of the two major part ies is evidence that Americans do not have a particularly strong attachment to parties. In dependents may think par ties are not essential for modern democracy, or they may think th at democracies work better when voters are not attached to either party, or they consider political parties part of the problem of gridlock or bickering and infighting that prevents well -meaning representatives of the people from working together to solve problems.

PAGE 272

266 | Chapter 11: Political Parties 11.3 | Anti-party Thinking about Politics Parties did not exist when the Constitution wa s written. There were “factions” or people who shared political, economic, and regional in terests, but they were not mass membership organizations competing in elections to control government. In fact, the founders considered factions harmful influences whose power needed to be checked because they pursued special interests rather than the national interest. Both George Washington and James Madison worried about the emergence of factions. Madison designed a form of government that was intended to limit the power of such special interests by a system of checks and balances. 11.31 | George Washington George Washington’s Farewell Address on September 19, 1796 is a famous statement warning against the spirit and actions of political parties. He warned against the development of state parties that created geog raphic divisions among Americans as well as “the baneful effects of the spirit of party generally,” a spirit that was “inseparable from our nature,” and existing in all forms of government, but “it is seen in it s greatest rankness, and is truly their worst enemy,” in popular forms of government: James Madison also consid ered factions a problem. But he thought than one solution—banning factions—would be a cure that was worse than the disease. He believed factions were rooted in human nature and therefore could not be eliminated. So in Federalist Number 51 he described a political system that made factions part of the solution to the problem of factions The system of checks and balances required many different factions, interests, par ties, and even religions so that no one group could get control of government power and use it against the others. The political solution to the problem of factions was to create a system th at had many factions. Th e way to guard against The alternate domination of one faction over a nother, sharpened by the spirit of revenge, natural to party dissension, which in differen t 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 miserie s which result gradually incline the minds of men to seek security and repose in the absolute pow er 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 eleva tion, on the ruins of public liberty. …[T]he 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. It serves always to distract the public councils and enfeeble the public admini stration. It agitates the community with illfounded jealousies and false alarms, kindles the anim osity of one part against another, foments occasionally riot and insurrection. It opens the door to foreign influence and corruption, which finds a facilitated access to the government itself through the channels of party passions. Thus the policy and the will of one country are subj ected to the policy and will of another.”

PAGE 273

Chapter 11: Political Parties | 267 a united majority threatening the rights of the minority is to create a society with “so many separate descriptions of citizens as will render an unjust combination of a majority of the whole very improbable, if not impracticable.” Madison specifically compared the problem of protecting political right s with the problem of pr otecting religious rights: “In a free government the security for civil ri ghts must be the same as that for religious rights. It consists in the one case in the multip licity of interests, and in the other in the multiplicity of sects. The degree of security in both cases will depend on the number of interests and sects; and this may be presumed to depend on the extent of country and number of people comprehended under the same government.” 11.32 | Parties and the Constitution The Founders worried that factions were divi sive forces that would literally divide Americans into parts or parties. But the two-party sy stem emerged in the early 1900s has not changed much for almost 200 years. The tw o major parties have changed a great deal, but the party system has not. Shortly after the Constitution was written, the Federalist Party and the Anti-federalist Party emerged to co mpete for control of the federal government. The Federalist Party supported a strong national government, a strong executive in the national government, and commercial interest The Federalist Party’s geographic base was in New England. The Anti-federalist Party s upported strong state gove rnments, legislative government, and agrarian interests. Its geogr aphic base was strongest in the South and West. Alexander Hamilton and Chief Jus tice John Marshall were strong Federalists. Thomas Jefferson and James Madison were An ti-federalists (a party which came to be called the Democratic-Republicans). The elect ion of 1800 was a pres idential contest won by Jefferson, and the landmark case of Marbury v. Madison (1803) began as a political contest over Federalist and Anti-federalist control of government. The Jeffersonians (or Democratic-Republicans) then became the dominant party, wi nning seven consecutive presidential elections from 1800 to 1824. The two major parties change because pol itical movements and third parties have periodically arisen to demand that the government addres s new issues facing the nation. American political culture values individualis m. Individualism makes Americans wary of political parties. But parties are also important linkage institutions th at organize individuals to more effectively participate in politics. Organization increases effectiveness. The tensions between individualism a nd organization are reflected in a political culture that is ambivalent about parties. There is a strong tradition of declinist thinking in American politics—claims that the country is going downhill in one way or another. The declinist thinking includes thinking about political par ties. Books with vari ations on the title The Party is Over2 either celebrate or mourn the impendi ng death of political parties. Political science research describing parties as dead or dying bring to mind Mark Twain’s famous quip about a newspaper report that he had di ed: “The reports of my death are greatly exaggerated.”

PAGE 274

268 | Chapter 11: Political Parties 11.4 | Party Systems Political systems are one-party systems, twoparty systems, or multi-party systems. The U.S. has a two-party system. 11.41 | One-Party Systems In one-party systems only one political party is lega lly allowed to hold power. Minor parties may be allowed but th ey are required to accept the official partyÂ’s role in governance because the party is usually officially part of the government. Government officials are not only members of a political pa rty they may be party officials. There are few one-party systems in existence today but a variant, the dominant party system is actually becoming more common as a global tren d toward declining support for democracy continues. Declining support for democracy is related to declining support for political parties. A dominant party system is one where one party is so strong that other parties have no real chance of competing in elections to wi n power. Other parties are legally allowed to exist, but they are not politically viable. Dominant party systems can exist in countries with a strong democratic tradition. The inability of any other party to compet e in elections may be due to political, social and economic circumstan ces, public opinion, or the dominant partyÂ’s monopoly over government power, which it uses the way a business monopoly uses its market dominance to protect its dominance. The dominant part y uses political patrona ge, voter and election fraud, gerrymandered legislative districts, and privileged access to the media, to maintain popular support. Political patronage is distri buting government jobs, contracts, or other benefits to influence votes. This is why having free and fair el ections is such an important component of the measure of democracy. Exampl es of dominant party systems include the PeopleÂ’s Action Party in Singapore, the Afri can National Congress in South Africa, and the Institutional Revolutionary in Mexico until the 1990s. In the United States, the South was a one-party dominant region from the 1880s until the 1970s because the Democratic Party controlled the South. The South is sti ll a one-party dominant region but now the Republican Party is the dominant party. 11.42 | Two-Party Systems A two-party system is one where there are two major pol itical parties that are so strong that it is extremely difficult for a candidate fr om any party other than the two major parties to have a real chance to win elections. In a two-party system, a third-party is not likely to have much electoral success. The Republican and Democratic Parties are the dominant parties in the U.S. two-party system. It is difficult for any third or minor party to win elections. The individual states, not the federal government, prim arily regulate political parties because most elections are state electi ons. The states organize elections for local, state, and federal offices. There are no state or federal laws that limit the number of political parties. The U.S. could develop a multi-pa rty system with a Republican, Democratic, Libertarian, Socialist, Green, and even a Chri stian Democrat party. Th ird or minor parties do appear periodically on the American political landscape but they tend to be single-issue

PAGE 275

Chapter 11: Political Parties | 269 parties whose issue is often incorporated into the platform of one of the two major parties. The electoral rules also make it hard for minor parties to become major parties. For example, states have restrictive ballot access laws that make it hard for small parties to get on the ballot, win elections, and then development in strength as they broaden their appeal to voters. In two-party systems, the el ectoral marketplace is typically divide d into a right of center party (the conservatives) and a left of center party (the liberals). The Republican Party is right of center and the De mocratic Party is left of cente r. Both parties are coalitions of interests. A coalition is a temporary combin ation or alliance of different interests that unite to achieve shared goals. The two major pa rties have to have broa d appeal in order to win elections by capturing a majority or near ma jority of the votes ca st in an election. The Republican Party coalition cons ists of four main intere sts: economic conservatives (primarily business interests); social conserva tives (primarily the religious right); crime control conservatives (getti ng-tough-on crime advocates of public order); and national security conservatives. The Democratic Part y coalition consists of minorities (primarily blacks but also Hispanics, women, gays and lesbians; and immigrants; economic liberals, primarily organized labor and consumers; urbanites; and young and old voters. The coalitions of interests in the two ma jor parties do change over time. Politics, like sports, is activity that is organized by rules that determine how the game is played and who wins. The most important rule in the electoral game is whether to use proportional representation (PR) or single-member distri ct plurality vote system (SMDP). Proportional representation is a system where each party receiv es a share of seats in parliament that is proportional to the popular vote that the party receives. In a singlemember district plurality vote system the pe rson who gets the most votes in an election wins the seat. It is a winner-t ake-all election: The person w ho gets the most votes (i.e., the plurality) wins the election even if he or she did not wi n a majority of the votes. The United States uses this single-member distri ct plurality system. For example, in a congressional election, the candidate who gets the most votes wins the senate seat or a house seat. The Electoral College also uses this winner-take-all system. The presidential candidate that receives the most popular votes in a state gets all of that stateÂ’s Electoral College votes (with the excep tion of Nebraska and Main e which use a system of proportional representation). The winner-take-all system is not very democratic because 49% of the voters in an electi on are losers! The system also disadvantages minor parties. Election rules have a major impact on how the political game is played and who is likely to win. The winner-take-all system has the following effects on the way the political game is played: It tends to create and maintain a two-party system. It tends to make political parties more ideologically moderate because they must compete to win the most votes cast in an election or it will lose the election. Extremist or single-issue parties are unlikely to win elections. It increases political stability because te nds the differences between the two major parties will not be as great as it would be in a political sy stem where parties competed at the left or right extremes of the ideological spectrum. Maurice Duverger, the French sociologist described how the electoral rules had these effects on party politics.

PAGE 276

270 | Chapter 11: Political Parties An electoral system based on proportiona l representation creates conditions that allow new parties to develop and smaller part ies to exist. The winner-take-all plurality system marginalizes new and smaller political parties by relegating to the status of loser n elections. A small third party ca nnot gain legislative power if it has to compete and win in a district with a large population in order to gain a seat. Similarly, a minor party with a broad base of support that is geographically spread throughout a state or spread across the nation is unlikely to attract enough votes to actually win an election even though it has substantial public support. Fo r example, the Libertarian Pa rty has supporters throughout the country, and may attract a substantial number of votes, but the votes are not enough to be the majority in a single district or a single state. Duverger also believed the SMDP vote rule produces moderation and stability. Take, for example, the following scenario. Tw o moderate candidates (from two moderate parties) and one radical candida te are competing for a single office in an election where there are 100,000 moderate voters and 80,000 ra dical voters. If each moderate voter casts a vote for a moderate candidate and each radical voter casts a vote for the radical candidate, the radical candidate would win unless one of the moderate candidates gathered less than 20,000 votes. Consequently, moderate voters seeki ng to defeat a radica l candidate or party would be more likely to vote fo r the candidate that is most likely to get more votes. The political impact of the SMDP vote rule is that the two moderate parties must either merge or one moderate party must fail as the vot ers gravitate to the two strong parties. A third party usually can become successful only if it can exploit the mistakes of one of the existing major parties. For example, the political chaos immediately preceding the Civil War allowed the Republican Party to replace the Whig Party as the more progressive party. Loosely united on a platform of country wide economic reform and federally funded industrialization, the decentralized Whig leadership failed to take a decisive stance on the slavery issue, effectively splitting the party along the Mason-Dixon Line. Southern rural planters, initially lured by the prospect of federal infrastructure and schools, quickly aligned themselves with the pro-slavery Democrats, while urba n laborers and professionals in the northern DuvergerÂ’s Law is a principle that a plurality election system tends to produce a stable, two party system.

PAGE 277

Chapter 11: Political Parties | 271 states, threatened by the sudden shift in polit ical and economic power and losing faith in the failing Whig candidates, flocked to the increasingly vocal anti-slave Republican Party. In countries that use proportional represen tation (PR), the electoral rules make it hard to maintain a two-party system. The number of votes that a party receives determines the number of seats it wins so a new party can start small, win a local or state election, develop an electoral base of support, and then expand it. Proportional representation results in the creation of multi-party systems. 11.43 | Multi –Party Systems Multi-party systems have more than two parties. The Central Intelligence Agency’s World Factbook lists the political parties in countries. Canada and the United Kingdom have two strong parties with a third party that is strong enough to have some electoral success, may occasionally place second in electio ns, and presents a serious challenge to the two major parties, but the third party does not win enough votes to gain control of government. These third parties play an important role, particularly if neither of the two major parties wins a majority in the representative assembly. Then one of the major parties must try to form a coalition with the third part y in order to gain a legislative majority and gain control of government. This makes the thir d party the “kingmaker.” This occurred in the 2017 election in Britain when Prime Mini ster Theresa May’s Conservative Party won only 318 of the 650 seats in the House of Co mmons, which was short of the 326 majority required to form a government. May’s Cons ervative Party formed a coalition with a Northern Ireland Party, the Democratic Un ionist Party, whose 10 seats provided the majority the Conservative Party needed to fo rm a government. Third or minor parties also play an important role in pu tting problems, issues, and ideas on the government agenda. A third party may support a part icular public policy that b ecomes popular enough for one of the two major parties to adopt it as one of thei r own. No party has an intellectual property right or trademark right to a pa rticular political idea. Parties regularly steal ideas from one another. Finland has an unusual party system. It ha s a three-party system in which all three parties routinely win elections and hold the top government offi ce. It is very rare for a country to have more than three parties that are equally successful and have the same chance of gaining control of government (that is, “forming” the government or appointing the top government officials such as the prime minister). In political systems where there are numerous parties it is more common that no one party will be able to attract a majority of votes and therefore form a government, so a party will have to work with other parties to try to form a coalition government. Coalition governments, which include members of more than one party, are actually commonpl ace in countries such as the Republic of Ireland, Germany, and Israel. In countries with proportional representati on, the seats in a country’s parliament or representative assembly woul d be allocated according to the popular votes the party received. The electoral districts are usually as signed several representatives. For example, assume the following distribution of the popular vote:

PAGE 278

272 | Chapter 11: Political Parties Part y Percent o f the Popular Vote Republican Part y 36 Democratic Part y 35 Libertarian Part y 15 Green Part y 14 The seats in the countryÂ’s 100-member repres entative assembly would be allocated as follows: Part y Seats in the Representative Assembl y Republican Part y 36 Democratic Part y 35 Libertarian Part y 15 Green Part y 14 Proportional representation makes it easier fo r smaller or minor parties to survive because they can win some seats in an election even though they never win enough votes to form a majority and control the governmen t. Consequently, propor tional representation tends to promote multi-party systems because elections do not result one winner (the candidate or party that get the most votes) a nd all the rest of the candidates are losers. 11.5 | U.S. Political Parties The U.S. has a two-party system. The two ma jor parties are the Republican Party and the Democratic Party. The U.S. also has two well established minor parties, the Libertarian Party and the Green Party. Other smaller parties include the Constitution Party and the Socialist Party. The following table includes the largest current largest parties. Each party was on the ballot in enough states to have had a mathematical chance to win a majority of Electoral College votes in th e 2008 presidential election. Project Vote Smart provides a useful list of political partie s in each of the 50 states. Act on It! World Factbook

PAGE 279

Chapter 11: Political Parties | 273 12.51 | Current Largest Parties Party Name Date Founded Founder(s) Associated Ideologies Current Chair Democratic Party 1792/ 1820s Thomas Jefferson/ Andrew Jackson Liberalism, Progressivism, Social Liberalism Tom Perez Republican Party 1854 Alvan E. Bovay Conservatism, Neoconservatism, Economic Conservatism, Social Conservatism Reince Priebus Libertarian Party 1971 David Nolan Libertarianism Nicholas Sarwark (Chair of Libertarian National Committee) Green Party US (GPUS) 1984 Howie Hawkins John Rensenbrink Environmental Protection, Liberalism Co-Chairs of Steering Committee of GPUS: Chris Blankenhorn, Andrea Merida Cuellar, Darlene Elias, Sandra Everette, Darryl! Moch, Tamar Yager, Bahram Zani Act on It! Contact a local or state party official in your state, or another state, and ask a question about the partyÂ’s position on an issue that interests you.

PAGE 280

274 | Chapter 11: Political Parties 11.6 | Political Party Eras Political scientists have identified distinctiv e party eras in the U.S. party system. A party era is a time period when the two major partie s took different sides on the most important issues that were facing the nation during that time period. Th e following describes six party eras. 11.61 | The First Era: the 1790s until around 1824 The election of 1796 was the first election where candida tes ran as members of a political party. The Federalist Party and the Anti-Fe deralist Party (or Democratic Republicans) differed on the question of the power of the na tional government. The Federalists generally supported a strong national government and the Jeffersonian Democratic Republicans supported state government. The election of 1800 produced a number of firsts. It produced “America’s first presidential campaign.”3 It marked the beginning of the end for the Federalist Party. John Adams and the Federalis t Party supported Engl and, a strong national government, industrial development, and aristocracy. Thomas Jefferson and the Republican Party supported France, decentralized state governments, and agrarian society, and egalitarian democracy. Jefferson won the election of 1800, the first transition of power from one party to the opposition party and the beginning of a party system. By 1820, the Federalist Party had gone out of existence a nd a Democratic Republican (James Madison) was elected president—beginning what came to be called the “ Era of Good Feelings ” because it was a period of one party-domi nance with limited party competition. 11.62 | The Second Era: from 1824 until the Civil War During the second era, Andrew Jackson and th e Democrats were the dominant party. The Democrats advocated a populist politic al system that is often called Jacksonian Democracy The most distinctive aspect of Jack sonian Democracy is governing based on a system of political patronage. The familiar political slogan, “ To the victor go the spoils (of office) ,” describes how the candidate that won an election was entitled to give government jobs (and other benefits) to the pe ople (including the members of his or her political party) that supported the campaign. Th is was the era that pr oduced political parties as mass membership organizations rather than political parties as legislative caucuses. The most important national political issues duri ng this era were economic matters, such as tariffs to protect manufacturing and the crea tion of a national bank to direct economic development, slavery, and the territorial expa nsion of the republic. In the years 1854 to 1856, the Republican Party emerged to replace th e Whig party as the second of the major political parties of the era. Think About It! What does an era of limited party politics that is called an era of good feeling imply about party politics?

PAGE 281

Chapter 11: Political Parties | 275 11.63 | The Third Era: from the Civil War to 1896 During this party era, the Republican Party a nd the Democratic Party were divided on two major issues: Reconstruction of the South a nd the Industrial Revolution. The Republican Party was a northern party that supported manuf acturing, railroads, oil, and banking as part of the broader support for the Industrial Re volution. The Republican Party supported the national governmentÂ’s Reconstruction of the South after the Civil War. The Democratic Party was based in the South. It opposed the use of federal power, including civil rights laws, to regulate the way that Southern stat es treated newly freed slaves. In terms of economic policy, the Democratic Party also suppor ted rural or agrarian interests rather than urban and industrial interests. 11.64 | Fourth Era: from 1896 to 1932 The Republican Party was the dominant party duri ng the fourth party era. Its base was big business and regional strength in the northeast and the west. The Democratic PartyÂ’s base was in the southern states of the old Confederacy. The early years of the fourth party era were the Progressive Era, the period from the 1890s until World War I that were notable for major reforms in politics and government. It produced the civil se rvice system, primary elections, nonpartisan elections and direct democracy mechanisms such as referendum, initiative, and recall. The civil service system largely replaced the spoils system of political patronage with a merit system for sta ffing the government. Primary and nonpartisan elections weakened political pa rties by giving voters more control over the selection of candidates for office any by having candidate s run without party labels. These reforms were intended to get politics out of the smoke-filled back rooms where party bosses picked candidates for office. Referendum and initiativ e were two electoral reforms that expanded direct democracy by allowing the public to vo te on laws proposed by state legislatures or to initiate their own la ws without having to rely on state legislatures. Finally, recall was a way for voters to vote government officials out of office. 11.65 | The Fifth Era: from the 1930s until the latter 1960s During this era the Democratic Party was the dominant party. The era includes the major expansions of the federal social welfare st ate during the New Deal programs advocated by President Franklin D. Roosevelt and the Great Society programs advocated by President Lyndon Johnson. During this era, the Democratic Party became identified with the common person, minorities, and labor, while the Republican Party became identified with business and the wealthy. The New Deal issues included the national governmentÂ’s response to the Depression and foreign policy ma tters related to World War II and the Cold War. The Great Society issues focused on th e expansion of the social welfare state and civil rights and liberties. Egalitarianism is one of the values associated with New Deal/Great Society liberalism.

PAGE 282

276 | Chapter 11: Political Parties 11.66 | The Sixth Era: from the latter 1960s— This party era began as a conservative backlash against the liberalism of the New Deal and Great Society. Republicans blamed liberal Demo cratic policies for an increase in crime, social disorder (race riots, prison riots, and antiwar demonstrations), loss of the Vietnam War, loosening of sexual mores, school busi ng, affirmative action, th e secularization of society, inflation—and going soft on communi sm! During this era, the Republican Party could be described as a four-leg ged stool. The four legs were Crime control. Anti-communism. Economic conservatism. Social conservatism. Crime control meant getting tough on crime. Social conservatism meant defending and promoting traditional and family values. The term culture wars came to refer to the values and lifestyles conflict between liberals and c onservatives. Patrick Buchanan’s Address at the 1992 Republican Party Convention was a rousing speech calling for the Republican Party to fight back against liberal values. Buchanan, a traditional conservative, lost the Republican Party nomination for president but hi s speech inspired the social conservatives with a call to action: “There is a religious war going on in this country. It is a cultural war as critical to the kind of nation we shall be as the cold war itself—for this war is for the soul of America.” Economic conservatism prim arily meant de-regulation of business and opposition to taxes. Anti-communism meant an emphasis on national security that primarily focused on getting t ough on the Soviet Union. These four legs supported the Republi can Party coalition that has strongly influenced the national political debates an d public policy since Pr esident Nixon’s election in 1968. The Republican Party won the presiden cy five of the six presidential elections between 1968 and 1988. And Republican Presiden t George W. Bush’s party controlled both houses of Congress until the mid-term elections in 2006. When Barack Obama won the 2008 presidential election there was some speculation that the country was entering a post-party era where party politic s (partisanship) woul d be less important than issue-based politics. This expectation was reinforced by th e fact that President Obama was not a party animal! He did not enjoy, and therefore di d not do much of, the familiar political backslapping and legislative deal making th at was essential for building congressional support for Democratic policies. As a result President Obama, the titular head of the Democratic Party, left the party in bad shape after his two terms in office. The Obama years were marked by intense partisan divisions that ended any specul ation—or hope?—that the country was entering a post-party era of politics. The party system is dynamic, not static. It is constantly changing. The advanced age of the current party era raises some que stions about future developments in party politics. Is the sixth party era coming to an en d? Does the increase in the percentage of the public that consider themselves independents indicate a major shift in the coalitions of interests in the two major parties? The politic al forces that shape the two major political parties are still at work: “The modern Democr atic Party was shaped by the populism of the 1890s, the antibusiness reformism of the 1930s a nd the civil rights crusade of the 1960s.

PAGE 283

Chapter 11: Political Parties | 277 The Republican Party was formed by abolitio nism in the 1850s, anti-tax revolts in the 1970s and 1980s and the evangelical conservatism of the 1990s and 2000s.”4 The constituent elements of the two major parties change over time in response to demands that the party address contemporary problems or issues. Sometimes this results in the creation of a new dominant party era. The increase in the number of Americans who consider themselves Independents, and the ability of candidates to run for office using their own resources rather than the resources traditiona lly provided by a political party, has renewed speculation about the dec line of political partie s or even an end to the era of political parties. But partisanship has become even st ronger over the last decades, so the near-term future is more likely to bring fundamental ch anges in the party coalitions than the end of party politics as we know it—and love to hate it! 11.7 | Political Movements and Political Parties Understanding the long life of the U.S. tw o-party system requires understanding the relationship between political movements and poli tical parties. A political movement is an organized, fairly long-term campaign to achieve a particular goal or to work for a specific cause Movement can be effective because they in spire individuals to work for the cause. Movements can be organized efforts to enact a change in public policy OR to stop a proposed change. The U.S. political system has so many access points where movements can be stopped that is often eas ier to play defense than offense. The following is a short list of political movements: Abolition of slavery; Prohibition of alcohol; Pro-life or anti-abortion; Anti-communism; Civil rights; Feminism; Organized labor (unions); Environmentalism; Gay rights; The Tea Party; Property rights; The Religious Right; and The Black Lives Matter and the Blue Lives Matter Movements Political movements have life cycles The life cycle begins with the identification of the cause The movement then develops an organizational or institutional structure to work “Are Independents Just Partisans in Disguise” e-independents-just-partisans-in-disguise

PAGE 284

278 | Chapter 11: Political Parties for the cause. The movement then either achieves its policy goal or it fails to do so. Then movements tend to fade away whether successful or not. Figure 11.7: The Life Cycle of Political Movements Political movements often attach themselv es to one of the two major political parties in order to achieve the movement’s goals. The parties are the “action arms” that help turn the ideas into public policy. The Religious Right has been an important political movement since the 1970s. It developed organizations including the Moral Majority (created by Reverend Jerry Falwell), the Christian Coalition of America, and the Faith and Freedom Coalition (both created by Ralph Reed). And the moveme nt aligned itself with the Republican Party. Prior to and during the 2016 elections, some Ch ristian Right leaders suggested that they should recognize that they had lost the culture wars. American culture seemed to have moved away from them : divorce was commonplace ; pornography readily available; and homosexual sodomy and gay marriage were legalized. But then the movement got a new lease on life when Donald Trump won the electi on with the support of Evangelical Christians. 11.71 | Major Party Coalitions The Republican and the Democratic Parties are co alitions of interests, some of which are political movements. The Tea Party and the Religious Right are pol itical movements that aligned with the Republican Party to achieve their goals; the civil rights and environmental movements aligned with the Democratic Party. Identify The Cause Develop Organizational Structure Policy Success Policy Failure Fade Away

PAGE 285

Chapter 11: Political Parties | 279 The Democratic Party’s coalition of intere sts includes racial and ethnic minorities, organized labor, consumers, ur ban interests (i.e., “metrose xuals”) environmentalists, and more recently perhaps immigrants. This co alition began with the business reform movement of the 1930s (i.e., bus iness regulation) and the ci vil rights movements of the 1950s and 1960s. The Republican Party is still identified with national security, crime control, business interests, and moral regulat ory policy. The modern Re publican Party is a coalition of whites, business interests, the military, and Evangelical Christians that Ronald Reagan described as a three-legged stool. The three legs were the three kinds of conservatives: national security conservatives (i.e., Cold War anti-communists); economic conservatives (anti-tax; anti-bus iness regulation; and pro free-markets); and social values conservatives. The Republican Party is act ually more accurately described as a four-legged stool, because crime also played a very importa nt role in the rise of the Republican Party in the latter 1960s, and crime control continues to be an important base of conservative support. Figure 11.71: The Republican Party Coalition C r i m e N a t. S e c u r I t y E c o n o m i c s S o c i a l Modern Republican Party

PAGE 286

280 | Chapter 11: Political Parties Political movements change political parties as the movement’s ideas are incorporated into the party. As a result, part y coalitions shift. The movement-party dynamic explains both the continuity and change in party politics. The continuity is the fact that the two-party system of Republicans and Demo crats has remained the same for almost 200 years. The change is the fact that what it means to be a Republican or Democrat changes over time as movements arise to bring new i ssues to the political system. The dynamic of the relationship between a polit ical party and the causes an d political movements that periodically arise from within elements of a political party help explain how political change occurs within a two party system th at has not changed much in 200 years in the sense that we have had the same two major parties since the early decades of the 19th Century. 11.72 | The Just Society Belief and the Injustice of Cutting in Line The 2016 presidential electi on reveals how the party co alitions shift. Donald Trump’s hostile takeover of the Republican Party was base d on his appeal to white working class voters who had been the modern Democrat ic Party’s base. Trump’s promise to Make America Great Again resonated with these vote rs who believed that liberals and Democrats were allowing members of certain minority groups and even immigrants to cut ahead of them while they were standing in line to achieve the American Dream. Arlie Russell Hochschild, a journalist for a liberal publicatio n, went to “white Louisiana” to talk to working class people about polit ics. He concluded that this bastion of Trump supporters believed the following conservative story a bout what was happening to their American Dream—and they deeply rese nted the unfai rness of it: “You are patiently standing in the middle of a long line stretching toward the horizon, where the American Dream awaits. But as you wait, you see pe ople cutting in line ahead of you. Many of these line-cutters ar e black—beneficiaries of affirmative action or welfare. Some are career-driven women pushing into jobs they never had before. Then you see immigrants, Mexicans, Somalis, the Syrian refugees yet to come. As you wait in this unmoving line, y ou’re being asked to feel so rry for them all. You have a good heart. But who is deciding who you s hould feel compassion for? Then you see President Barack Hussein Obama waving the line-cutters forward. He’s on their side. In fact, isn’t he a line-cutter too? How di d this fatherless black guy pay for Harvard? Think About It! The relative importance of the four legs varies from election to election. Which of the legs do you think are the widest or strongest or most important today? What do GOP Platforms reveal?

PAGE 287

Chapter 11: Political Parties | 281 As you wait your turn, Obama is using th e money in your pocket to help the linecutters. He and his liberal backers have removed the shame from taking. The government has become an instrument fo r redistributing your money to the undeserving. It’s not your go vernment anymore; it’s theirs.”5 The above story explains how a political move ment (in this case populist) and an ideology (in this case conserva tism) align with a political party (in this case the Republican Party). One of the major questions about the 2016 pres idential election was whether Trump voters were motivated by economics or race Voting behavior is the result of many variables or factors. Political scientists try to determine the relativ e impact that factors have on voting. Figure 11.1 below describes seven ma jor factors in the 2016 election. Figure 11.1 Researchers cannot simply ask people whether sensitive issues like race determine their attitudes or votes because they may think thei r answers are socially unacceptable evidence of prejudice. Voters are unlikel y to provide honest answers to questions about whether race was a reason why they voted for Trump. In fact, conservatives and Republicans have rejected descriptions of the ideology and the party as racist, and defended positions on welfare and crime and affirmative action as prin cipled positions reflecting beliefs about the role of government. Social scient ists have developed theories of modern racism that can be applied to American National Election Studies (ANES) data in order to help answer the question whether votes for Trump were econo mic or racial. The concept of racial resentment captures important dimensions of modern racial animus. (Kinder and Sanders) In fact, “modern racism scales ” consider racial resentment scores better predictors of attitudes toward racial policies than either ideology or racial prejudice. (Carney and Enos) This modern racism research is relevant to the white male blue-c ollar voters who cast populist protest votes in the 2016 presidential election. Agai nst whom was the populist protest vote? The “just world beli ef” provides an explanation. The just world belief shapes conservative thinking about po litics (Lerner, 1980) much more than liberals—who are more likely to identify with political movement s to fight injustice, to mobilize action to Vote for Trump Race Economics (Class) Gender Immigration Religion National Security Crime

PAGE 288

282 | Chapter 11: Political Parties live up to ideals. Conservatives believe the U.S. is a basically just society where merit is recognized and rewarded. In es sence, Republican voters have a post-civil rights worldview in the sense that they believe that the various civil rights movements have ended discrimination based on race and gender, for inst ance. Therefore they believe this is now a just world where success is determined largely by individual merit. This just world belief has the following components: Past racial discrimination is over. Blacks n eed to try harder if they want to be successful. Everyone can now enter and run the race without handicap or special benefits such as affirmative action. Blacks have undue influence in (democratic) politics. This influence is resented and a source of animosity. Immigration increases crime and immigrants take social welfare benefits that would otherwise be available for others. The economic stress the middle class is experiencing has been caused by the establishment’s responsiveness to minorit ies and policies promoting diversity. The just world believers think that Blacks, Hispanics, women, gays, and other minorities, perhaps even immigrants, are deserving special attention. In fact, in a zero sum economy, these no-longer-deserving groups are taking resources and opportunities from white working class males. These beliefs resulted not just from the liberal political parties in the U.S. and Britain. They also resulted from rightward movement of both the left-of-center parties and the right of center parties—Margar et Thatcher’s Conservative Party in Britain and Reagans Republican Party in the U.S. in th e 1980s with the shift to ward market rather than government solutions to political problems. This “marke tization” contributed to the income inequality in both countries. In th e 1980s, Republican Presid ent Reagan declared that the government is the problem, not the solution. In the 1990s, Democratic President Clinton echoed the declaration by announcing th at “the era of big government is over.” Some analyses of the American National Elections Study data conclude that the Trump realignment of the Republican Party coa lition to include disaffected working class voters was not the result of their individual ec onomic conditions but ra ther a general racial animus— an anti-black affect .6 According to these analyses, the Trump vote was not about economic anxiety as much as the attitudes of white voters who angry about something much broader than their jobs and incomes. Th e Democratic Party enab led this affect with a campaign strategy that reinfo rced its already strong image as the party of racial and economic progressivism and reinforced the Re publican Party’s alrea dy strong image as the party of racial and economic conservatism. It is important to remember that this racial affect is best understood as broader than just race as a bi ological construct. The racial animus affect is similar to how 19th Century immigration policy treated race as a cultural or civilizational factor—hence the Black Irish and the treatment of Eastern and Southern Europeans as non-whites. George Packer explains the populist revolt that erupted in both parties during the 2016 elections. For the previous several decade s, elections had been fought over social issues more than economic policy. For example, even welfare reform in the 1990s was framed as more about saving morals (reduci ng dependency and creating initiative) more than saving money. President Clinton moved th e Democratic Party rightward ideologically in 1990s by supporting welfare reform, global tr ade agreements, and financial capitalism.

