Presentation on theme: "Chapter 5, Section 2. 5 Functions of political parties: 1.Govern 2.Nominate candidates 3.“Inform and Activate” 4.Create a “Bonding Agent” 5.Act as the."— Presentation transcript:
Chapter 5, Section 2
5 Functions of political parties: 1.Govern 2.Nominate candidates 3.“Inform and Activate” 4.Create a “Bonding Agent” 5.Act as the public’s “Watchdog”
1. Why does the United States have a two- party system? 2. The difference between one-party, two- party and multi-party systems. 3. Party membership trends in the United States.
1. Forces throughout history 2. Tradition in the United States 3. The American Electoral System 4. The “American Ideological Consensus”
How do you think the Founding Fathers felt about political parties?
Founding Fathers did not desire the existence of political parties… Viewed them as "factions" dangerous to public interest… If the political community broke into small groups committed to their own narrow interests, the search for the common good would be compromised!
republican ideology = subordination of narrow interests to the general welfare of the community… Politics was supposed to be rational and collaborative, NOT competitive! Can you even imagine this concept today? (HA!)
“Let me now take a more comprehensive view, and warn you in the most solemn manner against the baneful effects of the Spirit of Party…”
Federalists (Hamilton) vs. Anti-Federalists (Jefferson) Alexander Hamilton: …associated with the aristocracy, industry over agriculture, Great Britain over France and stronger central government over stronger individual states. Thomas Jefferson: …weak central government, common man and the addition of the Bill of Rights.
From the beginning, our country has had a two-party system… So, we have always had this system… Has this system ever failed us? No, not really. Basically, America has a two-party system because we have ALWAYS had a two-party system!
The prevalence of “Single-member districts”… One candidate is elected to office “Winner-take-all” elections Discourages third parties… Typically, people vote for incumbent, or next “most reliable alternative” – which is usually who? What mentality does this breed?
Is a vote for a third party a wasted vote?
American election law creates obstacles for third-parties… “Ballot access” laws - % of previous races Democratic and Republican state legislatures pass restrictive laws that make it difficult for third parties to get on the ballot in many states! “Write-in” vs. “Ballot access”
90% of Americans The American Ideological Consensus Although we have a pluralistic society, there is a broad consensus on fundamental issues in the country! Two major parties are very similar… “moderate”
In order to win elections, parties tend to take moderate stances on issues to appeal to the largest number of people!
One-party system: typically produces an autocratic or dictatorial power… aka “Single-Party” state
United States… Single party State?
Multi-party system: system in which multiple political parties have the capacity to gain control of government separately or in coalition… Coalition: alliance of parties who come together to control a government Most Western European Countries, Brazil, Canada, India, Israel, Indonesia, Japan, Mexico, the Netherlands, New Zealand and Taiwan…
Democrats Blacks, Hispanics Catholics Jews Union members Lower income Republicans (GOP) White males, Cubans Protestants Businessmen Higher income