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Chapter 6 Voters and Voter Behavior

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1 Chapter 6 Voters and Voter Behavior
American Cit. Chapter 6 Voters and Voter Behavior

2 Section 1 The right to vote

3 The History of Voting Rights
Suffrage The right to vote (AKA Franchise) Expansion of the Electorate The U.S. electorate includes some 210 million citizens potential voting population originally a state power, however progressively a federal power

4 The History of Voting Rights (Con’t)
extending suffrage: Five Stages first stage: Early 1800’s religious, ownership, tax payments banned second stage: 1870 15th amendment all races allowed to vote Third stage: 1920 19th amendment gave women suffrage Fourth stage: 1960’s voting Rights Act of 1965 removed any remaining barriers to African American suffrage Fifth stage lower voting age to 18 yrs. Old

5 The Power to set voting Qualifications
Still state power, however it can not be unconstitutional

6 Section 2 Voter qualification

7 Universal Requirements
Citizenship Most require you to be an American citizen Residence Must be a permanent resident of the state you vote in Most states do not set a requirement time period today Transients generally can not vote in new state person living in the state for only a short time Age Until 26th amendment, states varied with age from 21 to 18

8 Other Qualifications Registration
A procedure of voter identification intended to prevent transient voting Purging removing individuals who are not longer eligible to vote Poll Books the lists of all registered voters in each precincts Fight over how to stream-line it and avoid fraud

9 Other Qualifications (Con’t)
Literacy A person’s ability to read or write No longer required, however it was used to discourage African-American slaves forced creation of “Grandfather Clause” Tax payment demanded payment of a special tax called a Poll Tax However found unconstitutional Persons denied the vote declared mentally incompetent felons

10 Section 3 Suffrage and Civil Rights

11 Fifteenth Amendment Gave nearly all slaves the right to vote
However the right was still denied for nearly 90 years Violence used to persuade Literacy test Gerrymandering drawing of electoral district lines Democrats continually denied blacks into primary’s in the South

12 Early Civil Rights Legislation
Civil Rights Act of 1957 Inquired into claims of voter discrimination Civil Rights Act of 1960 Allowed federal voting referees

13 The Civil rights Act of 1964 Forbid voter registration or literacy in an unfair or discriminatory manner Use judicial branch to determine discrimination Used injunctions court order that forces or restrains certain actions by public or private officials

14 The Voting Rights Act of 1965
Applied to all elections and cemented 15th amendment Preclearance Approval by the Department of Justice Amendments to the Act Requirement to language 10,000 or more, minority

15 African Americans at the Polls
1 2 4 Chapter 6, Section 3

16 Section 4 Voter Behavior

17 Nonvoters The word idiot is Greek and it means citizens who do not vote

18 The Size of the Problem Off-year elections
Congressional elections held in the even-numbered years between presidential elections Many choose not to vote due to “voting fatigue” Presidential elections most voter population and participation

19 Why People do not vote Cannot voters Actual voters
Resident aliens are denied access to vote Disabled Actual voters Convinced there is no purpose Political efficacy lack any sense of their own influence or effectiveness in politics they feel popular sovereignty is no longer alive

20 Why People do not vote (Con’t)
Factors affecting voters Mostly lack of interest Comparing voters and nonvoters Voters tend to have higher income, education, and occupational status Unvoters are generally younger than 35, unmarried and unskilled However multiple factors affect it.

21 Voters and voting Behavior
Studying voting behavior Political socialization the process by which people gain their political attitudes and opinions Gender, Age gender gap measurable difference between the partisan choices of men and women Men more likely GOP and women more likely Democrat Younger people more likely vote Democrat and older people more likely vote GOP

22 Voters and voting Behavior (Con’t)
Religious, Ethnic Background Protestants more likely vote GOP Catholics and Jews tend to vote Democrat FDR’s New Deal and LBJ’s Civil Rights Acts of the 1960’s moved majority of African-American votes to Democrats Latino’s are more unpredictable Geography GOP has drawn good support from the South, and Democrats to the North Democrats tend to get the bigger cities, while GOP draws the rural areas of the country Family and Other Groups 9/10 married couples vote the same way

23 Psychological Factors
Voters perceptions of politics Party Identification Loyalty to Political Party Straight Ticket Voting The practice of voting for candidates of only one party in an election Weakened over the years as evident by more split-ticket voting also the rise of people who consider themselves independent Candidates and Issues Exit polls greatly reveal the role of the Candidates character and their stance on issues, in determining their electorate

24 Sociological Factors Voter preferences can’t be predicted by just one sociological factor. Voter opinion is a combination of all of these factors and more. 1 2 3 Chapter 6, Section 4

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