PAGE 289

Chapter 11: Political Parties | 283 These policies accelerated the economic and regional divides in the U.S. and other developed countries so that some individuals and some regions did very well while others did not. The political refrain from indivi duals and regions that did not do well was increasingly loud complaints about “[i]mmig rants, politicians, banks, criminals, the economy, and medical bills.”7 Some downscale whites actually embraced the redneck and white trash labels as their own distinct identity pol itics that set them apart from the urban professionals with their cosmopolitan values that had become cl osely identified with the leadership of the Democratic Party. But this was not the typi cal Republican Party constituency. The term working class used to connote mainstream, ma in-street, Middle American values. But in Hillbilly Elegy Vance (2016) laments how rural southerners became “downwardly mobile, poor, even pathological” people a fflicted with the same “ills” th at inhibited the black urban underclass: “intergenerational poverty, welfare, debt, bankruptcy, out-of-wedlock births, trash entertainment, addiction, jail, social distrust, political cynicism, bad health, unhappiness, early death.” Rust belt cities recovered from the “inner-city d ecline” but now the heartland and Appalachians have been economically and socially hollowed out. According to Vance, the coastal urban elit es either ignore these regions or blame individuals and their culture for their failures. He accuse s the two major parties of abandoning them—thereby creating the political space for both the Trump and Sanders insurgent campaigns in 2016. Thomas Frank’s Listen, Liberal (2016) describes how th e Democratic Party’s leadership responded to popular demands for change in the 1970s, but the party replaced one set of elites (e.g., organized labor) with a nother set (“affluent professionals”) and then failed to realize that the problems caused by growing economic inequality would be a problem for Democrats and liberals—not just for conservatives and Republicans whose economic policies had been the original cause of the inequality. President Bill Clinton’s Democratic Leadership Council emphasized reinventing government (deregulating business, particularly finance), reinventi ng people (ending welfare and expecting the working class to rise to the professional classes in an e xpanding economy), and reinventing the economy (e.g., an almost religious faith in globalization as the solution to poverty among nations). In subsequent de cades, it became clear that even rich nations would have losers just as there were losers within na tions. Globalization reduced Global Inequality by raising poor countries, but it also made inequal ity much worse in rich countries. According to Frank (2016: 54), Democratic policymakers came to think of poverty as “foreign” or “black” and they misunderstood the important of nationalism because it wasn’t very important to them. They, like the Republican Party establishment, grew comfortable with transnational corporations and dual citizenship and cosmopolitan urban professional values while the “other America” grew to despise these elites. In the 2016, the “other Americans” who felt neglected by the two major parties had two presidential candidates who voiced their views, and one won his party’ s nominations and the election. 11.73 | The Failure of Success In the 1970s cities were considered centers of crime, drugs, and poverty. In 1975, for example, New York City was on the verge of bankruptcy and requested a federal bailout.

PAGE 290

284 | Chapter 11: Political Parties That was then. Now major cities including Ne w York are struggling with the inequality problems created by success. In fact, this version of urba n renewal is part of a globa l problem. Economist and other social scientists describe “The Elephant Char t” to explain global trends in inequality over the last twenty years or so. The chart show s Global Income Distribution by percentage increases over twenty years from 1988 to 2008. The global income distribution has become more equal as the developing worl d becomes more wealth. But the chart also shows the hollowing out of the middle class in developed countries such as the U.S., Britain, and France as the develo ping regions of the world be come wealthier in absolute and relative terms. The lower classes have gained income while the middle class incomes have been stagnant and while the top 1% has experienced steep increases in wealth. The populist protest politics in the U. S. and other western democracies has been fueled by the established, mainstream parties’ failure to address these new developments in the relationship betwee n economics and politics. 11.74 | Party Affiliation and Political Attitudes Political party identification is re lated to political attitudes. T he origins of pa rtisanship (the identification with a political party) have been studied extensiv ely. There is broad agreement that a person’s party identificati on is influenced by upbri nging, ethnicity, race, geographic location, and socioeconomic status. People also identify with a party because of ideology or positions on important issues. In order to better understand all of these factors, a Gallup Panel survey asked Ameri cans who identified themselves as Republicans or Democrats (or said they lean toward eith er party if they initially said they were independents) to explain in their own words ju st what it is about th eir chosen party that appeals to them most. The following Gallup Po lling data describe the appeal of the two major parties.8 Republicans justify their allegiance to the GOP most often with reference to ideology: conservatism. Conservatism mean s moral regulatory policy, economic policy Think About It! The PBS story “Has Urban Renewal Ca used a Crisis of Success?” looks at the other side of the coin of relative economic decline in rural America. It also is a story that th e two parties neglect at their peril. Think About It! Paul Salman explains “The El ephant Chart” in the Making Sense segment on the PBS Newshour

PAGE 291

Chapter 11: Political Parties | 285 that prioritizes tax cuts a nd balanced budgets, and a generalized support for smaller government. Republicans Democrats Percent Percent Conservative/More conservative 26 Social/Moral issue positions 18 Conservative family/moral values 15 Overall platform/ philosophy/ policies 14 Overall platform/ philosophy/ policies 12 Liberal/More liberal 11 Conservative on fiscal/economic issues 10 Help the poor 7 Favors smaller government 8 Disagree with the Republicans 5 Favors individual responsibility/ self-reliance 5 Always been a Democrat 5 Always been a Republican 4 Antiwar 3 For the people/working people 3 Healthcare reform 2 Low taxes 3 Pro-environment/conservation 1 Favor strong military 3 Pro-life on abortion 2 More honest than the Democrats 2 Disagree with the Democrats 2 Other 3 Other 7 Nothing in particular (vol.) 5 Nothing in particular (vol.) 6 No opinion 6 No opinion 5 Asked of Republicans and independents who lean to the Republican Party, What is it about the Democratic Party that appeals to you most? Percentages add to more than 100% due to multiple responses. Asked of Democrats and independents who lean to the Democratic Party) What is it about the Democratic Party that appeals to you most? Percentages add to more than 100% due to multiple responses. Democrats are less likely to mention ideology as a reason for their partisan identity, and more likely to mention that the partyÂ’s commit ment to the working class, the middle class, or the common man However, the 2016 presidential mark ed a significant change in the partyÂ’s identity as disconnected from the white working class. 11.75 | The Wired World of Party Politics The world is increasingly wired together by global trade, electr onic communication, and travel. These connections affect politics. U.S. political parties are a ffected by gl obal trends such as the current trend toward declining public confidence in established political institutions. The party systems in Europe, Brita in, and the U.S. are struggling to adapt to

PAGE 292

286 | Chapter 11: Political Parties new economic conditions, ideological coalit ions, and partisan voting behavior. For example, the center-left (i.e., the social de mocrat) parties in Eur ope were expected to benefit from 1) the general tr end toward globaliza tion, seculariza tion, and diversity; and 2) the perception that conservative parties were to blame for the Great Recession that began in 2008, the increased economic inequality, and th e neoliberal public policies that rewarded individual success but failed to provide for the common or public good. But liberal parties have struggled to maintain support in the contemporary political climate, while radical, conservative populist leaders advocating nationa list policies benefited from the economic, social, religious, and political anxiety in Eur ope and, to a lesser extent, the U.S. Three common features of trans-Atlantic politics explain these political developments in party politics. First, the right stole some of the le ft’s political thunder by adopting populist rhetoric criticizing th e political establishment for ignori ng the needs of th e common people. Populist conservatives sounded like liberals who had been critical of the long-term trends toward increased economic and political inequality. This made it harder for liberal or leftof-center political parties to differentiate themselves from the right. For example, Donald Trump’s campaign appealed to working cla ss whites that were struggling economically and felt that they were downwardly mobile Second, over time the European left had splintered into numerous competing factions that resembled special or single-issue groups more th an a liberal political party with a broad electoral appeal. Countries w ith multi-party systems that use proportional representation to allocate parliamentary seats fostered this splintering of interests. The 2017 general election in The Neth erlands resulted in individu als from 13 political parties winning seats in the 150-member parliament. As a result, no party was able to win a majority, and a four-party co alition was necessary to get 75 seats to form a governing majority.9 In the U.S. two-party system, the left’s splintering has been primarily intra-party splintering that has created a Democratic Part y with ideological wings. On occasion, the left’s ideological splintering has resulted in major defections. In the 2000 presidential election, liberal Democrats who vo ted for the Green Party were a factor in George W. Bush winning the presidency despite not receivi ng a majority of th e popular votes. The third reason why liberal parties have not benefited from the economic crisis is the fact that identity politics has eroded working-class s upport for European social democratic parties and the American Democrats. This is a major shift in party coalitions because the working-class was the traditional base of European social democrats and the Democratic Party. As the Demo cratic Party became more closely identified with identity politics—blacks; ethnic minorities; gays/lesbi ans; immigrants; and perhaps even unions— than the economic policies that worked fo r the working class, they abandoned the Democrats. Frank descri bes this alienation in What’s the Matter with Kansas? Donald Trump took advantage of this opportunity by campaigning as a Republ ican who broadened the party’s appeal beyond business interest s and the wealthy to include traditional democratic voters—the worki ng class, blue-collar, middle America voters—by promising to restore jobs and values. The strength of partisanship in th e electorate is evident in the fact that public opinion polls conducted in the first months of the Trump administration indicated strong support fr om Republicans but almost no crossover support from Democrats. The fact that the percentage of Republicans who thought the economy was good increased from 14% to 44% is evidence th at partisanship determines views. As a

PAGE 293

Chapter 11: Political Parties | 287 result, both parties feel compelled to appeal to their bases of s upport with proposals for very different solutions for the same problem—economic insecurity.10 11.76 | The Election Integrity Movement The election integrity movement is one of th e more controversial de velopments in U.S. party politics over the last several election cy cles. Conservatives and Republicans describe the movement as an organized campaign to prot ect the integrity of Am erican elections by Tightening voting laws, primarily through voter identification laws; Tightening voter registration laws, primarily by requiri ng earlier registration in order to vote; Limiting electronic voting; and Restricting early voting. The American Legislative Exchange Council (A LEC) is a conservative organization whose public policy views are closely aligned w ith the Republican Party. ALEC, an early supporter of the election integrity movement, cr eated a Public Safety and Elections Task Force that developed model state laws to pr event election fraud. In 2012, ALEC ended its model policy projects on social issues, guns, voter ID, immi gration, and elections after some of them became controversial.11 Kris Kobach, the Republican who was Kansas’ Secretary of State, then becam e the policy entrepreneur who as much as anyone else was responsible for putting ballot integrity on the agenda of the nationa l government. The 2016 GOP platform includes a plank supporting el ection integrity. Presid ent Trump repeated Kobach’s claims that “millions of illegals” voted in the presidential election, thereby denying Trump a majority of the popular vote. This reference to “illegals” has two meanings: illegal immigrants and citizens voting illegally. President Trump created the Advisory Commission on Election Integrity and named Kobach as vice-chair. Kobach has linked immigration—specifica lly the need for extreme vetting, enforcement of immigration laws, and build ing a wall along the southern border—and voter fraud. Kobach was a strong supporter of a Kansas law, the Secure and Fare Election Act of 2011 (SAFE) that required presentati on of a birth certificate, passport, or naturalization papers in order to register to vote. Kobach has also been a strong supporter of reducing the number of immigrants in order to preserve American national identity. He thinks the large number of Latino immigr ants—particularly from Mexico—threaten American national identity. The worry that La tinos threaten American (white Protestant) national identity is based on Samuel P. Huntington’s “clash of civilizations” thesis.12 The war on terror has revived interest in Huntington’s writings a bout the religious dimensions of the clash of civilizations after a period when liberal globalists dismissed them as Anglocentric. The election in tegrity movement cannot be divorced from partisan politics because gerrymandering and restrictive voter la ws are used to win elections. Check It Out! (The Kansas Voter ID Law)

PAGE 294

288 | Chapter 11: Political Parties Members of the election integrity movement in vestigate claims of voter fraud, prosecute illegal voters, and prevent voter fraud. Horro r stories about immigrants voting, dead people voting, people voting more than once, and ev en dogs voting have figured prominently in justifications of the efforts to limit voting. The leaders of various state Voter Integrity Projects and the Ballot Integrity Project have taken advantage of the anti-immigration environment to claim that their efforts to pr event and prosecute illeg al immigrant voting is necessary to save democracy. The stated goal of the ballot inte grity movement is to prevent voter fraud. The individuals and organizations in the move ment argue that restricting voting is a necessary price to pay for protection against th e risk of voter fraud. It is important to understand the following issues beca use the intent and the effect of the ballot integrity movement is to restrict voting: What is vote fraud? What is the evidence of vote fraud? What is the intent of the ballot integrity movement? What are the effects of the ballot integrity movement? Voter fraud is intentionally casting an illegal vote in order to affect the outcome of an election. Mistakenly casting an illegal vote is not fraud. Claims of voter fraud are not evidence of voter fraud. Conservatives and Republi cans have made voter fraud an issue. Fox News programming hypes “explosive” stories about uncovering voter fraud associated with the motor voter law, for example. Rush Limbaugh, the conservative talk radio personality, regularly talks about voter fraud by Democrats: As a candidate and as President, Trump has repeatedly warned about and claimed voter fra ud and rigged elections. Conservative media frequently mention a study by Richman and Earnest, “Could Control of the Senate in 2014 Be Decided by Illegal Vo tes Cast by Non-Citizens?” as evidence of voter fraud. These stories and the study are not evidence of voter fraud: they are claims that voter fraud exists. The Richman and Earn est study of non-citizen voting, for example, presents a theoretical model of how much noncitizen voting might be expected to occur! Furthermore, the data they used for their model is flawed.13 What is Donald Trump checking (out)?

PAGE 295

Chapter 11: Political Parties | 289 The stories of voter fraud are re peated so often that voter frau d can be considered an urban myth—a story that is told and retold and of ten believed but without evidence of truth. The Media Matters Electoral Studies analysis explains the difference between claims of voter fraud and evidence of it. There are actual cas es of non-citizen voting. The prosecution of Rosa Maria Ortega is an interesting case. Was it voter fraud or a mistake? Did a Republican prosecute her so that the movement c ould have an actual case of fraud? The intent of the election integrity movement can be inferred from the effects of its efforts. Reducing voter turnout generally fa vors the Republican Party. The election measures supported and adopted by the moveme nt target liberals, younger voters, lower income voters, naturalized Hispanic voters, and blacks. For instance, members of these groups are more likely to be without the approved government -issued photo identification documents that are required by the tightened voter identification laws. Texas adopted one of the strictest photo ID laws in 2011—a law th at has been repeatedly challenged in court as a violation of the Voting Rights Act of 1965 because of its effect on black and Hispanic voters. The law recognizes seven government -issued photo IDs as acceptable for voter identification: a handgun permit issued by the Te xas Department of Public Safety is on the list, but student photo IDs are not. Is this because handgun owne rs are more likely to be Republican than college students? Shortening voter registration time is also likely to reduce turnout of younger voters such as college students who are more likely to change residency and who are more likely to be living away from home. Laws that prohi bit felons from voting, or which make it hard for felons to restore their voti ng rights after having served their sentences, are also likely to hurt Democrats and help Republicans. The irony of the election integrity movement is that the stated goal of incr easing confidence in democracy and elections is actually undermined by the partisan efforts to use voting laws to affect the outcome of the elections. In a democracy, voters are supposed to choose government officials; government officials are not supposed to choose their voters! The evidence supports th e conclusion that the intent and the effect of the election integrity movement are to reduce the turnout of Democratic voters. Pennsylvania House Speaker Mike Turzai (Rep.) described the im pact that a new state Voter ID law would likely have on the 2012 presid ential election campaign betwee n Mitt Romney (Republican) and President Obama (Democrat). Check It Out! Texas Photo IDs /forms/id/acceptable-forms-of-ID.pdf Check It Out!

PAGE 296

290 | Chapter 11: Political Parties The federal courts have also struck down as violations of the 1965 Voting Rights Act various changes in state election laws because they diluting the votes of blacks—one of the main groups in the Democratic Party coalition. 11.77 | The Voter Fraud Fraud A Brennan Center for Justice report, The Myth of Voter Fraud and Debunking the Myth of Voter Fraud describes and analyzes claims of voter fraud. The Report defines voter fraud, describes the kinds of voter fraud claims and explains why people are sometimes registered to vote in more than one place—and even why dead people sometimes vote. The Report concludes that voter fraud is a myth in the sense that investigations of voter fraud claims conclude that voter fr aud (as distinct from problem s with the administration of elections) is “very rare” or “almost nonexist ent.” There are simple reasons why immigrant voter fraud is extremely unlikely even though th e rules for determining voter eligibility are complicated, and local and state government voter registration lists are notoriously errorfilled. Voter fraud is a felony; it is easily de tected using records of citizenship and voting records; the penalties can be severe; and voter fraud is a ve ry inefficient way to try to influence the outcome of an election. Organi zed voter fraud by a candidate or political party or interest group—such as a strategy to get non-citizens (legal residents or illegal immigrants) to vote—is very inefficient and it would require get ting large numbers of individuals to commit crimes. This is crimin al conspiracy. It is much more logical and more efficient to try to influence the outcome of an election by 1) hacking into the electronic voting systems; or 2) by hacki ng into private campaign communications and releasing them to the public; or 3) by spread ing fake news! Vladimir Putin operationalized plans to undermine the integrity of elections in the U.S. and Europe that relied on these methods not voter fraud. 11.8 | Summary The U.S. two-party system provides both poli tical continuity and change. The parties generally stabilize politics by moderating ra dical leftwing or rightwing ideas. The two parties create an establishment status quo. Bu t the parties must also respond to demands for change or risk being reject ed by the voters. The fact that about one-third of voters call themselves independents is evidence of so me dissatisfaction with the Republican and Democratic Party labels. The 2016 presidenti al election challenged both the Republican and Democratic Parties. Donald Trump and Be rnie Sanders ran against the Republican and Check It Out! The 2016 election and the Trump administration have made fact checking a growth industry. Check out the fact checking of voter fraud claims: /23/cnns-jim-acosta-trumps-claimundocumented-immigrants-cost-him-popul ar-vote-falsehood-full-stop/215099 6630/trump-claims-voter-fraud-feccommissioner-wants-administrations-evidence

PAGE 297

Chapter 11: Political Parties | 291 Democratic Party establishments. Trump’s successful primary campaign was, in many ways, a hostile takeover of the Republican Party. His change campaign correctly sensed that the electorate that was dissatisfied with the status quo offered by both major parties. His general election campaign, which continue d to pull the party in a new more populist direction, was successful because the Democratic Party leadership seemed out of touch with the average American on both economic issues (jobs and trade) and values (e.g., religion; diversity; gay rights) The economic and social positions that he took were also closely related to two issues that became salient during the campaign: immigration and race. Immigration policy became closely identi fied with national security, economics, and national identity politics. Race became closel y identified with crime control politics— which has divided Republicans and Democrats, conservatives and liberals, for decades. Independents and voters who had voted for Democrats in the past either did not vote or voted for Trump because they thought the Democratic Party was more likely to work for groups other than the white working cl ass. Hillary Clinton was slow to recognize how the changing political dynamics were challe nging the established party coalitions. She ran what had become the establishment Demo cratic campaign—one that appealed heavily to identity politics—despite the fact that Be rnie Sanders, her primar y campaign challenger, attracted strong support running as an insu rgent challenging th e Democratic Party establishment. During the campaign, some of Hillary Clinton’s supporte rs warned that she was not adjusting to the changing political climate because her polit ical instincts “are suboptimal.”14 Pollsters, Party leaders, political analysts, ha ve had a hard time predicting election outcomes during the recent popu list politics wave in the U.S., Britain, and Europe. Populism is not just anti-esta blishment venting. Populists advocate for specific economic, social, and national security policies. The populist rhetoric in the 2016 U.S. elections reflects increased political polar ization even while parties have become weaker political institutions. The result is a scrambling of status quo coalitions in the Republican and Democratic parties. Elections have policy c onsequences. The Republi can victories in the state, congressional, and presid ential elections in 2016 have produced major changes in the following areas of public policy: Criminal Justice. The Republican Party supports the crime control model of justice as part of getting tough on crime. Health Care. Efforts to repeal and replace Obamacare have been inspired by efforts to reduce government involvement and in crease private sector insurance-based systems for providing health care. The Environment. The Environmental Pr otection Agency (EPA) is the federal agency primarily responsible for implementing environmental statutes and developing administrative regulations in tended to protect the environment. Conservatives, Republicans, and Presid ent Trump have made the EPA a highprofile target for reducin g government regulation. Economics. Conservatives, neoliberals, and Republicans generally supported free market theory that made globalization and free trade agreements centerpieces of foreign policy, and deregulation of busine ss a centerpiece of domestic policy. The Trump administration supports both more and less government: a more statist policy as part of the make America great again goal, but a less statist policy that deregulates business from power plants to agribusiness, to pharmaceuticals, to the

PAGE 298

292 | Chapter 11: Political Parties Internet. This marks a change from th e Democratic economic policy, which tends to supports government protection of wo rkers and consumers while promoting economic equality. However, President Trump’s initial budget proposals, tax reform proposals, and health care overall are not populist polices, but rather policies reflecting the establishment Republican priorities. Immigration. The Obama administration supported a comprehensive immigration reform proposal that promised to increase border security and enforcement of immigration laws by deporting individuals who committed serious crimes while in the country illegally but also offering a path way to either legal status or citizenship. Republicans eventually adopted a politic al strategy of opposing immigration reform while getting tough on illegal immigration and stressing border control. President Trump’s actions on immigration can be described as one of the examples of “Promises Made. Promises Kept.” 11.9 | Additional Resources The American Presidency Project at the Univer sity of California, Sa nta Barbara, provides National Party Platforms, Presidential No mination Acceptance Speeches, and Debates The Republican Party Platform is available at The Democratic Party Platform is available at on/the-democratic-national-committee The Libertarian Party Platform is available at The Green Party of the U.S.: Study Questions What are the roles and functions of political parties in America? Do parties play a worthwhile role in the American political system? 1)How are political parties organized in America? What effect does this have on the political system? 2)Trace the evolution of the political parties from the founding through the New Deal. How and why did the parties change during this period? 3)What role do political parties play in elections? 4)What are the major eras in the history of American political parties? 5)Compare and contrast the platforms, strengths, weaknesses, and strategies of the Republican and Democratic Parties.

PAGE 299

Chapter 11: Political Parties | 293 The Constitution Party: The Federal Elections Commissi on provides information about registering as a political party: didates-and-committees/registering-political-party/ The Central Intelligence Agency’s World Factbook provides a great deal of information about the party systems of th e countries in the world: ons/the-world-factbook/fields/2118.html A list of political parties is available at ies/politicalparties.htm provides information about various political systems: 11.91 | In the Library Berger, Peter, and John Neuhaus. 1977. To Empower People: The Role of Mediating Structures in Public Policy Bibby, John F. and L. Sandy Maisel. 2002. Two Parties—Or More ? Westview Press. Carney, Riley K., and Ryan D. Enos. 2015. “Cons ervatism and Fairness in Contemporary Politics: Unpacking the Psychological Underpin nings of Modern Racism,” Working Paper Presented at the Annual Meeting of the Midw est Political Science Association. Accessed at https://scholar.harvar Green, Donald, et al. 2002. Partisan Hearts and Minds: Po litical Parties and the Social Identities of Voters Yale University Press. Greenberg, Stanley B. 2004. The Two Americas: Our Curre nt Political Deadlock and How to Break It St. Martin’s Press. Frank, Thomas. 2004. What’s the Matt er with Kansas New York: Henry Holt & Company. Frank, Thomas. 2016. Listen, Liberal: Or What Ever Happened to the Party of the People? New York: Metropolitan Books. Kinder, Donald R., and Lynn M. Sanders. 1996. Divide by Color: Racial Politics and Democratic Ideals Chicago: University of Chicago Press. Lerner, Melvin J. 1980. The Belief in a Just World New York: Springer. Lofgren, Michael. 2012. The Party is Over: How Republicans Went Crazy, Democrats Became Useless, and the Middle Class Got Shafted New York: Viking.

PAGE 300

294 | Chapter 11: Political Parties Noel, Hans. 2014. Political Ideologies and Political Parties in America Cambridge. Reichley, James A. 2000. The Life of the Parties: A History of American Political Parties Second Edition. Lanham, MD: Rowan & Littlefield. Sanbonmatsu, Kira. 2004. Democrats, Republicans, and the Politics of Women’s Place University of Michigan Press. Sundquist, James L. 1973. The Dynamics of the Party System Washington, DC: The Brookings Institution. Vance, J. D. 2016. Hillbilly Elegy: A Memoir of a Family and Culture in Crisis New York: Harper. 1 Jens Krause and Graeme D. Ruxton. 2002. Living in Groups London: Oxford University Press. 2 Mike Lofgren. 2012. The Party Is Over. New York: Viking. 3 Edward J. Larson. 2007. A Magnificent Catastrophe: The Tumultuous Election 4 Sam Tanenhaus, “Harnessing a Ca use Without Yielding to It.” The New York Times (November 9, 2008), p.3WK. 5 Arlie Russell Hochschild, “How Donald Tr ump Took a Narrative of Unfairness and Twisted It to His Advantage, Mother J ones (September/October 2016). Retrieved at 08/trump-white-blu e-collar-supporters/ 6 Sean McElwee and Jason McDaniel, “Ec onomic Anxiety Didn’t Make People Vote Trump, Racism Did,” The Nation (May 8, 2017). Accessed at ic-anxiety-didnt-mak e-people-vote-trumpracism-did/ 7 George Packer, “Hillary Clinton and the Populist Revolt,” The New Yorker (October 31, 2016), p.50. Accessed at 1/hillary-clinton-a nd-the-populist-revolt 8 ehind-Republican-Democratic-PartyID.aspx 9 Cynthia Kroet, “Dutch Coalition Talk s on Hold After Second Attempt to Form Government Fails,” Politico (May 23, 2017). Accessed at: tion-talks-on-hold-after-second-attempt-toform-government-fails-election-mark-rutte/ 10 PEW Research Center, “In First Month, Views of Trump are Already Strongly Felt, Deeply Polarized,” (February, 16, 201). Accessed at lready-strongly-felt-deeplypolarized/ 11 merican-legislative-exchange-counciltransparency-and-public-engagement/ 12 Ari Berman, “The Man behind Tr ump’s Voter-Fraud Obsession,” The New York Times (June 13, 2017). Accessed at

PAGE 301

Chapter 11: Political Parties | 295 13 See the NPR story for the analys is of the methodological flaws: 503628803/here-are-the -problems-with-the-trump-teamsvoter-fraud-evidence 14 John Podesta quoted in Jake Tapper “W ikileaks Seems to Reveal Top Clinton Advisers’ Frustration with Clintons over Political Attacks,” CNN (October 18, 2016). Accessed at litics/clinton-sta ffers-frustrated-hillary-clinton-billclinton-chelsea-clinton/

PAGE 302

Lobbyist Bob Livingston (L) and former Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich (R) CHAPTER 12: Interest Groups

PAGE 303

Chapter 12: Interest Groups|297 12.0 | Interest Groups Interest groups play an extremely important role in American politics and government. In fact, it is impossible to understand American government or politics without a basic understanding of interest groups. This chapter describes interest groups and their political activities. It also explains th eir role in politics, government and the public policy process. The explanation of the increased role that interest groups play in modern politics and government includes assessments of whether th eir role is basically good or bad, benefici al or harmful, as well as whether interest groups are too powerful. The main question about interest groups is whether they advance their special interests to the detriment of the general, public, or national interest. This question is similar to questions about the ro le of political parties, and it produces similar skepticism about powerful special interests. In politics as in other areas of life, organization increases effectiveness. Like parties, interest groups are mediating institutions that organize public participation in politics, function as part of the system of checks and balances, and help civil society control government power. This chapter will help you decide whether group behavior is madness or whether groups give voice to individuals. 12.1 | What is an Interest Group? An interest group is a collection of individuals or organizations that share a common interest and advocate or work fo r public policies on behalf of the members’ shared interests. For these reasons, interest groups are also called a dvocacy groups, lobbying groups, pressure groups, or even special interest groups. What is the difference between an interest group and a political party? It is not size—alt hough in the U.S. interest groups are smaller than the Republican and Democratic Parties. An interest group can have more or fewer members than a political party. A large or ganization such as The Association for the advancement of Retired People (AARP) has more members than some minor political parties. The major difference between an interest group and a political party is that parties try to achieve their policy goals by running candidates for office in order to control government but interest groups usually do not. Both political parties and interest groups take positions on important public policy issu es and work on behalf of their members’ goals. But interest groups advocate for polic ies without actually running candidates in elections in order to try to take control of government. Inte rest groups typi cally lobby the government to adopt their positions. Lobbyist s are the individuals who represent and advocate on behalf of an interest group. Political scientists ag ree that interest groups play an important role in American politics, but they do not agree on what exactly defines an interest group. One definition of an inte rest group focuses on membership: a group must have a significant number of members in order to be officially recognized as an interest group. Another definition focuses on efforts to influence public policy, not membership Madness is rare in individuals but in groups, political parties, nations, and eras its the rule.Ž Friedrich Nietzsche Ten people who speak make more noise than ten thousand who are silent.Ž Napoleon Bonaparte

PAGE 304

298 | Chapter 12: Interest Groups itself, so that an interest group is defined as any non-government group that tries to affect policy. The term interest group is sometimes used generically to refer to any segment of a society that shares similar political opinions on an issue or group of issues (e.g. seniors, the poor, consumers, etc.) even if they are not necessarily part of an organized group. 12.12 | Types of Interest Groups There are many types of interest groups. Intere st groups represent or advocate on behalf of almost every imaginable organi zed interest from A (abortion; airlines; agriculture) to Z (zoning and zoos). One major distinction betwee n types of interest groups is the difference between public and private interest groups. A public interest group is one that advocates for an issue that benefits society as a whole. A private interest group is one that advocates for an issue that primarily benefits the memb ers of the group. There are some overlaps between these two types because it is not alwa ys possible to separate public and private interests. Common Cause founded by Ralph Nader, was one of the first public interest groups. It promotes responsible government generally but it has a primarily liberal orientation. Three prominent public interest gr oups in the field of public health are the American Heart Association the American Cancer Society and the American Lung Association A related type of publ ic interest group is The Public Interest Research Group (PIRG), but it is a primarily li beral advocate on issues such as the environment, public transportation, and education. Groups whose primary purpose is advancing the economic interests of their members are private interest grou ps. The Indoor Tanning Association, for example, is a trade group that advocates for a specific industr y. It lobbies to protect an industry from increased government regulatio n during a time when there is increased concern about skin cancer. During the protract ed health care reform debates of 2009 that eventually resulted in the passage of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (Obamacare), Congress considered proposals to pay for the expanded health with a “Botax,” a tax on elective, cosmetic surger y. Doctors successfully lobbied against the Botax in the Senate health care reform bill, so a “tantax” was substituted—a tax on indoor sun tanning services. The Indoor Tanning Association opposed the proposed Tantax. In fact, the tanning industry has a broader lobbying and public information campaign to ease public concerns about the adverse health e ffects of tanning and thereby avoid further taxation and regulation. This cam paign is a good example of a defensive strategy, one that is intended to prevent public policy actions that are adverse to a group’s interests. The U.S. political system has many veto point s where legislation can be stopped. The number of organized interest groups began increasing in the post-World War II era, with group formation su rging since the 1960s. The in creased size of the federal government also meant that many of the interest groups went national in the sense that they focused their activitie s on Washington, DC.1

PAGE 305

Chapter 12: Interest Groups|299 The following illustrate the types of intere st groups and interest group activities: Business Groups. A corporation such as an aerospace manufacturer or a health care company that lobbies to win a government contract to buy airplanes or provide health care services. Corpor ations often hire a lobbying firm to advocate for their interests. Trade or Professional Associations. An employersÂ’ organization or trade or professional association that represents th e interests of an entire industry (e.g., manufacturers or health care or insurance or legal services). An interest group that represents an entire sector of the economy might lobby fo r favorable tax policies or favorable regulatory policies. Labor Groups. Labor unions that represen t organized labor and other employee rights groups advocate for public policies th at benefit workers, such as minimum wage laws or workplace safety laws or health care. These groups can represent private sector workers or public sector workers. Demographic Groups. These are organizations that represent sp ecific demographic segments of society such as senior citizen s; racial, ethnic, or religious minorities; veterans; persons with disabilities; and immigrants. These groups typically lobby for retirement benefits, laws protecting against discrimination, pension benefits, handicap accessibility, religious freedom s and public support, and favorable immigration policies. Single Issue Groups. These are groups that were created specifically to advocate for a single-issue. Single-issue groups include those that advocate for womenÂ’s rights, the environment, or advocate fo r or against abortion or gay rights. Ideological Groups. Ideological groups in clude organizations that advocate for conservatism, liberalism, or libertarianism, for example. Ideological groups also include think tanks, the re search and policy organiza tions that often have a

PAGE 306

300 | Chapter 12: Interest Groups particular ideological persp ective or a particular economic theory that informs their policy analysis and advocacy. Religious Organizations. Chur ch Groups or organizations active on religious issues lobbying government for exemptions from zoning laws, tax laws, or employment rules and regulations. 12.13 | Economic Interest Groups The greatest number of interest groups is economic interest groups including business, trade and other associations, labor and professional associations. Business Businesses such as General Motors, Microsoft, and Boeing lobby to influence public policy regarding employment, workplace safety, the environment, taxes, and trade pol icy, among others. In this era of cooperative federalism, where both the national and state governments regulate business and economic activity, corporations typically have a Public Affairs or Public Relations or Government Affairs division to conduct public relations campaigns, to make campaign contributions on behalf of candidates they support, and to lobby on behalf of the businessÂ’ interests. Trade Associations Businesses with a similar interest sometime s join trade associations to advocate on behalf of the entire industry or sect or of the economy. The U.S. Chamber of Commerce, the National Federation of I ndependent Businesses, and the National Association of Manufacturers are trade asso ciations. They are interest groups that represent business generally, or small bus iness specifically, or the manufacturing sector specifically. The nu mber of such business groups and their local, state, and national influence make them one of the mo re important political forces in U.S. politics. Business groups are generally me mbers of the Republican Party coalition. Labor Interest groups representing worker s include labor unions that represent individuals who work on farms or the ag ricultural sector, manu facturing such as steel and auto manufacturing), and indivi duals who work in the service sector. Union membership in the U.S. is low, pa rticularly compared with membership in other industrial democracies. Two of the oldest and most powerful labor unions are the AFL-CIO (The American Federation of Labor and Congress of Industrial

PAGE 307

Chapter 12: Interest Groups|301 Organizations) and the Teamsters The influence of organized labor has greatly diminished over the past decades. One reas on for their decline is the American economy has moved away from industry and manufacturing, which were the sectors of the economy where unions were strongest, toward an information and service sector economy, where unions were not organized. Industrial and manufacturing unions represented blue-col lar workers. White-collar workers have not been heavily unionized. As the econom y shifted toward the service sector, a labor union was created specifically to repr esent these “pink collar” workers. The Service Employees International Union (SEICU), which calls itself the largest and fastest growing union, organizes on behalf of health care and hospitality industry workers. Labor Unions are traditiona lly members of the Democratic Party coalition. Professional Associations Professionals have organized themselves into some of the most influential interest groups in the U.S. These include such well known professional associations as the American Medical Association ; the American Bar Association ; the National Education Association ; the National Association of Realtors ; and engineering associations—the National Society of Professional Engineers and the American Engineering Association The AEA’s mission is to make the AEA “an AMA for engineers.” The above “Top Spenders on Lobbying” graph shows that professional associati ons are the top spenders on lobbying. Each state controls occupational licensure. That is, a state licenses professionals to operate in the state. Therefore there are 50 state medical associations and state bar associations. Medicine, law, and engi neering are among the most prestigious professions. Their professiona l associations can exert considerable influence over government regulation of their professions including the licensing standards that determine access to the profession. One power question about these professional associations is whether they use their influence to protect the public/consumers (from untrained or unscrupulous doctors, engi neers, lawyers, or financial advisors) or whether they use their political power to protect their members. Act on It! Civic engagement includes interacting with organizations that are such an important part of civil society. Contact an interest group to ask about an issue that you are interested in or an issue that the group supports.

PAGE 308

302 | Chapter 12: Interest Groups 12.14 | Ideological Groups Ideological groups are organize d to advocate for a particular set of political beliefs. Ideological groups are harder to identify than economic groups. The American Conservative Union calls itself the oldest membership -based conservative organization in the U.S. One of its most widely known ac tions is the rating of elected government officials. The American Civil Liberties Union might be considered an ideological organization but its advocacy of civil liber ties is sometimes liberal and sometimes conservative. The Americans for Democratic Action calls itself the ol dest independent liberal organization in the U.S. There is a la rge number of radical or fringe organizations that are active in American politics, if so metimes only on the Internet. One such radical right organization is the Guardians of the Free Republic 12.15 | Think Tanks Think tanks are organizations th at are primarily interested in researching and promoting ideas. It is appropriate to think of think ta nks as “think-and-do” tanks because they are interested in thought that produces action. Thi nk tanks research and advocate public policies that are based on th e ideas they support. The Am erican Action Network is a conservative think tank. A former director of the Congressional Budget Office described its purpose, and the purpose of other think tanks: “Havi ng good ideas is not enough. You actually have to sell them to the Co ngress, the president, the citizens.” 2 Two prominent think tanks are the Brookings Institution a think tank with a gene rally liberal orientation, and the American Enterprise Institute a think tank with a generally conservative orientation. 12.2 | Incentives to join Why do political groups exist? Why do people join groups? The Politic al Scientist James Q. Wilson identified three type s of incentives to join a group: solidarity, material, and purposive.3 Some interest groups provide more than one of th ese incentives for membership, but the different categories are useful for understanding the different kinds of interest groups. 12.21 | Solidarity Solidarity incentives for a person to join a group are essen tially social reasons. Individuals decide to join a group because they want to a ssociate with others w ith similar interests, backgrounds, or points of view The old saying, Birds of a Feather Flock Together, describes solidarity incentives Church groups, civic groups such as the Elks Club, and groups whose members have shared ethnic backgrounds, are examples of groups whose members are motivated primarily by a ssociational or shared interests.

PAGE 309

Chapter 12: Interest Groups|303 12.22 | Material Material incentives are esse ntially economic motives for membership. Membership is motivated by a tangible benefit. An indi vidual who joins the Association for the Advancement of Retired People (AARP) to get mo tel, restaurant, or car rental discounts is motivated by a material incentive to join. A company that becomes a member of a trade association such as the Chamber of Co mmerce or the National Association of Manufacturers in order to benefit from the trade associationÂ’s lobbying is motivated by a material incentive. A study of interest groups in the United States and other countries found that a great majority (almost three-quarte rs) represents professional or occupational interests. The main motivation of such profe ssional or occupational groups is economic or material interests.4 12.23 | Purposive Purpose incentives are those that appeal to an individualÂ’s commitme nt to advancing the groupsÂ’ social or political aims. Purposive groups attract members who join for reasons other than merely associ ating with others who share their interests, or solely because they want to obtain material benefits. Some of these purposive or issue advocacy groups are ideological. Ideological purposive groups advocate on behalf of ideas (e.g., conservative; liberal; libertarian) or causes (right-to-life; civil liberties; property rights; the environment; religious freedom). Purposive groups include the American Conservative Union, the American Civil Liberties Union, th e Sierra Club, and the two major interest groups who take different sides in the debate over abortion policy: The National Right to Life and the National Abortion Rights Action League (NARAL). 12.3 | What Do Interest Groups Do? Much of what interest groups do falls under the large umbrella of lobbying. Lobbying is a broad term for an interest groupÂ’s activities that seek to persuade political leaders and government officials to support a particular position. Lobbying occurs at all levels of government (local, state, national, and internat ional), in all three br anches of government (although technically groups do not lobby the co urts), and in non-gove rnmental settings. Interest group lobbying includes testifying at government hearings, co ntacting legislators, providing information to politicia ns, filing lawsuits or funding lawsuits or submit amicus curiae briefs with a court, and public campaigns to change public opinion or to rally members of the group to c ontact public officials.

PAGE 310

304 | Chapter 12: Interest Groups 12.31 | Lobby Congress Congress, committee members, and individual members of congress are frequent targets of lobbying campaigns. Interest groups might lobby in the congr essional setting by providing testimony at a committee or subcommittee meeting, contributing to an individual c ongressional representative’s campaign fund, or organizing a letter or phone-call campaign by members of the interest to convince a particular representative of the pub lic support for a policy. 12.32 | Lobby the Executive Branch Although the executive branch does not actually make the laws, interest groups target the executive branch in order to influence the formation of public policy or its implementation. Lobbying the executive branch may include contacting the president, members of the president’s staff (including the chief of staff or policy advisors), cab inet level officials, or other high-ranking members of the executive departments (the political appointees that make policies). Interest groups also lobby the independent regulator y commissions. These agencies have rule making authority. The rule making process includes taking pub lic comments about proposed regulations. Interest groups participate in this process in order to influence regulatory policy that affects them. Officials in the executive departments also play an important role in the development of the federal budget, so interest groups l obby them to support programs that the groups supports and oppose programs that the group is opposed to. Agricultura l interests, food processors, and consumer group s lobby members of the Department of Agriculture, which plays an important role in congressional and administration food policy. Health care providers, insurance companies, and patient rights groups lobby officials in the Department of Health and Human Services, which play an important role in formulating and implementing health care policy (incl uding Medicare and Medicaid). The telecommunications industry, consumer rights groups, and citizen groups interested in the content of broadcast programming lobby th e Federal Communications Commission. The FCC is an independent regulatory agency that licenses broadcast companies and has some authority to regulate the content of broa dcast programming and other aspect of the telecommunication industry. Interest Groups are an impor tant part of the policymaki ng process. They are one of the three major members of what political scie ntists call Issue Networks. The term Issue Network describes the patterns of interactions among three sets of participants in the policy making process: a congressional committee; an Executive Department; and interest groups. Each area of public policy has an Issue Network. Interest groups link the government— that is congressional committees and the execu tive departments or independent regulatory commissions—and the civil society (the inte rest groups). The following figure describes the Issue Network for defense policy. The ar rows describe the mutual benefits the participants provide. Interest groups provide information to the legislative committees and

PAGE 311

Chapter 12: Interest Groups|305 executive departments that make public polic y in their area of interest. Congressional committees provide budgets for programs that an interest groups supports. And executive departments support programs that interest groups support. Figure 12.3 Issue Networks: Defense Policy Congressional Committees Senate Armed Services Committee House Armed Services Committee Executive Departments Interest Groups The Department of Defense (Aerospace and Defense Industries) 12.33 | “Lobbying” the Courts In an effort to maintain some separation of law and politics, it is considered inappropriate for interest groups to lobby the courts the way they lobby congr ess and the executive branch. Interest group efforts to influe nce the courts take two forms. The first is political litigation. Political litigation is using a lawsuit primarily to change public policy. An interest group may file a lawsuit on behalf of its members. The Sierra Club may file a lawsuit challenging a policy allowing development of a natural environment. The National Fede ration of Independent Businesses challenged the constitutionality of the Patient Protec tion and Affordable Care Act (Obamacare). A second way that an interest group ca n lobby the courts is by filing an amicus curiae brief (that is, a friend of the court br ief) that advocates for one of the two sides in a case that is before the court. The major cases that the Supr eme Court agrees to de cide typically have a large number of amicus curiae briefs submitted for both sides. A third way that interest groups attempt to influence the courts is by s ponsoring a lawsuit, providing legal resources for the actual parties. Taking a case all the wa y to the Supreme Court requires a great deal of time and money. A good example of political litig ation is the efforts of The National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) to support lawsuits challenging the constitutionality of segregated public school s. The landmark Supreme Court ruling in

PAGE 312

306 | Chapter 12: Interest Groups Brown v. Board of Education was the result of an organized campaign to use the courts to change public policy. In fact, the various civil rights revolutions of the period 1940s-1960s relied heavily on political litigation. In the 1950s and 1960s, liberal public interest groups relied heavily on political litigation to change public policies related to prisoner rights, racial equality, fr eedom of expression, the right to privacy, and environmentalism. In the 1970s conservative pub lic interest groups used political litigation to change public policies on abortion, propert y rights, freedom of religion, affirmative action, business and employe r rights, and gun rights. Today there are many conservative organiza tions that have adopted a legal strategy to achieve conservative policy goals: The Pacific Legal Foundation was created to challenge environmental regulations. The U.S. Chamber of Commerce establishe d a National Chamber Litigation Center and the Institute for Legal Reform to advocate pro-business legal policies. The Christian Legal Society advocates agains t the separation of church and state. The Cato Institute advocates libertarian positions. The National Rifle Associati on advocates for gun rights. The tort reform movement is an example of business groups going to court to cha nge legal policies relating to torts—wrongful injuries such as medical malpractice and product liability. “Judicial He llholes,” “Jac kpot Justice,” “Looney Lawsuits,” and “Wacky Warning Labels Contest” are terms that have entered everyda y vocabulary about civil law in modern American society. The American Tort Reform Association has even trademarked the epithet “Judicial Hellholes.” The National Federation of Independent Businesses has created a Small Business Legal Center specifically to advocate in the courts: “The Le gal Center is the advocate for small business in the courts. We do what federal and st ate NFIB lobbyists do, but instead of lobbying legislatures we lobby judges th rough briefs and oral argumen ts in court. We tell judges how the decision they make in a given cas e will impact small businesses nationwide.”5 The American Tort Reform Association ’s membership and funding come from the American Medical Association and the Council of Engineering Companies. The National Association of Manufacturers uses political litigation to change policies that it considers anti-business, such as product liabil ity laws and campaign finance laws that limit campaign contributions. The U.S. Cham ber of Commerce has established an Institute for

PAGE 313

Chapter 12: Interest Groups|307 Legal Reform which specializes in political litig ation to advance pro-business legal policies. Whose side ar e the lawyers on? In criminal justice, the defense bar represents suspects who have been accused of a crime. In civil justice issues such as product liability and medical malpractice, the plaintiff bar gene rally represents consumers, employees, or patients. Lawyers for Civil Justice is a national organization of corporate counsel and defense lawyers advocating for tort reform. The Florida Chamber of Commerce created the Florida Justice Reform Institute to reform what it calls a wasteful civil justice system. Other business organizations advocating tort reform include America’s Health Insurance Plans, American Hospital Association, Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturing Association, and the National Federation of Independent Businesses. 12.34 | Grassroots Lobbying and Protests Interest groups also engage in grassroots lobbying Grassroots lobbying is a term fo r efforts to mobilize local support for an issue position the group has taken. Grassroots lobbying is usually contrasted with Washington lobbying. Washington lobbying is sometimes criticized as “inside-thebeltway” activity that focuses on the Washington political establishment to the neglect of the average American or Mainstreet America. Grass root s lobbying has an “outside-thebeltway” focus and therefore a reputation for being a more genuine reflection of public opinion that Washington lobbying campaigns. Grassroots lobbying consists of interest groups contacting citizens and urging them to contact government officials rather than having the interest group directly contact government officials. The political appeal of appearing to be a grass-roots organization whose members come from the community has created the phenomenon called “astroturf” lobbying. Astroturf lobbying is wh ere an interest group

PAGE 314

308 | Chapter 12: Interest Groups without a large membership portrays itself as having ro ots in the community. The membership is artificial, however, which is why the grassroots are called astroturf. In today’s media age and celebrity culture, grassroots campaigns can use influential media personalities (such as Rachel Maddow or Glen Beck) to encourage their listeners or viewers to take action, thereby linking the national and electronic communitie s to the local or grassroots. The more extreme version of gr assroots lobbying is organizing or supporting protests and demonstrations. Many national or ganizations have a day where they bring members to Washington, D.C. to call attentio n to their issues, whether advocating to put an issue on the policy agenda or to protest a change in public policy. 12.35 | Lobbyists Interest groups frequently pay professional lobbyists to represent the organization to the public and the government. Professional lobbyists can either work direc tly for the interest group or they can be employees of public relations or law firms who are hired by the group for a specific campaign. One of the most seriously funny depictions of interest group efforts to influen ce public opinion and public policy, and the image of lobbyists is the Hollywood film Thank You For Smoking The fictional film describes the efforts of the tobacco lobby, the alcohol lobby, and gun lobby, which IN THE FILM are called the “MOD Squad: Merchants of Death.” The Youtube video clip is available at: 12.36 | Campaigns and Elections Interest groups also participat e in campaigns and elections. In elections of government offici als, interest group activity includes the following: Candidate recruitment. Groups recruit candidates with specific views on political i ssues to support for office. Campaign contributions. Interest groups provide funding to support campaigns. Campaign resources. Interest groups with large memberships provide campaign workers. Public information. Interest groups ra te candidates (e.g., on conservatism or liberalism) to provide information to vot ers about where a candi date stands on the issues).

PAGE 315

Chapter 12: Interest Groups|309 Get out the vote efforts. Groups can rally their members to go to the polls to vote for a particular candidate. Of course, money is the mother’s milk of po litics. Money has become more important as politics has moved away from the grass roots retail politics (one-to-one or personal relationships) toward wholesale politics (mass appeal campaigns). Wholesale politics is more likely to be “air war” campaigns that are conducted on television, radio, and the Internet. One of the main ways that groups participate in elections is by providing money— raising and spending money on behalf of a camp aign or political cause. There are a number of organizations that are created specifically to pr ovide money for campaigns. A Political Action Committee (PAC) is a political arm of a business, labor, trade, professional, or other group. PACS are legally authorized to raise voluntary funds from employees or members of the group to contribute to a part y or candidate. Many in terest groups have PACs. Realtors have RPAC; doctors have AMPAC; supporters of abortion rights have NARAL-PAC and pro-life advocates have Right to Life PAC. Political action committees (PAC) allow interest groups pool resources from group members and contribute to pol itical campaigns and politicia ns. Under federal law, an organization automatically becomes a PAC by either receiving contributions or making expenditures more than $1000 for the purpose of influencing a federal election. Individual contributions to federal PACs are limited to $5,000 per year. However, the whole system of campaign finance law is currently in an unsettled state because the Supreme Court has ruled that campaign spending is a form of free speech that is protected by the First Amendment. As a result, the federal laws lim iting the amount of money that an individual could spend on his or her own campaign were struck down. And in Citizens United v Federal Election Commission (2010) the Court ruled that co rporate campaign contributions that were independent of a candidate’s ca mpaign could not be lim ited by the government. This ruling resulted in the crea tion of Superpacs. In addition, organizations that are listed under section 527 of the tax code as social welfare or ganizations can also engage in more campaign activity without regulation. Not all campaigns are conducted to elect government officials. Some campaigns are referendums. A referendum is a political cam paign where the public votes for or against an issue that is presented on the ballot. An example of a referendum election is one where the public votes whether to approve a tax increas e. Interest groups are especially important players in referendum politics because groups or ganize public support for their side of the issue and public opposition for the side they oppose. 12.37 | Providing Information Interest groups and lobbyists ty pically describe their function as providing useful information to the public and government officials. The general public and even members of Congress are usually not experts on an issu e that they will be voting on. Lobbyists provide technical inform ation about their fields of interest or expert ise. Lobbyists for the American Medical Association provide information about health care and lobbyists for health insurance companies provide information

PAGE 316

310 | Chapter 12: Interest Groups about insurance. In this sense, lobbyists describe their role in the political process as an educative role: explaining tec hnical or specialized matters to generalists. Lobbyists who represent large membership groups also “educate” members of Congress or the administration about how the ge neral public or the group’s memb ers feel about a particular issue, bill, or law. This is also a representational role. An interest group’s strategy may al so include conducting a public opinion campaign. Public opinion campaigns are efforts to change public opini on about an issue. Issue advocacy campaigns are political advert ising campaigns to shape public opinion, to persuade the public to think abou t an issue the way that the gr oup thinks about an issue. Oil companies that are worried about their publ ic image can hire advertising companies to design campaigns that portray oil companie s as “energy companies” that are deeply concerned about the environment, global wa rming, conservation, jobs, and the socially responsible production of energy. Oil spills such as the Exxon Valdez sp ill in Alaska and the British Petroleum oil well spill in the Gulf of Mexico in 2010 prom pted extensive public relations campaigns to portray the two compan ies as good stewards of the environment. These kinds of well-financed public relations campaigns conducted by major corporations raise questions about the nature of public opi nion in a democracy. Is public opinion the cause of public policy, or is public opinion ma de by these campaigns. Most interest groups today rely to some extent on direct mail, th e use of computerized mailing lists to contact individuals who might sh are their interests. 12.38 | Agenda Building Agenda building is the proces s by which new issues are brought to the attention of political decision-makers. There is a seemingly unlimited supply of problems or issues that someone or some group thinks the government should do something about. But public officials have limited resources (time, political capital, informa tion, and money). Politics is the allocation of these scarce resources. Public officials must concentrate on a few important issues. Interest groups can convince politicians to put a new is sue on the government’s agenda. 12.39 | Program Monitoring Program monitoring is when individuals or groups keep track of the government’s actions to determine whether and how a bureaucracy or other administrative agency is implementing legislation. A group that monito rs a program may find that a program or policy they supported is not being implemented as intended or is not being implement ed well. Interest groups play a role in the policy process by monitoring policies.

PAGE 317

Chapter 12: Interest Groups|311 12.4 | Playing Offense or Defense? Sometime interest groups lobby for changes in public policy. They want to pass health care reform, make abortion illegal, increase regulation of Wall Street companies, enact policies to address global warming, or increase government support for religious activity. Some times interest groups lobby against change in public policy. They want to stop health care reform, maintain legal abortions, stop government regulation, or prevent the passage of laws that provide more government support for religious activities. Health care policy illustra tes how some interest groups play offense (they support change) and others play defense (they oppose ch ange). There are interest groups that are working hard to change the current employme nt-based health care system in favor of a public or national health care policy. The groups playing o ffense include organized labor unions, the American Association of Retired Persons (AARP), and even the American Medical Association, which has historically opposed the creation of public health care as a form of socialized medicine. The groups pl aying defense include he alth care providers, insurance companies, and organizations repr esenting business such as the U.S. Chamber of Commerce. The high economic stakes—he alth care accounts for around 17 percent of the country’s gross domestic product—make it ha rd to make any major changes in health care. For decades the interest group battles over health care reform have been a clash of titans—a conflict among big, power ful interest groups with a great deal at stake in the outcome: groups representing doctors, hospitals a nd other health care providers, insurance companies, and other business groups. Interest groups devote a great deal of money, time, and other resources to such conflicts. The de bate over the health ca re reform proposed by the Obama administration attracted an unpreced ented amount of money. For a description of the large sums of money spen t on health care reform see “ Exploring the Big Money Behind Health Care Reform .” Is it easier to play offense or defense? The political system makes it easier to play defense than offense. It is easier to prevent the government from acti ng than to prompt it to act. The separation of powers. Passing a fede ral law requires working with both the legislative and executive branches. Bicameralism. In order for a bill to beco me a law it must pass both houses of Congress. The committee system in Congress. The co mmittee system is a functional division of labor that creates natural contact points for interest groups to participate in the policymaking process. Interest groups can lobby a committee to “kill the bill.” Party politics. The “OUT” party often ha s a vested interest in opposing a bill proposed by the “IN” party. Federalism. The geographic division of power between the national and state governments is part of the system of checks and balances.

PAGE 318

312 | Chapter 12: Interest Groups All of these attributes of the political system create many veto points at which an individual or organization can try to stop action. The multip le veto points make it easier to stop action than to successfully propose it and interest groups are important pl ayers in the defensive contests to stop change that they oppose. 12.5 | The Free Rider Problem A large, active, and committed membership is a valuable resource. Candidates for office and elected government officials tend to listen to lobbyi sts that repres ent groups with large and active membership—particularly when the membership includes voters in the individual’s distri ct or state. The American Association of Retired Persons (AARP) is an influential demographic group because it has over 40 million members—and because older people have higher rates of voter turnout than younger people. But attractin g and maintaining membership can be challenging. One of the most important challenges to forming a membership-based group is the free-rider problem The free-rider problem occurs wh en a person can benefit from an interest group’s actions without having to pay for the costs of those actions. This creates an incentive to be a free rider, to receive bene fits without paying costs. Free riders get what is for them a free lunch. The free-rider pr oblem creates membersh ip problems for groups that rely on material or purposive incentives for members to join their group. In fact, the free-rider problem is one reason why the govern ment requires everyone to pay taxes that are used to provide certain goods and services. A private good is something of value whose bene fits can be limited to those who have paid for it. A private good is divisible in the sense that it can be provided to those who have paid for it but not to those who have not paid for it. Cars, computers, and phones are divisible goods. Health care, legal advice, and educati on are divisible services. A public good is something of value whose benefits canno t be limited to those individuals who have actually paid for it. In this sense, a public good is an indivisible good because once it is available its benefits cannot be limited to thos e who have actually paid for it. For these reasons, private goods are available for purchas e in the marketplace based on the ability to pay while the government provides public goods. Safe streets, public order, peace, national security, and clean air or clear water are co mmonly considered public goods because they are indivisible: once provided, it is hard to limit national security or clean air to those who have paid for them. Political debates about the role and size of government can often be reduced to arguments about whether some goods or services should be considered private goods, and available in the marketplace based on the abi lity to pay, or public goods that are provided by the government. Is education a public or pr ivate good? Does it depend on whether the education is primary or secondary education, or a college or professional education? Is health care a private or public good? The answ ers to these questions are political because they answer the age-old questions about what government should be doing.

PAGE 319

Chapter 12: Interest Groups|313 12.6 | Are Interest Groups Harmful or Helpful? Concern about the influence of interest groups is as old as the republic and as new as the coverage of health care reform. The Founders worri ed about factions. In Federalist No. 10 Madison worried about the ap parently natural tendency of individuals to organize themselves into groups that advocate for their sp ecial or self-interest ra ther than the general or public interest. Madison be lieved that the most common source of factions was “the unequal distribution of property.” He did not thin k that the “mischiefs of faction” could be eliminated; he thought they could be controlle d if there were so many different factions that no one or two could domi nate politics and use government and politics for their narrow self-interest and against the minority interests. It is not easy to determine whether interest groups play a harmful or helpful role in modern American government and politics. It is easy to cr iticize special interests for working against the public intere st. But there is often disagr eement about what the public interest is. And it is not easy to measure the influence of groups. The Center for Responsive Politics6 studies the activities and the influe nce of groups, with a special emphasis on political contributions and thei r influence on public policy. It is easier to measure activity (e.g., campaign contributions) than influence. It is not simply that large groups are mo re influential than small groups, or that money is the sole determinant of influence. Money and numbers are important. But familiar game of rock, scissors, paper can help explain the relationships among the major kinds of resources that groups can mobilize. Interest group resources include numbers (the size of the membership), money (financial resources), and intensity (the members’ commitment to the cause). If size alone—the number of members—were the sole determinant of influence, then consumers and workers would be much more influential than business interests because there are more of consumers and workers. And the poor would be mu ch more influential than the rich. But size can be trumped by money. The U.S. Chamber of Commerce has less than 10% of the membership of the AARP but the financial resources of the Chamber’s members make it an influential interest group. Money is a resource that is used to influence decision makers by making campaign contributions or by public relations campaigns that shape the way people think about an individua l, issue, or party. So money can trump numbers. And finally, intensit y of interest can trump number s and money. An organization with a small number of members who are intens ely interested or committed to their cause can trump numbers or money. Intensity is one of the keys to explaining the political

PAGE 320

314 | Chapter 12: Interest Groups influence of the National Rifle Association. NRA members are famously committed to the cause of advocating gun rights. Globalization has increased the number and type of organizations that are interested in foreign policy and international trade. Some of these interest groups are private interest groups (e.g., working for the material benefits of their members), some are public interest groups (working for broad benefits to societ y in general), and some are organizations whose members are governments. For example, the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) is an organization w ith 35 member countries that promotes cooperation for social, econo mic, and political development. 12.7 | Summary It might be said of interest groups (and bureaucrats) that love them or hate them, we can’t seem to live without them. The Founders worr ied about the “mischie fs” of faction, but groups have been integrated into the American po litical system at all levels (national, state, and local) and arenas (legislative, executive, and legal). Concerns about the power or influence of special interests remain valid, but it is not easy to determine whether groups are healthy or harmful. Members of Congress rely on interest groups to provide them with information about subjects being considered fo r legislation. Legislative committees take testimony from interest groups during committee hearings. Groups do provide a great deal of information to the public and to polic ymakers in both the legislative and executive branches of government. And like political parties, in terest groups are linkage organizations that can increase political effi cacy, the individual sens e that participation matters, that participation can make a differe nce, that membership in a group increases citizen control over public policy in a democracy. 12.8 | Additional Resources In order to get an idea of the number and type of interest groups see the list of some of the more important interest groups in the U.S., a list that is organized by the issues they represent or the public policy areas in which they lobby: “Political Advocacy Groups: A Directory of United States Lobbyists.” American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) offers information on the entire Bill of Rights including racial profiling, women’s rights, privacy issues, prisons, drugs, etc. Includes links to other sites dealin g with the same issues. AFL-CIO is the largest trade union organizatio n in America. Its Web site offers policy statements, news, workplace issues, and labor strategies. Richard Kimber’s Worldwide Index of Political Parties, Interest Gr oups, and Other Social Movements

PAGE 321

Chapter 12: Interest Groups|315 Mexican American Legal Defense and Edu cation Fund (MALDEF) Web site offers information on Census 2000, scholarships, jo b opportunities, legal programs, regional offices information, and more. Native American Rights Fund (NARF) Web site offers profiles of issues, an archive, resources, a tribal directory, and treaty information, as well as a lot of other information. The National Association for the Advancem ent of Colored People (NAACP) Web site offers information about the organization, memb ership, and issues of interest to proponents of civil rights. It also has sections on th e Supreme Court, Census 2000, and the Education Summit and includes links to other Web sites. The National Rifle Association (NRA) offers information on gun ownership, gun laws, and coverage of legislation on associated issues. National Organization of Women (NOW) Web s ite offers information on the organization and its issues/activities including women in the military, economic equity, and reproductive rights. It offers an e-mail act ion list and the ability to join NOW online. There is also a page with links to related sites. 12.81 | In the Library Berry, Jeffrey and Clyde Wilcox. 2008. The Interest Group Society Longman. Biersack, Robert. 2000. After the Revolution: PACÂ’s, Lobbies, and the Republican Congress Addison Wesley. Birnbaum, Jeffrey. 2000. The Money Men Times Books. Broder, David S. 2000 Democracy Derailed Harcourt Brace. Cigler, Allan J. and Burdett A. Loomis (Eds). 2006. Interest Group Politics CQ Press. Dekieffer, Donald E. 2007. The CitizenÂ’s Guide to Lobbying Congress Chicago Review Press. Gray, Virginia and David Lowery. 2001. The Population Ecology of Interest Representation: Lobbying Communities in the American States University of Michigan Press. Hernnson, Paul S. 2004 Interest Group Connection: Electioneering, Lobbying, and Policymaking in Washington Congressional Quarterly, Inc. Keck, Margaret and Kathryn Sikkink. 1998. Activists beyond Borders Cornell University Press. Rosenthal, Alan. 2001. Third House: Lobbyists and Lobbying in the States Congressional Quarterly, Inc. Strolovitch, Dara Z. 2007. Affirmative Advocacy: Race, Cl ass, and Gender in Interest Group Politics University of Chicago Press.

PAGE 322

316 | Chapter 12: Interest Groups 1 See Allan J. Cigler and Burdett A. Loomis. 2007. Interest Group Politics Seventh Edition. Washington, D.C.: CQ Press. 2Quoted in Jackie Calmes. “G.O.P. Group to Promote Conservative Ideas.” The New York Times. (February 3, 2010). Available at 3 Chapter three of James Q. Wilson. 1973. Political Organizations New York: Basic Books. 4 See 5 al-center/about-the-legal-center/ 6 Study Questions 1. What factors make an interest group successful? Provide examples. 2. Discuss and provide examples of how interest groups attempt to influence election outcomes. 3. Should there be additional limits on interest group participation in American politics? 4. What do interest groups do? 5. What are the different types of interest groups? 6. Should interest groups be protected under the First Amendment? Why or wh y not? Key Terms: Interest group Lobbyist Public interest group Economic interest group Grassroots lobbying Political Action Committee (PAC) Agenda building Program monitoring

PAGE 323

Policy CHAPTER 13: Public Policy

PAGE 324

318 | Chapter 13: Public Policy 13.0 | Public Policy The previous chapters examined public op inion and congression al and presidential decision-making. This chapter de scribes the stages of the pub lic policy process, explains the different types of public policies, and uses health care, environmental, and immigration policy as case studies that illustra te the politics of public policy. 13.1 | What is Public Policy? A policy is an official position on an issue or a pl an of action that is intended to achieve certain results. It is a position or plan of action taken by a government body, a business, a not-for-profit organization, or even an indivi dual. The following are examples of policies: A statute that makes it a crime for individua ls to provide material support for an organization that the government la bels a terrorist organization. An executive order that defers deporta tion of certain undocumented immigrants who are by law eligible for deportation, or one that restricts en try of certain people from certain countries. Workplace safety rules and regulations. Corporate marketing practices for advert ising tobacco or alcohol products to children. A company’s personnel employment practices for hiring, firing, and promotion. An interest group’s position on the environment or crime or some other issue. A non-profit organization’s hiring practices. A church’s budget priorities or community outreach. A university’s academic integrity code. A professor’s grading of coursework. Public policy refers to governmental programs, rules, and courses of acti on. Public policies are in statutes, executive orders, administrative regulations, judicial rulings, treaties and executive agreements, Federal Reserve Board decisions (monetary policy), and budgets (fiscal policy). The study of pub lic policy includes decisionmaking ( who makes decisions and how they are made), substance ( what the official position is), and analysis of impact (implementation and eff ectiveness). Public policy is both an academic discipline and a profession. The professional association of public policy practitioners, researchers, scholars, and st udents is the Association for Public Policy Analysis and Management. The academic discipline of public policy incl udes a broad range of social science fields including political science, economics, sociology, and public administration. Public policy includes both gove rnment action and inaction. A government decision not to take action on climate change, health care, poverty, or housing is a public policy. Politics ƒpolicy is more like an endless game of Monopoly than a bicycle repairŽ -Deborah Stone. 2001. Policy Paradox: The Art of Political Decision Making, page 261. I

PAGE 325

Chapter 13: Public Policy | 319 includes efforts to get the gove rnment to act and efforts to stop government action. The U.S. political system has so many veto points that it is usually easier to play defense—to stop proposed action—than to play offense—to take action. Advocates of gun control historically played offense and advocates of gun rights played defense, but the success of the gun rights movement has enabled it to play offense to remove gun control laws. The public policy process has three main stages, and politics occurs at all stages of the process: Identifying a problem and putting it on the government agenda; Making or formulating a policy and then adopting it; and Implementing and evaluating the policy. 13.2 | Identifying a Problem and Getting it on the Government Agenda The first stage is individuals, interest groups or even government officials identify a problem and put it on the gove rnment agenda. The problem might be pollution, taxes, inflation, food or drug safety, crime, terrorism, health care, immigration, bad roads, or bad schools. Agenda setting is putting the problem on the government agenda for action. It is easy to get some issues on the government’s “to-do ” list. It is easier to get maintaining safe streets, providing economic stab ility and prosperity, and providing national security on the government agenda because these are core gov ernment functions. Responsibilities. It is hard to get other issues on the government agenda which is why political movements are created to mount sustained campaigns and lobb ying efforts to get the government to pay attention to issues such as mass shootings, public transportation, health care, environmentalism, or workplace or consumer safety. Politics requires convincing people that something is a problem AND that the government should do something about it. Is workplace safety a public issue? The answer often depends on whether a job is, or is perceived to be, dangerous. 13.21 | Sex and Violence in the Media and Music Efforts to get the government to regulate i ndecent or violent programming on broadcast television and radio illustrate how agenda setting works. Individuals and organizations c oncerned about broadcast media depictions of sex and violen ce, and profane music lyrics, mounted sustained lobbying effo rts to convince the government to put the issues on the government’s agenda. The Federal Communications Commission licenses and regulates the Think about it! What are the deadliest jobs in America: 40/the-deadliest-jobs-in-america-in-one-graphic

PAGE 326

320 | Chapter 13: Public Policy broadcast media. The public, and therefore the government, is especi ally concerned about the impact of such materials on children. In the 1980s, the Parents Music Resource Ce nter and other organizations lobbied Congress to put offensive music lyrics on th e federal government’s agenda. Tipper Gore, at that time the wife of Se nator Al Gore, bought Prince’s Purple Rain for their daughter mistakenly thinking it was a children’s album. She was offended by the explicit lyrics. In 1985, she testified before Congress that musi c should be labeled, primarily to protect children from an increasingly coarse culture wh ere sex and violence were more explicit. Worries about explicit lyrics were similar to earlier worries that watching violent television programming caused violent behavior in ch ildren. Congress listened to Tipper Gore’s testimony, other complaints about the lack of family values in the music industry, and the testimony of musicians such as Frank Zappa who opposed government regulation of the music industry. Congress ultimately decided not to pass a law re gulating music lyrics. Instead, Congress relied on the recording industr y to voluntarily label music that contained offensive lyrics. This is an example of an unsuccessful effort to put an issue on the government agenda. However, the media effect is still of great public interest. The question whether watching violent television programming, playi ng violent video games, listening to vulgar music lyrics, or visiting offensive Internet sites has a negative impact on attitudes or behavior remains an importa nt public policy question. 13.22 | Indecency and the Internet Unlike the efforts to label music, efforts to put Internet indecency on the government’s agenda have been successful. Stories about children being e xposed to, or accessing indecent, obscene, or other objectionabl e material simply by doing a Google word search prompted Congress to act. The Communications Decency Act of 1996 was intended to protect minors from harmful material on the Internet by making it a criminal offense to knowingly transmit “obscene or indecent” messages to any person under 18 years old. The American Civil Liberties Union challenged the law in court arguing that the First Amendment protected freedom of expression from such federal laws. In Reno v. American Civil Liberties Union 521 U.S. 844 (1997), the Court ruled that the law was unconstitutional. The Court held that the penalty—making it a federal criminal offense to send an indecent message—was too severe, partic ularly considering the lack of agreement on what indecent means. For example, it was not clear whether the law made it a federal criminal offense to email or Tweet an off-color joke to a minor? The Court’s ruling did not put an end to efforts to put Internet indecency on the government’s agenda, and Congress passed the Child On-line Protection Act of 1998 to protect children from Internet material that was “harmful to minors.” The Court struck down this Act as a violation of the First Amendment freedom of expression so Congress than passed the Children’s Internet Pr otection Act of 2001. The American Library Association filed a lawsuit claiming the Ac t was unconstitutional but the Supreme Court upheld it in United States v. American Library Association (2003). Parental concerns about Think About It! Should the government require labeling music and video games and television and radio programs the way the government requires labeling of food? es/story/story.php?storyId= 4279560

PAGE 327

Chapter 13: Public Policy | 321 the content of Internet materials and activities such as sexting keep the issue on the government agenda. 13.23 | Climate Change Climate change is an especia lly interesting case study of agenda setting. Scientists and environmental organizations use data show ing temperature increases to lobby the government to take actions to reduce emissi ons that contribute to global warming or climate change. Business groups and conser vative organizations lobby against such government action. Their initia l defensive strategy was to deny the existence of climate change by claiming that temperature increases were part of natural, long-term cycles of temperature fluctuations that sometimes resulted in ice ages and sometimes resulting in warm periods. The increased scientific cons ensus supporting climate change required a shift in strategy, so the opponents acknowledg ed climate change but claimed that the evidence did not support human causes of it. In fact, climate change—like evolution—is an example of political science or the politicization of science related to controversial public policies. The Yale Project on Climate Change is an organization that is committed to “bridging science and society” on the matter of climate change. It includes an examination of how public opinion has been sh aped by organized efforts to challenge the science. 13.24 | Imported Goods Many consumer products are imported. The sa fety of products imported from China became an issue when media reports of goods with the “Made in China” label included stories about imported pet food and toothpast e with chemical contaminants or other harmful ingredients, dangerous toys, drugs that were not tested the way that drugs with the “Made in the U.S.A.” were tested. These stories created a campaign to put consumer protection from imported products on the government agenda. The campaign included lobbying the federal government to adopt polic ies that increased inspection of imports. Parents who worry about imported toys with lead paint or heavy metals such as cadmium and imported dairy products contaminated with the chemical melamine can be effective advocates for putting the safety of imported products on the government agenda. The Consumer Products Safety Commission now mon itors toy safety standards. The creation of the law does not end politics or the policy process. It is often necessary to lobby for funding for the agencies such as the Depa rtment of Agriculture, the Food and Drug Administration, or the Consumer Products Safety Commission which are responsible for inspecting imports. And it is necessary to monitor whether the Consumer Products Safety Commission is actually enforcing the safety standards. Think About It! Former Congressman Anthony Weiner (D-NY) plead guilty to sexting explicit pictures and messages to a minor in violation of Title 18 U.S.C. Section 1470 which prohibits transfer of obscene material to minors.

PAGE 328

322 | Chapter 13: Public Policy 13.25 | Food Policy The story of how food security and nutrition we re put on the government agenda is another example of how issues become political. In one sense, the consumption of food is a classic example of a private good rather than a public good. After all, food is an item whose benefits can be limited to thos e who have paid for it, and ke pt from those who were not willing or were unable to pay fo r its costs. But at least cert ain aspects of food consumption are also considered appropriate for governme nt action. Food policy is examined in greater detail in a separate chapter. 13.26 | Tobacco Policy: The Tobacco Wars One of the early fights over health care policy was a political and legal campaign to regulate or even ban smoking and the use of other t obacco products. The term tobacco wars was coined to describe the long-r unning battle between the tobacco industry (primarily growers, manufacturers, and sellers) and the anti-tob acco lobby (the American Medical Association, the American Heart Association, the American Lung Association, and other consumer and public health advocates). The fight over control of tobacco policy has been waged in all political arenas: city government, state gove rnment, and the federal government; congress, the executive branch, and the courts. The consumption of tobacco was traditionally considered a private choice to use nicotine. As the adverse health consequences of tobacco use were discovered, however, an anti-sm oking movement emerged to make tobacco a political issue, to put tobacco on the politic al agenda. The movement used political litigation (lawsuits that are intended to cha nge public policy), admini strative regulation, and legislation to produce a complicat ed system of tobacco regulation. Looking at how tobacco advertisements have changed over the years reveals how much attitudes toward smoking and tobacco regu lation have changed over the years. What is especially striking about many of the early to bacco ads is that they explicitly claimed or strongly implied that smoking was healthful by using doctors and nurse s and science to sell cigarettes. They even used images of in fants who seemed to notice that mommy was especially enjoying a particul ar brand of cigarettes. 13.3 | Making Policy: Policy Formulation and Adoption Issue network have developed around specifi c areas of public polic y. An issue network consists of the congressional committees w ith jurisdiction over an issue, the executive departments with jurisdiction ov er the issue, and th e interest groups or ganized to advocate on matters related to the issue. Each of these three members of the issue network works to formulate public policy based on its understa nding of the problem and the solution. Energy. Is the price of a gallon of gaso line too high or too low? Are gas price increases caused by high rates of consum ption (Americans tend to drive big cars and SUVs that do not get good gas mileag e!) or by decisions to not exploit all sources of energy (“Drill, baby, drill!)? Environmentalists and energy companies typically have opposing views on energy policy.

PAGE 329

Chapter 13: Public Policy | 323 Health Care. Is the high cost of health care caused by too much or too little access to health care? Do consum ers overuse health care be cause their employers are paying for some of the cost of health insurance? Or are health care providers the problem? Supporters of The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (Obamacare) defined the problem in terms of access and coverage, while opponents defined the health care actÂ’s mandate to buy insurance as an infringement on individual freedom. Health care providers and insurance companies and groups representing consumer s (patients) typically have different views on health care policy. Economics. Should economic policy focus on reducing taxes, budget deficits, or inflation? Or should it focus on une mployment and stagnant wages. Is unemployment caused by the lack of indivi dual initiative or tr aining? Management and labor typically have conflicting views on employ ment policy. Business interests and consumers typically have conflicting views on economic regulatory policy. The Environment. Energy companies and environmentalists typically have conflicting views on environmental policy. Are market forces the best way to protect the environment and conserve resources, or is government action necessary? Immigration. Is immigration a threat to American national identity? Do immigrants take jobs from Americans or lower wage s? Is immigration policy about economics (importing a labor supply) or national secur ity (the threat of terrorism)? Business interests have historica lly supported importing labor, while labor and other interests have historically worri ed about the effects on wages. How an issue is framed affects the formulation of public policy. Defining the energy problem as a problem of over-consumption produces energy policy that emphasizes conservation. Defining the energy problem as inadequate supply produces policy that emphasizes production. Defining the health care pr oblem as the need for cost control leads to health care policy that is very different th an health care policy that emphasizes increased access. Each of the three components of the issu e networks work hard to maintain control over how a problem is define d in order to control the substance of the policy that is ultimately adopted. 13.31 | Policy Adoption Policy adoption is the decision to officially give the policy the force of law. It usually follows public hearings to take testimony about the issue from interested or affected individuals and organizations, and to consider evidence presented. If the public polic y is to promote a desirable activity such as healthy diets and conservation, then lobbying efforts focus on increasing support for government subsidizing the behavior The U.S. system of government is an open system in the sense that there are many points and stages where supporters and opponents can participate in the process.

PAGE 330

324 | Chapter 13: Public Policy The policy adoption stage culminates with the passage of a law or administrative regulation that identifies the official purposes of the policy. Elected officials often publicly appear at the signing of a popular law, for ex ample, and bureaucratic officials may support a public policy that increases the agency’s budge t or rule making authority over their area of expertise. 13.32 | Implementation and Evaluation Implementation is what happens after a policy is adopted. A policy may not be implemented as intended due to problems w ith ambiguity, communica tion, and resistance. The ambiguity problem is caused by language that is vague or general. When a statute or regulation is vague or impreci se, those who are responsible for implementing the policy may not know what it requires. This probl em is fairly common when Congress passes a general law that describes its goals only in very general terms, and then requires the experts or specialists in the bureaucracy to actually define what the law requires or to determine the best way to implement it. Two examples of ambiguity are the Clean Air Act and the Clean Water Act. These federal statutes declare that it is federal poli cy to support clean air and clean water. But clean air and clean water are general goals that require precise definitions. The EPA is left the job of determining standards and methods of achieving them. This is why so much of the politics of environmental policy implementation and eval uation stages. The counterterrorism debates about the use of “enhanced inte rrogation” are anot her example of ambiguity. Torture is illegal. But there are differences of opinion ab out what is torture. Individuals who are conducting field interrogations are sometimes left to define what treatment is torture and what is not. In fact, police officers, military police, or the FBI and CIA interrogators may not even know what the legal policy is c oncerning legal methods of interrogation. Having an official or general policy agai nst torture does not eliminate the need to define what is, and what is not, torture. All large organizations need clear communication of instructions throughout al l levels in the organizationa l chain of command—from the policy makers to the policy followers—if policies are to be implemented as intended. The third problem is resistance If the individuals who are responsible for implementing the policy do not support it, the policy is unlikely to be implemented as intended. Police officers may oppose a Supreme Court ruling that the Constitution requires that individuals who are suspected of committi ng a crime must be notified of their rights before being questioned by the police. A public school teacher may oppose a Supreme Court ruling that that prohibits organized, spoken prayer in public schools or at school

PAGE 331

Chapter 13: Public Policy | 325 events. The political appointee on the C onsumer Products Safety Commission may be opposed to further government regulation of business. The head of the Food and Drug Administration may claim that the FDA has th e authority to regulate nicotine despite the tobacco lobby successfully stopped efforts to get Congress to pass a law that specifically authorized the FDA to regulate nicotine as a drug.1 The head of the Environmental Protection Agency may be a strong critic of the agency and environmental regulatory policy. President TrumpÂ’s head of the EPA, Sc ott Pruitt, was a strong critic of the EPAÂ’s activist agenda and sued the agency 13 time s. Strongly identified with the oil and gas industry and utility companies, he sued the EPA on behalf of Oklahoma utilities challenging the increased costs of complying wi th the Clean Power Plan and the Waters of the U.S. rule. He also rejects the scientific consensus on human causes of climate change. Federalism and the separation of powers further complicate policy implementation: Congress creates immigration statutes, but presidents implement them; Congress passes environmental laws to protect clean air a nd water, and health policies such as the Affordable Care Act, but relies heavily on the states to implement the laws. 13.33 | Budgeting Funding is essential for the implementation of most policies. Republicans continued to fight the Affordable Care Act after it wa s enacted into law by challenging the constitutionality of its funding and by reducing funding for it. Gun rights groups successfully lobbied Congress to effectively prohibit agencies from using health care funding to study gun violence as a public health problem. Both Congress and the president use funding to control the actions and prioriti es of administrative agencies. Cutting the Environmental Protection AgencyÂ’s budget is one way to reduce business costs of complying with environmental regulations wi thout actually repealing the environmental regulations or the statutes. 13.34 | Policy Evaluation Politics does not start with government deci sion-making, and it does not stop with policy adoption. Politics includes what happens after a bill has become a law. Policy evaluation is determining whether a policy is working as intended. This can be difficult because the subject can be complex (e.g., determining the cau se of crime) and because of politics. Some evaluation is based on anecdotal evidence Anecdotal evidence is stories from a few people that make their way to the ears of an evalua tor. Politicians often cite compelling personal stories as evidence that a polic y they support is working, or as evidence that a policy they support is not working. Sometimes horror stories and success stories are cherry-picked from the data. Evaluation also sometimes relies on public opinion The political assumption Think About It! Compare the above description of EP A Administrator Scott Pruitt public policy actions with his official EPA biography

PAGE 332

326 | Chapter 13: Public Policy is that a popular policy must be a good polic y and an unpopular policy must be a bad policy. But public opinion—conventional wisdom—can be mistaken. Social scientists value evaluation that is based on empirical evidence : the systematic analysis of data. However, policies are assessed by a variety of individuals from a variety of perspectives and with a variety of goals in mind so it is not surprising that different methods of evaluation are used. 13.35 | Unintended Results Public policies frequently have uninte nded (unexpected) or even counterintuitive (apparently not logical) resu lts because they apply to complex adaptive systems Policies apply to complex systems such as state governments, national governments, and international governing bodies; large companies or major sect ors of the economy; and even entire countries. Public policie s apply to systems that are adaptive in the sense that the targets of a policy adjust (or adapt) their beha vior in anticipation of public policy or as a result of the policy. Tax policy provides an example of counterintuit ive adaptive behavior. Raising taxes may increase tax revenue or, de pending on the size of the tax increase, may reduce tax revenue by causing capital flight or by raising the tax rate so high that people have incentives to NOT work to earn money th at will be heavily taxed, or to NOT purchase a good or service. In the U.S., increasing ta xes can actually reduce tax revenue because there are so many units of government. A city or a state that raises taxes can shift economic activity to another city or state where taxes are lower. Unintended consequences happen. A good po licy formulation pr ocess takes into consideration a broad range of informati on in order to minimize the likelihood of unintended consequences. But democratic soci eties and governments are complex adaptive systems so it is not possible to consider all possible effects of a part icular policy. Policies are intended to affect human behavior. It makes sense to think about motivations when formulating policies intended to get people to do something. Money is a familiar motivator: individuals or companies can be paid to do things the government wants them to do (e.g., work), and fined for doing things the governme nt does not want them to do (e.g., breaking traffic laws). But money is an imperfect motivator.2 A good example of unintended conseque nces is the public policy supporting wearing a helmet while riding a bicycle. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration recommends that bicyclists wear he lmets as a safety measure to protect against head injuries. Parents often require ch ildren to wear bicycle helmets. Should local governments require bicyclists to wear helmet s while riding on bike paths? The intended result is fewer head injuries; the unintended re sult could be increased rates of obesity, heart disease, and diabetes if requi ring helmets reduces bicycle ridi ng (exercise). Helmet laws also present problems for the cities that adop t bike-sharing programs to increase the use of bicycles for urban transportation. When consid ering a law requiring bicyclists to wear helmets, the benefits of reduced head injuri es should be considered against the costs of decreased bicycling. 13.36 | Types of Policy Public policies are intended to affect 1) the conditions under which people live and work; and 2), the human behavior of individuals a nd organization. Policies affect conditions by

PAGE 333

Chapter 13: Public Policy | 327 creating safe streets, economic security, nation al security, and health care, for instance. Policies affect behavior by creating incentives that encourage desirable behavior and disincentives to discourage undesirable behavior. Governments accomplish these goals using distributive policy and regulatory policy. Distributive policies provide goods and services. Distri butive policies in clude government spending programs that provide welfare, public education, transportation systems, public safety, or other benefits as well as tax polic ies that provide deductions and credits. The most politically controversial distributive policies are those that redistribute income. Redistributive policy takes resour ces from one group of individu als or states—for example, the wealthier, the younger, the employed, or the urban—and re distributes the resources or transfers them to another group of individuals or states—for example, the poorer, older, unemployed, or rural). Social welfare program s are the most common type of redistributive policy. Money or in-kind services such as f ood stamps or health care (under Medicaid) are provided to individuals who cannot adequately support themselves or their families. Tax policies, particularly progressive income taxes, are redistributive policies that transfer money from wealthier to poorer individuals, states, or region s. The federal tax law that allows for deducting home mortgage interest is also redistributive. A married couple can deduct up to $1 million worth of home mortgage interest each year. This approximately $70 billion dollar tax deduction primarily bene fits middle and upper income individuals and families. One of the most important soci al welfare policies is Social Security. The Social Security Administration (SSA) Web site provides historical information about the creation of the program and its funding, as well as current information about social security rules, regulations, and policies. The fiscal stab ility of Social Security has become part of contemporary political debates about entitlement s in an era where the aging or greying of the American public means increased dependence on the program for income security in old age. Regulatory policies are intended to change the behavior of individuals or organizations. Regulatory policies are usually used where there is broad consensus about what good behavior is and what bad behavior is. Regulatory policy can discourage bad behavior or encourage good behavior. Regulatory policy commonly uses fines, taxes, or sanctio ns to discourage bad behavior. Traffic laws enforced by fines; “sin” taxes on alcohol, tobacco, marijuana, or gambling; and even tax credits for consumers who buy hybrid vehicles or energy efficient appliances to discourage the bad behavior of consumers who buy high energy use products are all examples of regulatory policy. Most countries also have population policies that are intended to either encourage people to have more children, or to discourage people from having more children. Regulating fertility is a public policy because population policies are important components of a country’s nati onal identity—most countries wa nt to increase the fertility rates of native residents—and national econom ic policy. Demographics are an important factor linked to, among other things, a country’s economic development. Demographics include the age distribution of a country’s population. Having a larger or smaller percentage of younger or older people has great implications for public policies. China’s Think about it! Should the government take from one group of people (or states) and give to others?

PAGE 334

328 | Chapter 13: Public Policy one-child policy is an example of a nationa l population policy whose primary objective was to control population increase. However, policies intended to so lve one problem often have other, unintended consequences. Chin a’s one-child policy has controlled population growth, but it has created other problems that are just now emerging. Limiting births has serious long-term implications for a country’s demographics because it affects the ratio of working age individuals to the young, elderly, and retired. Countries with aging populations such as the U.S., the Scandinavi an countries, and France and Germany have used a variety of public policies to increase fe rtility. They have not been very effective— which is why the countries relied on im migration to import a supply of labor. The Great Recession put government regulatio n of the financial services sector of the economy on the government agenda. The Ob ama administration proposed the creation of a Consumer Financial Prot ection Bureau. President Obama appointed Elizabeth Warren as a special assistant to create a Consumer Financial Protection Bureau. Her testimony (May 24, 2011) before the H ouse of Representatives Subco mmittee on TARP and Financial Services of the Committee on Oversight a nd Government Reform revealed the sharp partisan differences on government regulation of financial services. Democrats generally support government regulation of business to protect consumers. Re publicans generally oppose such public policies because they believe the competition of the marketplace is sufficient to protect against the bad behavi or that product the economic crisis. In 2012, Warren was elected as a U.S. Senator from Massachusetts. Social policy includes a broad range of both redist ributive and regulator y policies: social welfare policy (income or service support), hea lth care, and education. Social policy is often distributive policy insofa r as it entails taking resour ces from one group and providing them to another groups, or from a general population to a particul ar population. Because of the relationship between economic resource s (income or wealth) and opportunity, social scientists study the impact of economic inequality. The relationship between President Obama with Elizabeth Wa rren, a Harvard Law Professor who participated in crafting legislation to regulate the financial industry.

PAGE 335

Chapter 13: Public Policy | 329 income/wealth and education is particularly important because so much emphasis is placed on education as the key to economic opportunity and political equality. Studies of performance on standardized tests that are us ed to determine admission to colleges, for example, reveal consistent correlations between family income and performance on standardized tests.3 State compulsory schooling laws, testi ng, and taxes supporting public education are evidence of the importance of education. Is education a private good or a public good? Primary and secondary education is considered a public good because the benefits are not limited to the individual student who receives the education. The economy benefits from a trained work force; democracy benefits from having an educated citizenry. College is more complicated. Receiving a college degree is a private good in the sense that it provides an individual with certain benefits. But college is also a public good in the sense that higher education is often part of a state’s economic de velopment strategy. Recent trends in state funding of higher education, sp ecifically reductions in tax support, reflect a nationwide shift toward thinking of college education as a private good rather than a public good. This education policy shift reflects new thinking about how to provi de a trained work force for today’s economy, and the wisdom of assuming that everyone should go to college. Is there an education bubble simila r to the real estate bubble that played an important role in the Great Recession? Both sectors of the economy be nefited from and relied on the perception that values—properties and degrees—would continue to increase? Are sub-prime mortgages, which played an important ro le in bringing about the Great Recession, analogous to sub-prime college degrees? 13.4 | Health Care Policy Health care is important for individuals, fam ilies, and for the economy. It is an important component of social welfare policy and it is an important sector of the economy. Health care accounts for around 18% of the U.S. Gross Domestic Product (GDP). The governments of all the major industrial democraci es play a role in providing health care. In the U.S., government plays a smaller and different role than the governments in other countries with similar economic and political syst ems. The high cost of health care in the U.S., measured as a percentage of a family ’s budget and as a percentage of the GDP, has put health care reform on the government agenda. However, the ideological and partisan differences of opinion about the best solution to the problems of health care have kept health care on the government agenda w ithout consensus on policy solutions. Think About It! What is the value of a college degree? See the Public Broadcasting story “Assessing the Value of College Education” at

PAGE 336

330 | Chapter 13: Public Policy President Obama signed the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (commonly called the Affordable Care Act or Obamacare) into law in 2010. Republicans in Congress repeatedly tried to repeal the Act, and Re publican governors filed lawsuits challenging the constitutionality of the Act. Th e Supreme Court upheld the Act in National Federation of Independent Businesses (2012). But provisions of the law were still being challenged when President Trump and the Republican majority in Congress worked on repeal and replacement with the American Health Care Act in 2017. 13.41 | Evaluating Health Care Public policy analysis requires evaluating the status quo and proposed solutions. How would you diagnose the health of the U.S. health care sy stem? Doctors routinely ask patients about pain levels and the state of th eir health. You be the doctor! Put a check mark in the box indicating what you th ink describes the health of the health care system: The health care system is in Good Health. The health care system is in Fair Health. The health care system is in Poor Health.

PAGE 337

Chapter 13: Public Policy | 331 What did you use to evaluate (or di agnose) the health care system? Cost. Is health care affordable? The shar e of a personÂ’s income, a familyÂ’s income, or a countryÂ’s Gross Domestic Product that is spent on health care is one measure of affordability. Access. One measure of access is the pe rcentage of people who have access to health care because they have, fo r example, insurance coverage. Performance. This is the measure of th e bang for the health care buck! What do individuals and the na tional as a whole get for spendi ng on health care? Health care performance measures include infant mortality rates, life expectancy, and quality of life. One complication in formulating national health care policy is federalism. The states play an important role in the design and delivery of health care. The federal government cannot mandate state actions. For example, 26 Republ ican governors filed la wsuits challenging the constitutionality of the Affordable Care Act. How is the health of your stateÂ’s health care policy? The Kaiser Family Foundation provides data and analysis of the health care in the U.S. a nd other countries. It measures health care spending, quality, access and affordability, health and wellbeing. The Commonwealth Fund in an organization that pr omotes the creation of a more effective health care system. It prov ides a great deal of useful data on hea lth care. Its State Scorecard 2014 provides an interactive map that enables a reader to quickly see where the state in which they reside ranks in terms of health car e on various measures and by overall rank. It also provides Surveys and Data from states, regions, and countries. 13.42 | Comparative Approaches Asking whether the U.S. has a good health care system often prompts not an answer but another question: Compared to what? Comp arison is valuable because it provides benchmarks for evaluating policy. Health care can be studied from a number of comparative perspectives. One comparison is historical : comparing the current system with the past system. A second approach is comparative : comparing states or countries. A third way is to compare the health care sector of the American economy with other sectors of the economy. Comparative Health Care Policy T. R. Reid compares the health care systems in countries with political and economic systems that are similar to the U.S. and countries with different systems. The results provide valuable benchmarks for determining the performance of different health care systems: s/rundown.php?prgId=13&prgDate=824-2009 The comparative costs of health care are examined in this PBS story: /2012/10/health-costs-how-the-uscompares-with-other-countries.html

PAGE 338

332 | Chapter 13: Public Policy The comparisons of health care systems include the ways that health care is delivered—including the reliance on medical technology. The American practice of medicine is noted for its adva nced technology. Medical tec hnology is a mixed blessing: it produces amazing health care outcomes for some i ndividuals but it is very expensive. The American practice of medicine’s reliance on technology has made the old-fashioned physical exam—which is a low-cost diagnosis —a “dying art.” Dr. Abraham Verghese, a physician at the Stanford Medical School, descri bed the problem in a semi-serious way: “I sometimes joke that if you come to our hos pital missing a finger, no one will believe you until we get a CAT scan, an MRI, and an ort hopedic consult. We don’t trust our senses.” Dr. Verghese’s comment criticizes the m odern medical profession for becoming so dependent on machines to tell them about the patient (the “I-patient”) that doctors do not pay very much attention to the ac tual patient in the hospital bed.4 A final comparison looks at health care relative to other s ectors of the economy. The U.S. economy has various sectors: hosp itality, manufacturi ng, agri-business, education, criminal justice, telecommunications, and even a fast food sector Comparing the health care and fast food sectors may seem inappropriate because they are so different. But the fast food industry has developed and ap plied cost and quality control measures, as well as other organizational prac tices that might be applicable to the health care industry. The two sectors might seem so completely differe nt that the one has little to say about the other, but from an organizational perspective, th e attention that restaura nt chains have paid to delivering a good (fast food) produce may be re levant to the delivery of a service (health care). Americans brought organizational skills to manufacturing, agriculture, and to the service sector (notably, through chain restau rants and lodging). But medicine—doctors and hospitals—have resisted the trend until recently. Doctors were self-employed; now threequarters are employees. Hospitals are also becoming parts of chains. In “Big Med,” Gawande describes how “[restaurant] chains have managed to combing quality control, cost control, and innovation” and asks whethe r their organizational principles can do the same for health care.5 In the U.S., health care policy developed as a series of deci sions related to the regulation of hospitals, the licensing of hea lth care providers, the creation of employerbased benefits, and the regulation of insu rance companies. Health care policy is surprisingly dependent on taxes to raise money to fund government programs, to discourage certain activities (e.g., smoking), en courage certain behaviors (e.g., marriage; child rearing), and to redistribute wealth (progressive income taxes). Think About It! Is a tax break the best policy for s ubsidizing health insurance coverage? /12/04/1664342 47/the-huge-andrarely-discussed-health-insurance-tax-break

PAGE 339

Chapter 13: Public Policy | 333 13.5 | Environmental Policy Environmental policy is more complicated th an many other areas of public policy because so many areas of public policy—economic s, transportation, energy, and food—have environmental impacts. So environmental polic y includes issues such as air and pollution and the conservation of water and land and ot her natural resources. Like other areas of public policy, there is an environmental polic y issue network consisting of congressional committees, executive agencies including the Environmental Protection Agency and interest groups—both environmentali st groups and business groups. The EPA’s mission includes a broad range of relate d activities. The states al so play important roles in developing environmental policies and implemen ting federal priorities and programs. The American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy describes what the states are doing. For these reasons, federal environmental pol icy has been described as fragmented and conflicted. It is fragmented because so ma ny units of government have authority over some aspect of environmental policy. And it is conflicted because the agency missions include both protecting natura l resources and exploiting them for economic development, agricultural production, human consumption and recreation, and energy production. Water policy illustrates these issues. Water is essential for life. Every la nguage has a word for water. The American Museum of Natural History’s “H20=Life” explains the importa nce of water. Historically, the major civilizations of the world develope d around water, or water was considered an especially significant natural, religious, or cultural resource: the Ti gris and Euphrates; the Ganges; the Nile; the Jordan. Th e significance of water is reflect ed in the central role that water plays in a country’s history, economics, politics, and religion (e.g., baptism and cleansing rituals). Today, we can engineer urba n environments to make water available in arid regions, but providing a sustaina ble supply of water is essential for most countries. Water scarcity causes economic problem s and political conflicts. In the U.S., states have been fighting water wars with neighboring states and countries (Canada and Mexico) for decades. Water is also becoming a national secur ity issue in regions of the world such as the Middle East. There are thr ee things to keep in mind wh en studying water policy in the U.S.: interstate commerce; regionali sm; and federal water projects. Interstate Commerce Water can be an article in interstate commerce just like other goods (cars, clothing, and el ectronic equipment) and serv ices (e.g., health care or legal services). Water that moves in, involves, or affects interstate commerce comes under Congress’ interstate commerce powers—whether it is lake water, river water, stream water, spring water, or underground (an aquifer). Congress has plenary (that is, total and complete) power over interstate commerce. The federal government has complete power over interstate co mmerce. Article I, Sect 8 of the Constitution pr ovides that “The Congress shal l have Power To…. regulate U.S. national security strategy documents now describe water problems as a national security threat. Water s carcity and climate change create political problems that threaten U.S. national security interests.

PAGE 340

334 | Chapter 13: Public Policy Commerce with foreign Nations and among the several Stat es, and with the Indian Tribes….” This means that any use of water th at involves more than one state, or another country (e.g., interna tional water agreements with Grea t Lakes states and Canada) is subject to federal regulation. Intrastate waters those that are entirely within one state, can be regulated by that state. The federal gove rnment approves inters tate and international water compacts because they involve interstate commerce in water. The federal government’s complete power over interstate commerce was established in an early Supreme Court case, Gibbons v. Odgen (1824). The case involved a legal dispute over whether a state or the fe deral government could license a ferry across the Hudson River between New York City and New Jersey. The Court ruled that Congress has complete power over interstate commerce defined as any economic activity involving or affecting more than one state. Water th at affects more than one state comes under the federal government’s interstate commerce power. A small lake or pond or stream that is entirely within a state is generally consider ed beyond the interstate commerce power of the federal government. Regionalism Most of the United States is ble ssed with an abundant supply of water for human consumption and use in agricu lture, manufacturing, transportation, and the generation of electrical power. However, water is generally abundant in the eastern half of the country and generally scarce in the we stern half of the country. The politics of federalism requires cooperation to resolve water conflicts, and th e Founders anticipated conflicts between states. The Constitution provides that the U.S. Supreme Court has original jurisdiction to hear cases where a st ate sues another state. These kinds of cases include legal disputes over water. Many state boundaries include rivers Rivers change their courses, but state boundaries do not change becau se the river changes course. States also sue other states over the use of water from rivers, lakes, reservoirs, and aquifers. Federal Water Projects Federal water projects have played an important role in regional economic development. The Tennessee Valley Authority ( TVA ) is a major federal water and power project that increas ed the economic development of Appalachia. The TVA was created in the 1930s to ge nerate electrical power. Today, the TVA website identifies “energy,” “environment,” and “econom ic development” as its purposes. Federal projects have been essential for western ec onomic development. As the supply of clean water has become an increasingly scarce resour ce, water has become a contentious political issue for local, regional, stat e, and national government. Ea st of the Mississippi River where water was plentiful wasting water meant consuming it needlessly or using too much water. In the arid regions west of the Miss issippi River, wasting wa ter meant not using it by allowing river water to flow unimpeded a nd used until it eventually emptied into the ocean. Much of western urban development—the Los Angeles, Phoenix, Las Vegas, and San Diego metropolitan area—and agricultur al development was made possible by massive dams and irrigation projects that tr ansported water over l ong distances and even over or around high mountains to where it was needed for thir sty people or thirsty crops. As a result, it has been said that in the American West water flows uphill—toward money. (Reissner 1986) On the Great Plains, the Ogalla la (or High Plains) Aquifer that lies beneath much of the country ranging from South Da kota to Texas supports large-scale industrial agriculture. The use of this ground water can be considered mining as much as irrigation

PAGE 341

Chapter 13: Public Policy | 335 for farming .6 Underground aquifers are mined for th eir water the way other minerals such as gold, copper, silver, and coal are mined. 13.51 | Water Wars in the Dry West Western federal water projects have been esse ntial for economic development, agricultural production, and urban life in major cities in cluding Las Vegas NV, Phoenix AZ, and Los Angeles CA. California’s major agricultural areas, the Central Valley and the Imperial Valley, depend on federal water projects. Wester n water projects have prompted the quip that in most of the world water flows downh ill, but in the American West, “Water flows uphill—toward money!” It flows uphill because of projects such as the Hoover Dam which is part of a massive western water projec t that is managed by the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation, “the largest wholesaler of wate r in the United States.” The Bureau is an agency in the U.S. Department of the Interior the agency that mana ges the country’s “vast natural and cultural resources.” The Department of Agriculture’s Natural Resources Conservation Service also manages natural resources such as water. And, of course, the EPA is the primary agency responsible for ad ministering various cl ean water acts. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Association (NOAA) Centers for Environmental Information provide a map of the major river basi ns in the contiguous United States. In which river basin do you live? The rivers of the western U.S. have been so extensively engineered and managed that they have been transformed into outdoor plumbing systems that have been e ngineered to move water from where it is, and wher e it naturally flows, to where it is needed: cities, farms, and reservoirs. The Rio Gra nde is one such grand outdoor plumbing system. The Rio Grande Compact created in 1937 includes Colorado, New Mexico, and Texas. The Colorado River Compact includes seven states The federal government tunneled under the Continental Divide to send Colo rado River water to the Rio Grande River, which has had so much of its river flow withdrawn from th e river that it no longer flows into the ocean. The Central Arizona Project (CAP) is one of these massive federal projects. California William Mulholland (1855-1935) was the head of the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power. He is a fa mous figure in the western water wars—for instance, the Owens Valley Water Wars). The western water story is told in a series Cadillac Desert that describes how impor tant the development of water and waterpower was to California and the entire arid West’s development. Cadillac Desert also provides insights into an earlier era of great confidence, the “can-do” attitude, and the belief that the Check It Out! The American Geosciences Institute’s Interactive Map of Major Streams and Rivers has a streamer app that allows you to trace any major stream upstream to its source or downstream to where it empties into the sea.

PAGE 342

336 | Chapter 13: Public Policy U.S. can find an engineering solution to any of its water problems. After WWII, the U.S. explored peaceful uses of its nuclear bombs. Project Plowshare was the Atomic Energy Commission’s (AEC) effort to promote “peaceful nuclear explosions” for a broad range of engineering and construction pu rposes such as widening th e Panama Canal, connecting Arizona’s aquifers, and bringi ng water through the mountains to California’s Sacramento Valley. In one sense, the AEC was providing a biblical justification for its efforts by referencing the Prophet Isaiah’s belief that people would beat their swords into plowshares and their spears into pruning fo rks and neither study nor train for war. This also fit well with the religious belief that it was wasteful to allow river water to empty unused into the seas. The American “can-do” attitude is expr essed in the Latin saying “Fiat Lux. Fiat Pluvia.” [Let there be light. Let there be rain.] This is the belief that electrical light could be engineered with waterpower just as water for drinking and irrigation could be engineered with water projects. California water utilities are on the front lines of the scarc ity problem. Parkwood, a small community in California’s Central Valley is one of 28 small communities whose water systems are listed as “Critical” because it relies on a single source of water: a stream that is now becoming a dry creek. The state a nd local agencies that manage water include the California Environmental Protection Agency (ACWA), State Water Resources Control Board and The Association of California Water Agencies The fact that the ACWA was formed in 1910 is an indicati on of how much earlier California has been formulating water policy than states such as Florida. But Ca lifornia’s history of lo cal control over water resources, and the existence of “historic” wate r rights claims that give older users priority over newer users, results in a patchwork of water agencies that do not uniformly enforce water restrictions desp ite the historic drought. The historic five-year drought in Californ ia that ended in 2016 prompted state and local rules to enact new regulations but “ Historic Water Claims Mean Special Status, Despite Drought Allocation Rules .” The California State Water Project is a complex and comprehensive state and local government agency that manages water resources. It includes the California Department of Water Resources The state’s fresh water policy goals include 1) providing enough water for hum an consumption and agriculture; and 2) preserving ecosystems. It is not easy to reconcile these goals. The dam problem In the past, major federal water projects built dams to store and then distribute water. But these dam structures are now aging and drought and increased water usage have lowered water levels in the reservoirs. The PBS story “ Why Dams are at the Heart of California’s Water Problems ” explains why One solution to the dam problem is dam repairs and proposals to solve the water shortage by building more dams that increase storage capacity. But “ To Build or not to build, that’s the Dam Question in Dry California ” because dams are solutions th at also create problems. One alternative is to increase the supply of water by drilling more wells. But wells have already created problems. Irrigated water results in the salinization of the soil The Dowsers (Water Witches)? A New Career Opportunity ?

PAGE 343

Chapter 13: Public Policy | 337 deeper the wells, the more chemical problem s irrigated water causes in the soil and the foods (e.g., fruits and vegetables) that are gr own using it. This is a major issue in the agricultural areas of California, for example. Th e depletion of aquifers has also caused the land to sink. Is California falling off the continental shelf? Or is it just sinking away as the increased mining of aquifers lowers the ground water levels? The “Epic Drought” that California experienced in recent years actually moved mountains— by lowering them — while the increased well drilling was lowering valley floors In the western water wars, drilling more and deeper well s and pumping ground wa ter at rates that lower aquifers is essentially mining water It causes the land to subside. Western water comes from rain, snowmelt that fills streams and lakes and reservoirs, canals (the elaborate system water transfers across regions and st ates) and aquifers—from which underground water is mined. 13.52 | Water Wars in the Southwest The Red River Water Wars refers to the polit ical and legal fights th at Texas, Oklahoma, Arkansas, and Louisiana have had over the ri ghts to use water from the Red River Basin. The Red River Compact specifies rights th at are managed by a Commission. Texas and Oklahoma fight over the water from Lake Texoma The Tarrant Regional Water District sued Oklahoma to get more rights to use water for growing cities in north Texas cities. The U.S. Supreme Court ultimately upheld a state’s power to control its ow n natural resources rather being forced to sell them (in this case, water) to another state. 13.53 | Water Wars in the Midwest The Republican River Water Wars refer to the political and legal fights among Colorado, Nebraska, and Kansas over the rights to use Republican River water. The Republican River watershed includes the three states. In 1942, the thr ee states entered into a compact that Congress approved in 1943. The Republican River Compact stipulated each state’s water rights and created the Republican River Water Compact Administration (RRCA) to administer the district. During the 1980s, Ka nsas began reporting that Nebraska was violating the terms of the compact by permitting groundwater wells to pump water for agricultural uses. The Compact defined the virgin water supply as the multiyear average supply of water in the Basin un-depleted by human activity; estimated the average water supply; and allocated to each state an agreed-upon share for beneficial human use. But the Compact did not provide a dispute resoluti on process or administ rative details beyond saying that each state can appoi nt an administrator and the th ree administrators can make regulations. Non-binding arbitr ation resulted in a finding th at Kansas 1) had suffered damages, but 2) failed to adequately prove th ose damages. Kansas appealed to the U.S. Supreme Court to determine if Nebraska had vi olated the compact and if so determine the damages. The state fights indicate that when it comes to water, we can’t all just get along The U.S. Supreme Court appointed a Special Master to gather information and make a Think About It! Sinking land and rising seas?

PAGE 344

338 | Chapter 13: Public Policy recommendation that settled the dispute (for now) when the Supreme Court adopted the recommendations in Kansas v. Nebraska (2015). These water issues also apply to mid-si zed cities in the industrial north. Flint, Michigan’s water woes focused attention on aging infrastructure such as lead pipes leaching into city water supplies. The City of Waukesha, Wisconsin proposed changing from well water sources to water that was pipe d from Lake Michigan. The city had to apply for an exception to the Great Lakes-St. Laur ence River Basin Water Resources Compact and the Great Lakes-St. Laurence River Basi n Sustainable Water Resource Agreement, which limited diversion of the water from th e basin. The Compact Council, which consists of the governors of the eight Great Lakes stat es, approved the diversion. One concern with such diversions is the legal pr ecedent that would be set by allowing water to be diverted from the basin. The increasing value of water has caused water to be described as a kind of “blue gold.” Dayton, Ohio is a Rust Belt city that wa s hit hard when manufacturing first left for the Sun Belt, then Mexico, and then China. Da yton is now advertising itself as a city with an abundance of fresh water vital for familiar uses such as consumption, agriculture, and manufacturing AND for new uses such as cooling computer server farms. 13.54 | Water Wars in the Southeast The Tri-State Water Wars refer to the sout heastern fights among Florida, Georgia, and Alabama, three fast-growing Sunbelt states over the rights to use water from the Apalachicola, Flint, and Chattahoochee River System Once again, the U.S. Supreme Court is required to ultimately decide these water wars. The Southern Environmental Law Center reports on the story of this water war.

PAGE 345

Chapter 13: Public Policy | 339 13.55 | Solutions to the Scarcity Problem The belief that taxes can be cut without re ducing programs by increasing efficiency is similar to the belief that improved water mana gement is the solution to the water scarcity problem. Killing the Colorado is the story of “ Drought and Man in the West .” What about conservation? Population growth in the So uthwestern Sun Belt st ates began raising questions about whether the water scarcity problem was too little water or too many people. Are there too many people for too little water in the arid western states? Conservation has had an impact on behavior. The United States Geological Survey ( USGS ) reported a 13% decline in water usage acro ss the nation during five-year period 2005–2010. However, little of the decline in consumption was public cons umption; most of the reduction was in power plant and agricultural usage. Twelve states account for 50% of the water withdrawn from ground and surface resources: CA (11%); Texas, Idaho, Florida, Illi nois, NC, ARK, CO. The “supply side” solutions—drilling more wells and building more dams, reservoirs, and even de-salinization plants —do not address the “demand side” problem. Conservation attempts to address the demand si de, but to date conservation measures have not ended the water wars. In fact, conserva tion—individuals and businesses lowering their rates of water usage—has not compensated for the higher total water usage resulting from population increases. The new western water wars are inter-state battles over access to Colorado River water, intra-state battles between urban and agricultural interests, and regional battles between northern California and southern California. There also is a backlash against environmentalists. Critics accuse environmentalists of seeming more interested in protecting small creatures—a bird like the spotted owl, a mammal like a prairie dog, or a fish like the snail darter—than allowing the use of natural resources to provide people with food or wate r or energy or forestry products for building houses. Are tree-huggers more than people-hugge rs? This is in essence the point of the PBS story “ Fishermen and Farmers Fight over Water in California .” Think about it! The “milkshake” speech from There Will Be Blood (2007) (at 7:20) is one of the top ten business speeches in film. What does it have to do with these water cases? Think About It! In the academy award-winning film The Graduate (1967) a college graduate looking for a career is advi sed to get into plastics because plastics were the future. What about getting into water? The U.S. Geological Survey has a Water Science School.

PAGE 346

340 | Chapter 13: Public Policy 13.56 | The Water Pollution Problem There is extensive mining in the West. Of the approximately 500,000 abandoned mines in the country, only about 48,000 have been inventoried by the Bureau of Land Management’s Abandoned Mine Lands program. The estimat ed cost of cleanup ranges from $20–54 billion dollars. The Clean Water Act makes mine owners responsib le for controlling discharges, but owners often sa y that they are not responsible for cleaning up mines that stopped operating long ago. The Go ld King Mine in Colorado stopped operating in 1923. In 2015, the EPA contracted with a company to plug the mine’s toxic wastewater holding pond. An accident caused a three million gallon wastewater plume into the Animas River. The wastewater pond cleanup accident that polluted the Animas River was readily apparent in the color of the river water. The alternative to plugging wastewater ponds is building a treatment plant to clean the water. Both local government officials and company officials ar e reluctant to support federal cleanup plans because they cost mone y. The Silverton area where Gold King is located was first developed after an 1872 fede ral mining law encourag ed exploitation of western resources by allowing i ndividuals to claim the mineral rights beneath public lands. Toxic wastewater has been left behind at many of the mining operations. The acid rock drainage pollutes watersheds with heavy metals, “stew brews” with sulfuric acid concentrations high enough to dissolve steel an d to leach poisons including lead, arsenic, and cadmium out of mountainsides. The Cuyahoga River Fire (1969) is one of the environm ental disaster stories that put the environment on the national government agenda. Why were factories and cities built along waterways? One reason is rivers pr ovided transportation. Another reason is factories and cities could litera lly flush some of the costs of manufacturing, and some of the costs of treating sewage, downstream or in to a big body of water according to the theory that “dilution is th e solution to the pollution.” The story is told in an article with curious title: “ Why Rivers No Longer Burn. ” A lot has been done to rivers. Why was the Chicago River reversed? The Chicago Ri ver used to flow eastward into Lake Michigan. Chicago was a growing metropolis that needed a sewer th at did not flow right into Lake Michigan because Lake Michigan was its source of drinking water. In 1885, many people died after a heavy rainstorm washed sewage from the rive r—which was, in a sense, the city’s sewer— into the lake where the city’s water intake pipes were located. So engineers decided to reverse the flow of the river: they connected it into a “Sanitary and Ship Canal” that connects to the Illinois River, the Des Plaine s River, and then flows to the Mississippi River. Today, there is a Des Plaines River watershed The Metropolitan Water Reclamation District of Greater Chicago has authority over the waterway system. The Friends of the Chicago River opposes a plan to reverse engineer the Chicago River so that it once again flows into Lake Michigan because the river is currently “flushed” with fresh water from Lake Michigan that flow s to the Mississippi. The Great Lakes and the Great Lakes Basin are a great freshwater supply. The Great Lakes constitute 84% of North Ameri ca’s surface fresh water and about 21% of the world’s fresh surface water. The Great Lakes are a natural resource that is subject to state, federal, and international regulation. Th e Great Lakes Coalition sponsors an annual Great Lakes Restoration Conference with themes such as healing our waters and caring for our drinking water.

PAGE 347

Chapter 13: Public Policy | 341 13.57 | Water Treatment The American public expects an adequate supply of clean water. This is a fairly modern expectation. The Victorian Age is remembered today mostly for being an age when people were worried about dirty books but in the Victorian Age London’s filth included filthy air and water. Water systems are now integral parts of urban utility systems that provide water, electrical power, and disposal of sewage and solid waste. Water works are impressive engineering feats—especially considering the si ze of the urban populations they serve. But water works are victims of their own success in the sense that they have worked so well for so long that they are often taken them for granted. The NPR story “ If a Water Main Isn’t Broke, Don’t Fix It (for 300 years? )” describes how years of deferred maintenance have created a stressed system. The American Water Works Association ’s Water Utilities Council directs its government affairs staff to sound as “the voice of water.” What should be flushed down the toilet? Wipes? The fact that Wipes are flushable doesn’t mean they should be flushed. Drugs? We live in a pharmaceutical age. People take lots of drugs. Where do they go? Read the NPR story “ Traces of Drugs in Water ?” to learn some of the impacts of drug usage. The Swedes take lots of anti-anxiety drugs—which may explain why they seem calm and generally score rather high on happiness measures Are trace amounts of these drugs in the waters of Sweden making the fish less anxious too— and therefore making it easier for them to be eaten by other fish, and easier to be caught and eaten by people? Public perceptions limit efforts to reuse or re-cycle water. Cognitive awareness that the wastewater has been cleaned does not comp letely overcome the psychological feelings about what the water had been used for and where it had been. Recycling cleaned Where does all the small plastic stuff like microbeads in soap go ? Think About It! “Water, water everywhere but not a drop to drink?” 642271/why-cleaned-wastewaterstays-dirty-in-our-minds Think About It! Why do people drink so much bottled water? The Story of Bottled Water provides one explanation and the bottled water industry provides a rebuttal in The Real Story of Bottled Water.

PAGE 348

342 | Chapter 13: Public Policy wastewater—particularly recycling sewage water—for human consumption requires addressing the “ick” factor associated with drinking recycled toilet water. The NPR story Water, Water Everywhere but not a Drop to Drink ? explains why people think that cleaned wastewater is still too dirty to drink. Non-profit organizat ions such as the WaterReuse Research Foundation conduct and promote applied research on the science of water reuse, recycling, reclamation, and desalination. Water politics is no longer just about conservation, sustainability, or being green—it is a vital reso urce that has national security implications. The EPA’s “ History of Drinking Water Treatment ” provides an overview of one aspect of water policy and technological developments. The EPA’s Office of Water includes the following offices: Immediate Office of the Assist ant Administrator for Water Office of Ground Water and Drinking Water Office of Science and Technology Office of Wastewater Management Office of Wetlands, Oceans and Watersheds 13.58 | Climate Change Climate change—or the more controversial te rm global warming—presents a new set of regional water problem: rising sea levels. Risi ng sea level require asking which coastal cities can be defended, how they can be defended, and who shoul d pay for the coastal defense? Hurricane Katrina’s disastrous flooding of New Orleans left some people to think that New Orleans was so vulnera ble to flooding that it was not worth it to tr y to prevent flooding considering the city’s exposure to hurricanes and the high costs of flood protection. But New Orleans is not the only urban center that is vulnerable to flooding. What is the largest estuary on the west coast of the U.S.? Read “ About CALFED ” to learn about this surprising estuary, which includes Sacramento, a city protected by dams and dikes. Hurricane Sandy made landfall on October 29, 2012 at a barrier island north of Atlantic City. The storm water surge damage d barrier islands up the Atlantic coast and flooded New York City and the surround areas, thereby exposing the vulnerability of the entire New York City metropolitan region. Think About It! Act on It! Surf Your Watershed This is a civic engagement project: Find out where your water comes from (not the faucet). What watershed do you live in? Is there a special government district such as water district? Contact a local, state, or national government official and ask them what they think is the most important water problem.

PAGE 349

Chapter 13: Public Policy | 343 What should be the public policy go als for vulnerable coastal regions? Retreat from the sea? Governments could use zoning laws, flood insurance regulations, and disaster a ssistance funds to limit new development in flood-prone areas or even to pull back from shorelines. Armor the beaches? The coastal regions c ould be protected with sea walls and other structures as well as beach renourishment projects to create man-made barriers. Beach re-nourishment provide s temporary protection from storms. Congress responded to Hurricane Sandy by passing the Disaster Relief Appropriations Act of 2013, which provide d around $50 billion for relief projects and programs, some of which was funding for the Army Corps of Engineers—which contracts with The Great Lakes Dredge and Dock, a company that among other things continually re-nourishes the beaches with sand dredged from offshore. Beach re-nourishment is environmentally damaging, but most of the dama ge is on the ocean floor in a place that is out of sight and therefor e mostly out of mind. Does the U.S. have too many governments or not enough? The argument for more governments is based on the belief that re gional governments are needed to address regional environmental problems. Existing political boundaries—city borders, county lines, and state lines—are geogr aphical and political boundaries that are not in most cases natural boundaries. Environmental problems ar e increasingly regional problems. Take, for instance, acidification. Air pollution from Mi dwestern manufacturing pl ants and electrical power plants is sent up smoke stacks and into the jet stream, where the prevailing easterly winds drop acid rain in the northeast. The acidification of lakes and streams in the northeastern states comes from outside th e region. Acid rain also causes ocean acidification. Environmentalists believe thes e regional and even global problems require regional or even global government action. Libertarians disagree. Libe rtarians think that more government means less freedom. Therefore they look for private, non-government al solutions to soci al and environmental problems. Murray Rothbard is a libertarian who thinks that government caused many of the water use conflicts therefore creating more regional governments is unlikely to be the solution to the environmental problem. The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers predicts th at sea levels will ri se 9–24 inches by 2060. Four Southeastern Florida Counties (Monroe Miami-Dade, Broward, and Palm Beach) and 30 cities have joined the Southeast Florida Regional Climate Change Compact to coordinate responses to sea level rise, tidal flooding, and saltwater intrusion into drinking water well fields. There are many stories about it raining frogs and fish Some are apocryphal; some are true. But cephalopods in parking lots? Think About It! Do you agree with Murray Rothbard’s soluti on to the water wars as summarized in The American Conservative ? http://www.theamericanconservative .com/articles/texas-water-war/

PAGE 350

344 | Chapter 13: Public Policy An Octopus in a Miami Beach Pa rking Garage (in the Shade) 13.6 | Energy Policy The U.S. is a high-consuming natio n. It is not just that the U. S. uses a lot of energy—it is, after all a country with a large population. The U.S. is a high-consuming country because Americans have a high per capita use of en ergy. The following World Bank data compares the per capita consumption of energy in various countries.7 The U.S. per person consumption of energy is high compared to other countries. U.S. dependence of foreign oil has been an issue since the 1970s Arab Oil Embargoes. The U.S. has been talking about the need for en ergy independence ever since then.

PAGE 351

Chapter 13: Public Policy | 345 Energy policy has several goals: producing e nough energy, conservation of resources, environmentalism, national security, and econom ics. The discussion of renewable energy is part of the broader discu ssion sustainability—whether it is energy resources, fisheries, forestry, mineral deposits, or water supplies. The discussion includes some provocative thoughts about whether modern civilization as we know it is even sustainable. 13.61 | Sustainability Sustainability is an important concept in environmental policy. Sustainable forestry practices harvest trees while keeping enough fo rests and healthy forests—not just tree farms, which are basically monoculture crops. Sustainable agriculture refers to farming practices that incorporate pr oductivity with concern for main taining water and soil quality. Marine sustainability refers to fishing practices that maintain sustainable stocks of fish and healthy natural fisheries. The Marine Stewardship Council is a global organization that works with fisheries, companie s, scientists, conservation gro ups, and the general public to promote sustainable fisheries by labeling seafood as certified sustainable seafood. Do you care whether the fish you in the market or eat in a restaurant is obt ained using sustainable fishing practices? Is the “cer tified sustainable” label about science or economics? For a satirical view on polit ical rhetoric about the importance of U.S. energy independence see The Daily Show’s “An Energy-Independent Future.” Think About It! What Does “Sustainable” Fishing Mean? Think About It! Is modern civilization sustainable? Is civilization a bad idea? /11/15/142339570/is-civilization-ab a d -ide a

PAGE 352

346 | Chapter 13: Public Policy 13.7 | Immigration Policy What are the ties that bind a people together as a political community? Is national identity based on tribe, ethnicity, race, blood, langua ge, history, culture, religion, geography—or merely economic interests? The meaning of political identity is particularly complicated in the U.S. because Americans take pride in be ing a country of immigrants, but Americans also take great pride in a distinctive American national identity. The history of immigration policy reflects efforts to reconcile these two idea ls. National identity politics is at the core of the tension between the ideal of the U.S. as a republic founded as an immigrant nation— famously symbolized by the Statue of Libert y which welcomes with open arms the huddled masses that come seeking a better life—and the sense that there is a distinctive American national identity that must be protected from foreign influences. Immigration policy reflects the recurring debates a bout whether the nation’s borders should be open or closed, whether people should be pulled into the coun try or pushed out of th e country, and whether citizenship (naturalization) s hould be made easier or harder to get. Immigration policy has three main components: admission to the country, removal from the country (deportation), and the rules that determine eligibility for citizenship 13.71 | The Legal Foundations of Immigration Policy Congress’s constitutional power to enact immigration laws is based on Article I Section 8 (the power “To estab lish an uniform Rule of Naturalization”) and Section 9 (“The Migration or Importation of such Persons as any of the States now existing shall think proper to admit, shall not be proh ibited by the Congress prior to the Year one thous and eight hundred and eight, but a Tax or duty may be imposed on such Importation, not exceedi ng ten dollars for each Person.”)* *This referred to slaves. Article VI (the Supremacy Clause provide s that the Constitution, laws passed under its authority, and treaties shall be the s upreme law of the land and judges in the states are bound there by regardless of state laws.); and the The Plenary Power Doctrine. This is a rule that the Supreme C ourt created to help decide cases about who has power to make immigration policy. According to the Plenary Power Doctrine, Congress has plen ary (that is, complete and unqualified) power over immigration policy. Congress has delegated a great deal of its power to make immigration policy to the president—and the various administrative agencies such as the Department of Homeland Security and the Department of Justice). One early example of legislative delegation to the president is the Alien and Sedition Acts (1789). These were four laws passed during a period of worry about aliens—specifically, th e French and British who were still in the country after the Revolutionary War and whose loyalty was suspect. The Naturalization Act increased the residency requi rement for American citizensh ip from 5 to 14 years. The Alien Friends Act allowed the president to imprison or deport aliens that the president considered “dangerous to the peace and safety of the United States” at any time; and the

PAGE 353

Chapter 13: Public Policy | 347 Alien Enemies Act authorized the president to deport any male citizen of a hostile nation, above the age of 14, during times of war. In fact, most immigration statutes give the president a great deal of executive discretion to decide how to implement them. In 1986 Congress created the Visa Waiver Pilot Program to promote tourism and trade by allowing citizens of certain countries to enter the U.S. without visas, thereby bypa ssing the in-person in terview with U.S. consulates abroad. Most of the countries were European, because Europeans were considered safer and wealthier and therefore less likely to exceed their stay in the U.S. The pilot program was made permanent in 2000, and today 30 of the 38 countries that participate in the visa waiver program are European. The rest are U.S. allies such as Japan, South Korea, and Australia. Twenty million people now travel visa-free after filing out the Department of Homeland Security’s online application program known as the Electronic System for Travel Authorization. ) One response to the 9/11 terrorist attacks on 9/11 was added security measures to the waiver progr am, including a requirement that participating countries share information about citizens and nationals on terrori st/security lists. After the Republican majori ty in Congress stopped suppor ting bipartisan proposals for comprehensive immigration reform, Pres ident Obama took executive action to defer deportation of certain undocumented immigrants In 2012, he directed the Secretary of the Department of Homeland Security to implement the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA ) program. DACA created a process for applying for temporary deferral of deportation. Then in 2014, the Departme nt of Homeland Security announced the Deferred Action for Parents of Americans and Lawful Permanent Residents (DAPA) program. Republicans challenged provisions of these executive actions in court. Congress also passed the Regulations from the Execu tive in Need of Scru tiny Act of 2017, which provides for legislative review of targeted executive actions that Republicans wanted to end, such as President Obama’ s immigration policies and prov isions of Obamacare. These are examples of institutional struggles over control of immigration policy. 13.72 | Early Fears of “The Other” A large numbers of foreign-born people—primar ily British and French—lived in the U.S. in the early years of the republic people. The f ear of foreigners as an internal threat to national security during the Undeclared War with France resulted in passage of four laws that were known collectively as the Alien and Sedition Acts of 1798 Threats to national security are called sedition. This early fear of political “others” has periodically made immigration controversial desp ite the fact that the U.S. is a “settler nation.” The U.S.— like Canada and Australia and unlike Great Britain—was a settler nation that recruited people from other countries to settle vast frontier lands. (Maloney) The Industrial Revolution then created additi onal demands for labor so immigrants were pulled into the country to provide a labor supply. But immigration was also considered a threat to the idea of a di stinctive American national id entity. Therefore understanding immigration policy requires understanding bot h the push and pull of immigrants. Some immigrants were both pushed out of their home countries and pulled into the U.S. to provide cheap labor. This is th e case with the Iris h, one of the first groups of immigrants, and Mexicans, one of the largest groups of immigrants. But the experiences of the two groups of immigrants are very different. Th e U.S. periodically pulled Mexicans into the country, the Mexican government periodical ly pushed them out of Mexico when the

PAGE 354

348 | Chapter 13: Public Policy Mexican economy was bad, and the U.S. peri odically pushed Mexicans out of the country when they weren’t needed. The story of Irish immigration is the stor y of the first big wave of immigrants who were both pushed out of their native c ountry and pulled into the U.S. The PBS documentary, “The Irish in America: Long Journey Home ” describes the Irish experience in America. Episode #2 “ All Across America ” describes the early Irish experiences in East coast port cities (notably Bost on and New York) and New Orleans. In New Orleans, the relationship between blacks (both slaves and free persons of color) and Irish immigrants was marked by intense competition for jobs. Who fought whom, why, and who won? What do you think about the cartoon images of “the Irish” and “the black?” Episode #3 Up from City Streets primarily describes how the Irish pulled themselves up from the city streets as economic and political outsiders to become economic and political insiders. They did so by developing strong political organization such as Tammany Hall in New York City that controlled votes an d jobs (e.g., jobs as police officers) and government officials. These strong urban political organizations helped the Irish advance—while also raising Prot estant worries about political corruption and drinking and other behaviors that were inconsistent with the distinctive American national identity. The popular press of the day created and reinforced negative stereotypes of the Irish. Examples of these stereotypes ar e RF Outcault’s Hogan’s Alley cartoon, The Yellow Kid Irish Playing the Great Game of Golf and Coaching an Irish Parade What do you think are the messages conveyed in the different images presented in the scenes below? Fear of other “Others” The fear of other “Others” included Native Americans. General and President Andrew Jackson’s Indian Removal Polic y also provided a model for how the country responded to perceived threats to the distinctive American national identity. Read the Document Transcript to get a sense of how he saw the removal of “a few savage hunters” a si gn of progress, civi lization, Christian community. The removal policy of “clear ing” areas of the country of Native Americans, free blacks, and fugitive slav es included Florida—the destruction of the “ Negro Fort .”

PAGE 355

Chapter 13: Public Policy | 349 The first wave of Irish immigran ts was primarily Irish Protesta nts recruited to fight Native Americans on the frontier. The “second wave” in the 19th Century was the primarily Irish Catholics who worked on the canals and railro ads and in the mines and factories that created the foundation for the industrial revolution. These we re the Irish that fought their way into the economic, social, and political sy stem because they were not welcomed with

PAGE 356

350 | Chapter 13: Public Policy open arms by the establishment insiders. The Kensington riots in Philadelphia (1844) illustrate both the outside status of the Irish and their organization to fight nativists Eventually, urban political machines such as Tammany Hall in New York City began to recruit Irish and provide them social services. The lesson of the Irish experience is that political organization increases effectiveness. Without political organization, individuals like immigrants face struggles alone. Nativism was one of the earliest reactions to increases in immigr ation, to increases in the proportion of the population that is fo reign-born, and the sens e that the American political culture was being threatened by fore ign ideas. A positive definition of nativism is advocating for the native born citizens. A ne gative definition of nativism is advocating against non-natives. In the early years of the 19th Century, the Know-Nothing (or American) Party reflected nativist worries about immigrants changing American character. Anti-immigrant or pro-American movements ha ve periodically been a backlash against immigration. 13.73 | Development of National Immigration Policy Modern immigration policy (in the U.S. and elsewhere) is a function of the modern, industrial state. (Maloney ) In the U.S., prior to the industrial revoluti on, immigration policy was primarily the concern of the cities where immigrants entere d the U.S.—New York City and San Francisco—or ci ties where large numbers of immigrants settled (e.g., Boston). The development of a comprehensive, national immigration policy can be traced to the period 1875-1882, with passage of the 1875 Page Law (which provided for the exclusion of “undesirables”), the Immigrati on Act of 1882 (which re stricted immigration of people “likely to become a public charge ”), and the Chinese Ex clusion Act of 1882. These laws mark the beginning of Congress creating immigration policy to control the composition of the citizenry: controlling the number of immigrants; restricting eligibility for citizenship; screening for “alien” or un-American ideology; and determining the composition of the workforce. Congress used immigration policy to sort individuals and groups as a social and political filter to protect American national identity. The latter part of the 19th Century and early years of the 20th Century were periods of increases in the number of immigrants and changes in the kinds of immigrants. There were more immigrants and different immigr ants—immigrants from eastern and southern Europe rather than from the British Isles a nd Western Europe. The result was a “panic:” a widespread fear that immigration policy thre atened to erode “Americanism.” This public worry about American nationa l identity put immigration control on the national government agenda. The need to protect an d promote Americanism is the theme of President Theodore Roosevelt’s 2006 State of the Union Address The Address devotes considerable space to the question of American ism; the duty to manage the affairs of all the islands (the Philippines, “Porto Rico,” and Hawaii) “under the American flag,” including helping these people to develop so that they would eventually be prepared for citizenship. Roosevelt recommended independence for the Philippines only when (and if) they demonstrated political maturity. He r ecommended citizenship for residents of “Porto Rico.” He recommended develo ping statutory immigr ation rights for resi dents of Hawaii “whenever the leaders in the va rious industries of those islands finally adopt our ideals and heartily join our administrati on in endeavoring to develop a middle class of substantial citizens.”

PAGE 357

Chapter 13: Public Policy | 351 Roosevelt also provided advice about immigration policy by reminding the nation that “[g]ood Americanism is a matter of heart, of conscience, of loft y aspirations, of sound common sense, but not of birthpla ce or creed.” Nevertheless, an immigration panic resulted in passage of a broad range of laws in tended to protect Americanism by limiting immigration. The Expatriation Act of 1907 re quired women who were U.S. citizens who married foreigners to take the nationality of th eir husband. This is one of the most blatantly gender-biased laws ever passed by Congress. And in 1907, Congress responded to worries about immigration by creating the U. S. Immigration Commission (The Dillingham Commission) to study the eff ects of immigration on American society and culture. The Dillingham Commission Reports (1911) concluded the immigration was a threat and should be greatly reduced, and Congress pass ed the Emergency Quota Act of 1921 and other laws in 1924 that greatly reduced immigr ation from eastern and southern Europe. The Dillingham Commission Report and the subsequent laws restricting immigration were not merely based on raci sm. They reflected the new science of eugenics—controlled breeding to improve human populations—to sort pe ople; old nativist political ideas about foreigners threatening American national identity; and a general bias against specific immigrant groups (e.g., Catholics; Asians) and races These restrictive immigration laws created categories such as “poor physique” that were so broadly defined that they could be used to discriminate against individual s or groups. But it is also important to recognize that the Dillingham Commission’s ranking of groups was based on the era’s belief that scientific knowledge provided evidence that not all men, women, races, cultures, religions, or civilizations were created equal This justified immigration policy that ranked groups in order to sort pe ople so that the better sorts could be allowed in and the worse sorts could be kept out. Ranking groups to sort them into desira ble and undesirable immigrants remained part of immigration policy until the 1960s. The Council on Foreign Relations provides a Timeline on Post-WWII immigration policy. The Immigra tion and Nationality Act of 1965 fundamentally changed immigration law. Prio r to the 1965 Act, most immigrants were Caucasians from Western Europe; after the 1965 Act, most came from southern and eastern Europe, Africa, Asia, and Latin America. The 1965 Act ended the hi storical racial and cultural assumptions about which groups should be allowed into the country and which should be excluded becaus e they were less desirable. Th e national origins quota was biased in favor of Western Europe and biased agains t other regions, religions races, and cultures. The 1965 Immigration and Nationality Act is a civil rights law that was part of the civil rights movement that produced the more fa miliar 1964 Civil Rights Act and the 1965 Voting Rights Act. The 1965 Immigration Ac t increased the number of immigrants admitted annually and greatly increased the coun try’s racial and demographic diversity. In fact, the current anti-immigration mood can be co nsidered a backlash against the effects of the 1965 immigration act.

PAGE 358

352 | Chapter 13: Public Policy 13.74 | Current Immigration Policy Immigration policy is shaped by political, economic, and legal factors. The relative influence of these three factors varies de pending on the state of the economy, national security threats, and even thi nking about human and civil rights. or or How many people get lawful permanent re sident (LPR) status every year? The Department of Homeland Security provides data on the number of people who have obtained LPR status each year since 1820. The total numbe r increased in the 1970s and since 2001 the number has averaged just over one milli on immigrants. The American Immigration Council provides an introductory course Immigration 101 for those who want to know the nuts and bolts of how the immigration process works. 13.75 | Is Demography Destiny ? Demography is the study of the structure or composition of a populati on—particularly vital statistics such as age, gender, race and ethn icity, and education. A country’s demographics is determined by a broad range of factors including fertility rates, infant mortality rates, life expectancy, disease, accident s, and immigration policy. I mmigration policy affects the structure of the body politic by determining th e number of immigration admitted annually AND by sorting people so that the most desirable people are allowed to become lawful permanent residents (LPR) or naturalized citizens. Desirable has been defined in different ways: religion, race (broadly defined to in clude religion and culture and ethnicity), ethnicity, class (money), and uni que professional skills and abilities (such as software engineers, fashion models, and baseball play ers). Demography is politically important for a number of reasons including Crime rates. A population with a large share of young males will likely have a higher crime rate than a population with an older and more female population; Politics Immigration Policy Economics Law (Rights)

PAGE 359

Chapter 13: Public Policy | 353 Education policy. Younger populations requi re more spending on education than older populations; Social Welfare policy. Older populations need more health care than younger populations. Anti-immigration politics includes opposition to immigrants using social welfare programs; Economic policy. A country’s economic grow th rate, unemployment rate, and labor force participation rate are affected by the age distribution of a population. National identity. A large number of immigrants and a high percentage of foreignborn in a population change the ch aracter of a political community. The slogan demography is destiny reflects the belief that population trends and distributions DETERMINE a nation’s future Demography includes the total number of immigrants, the characteristics of the immigrants and the percentage of foreign-born in the country. These demographic factors have organi zed anti-immigrant movements in the U.S., Britain, and Europe where the white work ing class and middle class worry about economics and national identity. The economic worries include worries about immigrants taking jobs, lowering wages, and straining limited social welf are programs. The claim that demography is destiny is about a country’s economic destiny, political destiny and legal destiny In terms of legal destiny, ma jor human migrations have been associated with social order problems including crime waves. The criminal justice system has been used to respond to problems created by major human mi grations. The political response to the crime waves that followed two major human mi grations have largely defined the history of crime and punishment in the U.S. (Stuntz) The first migration occurred during the 70 years preceding WWI when more than 30 millio n Europeans came to the U.S. and settled primarily in the industrial ci ties of the Northeast. The second migration was internal. During the first two-thirds of the 20th century, around seven million blacks left the rural south and moved to northern industrial ci ties. The political response to these two migrations was the use of the criminal justice system to assert control over the new populations of outsiders who were considered threats to the established social order and local community identity. However, the local political establishments responded to the European immigrants by creating political machines like Tammany Hall, and the local police forces tended to resemble the residents of the co mmunity they policed. This is the origin of the stereotype of th e Irish cop. It is significant th at this did not apply to the southern black migration to nor thern cities. White police depart ments were used to control blacks. This remains a problem with polic e forces today. The Black Lives Matter movement exposed how police departments that are not representativ e of the community that they are policing crea te legitimacy problems. 13.76 | National Identity: The Latino Americano Dream? In 2014 there were 55 million Hisp anics in the U.S. The large Hispanic or Latino presence in the U.S. is one of the “harvests of empire,” the result of the American military, business, and political presence in Cent ral and South America. The Latino population is, however, a very diverse population. Th e PEW Research Center Hispanic Trends reports on the

PAGE 360

354 | Chapter 13: Public Policy numbers and trends. The Latino presence result ed from the following ideas, policies, and military actions: Manifest Destiny—the belief that the U.S. had a right to ex pand all across North America—and even beyond. The Monroe Doctrine and the Roosevelt Corollary to the Monroe Doctrine These doctrines declared that the U.S. had the right to act to protect public order, life, and property in the western hemisphere. The Mexican-American War (1846-48). Managing the labor supply. The story of Mexican immigration is mostly an economic story about the push and pull of immigrant labor. The Mexican governme nt pushed Mexicans across the U.S. border when the Mexican economy was bad. And dur ing various periods the U.S. government actively pulled Mexicans to work in the U.S., pa rticularly in agricultu re and manufacturing. During WWI, the U.S. pulled Mexican workers in to the country. But then during the Great Depression of the 1930s the U.S. Program to Repatriate Mexicans used mass roundups to deport Mexican workers. State and local governme nt officials used vagrancy statutes that made it a crime to be idle, homeless, or wit hout visible means of s upport to deport Mexican migrants. In 2006, California passed The Apology Act for its participation in the Mexican Repatriation Program. Then the U.S. government once again pulled in Mexican workers du ring WWII when there was a labor shortage in agriculture and ma nufacturing. The Bracero Program was a guestworker program that began in 1942. It is an infamous example of the U.S. actively recruiting Mexican labor. The bad treatment of some Mexican migrant labor is one reason why people are today wary of cr eating a guest wo rker program. Patterns of immigration from the Caribbean and Central America also flowed form U.S. military actions. The U.S. Department of State describes how forces from the U.S. and other Western powers “entered” Haiti in 1914—and U.S. troops occupied the country Learn About The Bracero Program! tories/mexico704/history/timeline.h tml Bracero_Program_PowerPoint.pdf The Mexican Repatriation Program americas-forgotten-history-ofmexican-american-repatriation

PAGE 361

Chapter 13: Public Policy | 355 until 1934. The State Department explains the reasons for the invasion. Haitian immigrants are one of the “harvests” of em pire in the sense that it creat ed patterns of interaction and a sense of national obligation. Fo r example, the U.S. granted Temporary Protected Status for Haitians after a devastating earthquake in 2010. In 1965, the U.S. sent in the marines to Dominic Republic in “ Operation Power Pack. ” Is “sent in” a euphemism for invaded? In Bitter Fruit: The Story of th e American Coup in Guatemala Stephen Schlesinger and Stephen Kinzer describe how the 1954 CIA coup in Guatemala produced the bitter fruit of the harvest of empire The extensive U.S. political, economic, and military engagement with Cuba has had a special impact on im migration policy. The PEW Hispanic Center describes Cuban immigrants as a distinctive subset of Hispanics: Cubans in the U.S. and Hispanics of Cuban Origin in the U.S. 13.77 | Cuba Policy Why did a professional baseball player eat his fake passport while on an airplane flight from the Dominican Republic to Miami? Smuggl ing is usually associ ated with drugs, guns, sex trafficking, or aliens crossing the Me xican border, but it also includes smuggling baseball players into the country. The Chi cago White Sox first baseman Jose Abreu left Cuba in 2013 for Haiti, where a “fixer” gave hi m residency status and a fake U.S. passport. He was then taken to the Dominican Republic where he got on a plane for Miami. He had to get to the U.S. because the Chicago White Sox had an oral commitment to sign him to a $68 million dollar contract if he made it into the country by October 2013. Onboard the plane, Abreu went into the bathroom, ripped out the first page of the fake passport—which had his picture and a fake name—threw away th e passport, and returned to his seat where he ordered a beer (a Heineken) that he used to wash down the pieces of the first page of his fake passport as he chewed them and swa llowed them. Once the plane landed in Miami, the special status of Cubans under the Cuban American Adjustment Act and the wet foot, dry foot policy meant that he was allowed to stay in the country. How do we know his story? Because two Floridians—sports agent Bartolo Hernandez and trainer Julio Estrada were recently tried in a federal court in South Florida for smuggling alien Cuban baseball players (and their family and friends) to the U.S. Abreu testified at trial that he signed a cont ract to pay Estrada 20% of his earnings and Hernandez 5% of his earnings. Abreu was Amer ican League rookie of the year in 2014. On January 12, 2017, President Obama bega n the process of nor malizing relations with Cuba with an executive action that ended the wet foot, dry foot policy that allowed Cubans who entered the U.S. illega lly to stay in the country if they were physically present in the country—that is, if they were able to actually set foot on American soil: “Effective immediately, Cuban nationals who atte mpt to enter the United States illegally and do not qualify for humanitarian relief will be subject to removal, consistent with U.S. law and enforcement priorities. By taking th is step, we are treating Cuban migrants the same way we treat migrants from other countries.” Ending wet foot, dry foot did not affect the immigration policy that allows around 20,000 Cuban visas for legal immigration every year, a number that is comparatively high for a country of around 11 million. But it did mean that Cuban migrants would be treated like migrants from other countries. The legisl ative background for the Cuba immigration policy

PAGE 362

356 | Chapter 13: Public Policy includes the Cuban Adjustment Act of 1966—a Cold War era law that gave immigrants from Communist-governed Cuba special privileges—and the 1995 U.S.–Cuba Immigration Accord The special status of Cuba ns always created a divide within the Latino community because it provided just one group (Cubans) w ith special access to the country, social services, and citizenship. The Cuban Adjust ment Act allowed Cubans who entered the country illegally to have their status “adjuste d” to legal permanent re sident (LPR; get green cards), be eligible for citizenship, and eligible for social welfare benefits that American citizens were eligible to received almost immediately upon entry. President Obama said that ending the wet foot, dry foot policy was for the following reasons: Normalization Part of the administration’s normalization of relations with Cuban—including opening the U.S. embassy in Havana; Fairness Only Cubans, but not Haitians for exam ple, were eligible for this special status despite the fact that today Cuba ns are economic migrants not political refugees; Human rights Ending the program would limit the human trafficking and risky attempts to reach Florida. The administrati on also said it was necessary to suddenly announce the ending because Cubans, who expected that normalization would eventually mean the end of their special st atus, were increasingly trying to enter the U.S. using rickety boats to cross the dange rous Florida Straits or by land transit from Venezuela, through Ce ntral American countries. Obama’s normalization was not pa rticularly controversial becau se of changed perceptions of the Cuban Adjustment Act of 1966. Specifi cally, the original Cuban migrants were considered political refugees from Comm unism whereas recent Cuban migrants were primarily economic refugees. Furthermore a se ries of investigative reports published in 2015 by a South Florida newspaper, the Sun-Sentinel entitled “ Plundering America: The Cuban Criminal Pipeline ” described organized crime rings taking advantage of the special treatment Cubans received. The report weak ened support for wet foot dry foot among Cuban-American Republicans in cluding Florida U.S. Senato r Marco Rubio. The changing politics of normalization includes changes in Cuban American demographics and Cuban American party identification that have made normali zation less controversial. 13.78 | Economic and Political Destiny A country’s economic destiny is measur ed by economic growth rate, economic development, employment rate, and social we lfare policy (dependency ratios). A country’s political destiny is determined by political culture and party identity (partisanship). Studies of immigrant political behavior indicate that a person’s status as an immigrant or a native citizen (nativity status) is re lated to politics, particularly attitudes toward government, views on public policies, and voting behavi or—including party iden tification and voting patterns. The economic and polit ical destiny arguments make immigration policy political in terms of both ideology and partisanship. This is the pr imary reason why conservatives and liberals, Republicans and Democrats, were ultimately unable to agree on

PAGE 363

Chapter 13: Public Policy | 357 comprehensive immigration reform despite the fact that all four sides agreed that the immigration system was broken and needed fixing. The demographic composition of the country is related to the partisan composition of the country therefore proposed changes in immigration policy are likely to change the balance of Republicans and Democrats. Republic an worried that large numbers of Mexican immigrants would eventually mean an increase in democratic voters if immigration reform provided a pathway to citizenship! The expect ation that immigration reform would benefit one party more than the other impact wa s reasonable based on experience. Cuban immigrants increased the number of Latino Repu blicans in Florida, for example. The fear that immigration reform that pr ovided illegal immigrants with a pathway to legal status or even citizenship would convert Latinos into Democratic voters prompted the Republican Party leaders in Congress to oppose immigration reform. The decision was good politics. It anticipated and reinforced the anti-immigra tion movement. Ironically, this occurred after decades of conservative and Republican suppor t for open immigration policy in order to provide a supply of cheap labor and consiste nt with a broader deregulation of goods, services, and people ac ross national borders. The U.S. is no longer a settler nation that pul ls immigrants into the country to settle a vast, largely unpopulated frontier. The U.S. is a developed country that uses immigration for other purposes including demographics. Studies of economic policy examine the relationship between two variables: economic development and the Age Dependency Ratio The Age Dependency Ratio is central to public policy debates about a country’s economic growth rate, wage rates, and social welfare programs. One aspect of immigration policy, admissions, determines the total number a nd the sorts of people to be allowed into the country every year. Conservatives and Republican have traditionally been most concerned that large numbers of immigrants would 1) change the distinctive American national identity; and 2) increase the number of people who are dependent on social welfare programs. The expansion of social welfare programs—broadly defined to include social security, Medicare, Medicaid, ve terans’ benefits, education and job training, food stamps, etc.—increased worries that immigrants—particularly illegal immigrants—were taking advantage of welfare programs. This is what Mitt Romney meant by his politically illadvised 47% comment during the 2012 presidential election that 47% of the people in the country were receiving some form of governme nt support and would not vote for him or Republicans. There are two meanings of entitlement. One meaning is that federal statutes define who is “entitled” to received veteran’s benef its, social security benefits, and food stamps, for example. The other meaning of entitlement is that some people think that they are “entitled” to government social welfare progr ams—and the expansion of social welfare programs increased government dependency on such programs. Conservatives and Republicans think that the one group is deserving of the government benefits while the other group is undeserving Anti-immigrant politics includes the belief that immigrants— legal and illegal—rely heavily on social welf are programs that are paid for by taxes paid by citizens, some of whom are alrea dy experiencing financ ial insecurity. Organizations such as the World Bank consider a country’s dependency ratio an important measure of its economic health. The formula for determining a country’s dependency ratio is to divide the number of people not of working age (young people under

PAGE 364

358 | Chapter 13: Public Policy 14 and old people 65 and over) by the total number of people of working age (14 to 64), and then multiplying that number times 100: Dependency Ratio (DR) = Total number of people aged under 14 and 65 and older x 100 Total number of people 14 to 64 The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) hi res economists who measure “Labor Force Participation Rates.” The media and th e public generally pay attention to the unemployment rate as a measure of how the economy is doing but the labor force participation may be a better measure of economic performance. The La bor Force Participation Rate measures the percentage of the working age population that is actually em ployed. The aging of the U.S. population is a major factor in business thinking about economic policy, social welfare policy, and immigration policy. The BLS tables show a decades-long decline in labor force participation rates. The current rate is below 63%—so around 37% of the working age population is not working for one reason or anot her. The low labor force participation rate means that the American labor force could be more productive if more people were working. Are too many people not working beca use of social welfare programs such as food stamps and unemployment compensatio n? The recent decline in white male participation in the labor force is an especia lly significant development because it is one of the primary reasons for the current populist politics opposing both immigration policy and trade policy. What is the U.S. age dependency ratio? How does it compare with other countries? The World Bank and the Central Intelligence Agency provide comparative data on the age dependency ratio, fertility rates, and other demographic data relevant to economic development. Compare the U.S. and European countries, for example, with Middle Eastern countries, African countries, or Central and South American countries. Germany used immigration policy, specifically a guest work er program, to solve the problem of a high dependency ratio and a low fe rtility rate. What is the relationship between economic development (low income versus high income countries) and fertility rates? The current anti-immigration politics in Germany is partly a backlash against the German policy of using immigration to import labor—econom ic opposition that was fueled by sudden acceptance of large numbers of refugees fleeing violence in the Middle East. Like the U.S. and France, Germany has an ag ing population so it was a good economic idea to import foreign labor until suddenly it wasn’t a good political idea. Chancellor Angela Merkel’s Christian Democratic Union Party (a center-ri ght party) supported the policy. But German voters like American voters and French voters, are anxious about the future and angry that economic and immigration policies have primar ily benefitted the wea lthy and international elites. The populist, anti-immigrant backlash is fueled by worries about both economics and national identity.

PAGE 365

Chapter 13: Public Policy | 359 13.79 | Are there too many people, too few people, or just too many……what? The New York Times series “ Demography is Destiny? Teac hing about Cause and Effect with Global Population Trends ” reviews claims that the human population bomb was going to produce famine and disease and conflic t. Were the fears wrong? Kolbert (2013) examines ways of thinking about whether th e world has too many people, too few people, or just too many of the wrong kind of people? These are actually old questions. Thomas Malthus was a famous economist (and minister because in the good old days college education was under religious authority) whose 1798 work “ An Essay on the Principle of Population ” described the natural resource limits that constrained population growth. Over the years, the term “Malthus ian” was used to describe economists or anyone else who warns about the drastic consequences of over-population—populati on growth beyond the limits of natural resources. Th e Malthusian trap or catastrophe refers to the fact that population growth is likely to outpace natural resources (e.g., food production; water; energy)—thereby resulting in an eventual catastr ophe such as famine, disease, or war. Paul Ehrlich’s “ The Population Bomb ” (1968) is a work in the Malthusian tradition. The environmentalist movement also reflects this Malthusian perspective on the need to control population growth to reduce strain on the environment. The Green Revolution greatly increased food production, thereby enabling popul ation growth without subsistence living. Nitrogen-based fertilizer production greatly increased crops—and today half the world’s population subsists on crops grown with nitr ogen-based fertilizer. Are natural resources sufficient to sustain population projections? Writing in The Weekly Standard a conservative publication, Jonathan Last describes some of the problems created by a coun try where the fertility rate is so low that the population cannot sustain its elf without importing people. In “Demography is Destiny: The Perils of Population Loss” (April 23, 2012), Last blames the declining fertility rates in First World countries over the last 40 years for “sputtering economies” where there aren’t enough young and working age people to support the growing percentage of “old geezers.” He wonders whether the First World count ries will become like Florida. In “ What to Check It Out! World Bank Data on Dependency Ratios and Fertility Rates: World Bank Data on Age Dependency Ratio (%of working age population); Fertility rate, Total (Births per woman) The Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) World Factbook comparative demographic data: media age/ranks; dependency ratios (b oth young and old) and ranks; birth rates/infant mortality rate s/ranks; and net migration/ranks. Compare countries and regions. Do the data explain European im migration policy and the migration crisis in Europe?

PAGE 366

360 | Chapter 13: Public Policy Expect When No one’s Expecting: Am erica’s Coming Dem ographic Disaster, ” Last also describes what he considers a problem created by differential fertility rates: black women have a “healthy rate” of 1.96 children; Hispan ic women have a rate of 2.35; and white women have a 1.9 rate. Furthermore, he descri bes the higher birth ra tes of lower income women as a kind of reverse Darwinism— survival of the least fit rather than the fittest These are the kinds of “sorting” problems that were part of immigration policy in the 19th and early 20th centuries. Another more relig iously-conservative publication, Human Events worries that Latino immigration is a special problem because “ Demography is political/partisan destiny .” Steven Kramer, a professor at the Nati onal Defense University, writes about the other population bomb—the population im plosion not an explosion—in “ The Other Population Crisis: What Governments Can Do about Falling Birth Rates .” He calls too few children (low native fertility rates) a crisis. Pu blic policy solutions have to recognize that it is seems much easier to reduce a birth rate th an to increase it. Fr ance has a broad range of pro-natalist policies that are intended to increase native French fertility rates: grants, tax deductions, and paid maternity leave. But these government subsidies seem to have a minimal impact on birth rates. Japan is faci ng an acute population problem (low rates of increase or even declining population) because Japanese seem uninterested in sex—which is, by the way, related to popul ation. The government of Ja pan produces an annual white paper discussing ways to increase the low bi rth rate. Surveys indi cate that large and increasing numbers of Japanese men and women are not interested in sex So what’s a country to do? Some countries use immigration policy to import people to compensate for low native fertility rates. Th is made political sense during times of economic growth and prosperity. However, the slow-growth economie s have created a zero sum way of thinking about economics—and more natives/citizens blame immigrants for taking their jobs, undermining their economic security, and changi ng the country’s identity. This is what Congressman Steve King (R-IA ) meant when he said that the U.S. and white European Christian civilizations, like any other civ ilization—cannot “rebuild” or restore its civilization by relying on other people’s babies. 13.8 | Additional Resources 13.81 | Internet Resources Congress funds the Congressional Research Se rvice, which provides detailed descriptions and analyses of public polic y issues. The Web site The Congressional Budget Office (CBO) Web site offers Congr ess’s opinions on budget matters including statistics, reports, budget reviews, testimony, and more. The American Enterprise Institute is a conserva tive think tank that addresses a variety of issues. Its website offers information on their calendar of events, a variety of articles, and links:

PAGE 367

Chapter 13: Public Policy | 361 The Brookings Institution is th e oldest think tank in Ameri ca and has the reputation of being fairly moderate. Its Web site offers policy briefings, articles, books, The Brookings Review, discussion groups, and links. The Cato Institute is a libertarian think tank promoting free market ideas. Its Web site offers a variety of articles and links. U.S. Department of Health and Human Servi ces offers information about public policies related to health and other issues under their purview. Almanac of Policy Issues has a wide array of information about policy related issues and has numerous links to more information. 13.82 | In the Library Benabie, Arthur. 2003. Social Secu rity Under the Gun. Palgrave. Blank, Rebecca, et. al. (Eds). 2001. The New World of Welfare The Brookings Institution. Bryce, Robert. 2009. Gusher of Lies: The Dangerous Delusions of “Energy Independence .” Public Affairs. Conkin, Paul K. 2008. The State of the Earth: Environmental Challenges on the Road to 2100 University Press of Kentucky. Davis, Jack E. 2017. The Gulf: The Making of an American Sea New York City: Liveright Publishing. Diamond, Peter A. and Peter R. Orszag. 2004. Saving Social Security: A Balanced Approach Brookings Institution Press. Dinitto, Diana M., and Linda Cummins. 2004. Social Welfare: Politics and Public Policy Allyn & Bacon, Inc. Ehrenreich, Barbara. 2001. Being Nickeled and Dimed: On (Not) Getting By in America Metropolitan Books. Gilbert, Neil, and Amitai Etzioni. 2002. Transformation of the Welfare State: The Silent Surrender of Public Responsibility Oxford University Press. Katz, Michael. 2001. The Price of Citizenship: Redefining the American Welfare State Metropolitan Books. Kelly, David. 1998. A Life of One’s Own: Indivi dual Rights and the Welfare State. The Cato Institute.

PAGE 368

362 | Chapter 13: Public Policy Kolbert, Elizabeth. “Head Count: Fertilizer Fertility, and the Clashes over Population Growth,” The New Yorker (October 21, 2013: 96-99). Kneidel, Sally. 2009. Going Green: A Wise Consumer's Guide to a Shrinking Planet. Fulcrum Publishing. Lee, Kelly, et. al. (Eds). 2002. Health Policy in a Globalising World. Cambridge University Press. Maloney, Deidre M. 2012. National Insecurities: Immigrants and U.S. Deportation Policy Since 1882 Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina Press. Owen, David. 2017. Where The Water Goes: Life and Death Along the Colorado River New York City: Riverhead Books. Reissner, Marc. 1986. Cadillac Desert New York: Viking Press. Schram, Sanford. 2000. After Welfare: The Cult ure of Postindustrial Social Policy. New York University Press. Stevens, Robert, and Rosemary Stevens. 2003. Welfare Medicine in America: A Case Study of Medicaid. Transaction Publishers. Stuntz, William J. 2013. The Broken Criminal Justice System Cambridge: Harvard University Press. Vig, Norman J., and Michael E. Kraft. (Eds.) 2016. Environmental Policy: New Directions for the Twenty-First Century Ninth Edition. Los Angeles: Sage. White, Joseph. 2003. False Alarm (Century Foundation Book Series): Why the Greatest Threat to Social Security and Medica re is the Campaign to Save Them Johns Hopkins University Press. Zucchino, David. 1999. Myth of the Welfare Queen Touchstone Books. Study Questions 1.How do issues get on the political and government agendas? 2. What issues are most likely to make it onto these agendas? 3.What are the stages of the policy process? 4.What are the challenges in implementing policy? 5.Describe the problem of unintended consequences. 6.How has policymaking changed over time?

PAGE 369

Chapter 13: Public Policy | 363 1 2 See ess/jan-june10/makingsense_04-15.html 3 See 4 Quoted in Richard Knox, “The Dying Art of the Physical Exam,” All Things Considered, Morning Edition, National Public Radio (September 20, 2010). ?action=1&t=1&islist=false&id=129931999&m= 129984296 5 Atul Gawande, “Big Med,” The New Yorker (August 13, 2012): 53-63. 6 7 See &dl=en&hl=en&q=energy+consumption#me t=eg_use_pcap_kg_oe&idim=count ry:USA:ALB:AUS:ARG:BHR:IRN to examine the energy use of additional countries. The original data is available from Key Terms Policy Public policy Domestic policies Foreign policy Agenda setting Policy adoption Policy evaluation Distributive policies Regulatory policies

PAGE 370

14.0 | The Economy and Economic Policy How is the economy working for you ? How is economic policy working out for you? The answer to these questions increasingly depends on who you are Are you young—perhaps a college student thinking about the job mark et, or old—maybe a re tired person receiving Social Security and Medicare? Are you financia lly well off or not? Are you white or black, male or female? Do you live in one of the count ry’s major metropolitan centers or a rural, low population area? The answer s to these questions increas ingly determine the answers CHAPTER 14: Economic Policy

PAGE 371

Chapter 14: Economic Policy | 365 to the questions about how you are doing econo mically. This was not always the case. The post-WWII era of prosperi ty has been called the long boom because the good economic times lasted so long. The age of affluence created the optimistic belief that a rising (economic) tide lifts all boats. The belief that the economy was a shared experience that lifted everyone’s standard of living is hard to reconcile with today’s economic conditions. The new information and service economy works different for different people. Even before the Great Recession from 2007 to 2009, the economy and economic policy had been sorting the country into different groups of haves and the have-nots. A decadeslong trend toward increasing economic ine quality was sorting people by income and wealth—as well as other political and cultural and demographic factors. In The Big Sort: How the Clustering of Like-Minded America Is Tearing Us Apart (2008), Bill Bishop describes the negative c onsequences of sorting.1 The economic fortunes of individuals (rich versus poor) and regions of the country (bit cities versus all others) co ntinued to diverge in the years since the end of the Great Recessi on. As a result, today’s economy and economic policy are good, fair, or bad depending on who you are and where you live. Economic conditions are much better in the major metropolit an areas of the country than rural areas. Declining economic fortunes in rural areas have become one of the most important developments in American politics. It is not just about economics. American political culture extols rural and small town values. Th e values of Middle America or Main Street are considered more quintessentially American than the urban values that are associated Wall Street, Madison Avenue, and Hollywood Boul evard. But the nation’s big cities are now the engines of job growth, business star t-ups, and innovation. Metropolitan centers are now the hubs for the advanced industries se ctor of the economy. This is the high tech, high skills, and high value economy that has be en prospering in recent decades. Silicon Valley may be the most familiar example of an urban region that prospered by developing the advanced industries sector, but urban centers in other regions of the country have also promoted economic development by creating rese arch parks. This new economy prosperity has contributed to the real and perceived belief that the rural regions and rural values have been left behind. The urban-rural sorting of economic fort unes may not interest you but what about economic sorting by age? How is the ec onomy working for young people? Young people are more likely to have first-hand experience with how a structural change in the economy has changed the job market. During the l ong boom, young people who were just entering the job market could reasonably expect to ge t a job where they would spend their entire career working for one or two companies and th en receive a pension upon retirement. This was a reasonable expectation for manufacturing jobs in the Detroit auto industry and whitecollar jobs in the professional service sector. It is no longer a reas onable expectation or working life experience. Think about It! The term new economy refers to the knowledge and service economy. The new, new economy is the sharing economy gig economy and side hustle economy where more and more people hold down more than one j ob, change jobs frequently, and work as consultants, independent contractors, or te mps rather than as full-time employees of a company. How does the economy and economic policy work for these people?

PAGE 372

366 | Chapter 14: Economic Policy These changes are also affecting older working age people who are more likely to face layoffs or unemployment as their age, in come, and health care needs increase. What about gender? The declining fortunes of white working class males became an important issue in the 2016 elections. Donald Trump’s Make America Great Again campaign slogan was especially appealing to these workers whose loss of status as the breadwinners for their families threatened their ident ity and their lifestyle. The economic fortunes of men have declined relative to women, whose skill sets are more in demand in the new service economy that relies less on physical strength and more on social intelligence ski lls such as listening and communication. Hannah Rosin’s book The End of Men: And the Rise of Women (2012) describes how cha nges in the economy have ch anged gender roles in ways that benefit women more than men. So the question, how is the economy working out for you, is not limited to income or other economic measures. Income, w ealth, and education are components of socioeconomic status (SES). And there ar e strong correlations between SES and other important factors such as political efficacy and health. Political efficacy refers to the belief that political participation matte rs, that people can act individually or together to make a difference, to improve their lives or the live s of others. There is a positive correlation between SES and political efficacy: the higher the SES, the higher the political efficacy. There is also a positive correlation between SES and health. Lower SES individuals tend to have worse health than higher SES individu als. The declining economic health of white working class males, and the resulting decline in medical health, was a salient issue in the 2016 elections. The connections between econo mic health and medical health that prompted the passage of the Patient Protecti on and Affordable Care Act (the Affordable Care Act or Obamacare) in 2010 also compli cated Republican efforts to repeal it. The American dream is the expectation th at ability, hard work, and good behavior will be rewarded by economic prosperity. Th e American dream is a worker’s belief in upward mobility; it is parents who believe that their children will have the opportunity to be better off than they were; and it is the belief that each genera tion will live longer and better. The economy is testing these elements of the American dream. Economic decline has noneconomic consequences. Economic decl ine in certain regions of the county—for example the loss of coal industry jobs in Appa lachia—has contributed to an increase in the death rates of middle-aged wh ite men and women. The dec line in the number and quality of jobs is a factor that c ontributes to decreased longevity because it causes behavioral changes. The studies of American mortality and morbidity in the 21st Century document an increase in the “deaths of despair,” prem ature deaths from al coholism, opioids, and suicide. This pattern of dysfunctional indivi dual behavior is actu ally evidence of a dysfunctional culture. The cau sal relationship between a bad economy, bad individual behavior, and bad cultural values is the theme of J. D. Vance’s Hillbilly Elegy: A Memoir of a Family and Culture in Crisis (2016). The long period of low or stagnant wage growth is one cause of growing economic inequality. The decline of labor unions, globalization, and technol ogy are commonly cited for the low wage growth and the inequality. Bu t public policy has also caused the increasing inequality. For instance, the federal governme nt made the income taxes less progressive (i.e., lowered the top rates) and ended welfar e “as we know it” by passage of the Personal Responsibility and Work Opportunity Reconc iliation Act of 1996. The country is just beginning to discuss economic policy resp onses to automation, a technological

PAGE 373

Chapter 14: Economic Policy | 367 development increase inequality by reducing th e need for workers. One proposal is to tax robot “labor” the way wages are taxed. A pe rson who earns $50,000 a year working for an insurance company must pay income tax and so cial security tax. Wages are taxed to pay for social welfare policies including unemployment compensation and worker’s compensation. Bill Gates, the former head of Microsoft and current philanthropist, has proposed taxing robot labor. This novel idea seems appealing: we tax human labor (wages), so why not tax robot labor? Larry Summers, a former Secretary of the Treasury, thinks taxing robot labor would be ba d economic policy, particularly if the U.S. taxed robot labor but other countries did not.2 However, Summers and other economists do think that the U.S. needs to begin addressing some of the social problems cr eated by the negative e ffects of applying new technology in the workplace. One of these nega tive effects is the di splacement of human labor. It is necessary to think about ec onomic policy that addresses unemployment, underemployment, and job mobility because conv entional promises to bring manufacturing or coal mining back to the U.S. are unlikel y to create many jobs. Manufacturing and mining used to be labor-intensive industries, but they are now automated, capital-intensive industries that require fewer workers to be productive. One innovative approach to the inequality problems created by automation is th e creation of a basic income policy whereby everyone is given peri odic cash payments that are not dependent upon working. The Basic European Income Network (BEIN) was created in 1986 to advocate for adoption of the basic income policy. Why is the U.S. unlikely to adopt policies such as a basic income policy? What does economics have to do with politic s? What is the relationship between capitalism and democracy? What is economic policy and how is it made? This chapter examines three economic issues: The relationship between economics a nd politics. When studying a country’s government it can be useful to examine th e political system, the economic system, and the legal system. The economic and legal systems are not completely independent of the political system. In fact, they can be considered subsystems of the political system. This chapter explains how the political system and the subsystems work together in the U.S. The power problem. One issue for all gover nments is is the relationship between economic power and political power. Does economic inequality create political inequality? How does the distribution of income and wealth in the U.S. affect democracy and justice? Economic policy. Fiscal policy and monetary policy are the two main ways that the government makes economic policy. Fiscal policy is the taxing and spending policies that, taken together, comprise the annual budget. Monetary policy is controlling the price of money (i.e., interest rates) in order to achieve economic goals such as inflation and employment. The close relationship between economics and po litics has been evident since the colonial era. During the colonial era unarmed and armed mobs that were worried about losing their homes and businesses during bad economic times, or simply protested taxes—think of the

PAGE 374

368 | Chapter 14: Economic Policy Boston Tea Party—marched on government to demand relief. In the 19th Century, economic downturns called Panics caused majo r political problems. In the 1930s, the Great Depression caused great hardship. The pattern of stagnant wages, the loss of good jobs, and the increasing inequality over the last se veral decades has finally caught the attention of government officials and become an issue in presidential campai gns. But the two major parties tend to propose very differe nt solutions to the problem. 14.1 | The Market Model and the Government Model In terms of economic policy, one aspect of the power problem is finding the right balance between the private sector and the public sect or. The market model relies primarily on the business sector to provide goods and services. Capitalist economic systems rely on the private sector to allocate s carce resources and provide good social order. The government model relies on the public sector to allocate sc arce resources and provide good social order. One of the recurring themes in American politic s from the earliest days of the republic is the debate about whether to rely more on business or gover nment. Current debates about the size of government reflect the belief that the federal government in particular has gotten too big. Government certain ly has gotten bigger relative to the private sector. In Government versus Markets: The Changing Economic Role of the State (2011), Vito Tanzi compares government spending as a share of a country’s national income in 1870 and 2007. The numbers explain why the size of the government is an important issue. Table 14.1 Country Government Share of National Income by Year 1870 2015 U.S. 7.3% 37.7% United Kingdom 9.4% 42.8% Germany 10.0% 44.0% France 12.6% 56.6% Think About it! When someone talks about lots of things but not the most obvious thing, we ask “Why isn’t anyone talking about the elephant in the room?” During the 2016 presidential campaign, all the candidates talked about creating more American jobs. But they did not talk about the elephant in the room : robots. Why isn’t anyone talking about the robot in the room? Are American jobs going to MARS? M achines A nalytics R obots S oftware Apps

PAGE 375

Chapter 14: Economic Policy | 369 Table 14.1, which updates Tanzi’s data with Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) data,3 shows the clear trend toward bigger government, as measured by the government’s share of gross domestic pr oduct in western demo cracies. The growth of big government raises a couple of con cerns. The main concern is that expanding government (that is, the public sector) will mean contracting the private sector (that is, the business sector and civil society sector). The anti-government strain in American political culture is partly based on c onservative and Republican worr ies that expandi ng the public sector will shrink the privat e sector, that more government means the economy is less capitalist. A second concern is that the growth of government in the U.S. and other western liberal democracies occurred during a time of population increases and high rates of economic growth. But times have changed bot h of these conditions. These countries now face three new conditions that present economic and political challenges: Low rates of population growth. This is a significant development because population increases are an important component of economic growth. Comparatively low rates of economic growth. A growing economy has been considered an essential measure of a healthy economy. Low rates of economic growth, or even worse stagnant economies are associated with unhealthy economic conditions and polit ical conditions. Aging populations. Low population and economic growth rates produce demographic changes—changes in th e age distribution of the population, specifically an aging population. An older population may have a smaller share of workers (producers) and a larger share of people who are consumers of social services such as Social Security and h ealth care (Medicare). This can strain an economy. Economic prosperity is strongly linked to in creases in population, increases in economic productivity, and high rates of economic growth. Changing any one of these conditions changes the nature of politics. Economic growth mean that the pie was continually getting bigger and bigger. People were getting larger slices becaus e the pie was getting bigger. This is the essence of the American dream: the expectation that people were becoming better off, that their living st andards were improving, and they could expect their children to live even better than their parents. Th ese expectations depend on continued economic growth so the emphasis on the pie bakers —the entrepreneurs and other creators who increase the size of the econom y. Economic growth lessens c onflicts over scar ce resources because many peoples’ slice of the economic pi e is likely to be getting bigger in an expanding economy. In a low or no-growth eco nomy, economics and pol itics are likely to be a zero sum game. A zero sum game is one where one player’s increase (or win or gain) must come from another player’s decrease (or loss). Zero sum games increase conflict as players go on offense to get more from other pl ayers or play defense to protect what they have from others. In zero sum politics, people are more likely to be worried about how the pie is being sliced to determine who the winners are and who the losers are. The term class warfare is a negative term that is often used to describe the class conflicts that arise when everyone is worried about the size of their slice of the economic pie.

PAGE 376

370 | Chapter 14: Economic Policy 14.12 | Politics and Markets One indication of the importance of economics is the large number of interest groups, think tanks, policy organizations, prof essional associations, trade groups, and lobbyists that are active on economic issues. Economic interest groups of all kinds lobby on behalf of their members: companies, labor unions, professiona l associations, agribusiness, manufacturing associations, organizations representing serv ice industries, and or ganizations advocating on behalf of intellect ual property rights. 14.13 | The Relationship between Politics and Economics The term political economy describes the close relationship of politics and economics. Economic policy refers to government positions on economic activities that are directly related to the productio n and distribution of goods and se rvices. The close relationship between politics and economics is reflected in public opinion polls that regularly ask people what they think are the most important issues facing the nati on. The public opinion surveys consistently identify three issues: Economics (policies to provide st ability and prosperity) National security (war or threat of wa r; threats of terrorism) Crime (policies to provide public safety) The ranked order of the importance of these three issues varies depending upon circumstances. During good economic times, vot ers consider national security or crime more important than economics. Economics is likely to be ranked number one during bad economic times (recessions, depressions, high inflation, or high unemployment). During times of war or periods of elevated national s ecurity threats, the publ ic is most concerned What is the Dow Jones Industrial Average? The Dow Jones Industrial Average is one indicator of how the economy is doing. But the DJIA is no longer comprised of stock prices of industrial companies, as the name implies? The components of the Dow are changed every few years to reflect the breadth of the U.S. economy and to drop companies that are not doing well. In 2011, the 30 DJIA companies included four financial firms, two giant retailers, one restaurant chain, five consumer-products makers two telecommunications firms, three drug companies, five high-tech firm s and an entertainment conglomerate. It had only five traditional manufacturers— Caterpillar, Alco a, United Technologies, 3M and General Electric — plus a couple of energy companies. The Dow is not merely a collection of the largest U.S. firms. It does not include Apple — which trades places with Exxon Mobil as the biggest company in America — or Google, which has a larger market capitalization (the number of shares outstanding multiplied by price) than Wal-Mart, which is listed on the Dow. And these companies are multinational companies that do business globally.

PAGE 377

Chapter 14: Economic Policy | 371 about national security. People everywhere e xpect government to provide national security, crime control, and economic security. 14.2 | Economic History 14.21 | The Founding Era When Benjamin Franklin returned to Ameri ca in 1762 after spending almost five years abroad he wrote: “The expence of living is gr eatly advanc’d in my absence. Rent of old houses, and the value of lands…are trebled in the past six years.” Franklin was complaining about an increase in the co st of living caused by a real estate bubble An economic bubble occurs when a rapi d increase in an asset’s valu e, relative to other assets, that the high price cannot be sustained a nd ultimately collapses quickly. When the real estate bubble popped, cred it was tightened, and the bad eco nomic times contributed to the political discontent that eventually lead to the American Revolution.4 Scholars still debate the relative importance of political ideas and economic conditions in inspiring the American Revolution. Some scholars stress th e importance of the colonists’ commitment to political ideas (freedom, democracy, equality, and justi ce) while others stress the importance of economic conditions and the econo mic interests of the wealthy or property owning classes. Economic condit ions certainly cont ributed to the foundi ng of the republic. Shays’ Rebellion is an often-told story. In the fall of 1786 and winter of 1787, Daniel Shays and other Revolutionary War veterans conducted an armed march on the capital of Massachusetts. They were protesti ng mortgage foreclosures of their farms and businesses due to bad economic times, and de manded debt relief from the government. Political leaders were worried that bad econom ic conditions were creat ing political unrest that included mob violence. The fear of such unrest was one of the reasons for calling the Constitutional Convention in the summer of 1787. The Constitution gave the national government new economic powers: the power to tax and spend; the exclusive power to coin money; the exclusive power to regulat e interstate and foreign commerce; and the power to quell domestic disturbances such as those that arose from bad economic times. Economic issues remained important durin g the early years of the republic when political debates centered on the national govern ment’s role in the economy. Differences of opinion about the government’s role in the economic policy pl ayed an important role in the emergence of the first political parties. The Federalist Part y supported a national government with a strong and active role in economic development. The Federalist Alexander Hamilton is still remembered as one of the greatest Secretaries of the Treasury of all time because he effectively promoted the national government’s role in economic developments. The other major political party, the Jeffersonians or DemocraticRepublicans, believed that the state government s, not the federal government, had primary responsibility for economic policy. The Republi can and Democratic parties still take different positions on the governme nt’s role in the economy. 14.22 | The Industrial Revolution The Industrial Revolution fundamentally change d the U.S. economy in the middle years of the 19th Century. It changed the economy from an agrarian and small-business economy

PAGE 378

372 | Chapter 14: Economic Policy that was dominated by landowners and small entrepreneurial craftsmen, to an industrial economy where large corporations dominated various sectors of the economy such as transportation (railroads), manufacturing (steel ), energy (oil), and fi nance (banking). The Industrial Revolution changed the economy and caused profound social and political changes. 14.23 | The Progressive Era The Progressive Era (1890–1920) was a period of social and political reform that was inspired by efforts to solve some of the problems caused by the Industrial Revolution. Progressives were social reformers who trie d to address some of the problems caused by the Industrial Revolution. Progressives believed that big government was necessary to regulate big business They supported social welfare le gislation to protect individuals from the economic insecurities of the marketplace. Progressive Era legislation included child labor laws, minimum wage and maximu m hour laws, and workplace safety laws. The Progressive Era laid the groundwork for New Deal (1930s) and Great Society (1960s) expansion of the so cial welfare state. 14.24 | The Great Depression In the 19th Century economic downturns were called panics —a descriptive term because large numbers of people rushed to banks to withdraw their money until panic ensued when the banks could not meet the depositors’ demands. The 1920s were called the Roaring Twenties because of the good economic times. The good times ended with a stock market crash in late October of 1929. The Great Depression of the 1930s was actually a worldwide economic crisis that changed th e relationship between government and the economy in the U.S. The American people no longer accepted the high unemployment, bank failures, factory closings, bankruptcies, home mortga ge foreclosures, and a Dorothea Lange. 1936. “Migrant Mother” Small businesses—local, independent, “mom and pop” hardware, grocery, clothing, a nd electronics stores, have been driven out of business long before Wal-Mart and other big box stores and corporate chai ns. Listen to the NPR story of “The Great A&P and the St ruggle for Small Business in America.” list=false&id=139848775&m=139870174

PAGE 379

Chapter 14: Economic Policy | 373 collapse of farm prices as hardships that had to be endured because they were part of the natural boom-and-bust business cy cle that the government wa s powerless to do anything about. The Great Depression caused Americans to expect the government to do something about bad economic conditions such as unemp loyment, starvation, and shelter. The New Deal was the federal governmentÂ’s response to the public expectation that the government was responsible for managing the economy. Nineteenth Century economic policy prom oted economic development: the settling of the frontier; the expansion of the railroads; and the de velopment of manufacturing and oil industries. Entrepreneurial risk-taking was a higher priority than protecting individuals from the economic insecurity of the busine ss cycle, youth, old age, or infirmity. The New Deal policies of the Roosevelt administration (1933-1945) emphasized income security by providing disability benefits, unemployment in surance, and retirement benefits. Today these programs are collectively referred to as the social welfare state 14.25 | Ideology and the Role of Government in the Economy The Great Depression challenged the prevaili ng laissez faire economic theory, which held that the government should not intervene in the marketplace because market competition will naturally provide order, stability, and pros perity. An ideology is a set of beliefs. One of those beliefs is about the governmentÂ’s role in the economy. The following describes three theories about the size and role of governme nt in economic affairs: the laissez fair or market model; the mixed economy model; and the government model. Government and the Economy The Size of Government Small Medium Large Theorist Adam Smith John Maynard Keynes Karl Marx Type of economic system Free Market Model (Laissez faire) Mixed Model (Regulated) Government Model (Command) Adam SmithÂ’s The Wealth of Nations (1776) is an influentia l work that advocated free market or laissez faire economics. It was revolutionary for its time because it challenged mercantilism, the prevailing economi c theory. According to mercantilism the government directs, manages, and licenses ec onomic activity for the good of the nation. Mercantilist policies built the British Empire For example, the Crown licensed economic activity in the American colonies for the good of the empire Mercantilism is a statist theory because it emphasizes government management of economic activity to achieve political goals. In Wealth of Nations (1776) Smith argued that the free market could produce goods and services, allocate scar ce resources, and create good publ ic order without government management or direction. Smith used the term the Invisible Hand to describe how social benefits incidentally result from individua l actions without gove rnment regulation.

PAGE 380

374 | Chapter 14: Economic Policy Smith assumed that humans were by nature self-interested that self-interest was a good thing, but self-interest needed to be he ld in check because greed, ambition, and the pursuit of power over others would create problems. But Smith believed that marketplace competition, not government regulation, was the best way to control individual and business behavior. Smith’s ideas were ve ry innovative. He made selfishness—which traditional religious leaders considered a human vice—an economic virtue. It is not from the benevolence of the butcher, the brewer, or the baker that we expect our dinner, but from their regard to their own interest. We address ourselves, not to their humanity but to their self-love, and never talk to them of our own necessities but of their advantages. [As every individual strives to use his capital and his labor to greatest advantage] he “neither intends to promote the public interest, nor knows how much he is promoting it….[H]e intends only his own gain, a nd he is in this, as in many other cases, led by an invisible hand to promote an end which was no part of his intention…. By pursuing his own interest he frequently promotes that of society more effectually than when he really intends to promote it. I have ne ver known much good done by those who affected to trade for the public good. It is an affectation, indeed, not very common among merchants, and very few words need by employed in dissuading them from it.5 Note that Adam Smith’s Wealth of Nations was published in 1776. James Madison made selfishness a political virtue by designing a system of government that relied on institutional selfishness for checks and balances. Adam Smith’s laissez faire theory challe nged mercantilism, which was the prevailing economic theory of the 18th Century. John Maynard Keynes was a British political economist who challenged laissez faire th eory in the first half of the 20th Century. In The General Theory of Employment, Interest and Money (1936), Keynes argued that governments should use fiscal policy (the taxing and spending powers embodied in the budget) to achieve economic stability and pros perity. His theories influenced President Franklin Delano Roosevelt’s New Deal programs that used fiscal policy to end the Great Depression of the 1930s and Lyndon Johnson’s Great Society programs in the 1960s. Keynesian economic theory assumes that the government should interv ene in the economy to 1) regulate the extremes of the boom-a nd-bust business cycle; 2) provide economic stability; and 3) to promote justice. The belief that Keynesian economic theory implemented during the New Deal helped th e country out of the 1930s Depression made Keynesian economics the new prevailing theory of government and the economy. Think About It! Some new ideas in the natural sciences have crossover appeal in the social sciences. Was Charles Darwin the father of modern economics? What does the theory of natural selection have to do with economics?

PAGE 381

Chapter 14: Economic Policy | 375 14.3 | The Great Recession The Great Recessions was a severe economic down turn that was initially considered just another stage in the regular business cycle of expansion and cont raction—the boom and bust business cycle. Figure 14 below illustrates the business cycle with specific economic downturns noted, most notably the Great De pression, a severe and long-lasting economic downturn, and the Great Recession. The Great Rece ssion officially ended with a return to economic growth, but the rate of growth has remained comparatively low, job creation has lagged behind other recoveries, and wages have remained stagnant. This is evidence that the Great Recession was not part of the normal business cycle of expansion and contraction but rather more evidence of a struct ural change in the American economy. Figure 14.3 The Business Cycle: Expansion (or Booms) and Contraction (or Busts) Expansion Boom Contraction Bust 19th Century 1930s 1970s 2007-2009 Panics Great Depression Stagflation Great Recession 14.31 | What’s In a Name? What is a recession? What is a depression ? And what is so great about the Great Depression and the Great Recession? In the good old days, financial crises were called “panics” because they often involved people panicking to get their money out of banks before they failed. After the Great Depressi on, economic downturns were called recessions partly because the word recession did not remi nd people of the bad memories of the 1930s. Government officials do not like to use the wo rd recession either because it reminds voters that the economy is bad. In 1978 President Carter’s economic advisor Alfred Kahn was scolded for warning that the administration’s ef forts to fight inflation were likely to cause a recession. President Carter di d not want one of his leadin g economic advisors talking about a looming recession during the reelecti on campaign. So when Kahn spoke publicly about the likelihood that fighti ng inflation would cause a rece ssion, he simply substituted the word banana for the word recession : “We’re in danger of ha ving the worst banana in 45 years.”6 The organization that officially designa tes economic conditions a recession is the National Bureau of Economic Research. The National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER) defines a recession as a “significant de cline in economic activity spread across the economy, normally visible in real GDP, real income, employment, industrial production, and wholesale-retail sales.” The NBER’s Business Cycle Dating Committee maintains a chronology of the U.S. business cycle that iden tifies the dates of peaks and troughs that frame economic recession or expansion. The peri od from a peak to a trough is a recession

PAGE 382

376 | Chapter 14: Economic Policy and the period from a trough to a peak is an expansion. According to the chronology, the most recent peak occurred in March 2001, e nding a record-long expansion that began in 1991. The most recent trough occurred in Novemb er 2001, inaugurating an expansion. A recession begins just after the economy reaches a peak of activity a nd ends as the economy reaches its trough. Between trough and peak, the economy is in an expansion. Expansion is the normal state of the economy. Most recessi ons are brief and they have been rare in recent decades. The NBER reported that the Great Recession officially started in December 2007 and ended in June 2009. 14.32 | A Structural Change in the Economy? The length and depth of the Great Recession in creased concern that the downturn was not merely a stage of the normal business cycle but rather a structural change in the U.S. economy. A structural change is a major, long-term transformation of the economy. The Industrial Revolution was a structural change from an agrarian to an industrial/manufacturing economy. The Inform ation Age transformed the economy into a service economy. The fact that the recove ry from the Great Recession has produced disappointing job creation, continued wage stagnation, and low economic growth compared with past recoveries has reinfor ced the belief that the economy is undergoing a structural change. Economists explain why technology can cause unemployment and stagnant wages in “ The Great Stagnation: Why Hasn’t Recent Technology Created More Jobs?” The managing director of Vista Technologies, a manufacturing company, bluntly explained why companies prefer to buy new equipment rather than hire employees.7 He said he dreaded the hiring process: si fting through poorly written resu mes; interviewing applicants; paying for drug testing and mandated safety programs; and training new employees. The Federal Reserve Board also made the cost of capital relatively cheaper than the cost of labor by keeping interests so low that companies could borrow money to buy equipment rather than to hire more workers or increase wages. The wage problem has been worsened by the fact that most increases in labor costs have been due to increased co sts of health care not wage increases. It is a common business strategy to control costs by buying equipment that automates production or buying software to manage personnel and customers rather than hiring new employees. This strategy is more attractive where capital costs are lower than labor costs. Purchasing equipment from foreign manufacturers compounds the negative impact on jobs. Favorable tax laws such as accel erated capital depreciation also make capital investments more cost effective than labor. Globalization is another r eason why manufacturing no longer produces the jobs that it once did. Globalization has meant that U.S. manufacturing j obs have been sent abroad to low wage countries—first to Japan and more recently to China and India and other regions of the world. Technology has meant the increased use of computer-aided industrial production. Modern factories use Think about it! “I want to have as few people touching our products as possible. Everything should be as automated as it can be. We just can’t afford to compete with countries like China on labor costs…” Dan Mishak, Managing Director, Vista Technologies

PAGE 383

Chapter 14: Economic Policy | 377 robotics rather than more workers to increas e production. The elimination of jobs and the resulting downward pressure on wages has had a significant impact on “the American dream” of upward mobility. In “Making It in America,” Adam Davidson describes the “remnant workforce, the smaller workforce re maining in manufacturing in the U.S. He argues that this remnant workforce must be highly trained. During much of the 20th century, “simultaneous technological improvements in both agriculture and industry happened to create conditions that were favorable for pe ople with less skill.” The development of mass production “allowed low-skilled farmers to m ove to the city” and get jobs in highly productive factories. The change from an ag ricultural to an indus trial economy adversely affected “the highly skilled craftsperson.” The loss of manufacturing jobs is ending one of the ways that low-skilled workers could join the middle class.8 In spring 2017, the Bureau of Labor St atistics (BLS) reported that the economic recovery from the Great Recession reduced the unemployment rate to 4.3%, which was the lowest rate in more than a decade. The unemployment rate for blacks was just under 8%, and the unemployment rate for Hispanics was 5%. The declining unemployment rates are good news; the fact that the labor force par ticipation rate remained steady at 62.9% was not good news.9 An unemployment rate below 5% is approaching what economists call full employment. Why is there so much economic anxiety if th e economy is near full employment? There are a number of reasons. One reason is the fact that the unemployment rate is no longer a very good measure of how the economy is working for people. The unemployment rate does not reflect the increase in the number of jobs where the number of hours worked varies a great deal from week to week or month to month. The volatility in the number of hours worked creates increased income volatility which, in turn, creates financial uncertainty. Financial uncertainty creates financial anxiety, which creates political anxiety. Since the 1970s, steady work that pays a predictable and living wage has become increasingly difficult to find,” said Jonathan Morduch, a director of the U.S. Financial Diaries project, an in-depth study of 235 lowand moderate-income hous eholds. “This shift has left many more families vulnerable to income volatility.” Stagnant wages have also undermined th e meaning of the unemployment rate by people choosing not to wo rk or look for work. The labor fo rce participation rate in early 2017 was around 62.3%. This is the percentage of individuals in the labor force who are working or looking for work. The unemployment rate recovered from the Great Recession, but the quality of the jobs has not! Check It Out! The PBS Newshour video “It’s a Slow Painful Recovery for this Former Manufacturing Town” explains why the re placement of manufacturing jobs with service sector jobs has allowed the focus on the unemployment rate to mask a deeper economic problem.

PAGE 384

378 | Chapter 14: Economic Policy The displacement of manufacturi ng jobs by low-wage service sect or jobs is also related to the gender dynamics of the 2016 elections. Hillary Clinton’s campaign emphasized women’s issues in a number of ways that were consistent with the gender dynamics of party politics, includi ng promises to support health care and wage equity, which appealed to women, and promises to fight against th e Republican war on women. Donald Trump’s campaign was more traditionally Republican macho on economic, crime, and national security policy, which was more appealin g to the blue-collar male workers in manufacturing and mining. The PBS Newshour story describes and explains why men are reluctant to apply for jobs in fields such as education and health care where jobs are increasing—even in regions of th e country such as Appalachia and the Rust Belt that were hard hit by de-industrialization. The lower la bor force participation rates for men is a development with both economic, social, political, and cultural consequences. 14.33 | Why the U.S. Business Cycle Is So Closely Related to the Electoral Cycles The Great Recession is yet another exampl e of how bad economic conditions affect politics. The first thing the federal govern ment did was to enact a massive government bailout of businesses. The bailouts were followe d by fiscal and monetary policies that were intended to stimulate the economy. The econom ic policies created a huge budget deficit. Voters expressed their dissa tisfaction with the economic downturn by electing President Barack Obama in 2008 after he campaigne d promising “Hope” and “Change.” Voter anxiety then resulted in big Republican gain s in the 2010 mid-term elections. Republicans gained 69 congressional seats. The political lesson of the Gr eat Recession is that voters hold the government accountable for economic conditions—particularly during times of crisis when the public expects the national govern ment to take decisive action to stabilize the economy. The political impact of economic downturns is greater in the U.S. than in other western democracies because the U.S. has a smaller social welfare safety net. In the U.S., the loss of a job means the loss of income and, in many cases, the loss of health care insurance. The U.S. system of employme nt-based health insurance means that unemployment greatly increases income insecu rity. This economic insecurity has makes the U.S. political system very sensitive to the unemployment rate. Two major parts of the social welfare system, Social Security a nd Medicare, are not ev en designed to support unemployed young people. These two programs provide income security primarily for the elderly. Taken together, th ese policies make the job market especially political. The fact that the U.S. economy is a co nsumer economy where around two thirds of the gross domestic product comes from consum er spending further strengthens the link Think About It! A Unisex Workforce? Traditional dis tinctions among white, blue, and pink collar jobs, or men’s work and women’ s work, may not be as relevant, but the reluctance of Manly Men to apply for Girly Jobs is still an issue.

PAGE 385

Chapter 14: Economic Policy | 379 between the business cycle and the political cycl e. The decades prior to the Great Recession were marked by high rates of consumption and de bt and low savings rate s. The belief that the country was undergoing a long-term structur al change in the economy has stimulated interest in changing economic policy to en courage production and saving rather than consumption. This will require changing econo mic behavior. This explains why there has been an increase in school programs that teach children about financial literacy. Sesame Street the public television children’s program teaches children (and adults) about financial literacy and the importance of delayi ng gratification in orde r to increase savings rates.10 14.4 | A Regular Business Cycle of Economic Crises Economic problems tend to become politi cal problems, and major economic problems become major political problems. The latter 19th Century economic pani cs created populist and nativist reactions that increased hostility toward immigrants, Catholics, Jews, and blacks. The worldwide economic downturn in th e early 1930s resulted in totalitarian governments in Germany, Japan, and Italy. In the 1970s the U.S. suffered from two economic problems that do not usually occur together—high inflation and low growth— so a new word was coined to describe a stag nant economy with inflat ion: stagflation. The stagflation, which was caused by an Organi zation of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) oil embargo that greatly increased energy costs and decreased economic growth, decreased public confidence in American government and privat e sector institutions. The passage of the Troubled Asset Recovery Program and the Emergency Economic Stabilization Act of 2008 so quickly after the Great Recession began is evidence of the close relationship between economics and politics. The Great Recession created a group of pe ople of special concern: the formerly middle class. These were the people who achieve d middle-class status at the tail end of the long economic boom, and then lost their middle class standing when they became the first ones to drop out of the middle class during the downturn caused high unemployment and steep increases in the rates of home mortgage foreclosures. A middle class that is experiencing downward mobility is likely to ex press its displeasure by voting against those they blame for their financial stress and their loss of status. Americans have such a strong belief in upward mobility that it is considered part of the American dream. It is the belief in a system where ability and hard work produce prosperity. Downward mobility caused by loss of a job or underemployment, loss of a home or business, a health care problem, or some other crisis, erodes confidence in th e economic and political system. Downward mobility is not limited to loss of income. It includes loss of status in the community and forced changes in lifestyle. The conservative commentator David Brooks accurately predicted that the loss of social identity and the status symbols that mark the middle class’s Count on It? “Are U.S. Wages Enough to Live On?”

PAGE 386

380 | Chapter 14: Economic Policy place in the social order would increase aliena tion and ultimately create a political protest: “If you want to know where the next big soci al movements will come from, I’d say the formerly middle class.”11 The financial crisis that caused the Great Recession ha s renewed questions about why the U.S. experiences so many cycles of cr ises in the financial sector that end with government bailouts. In the 1980s, the Savings and Loan industry required a government bailout. A dot-com bubble in the high-tech sector burst in 2000. The Great Recession was caused by, among other factors, banking and i nvestment practices that included risky behavior, corruption, scandals, and fraud. It produced emergency legislation such as the Troubled Asset Relief Program whose government bailout provisions were intended to avoid a financial meltdown. This pattern of business crises followed by government bailouts is not the normal working of the marketplace where the rise and fall of businesses is considered natural. Why do corporate executives engage in risky or bad business practices that jeopardize their company and the economy? The first answer that comes to mind is that even smart people make some mistakes. This individual-level ex planation overlooks organization-level explanations. The first organi zational explanation is that some decision makers are insulated from the adverse conseque nces of their bad decisions. For example, the government protects bank deposits in sa vings accounts from bank failures through the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC). The FDIC in surance can actually encourage bankers to make riskier decisi ons—that is, to be less risk averse—by guaranteeing deposits in savings accounts. A second organizational explanation is ev en more important in explaining risky corporate behavior particularly in the fina ncial services sector of the economy: the separation of ownership and management in mo dern corporations. In the good old days of small business, the people who owned the bus iness actually ran it AND they were risking their own money so they had their own skin in the game Corporations are run by managers—and the managers of financial servic es companies are really playing with, or risking, other people’s money (OPM). Individua ls who work in financial services may be more willing to make risky decisions because they are playing with OPM. This problem was recognized as an organizational problem in Adolf Berle’s The Modern Corporation and Private Property (1932). The problems described above are examples of “ the moral hazard .” The moral hazard refers to situations where a decision maker does not assume all of the costs or responsibilities of a decision a nd is therefore likely to make riskier decisions than they would make if they knew that th ey would be held totally res ponsible for all of the negative consequences of their decisions. Some compan ies are considered too big or too important to fail. This means that the government will pr otect them from failure by bailing them out with programs such as the Toxic Asset Relief Program. In fact, the moral hazard is one explanation for the repeated pattern of financial crises and bailouts. The recurring cycles of financial crises and government bailouts are also caused by rapid memory loss: the bad times are quick ly forgotten once the good times begin again. During the Obama administration a number of regulations were enacted to prevent financial crises. One of these was the D odd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act of 2010, which was intended to protect consumers by enhancing the power of the Commodity Futures Trading Comm ission. The Dodd-Frank Act created the

PAGE 387

Chapter 14: Economic Policy | 381 Consumer Financial Services Protection Bu reau, a federal agen cy responsible for protecting consumers in the financial sector What could get buttoned-down Wall Street bankers and lawyers dance in the streets and ju mp for joy? The removal of regulations that limit risky but profitable fina ncial wheeling-and-d ealing! The Wall Street Journal and Republicans support financial deregulation, including getting rid of Dodd-Frank. This includes getting rid of laws limiting corporate tax arbitrage strategies. In economics and finance, arbitrage is the practice of taking ad vantage of price differences in different markets. Tax arbitrage is taking advantage of diffe rent tax rates in different markets. A corporate inversion is when an American company merges with a foreign company because that country’s tax are lower than U.S. taxes. Burger King gave up its American corporate citizenship by acquiring th e Canadian restaurant chain Tim Hortons as a corporate strategy to save taxes. In 2016, the drug company Pf izer bid $152 billion dollars to buy Allergen, the company that made Bo tox, as a corporate strategy to save taxes. As a corporate strategy, inversions are a type of rent-seeking behavior Rent-seeking refers to business decisions that try to make money by taking advantage of different rules rather than by focusing on making better goods or providing better services. The Obama administration issued a number of rules to reduce corporate inversions. The Trump administration proposed ending the tax regulations and the Fi nancial Stability Oversight Council, the body that designates which financial institutions are cons idered “systemically important” or too-big-to-fail. The Ameri cans for Financial Reform is a non-profit organization that was created in 2008 to advocate for the creation of what it says is a strong, stable, and ethical financial system that works for the economy and the country. It supports financial regulations that protect consumers from bad or risky financial business practices.12 14.41 | Follow the Money When the Washington Post reporters Bob Woodward and Carl Bernst ein were investigating the Watergate scandal in the early 1970s, they were advised by a secret source to “follow the money.” Money often leaves a telling trail. For instance, in 2008, New York State Governor Eliot Spitzer, an Think About It! Does the Moral Hazard explain why bankers become “banksters?” “Banksters” is the title of an Economist article (July 7, 2012) about British bankers illegally manipulating an important interest rate called the LIBOR (London Interbank offer rate). /21558260 Think About It? Should we consider the recurring financial cris es evidence of recidivism in the financial sector the way we think about repeat offenders in criminal law? Massachusetts Institute of Technology Fi nance Professor Andrew Lo discusses the recurring cycles of financial crises and govern ment bailouts in the Public Broadcasting System story, “ Evaluating and Preventing a Massive Financial Crisis .”

PAGE 388

382 | Chapter 14: Economic Policy ambitious Democrat with a promising national career, unexpectedly resigned his office. The media focused on the scandal angle: a high-profile political figure who paid a great deal of money to high-priced prostitutes. The story of how the government discovered the payments revealed how extensively the government monitors financial transactions. Sophisticated computer software that tracks almost all financial transactions revealed Spitzer’s payments. Large cash transactions are easy to spot because banks are required to report transactions over $10,000. Computer software also tracks small financial transactions in order to detect pattern of suspicious activity .13 The ability to track almost all financial tran sactions raises se rious questions about the use of such information in an age where more and more tran sactions are electronic and big data analysis allows information to be stored and retr ieved for economic and political purposes. 14.5 | Government’s Economic Tool Box: Fiscal Policy Fiscal policy is the government’s use of taxing and spending powers to achieve policy goals. Fiscal policy is reflected in the budget. A budget is a political document because politics can be defined as “the authoritative al location of scarce resources.” The budget is where you see policy priorities. Senator and Vice-president Joe Biden often people of his father’s saying: “Don’t tell me what you value. Show me what your budget is and I’ll tell you what your values are.” The federal government’s fiscal policy is reflected in the federal government’s annual budget for the fiscal year, which begins October 1s t. A state’s fiscal policy is reflected in the state’s budget. 14.51 | Who Makes Fiscal Policy? Congress and the president make fiscal policy Until the early years of the 20th Century, Congress exerted almost complete control ove r fiscal policy because it has the power to tax and to spend. Congress passed the annual fe deral budget. Today the president plays an extremely important role in making fiscal pol icy. For instance, the president begins the annual budget process by introducing the administration’s budget in Congress. Congress then holds committee hearings on the va rious budget proposals, debates the various provisions of the administratio n’s budget priorities assesses the administration’s taxing and spending policies, and th en adjusts the administration’s priorities to reflect congressional priorities. Congr ess then enacts the federal budget for the fiscal year.

PAGE 389

Chapter 14: Economic Policy | 383 The politics of the budget includes debate s about literally thousands of programs for law enforcement, social security, educatio n, health care, national security and trade policy. But the most politically salient deba tes about the budget and fiscal policy center on the budget deficit. Deficit spending occurs when government spending exceeds revenue in a fiscal year and the year ends with red ink. If the government spends more than it taxes, the fiscal year ends with a budget deficit. The national debt is the cumulative budget deficits. 14.52 | Budget Deficits Budget deficits are not usually accidents, mi stakes, bad mathematics, or the result of incompetent accountants or emergencies. The re d ink of budget deficit (spending more than tax revenue in a fiscal year) is usually intentional. Fiscal policy is the use of the taxing and spending policies to achieve public policy goals Keynes believed that government should use fiscal policy to manage the business cycle, to moderate the extr emes of expansion and contraction, to avoid the boom (the rapid econo mic expansion that leads to inflation) and bust (recession or depression). The term Ke ynesian economics refers to the government using taxing and spending policies to manage the economy. The logic of using fiscal policy to moderate the business cycle and achieve economic stability is fairly simple. During a time of rapid economic growth (a boom period), the government’s fiscal policy could increase taxes and/or cut government spendi ng. Increasing taxes and decreasing spending remove money from the economy, there by slowing economic growth. It has a “deflationary” effect on the economy. During a downturn in the business cycle fiscal policy could decrease taxes and/or increase government spending. Cutting taxes and increasing spending puts more money into the economy, thereby stimulating economic growth. Deficit spending has an inflationary effect on the economy; austerity budgets have a recessionary effect on the economy. Fiscal policy is intended to have a counter-cyclical effect on the business cycle. 14.53 | Tax Policy What is a tax? The simplest definition is that a tax is a compulsory payment to fund government. But taxes are used for a variety of purposes: Raise the Money to fund government The main purpose of a tax is to raise money to pay for the things that the government does. Gas taxes provide money to build roads and bridges; real estate taxes pr ovide money for schools; and income taxes provide money for fighting crime, figh ting fires, and for national security. Subsidize desirable behavior. Taxes are also used to subsidize behavior that the government wants to encourage or goals th at it promotes. Tax policy can subsidize The Budget Deficit and the National Debt

PAGE 390

384 | Chapter 14: Economic Policy marriage, having and raising children, relig ious and charitable contributions, or conservation of national resources by pr omoting green energy sources. Taxes for these purposes are primarily to subsidize behaviors rather than to raise money. Regulate undesirable behavior Taxes are also used to discourage or regulate behavior that government wants to discourag e. The term “sin” tax refers to using tax policy to decrease smoking or gambling or drinking alcohol. Carbon emission taxes are intended to reduce air pollution. Redistribution Taxes are also used to redistribu te income from some individuals or groups to others. Taxes redistribute in come from richer persons or states or region to poorer persons, states, or re gions. Taxes redistribute resources from younger individuals to older i ndividuals. Redistributive ta xes are used for social welfare purposes. Good tax policy, like beauty, is in the eye of the beholder. Economists generally prefer simple tax codes that raise money to fund government programs with minimum disruption of market forces. The Tax Foundation is an organization that advocates for what it considers the principles of good tax policy: fair ness; efficiency; and clarity. Efficiency and clarity are easier to measure than fairness because fairness is a subjective standard. People have different definitions of tax fairness. For example, federal tax and spending policies are redistributive. They take money from wea lthier states and redistribute resources to poorer states. Is it fair for the federal governme nt to make some states net contributors and other states net benefactors? On e of the ironies of federal tax and spending policies is that the Red States, which tend to be poorer and Re publican, are benefactor states while Blue States, which tend to be wealthier and Democra tic, are contributor states. It is ironic that Red States benefit an d Blue States pay because conservatives and Republicans are generally opposed to income redistribution as a form of welfare. Taxing and spending policies are also intended to influence indivi dual behavior. Subsidie s encourage desirable behavior—by providing rebates fo r buying energy efficient a ppliances, for instance—and taxes discourage undesirable behavior such as smoking and drinking alcohol. What do behavioral economists say about the effectiven ess of taxing and spending policies that are intended to influence behavior? The U.S. has a very complicated, expensive, and inefficient tax system. The reasons why are not very complicated. For example, the financial services sect or is an increasingly important sector of the economy. Financial services include fina ncial analysts, tax accountants, and tax preparati on companies. These special interests have been very effective in lobbying Congress to provide for special tax breaks their industry. They also benefit from the public perception that taxes are too complicated for the average taxpayer to file their taxes out without professional as sistance. In fact, their business model depends on it. And they benefit from the public percep tion that the income a nd other federal taxes are so complicated that the average person s hould not file their ow n taxes—and that the difficulty filing income taxes is evidence th at the government cannot do anything very simply (or very well). The federal income tax system also has numerous provisions that benefit real estate developers. The average e ffective income tax rate for all industries is 11%. The effective rate for real estate developers is just over 1% The real estate lobby is very effective in getting special tax breaks. President Trump is (or was?) a real estate developer. He also made income tax reform one of his administrati on’s priorities. Reducing

PAGE 391

Chapter 14: Economic Policy | 385 tax rates by simplifying the tax code will be a challenge because it will require overcoming the political power of the fina ncial services and real es tate development lobbies. 14.54 | The Federal Budget Process Congress and the president make fiscal policy. The federal budget pr ocess is a long and complicated process whose participants in clude Congress (particularly the House and Senate budget committees) and the president (particularly executive agencies and The Office of Management and Budget ). The Center on Budget Priorities provides a good description of the three main stages of th e federal budget process: 1) the Office of Management and Budget submits the administration’s proposed budget to Congress; 2) Congress adopts a budget resolution; and 3) re conciliation of the budget resolution. The process is described in greater detail in the two boxes below: The Federal Budget Process As Described By The Office of Management and Budget: The Center on Budget Priorities: Think about It! Why does the U.S. have such a complicated, expensive, and inefficient tax system? Watch T. R. Reid’s comparative tax policy analysis, “ What Other Countries Can Teach America about Taxes .”

PAGE 392

386 | Chapter 14: Economic Policy The Federal Budget: Timelines and Participants Early fall The executive departments and agencies send initial budget requests to the Office of Management and Budget (OMB). November/December/January The OMB reviews the initial requests, modifi es them, and sends them back to the agencies. The OMB hears ag ency appeals. The OMB resolves appeals and assembles the final budget request. February/March The president submits the budget request to Congress. Administration and agency officials testify in support of the budge t request before the House and Senate appropriations subcommittees (House and Sena te). Public witnesses also participate in the hearings. May The House and Senate adopt budget resolu tions prepared by the budget committees. The House and Senate Appropriations Comm ittees make 302(b) allocations—this is the section of federal law that describes how appropriations committees divide the overall level of discretionary spending provided in the Budget Resolution among thirteen subcommittees. June The House Appropriations Subcommittees prep are appropriations bills and the Senate Appropriations Subcommittees revise them. July-August The House passes spending bills and the Se nate passes revised spending bills. September Conference committees resolve differences be tween the House and Senate bills and agree on final versions of spending bills. The president signs or vetoes final bills. October 1 The start of the fiscal year. If Congress has not passed all the appropriations bills in time for the start of the fiscal year, conti nuing resolutions are used to maintain funding for agencies whose funding bills have not yet been passed.

PAGE 393

Chapter 14: Economic Policy | 387 14.6 | The Government’s Tool Box: Monetary Policy Monetary policy is defined as using the mone y supply to achieve economic goals such as controlling inflation and maintaining employ ment. The money supply is the amount of money in private hands. Increasing or decreas ing the money supply affects the rate of inflation and the amount economic activity. Monetarists argue that monetary policy is a better way to achieve economic goals than fiscal policy. Monetary policy is based on the assumption that the price of money—that is, interest rates—is the key to economic activity because incr easing interest rates will decrease economic activity, thereby lowering inflation, while decreasing interest rates will stimulate the economy. Monetarists advise increasing interest rate s during boom times in order to prevent or control inflation, and decreasing interest rate s to prevent a recession or to stimulate the economy to get out of one. The Federal Reserve Board (the Fed) has primary control over monetary policy. The Fed is an independent agency in the sens e that Congress and the president have limited control over it. Members of the Fed are appoin ted for lengthy terms of office that do not coincide with presidential or congressional election cycles in order to insulate The Fed from partisan politics. The Federal Reserv e Board (of Governors) consists of seven members who are appointed for 14-year terms. The Fed’s Open Market Committee consists of 12 Members (seven Governors and the heads of five regional banks) is the Fed’s main monetary policymaking body. Congress created the Fed and authorized it to regulate banks and to set monetary policy. It is responsible for using mone tary policy to achieve two economic objectives: price stability (controlling inflation) and maximum employment. Beginning in the fall of 2007, uncertainty in the financial markets created concern that the proble ms caused by sub-prime mortgage practices would turn into a full-blown nationwide or even global panic. Critics called the Troubled Asset Recovery Program (TARP) the Toxic Asset Recovery Program because the government was authorized to buy “troubled” financial assets. The Federal Reserve Board aggressively intervened in the capital markets in order bring about a measure of stability. The conservative Ben Stein reacted to the Fe d’s decisive action by saying, “God Bless the Fed.” The sense of relief that the Chair of the Federal Reserve Board acted decisively to avert a collapse of the financial system and perhaps the entire econom y is an indication of the Fed’s importance. Stein al so used an interesting meta phor to defend the government bailouts of banks. We had to turn to the federa l government for relief from the “terrifying prospect” of financial collapse because “(t)he private sector is the patient, not the doctor.”14 “God Bless the Fed” Ben Stein

PAGE 394

388 | Chapter 14: Economic Policy 14.61 | The Undemocratic Fed One of the basic democratic principles is that policymaker s should be elected representatives of the people. In democracies elections choose to policymakers and hold them accountable. But The Fed is a policymaking body whose members are appointed for long terms. In this resp ect, the Fed is an undemocratic inst itution. In fact, supporters of the Fed defend it because it is not political The Fed is designed to insulate economics from partisan politics. The Fed is an independent agency with some insulation from direct partisan control but it is not an apolitical institution. Its views of what to do about inflation and unemployment are political. The Fed’s choi ces about how much inflation is too much and how much unemployment is acceptable ar e political. The members of the Fed are bankers who bring a banking perspective to monetary policy. The Fed has faced strong political criticism since its creation. Populists think it serves the inte rests of big banks and Wall Street insiders rather than the common people. Libert arians are on principle opposed to government management of the economy. Former Congressman Ron Paul (RepublicanTexas) and his son, Senator Rand Paul (Republi can-Kentucky) are vocal critics of the Fed. What do you think of Ron Paul’s comments about the Fed’s role in the American system of democracy? 14.7 | Poor Economic Vision? The Great Recession caught most people by surp rise even though the boom and bust of the business cycle was very familiar. This raises an interesting question. Why were some of the best and brightest minds working in the fi nancial sector of the economy so shortsighted that they failed to foresee the problem that their actions were causing ? There are at least three reasons for poor economic vision (or myop ia): organization incen tives; ideology; and over-confidence. Information about how the government measures the rate of inflation/cost of living is provided in “ Why Your Salary May be Affected by the Price of Lettuce. ” Think About It! Do you agree with the Representative Ron Paul’s criticis m of the Federal Reserve Board? Are his views political?

PAGE 395

Chapter 14: Economic Policy | 389 14.71 | Organizational Incentives The financial services industry has an incen tives structure that rewards risk-taking behavior. If an industry rewards making risky loans and selling high-risk financial products because they bring higher profits than safer loans and investments, then it is rational for people who work in the financial services to engage in such riskier rather than safer economic behavior. 14.72 | Ideology An ideology is a set of beliefs about how the wo rld works. What if the beliefs are mistaken? Alan Greenspan was Chair of the Fed fr om 1987 until 2006. These were economic boom times. Greenspan was lionized as a great man with a deep understanding of how the financial system, monetary policy, and the ec onomy worked. Then the Great Recession hit! Greenspan was forced to acknowledge that ther e were fundamental flaw s in his ideological model of how the economic world worked. One flaw is the way the financial services sector was de-regulated: bankers were allowed to make riskier investments but the government kept in place government protections against depositors losing money (i.e., the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation ). Business deregulation is consider ed an element of conservative and Republican economic policy, but Democratic President Carter began the federal trend toward deregulation by deregulating the airlines and natural gas in the 1970s. Then in 1980 the Monetary Control Act eliminated regulations of interest rates a nd usury laws. In 1982, the Garn-St. Germain Depository Institutions Act deregulated savings and loan banks. Prior to 1982, these “thrift” banks were allowed to make residential (home) loans but not riskier commercial loans. They were also prohibited fr om using customer depos its to invest in the stock market. The savings and loans banks lobbied Congress to change the law to allow them to use deposits for riskier and generally more profitable, investments. The ensuing savings and loan crisis of the 1980s required a massive gove rnment bailout to protect depositors from losing their m oney. And then in 1999 the Financial Services Modernization Act repealed the provisions of the GlassSteagall Act, the 1933 law that separated commercial banking from investment. The probl em with this deregulation is that it deregulated risk-taking while continuing insu re bank deposits against loss in order to maintain public confidence in the banking system. The movement to deregulate the economy began when conservatives and liberals supported deregulation but for very diffe rent reasons. Conservatives supported deregulation because they thought government regulation was ineffective and limited growth. Liberals supported deregulation becau se they thought government regulators were actually serving powerful corporate interests rather than protecting consumers or the environment. Alan Greenspan’s Confession

PAGE 396

390 | Chapter 14: Economic Policy The Capture Theory explains why government regul atory agencies do not do what they were created to do. According to the cap ture theory, regulatory agencies are created to regulate an industry but over time they come to identify with the i ndustry that they were created to regulate. This is a variation on the Stockholm Syndrome where over time hostages over time come to identify with their captors. The capture theory works because of the revolving personnel doors between the public and private sectors. When government regulators leave their regulatory agency, they go to work in the industry the agency regulated; and regulatory agencies hire people from the industry they regulate. In effect, the players change teams. Former airlines re gulators are hired by the airlines industry. Former Internal Revenue Service official s are hired by tax and accounting firms that advertise that the firm employs former IRS agents. Goldman Sachs is a multinational financial services firm that is sometimes called “Government Sachs” because presidents recruit so many former Goldman officials to work in their administrations. President Clinton’s Secretary of the Treasury Robert Rubin was a Goldman official. President George W. Bush’s Secretary of the Treasur y Hank Paulson was a Goldman official. And President Trump’s Secretary of the Treasury (Steve Mnuchin), Deputy Secretary of the Treasury, White House Chief Strategist (S teve Bannon), Director of the White House National Economic Council, and Senior Counsel for Economic Initiatives all worked for Goldman Sachs. And President Trump’s nominee to head the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), Jay Clayton, is a corporate la wyer who represented Goldman Sachs. The capture theory and the revolving door explain why the Securities and Exchange Commission, the Commodities Futures Tradi ng Commission, and even The Fed grow so close to the financial services sector that it is hard to tell whether they are regulating the industry or representing Wall Street interests. Is this close relationship a reason why the government repeatedly