Voting behaviour

What's the long term voting model?
Sociological model
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What factors are sociological?
Class, age, race, region, gender and religion
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What's the short term voting model?
Rational choice model
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What are the rational choice model factors?
Issues, candidates, media, tv debates, campaigns and events
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What's socialisation?
The process of learning and developing political views from friends, family etc... It creates the long term influences between groups
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Which type of factors are seen in the increasing partisan alignment?
The long term factors - groups more split
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What's partisan identification?
Feeling you belong to a certain party - identify with them. Eg. "I am a Democrat"
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What % of people were said to be independent from a 2014 survey by ANES?
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What % of voters are actually independent? (don't have a lean)
10%, possibly as low as 3 or 4% of voters
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What's partisan re-alignment?
A political shift of a certain group, often after a significant historical event
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Which groups aligned with the two main parties during the Civil War?
Democrats had the South (white farmers). Republicans had free men in North and skilled workers
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When was their a re-alignment after the split of the Civil War?
The Great Depression - New Deal
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Who was in the New Deal Coalition?
The white southerners, along with african americans, immigrants, Jewish, Catholic, working class
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When did the New Deal Coalition break and who caused it?
Truman in 1948, when he had a liberal party platform at the National Convention, created a Civil Rights Committee and desegregated the military
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Who walked out at the 1948 Democrat convention?
The Southerners
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What party did Strom Thurmond run for and how many states did he win in 1948?
State's Rights Party - 4 states (deep south)
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What has altered alignment in the 60s and 70s?
Civil rights, Vietnam War, views on welfare and abortion
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What alienated the South from the Democrats in the 60s and 70s?
Became liberal, creating Medicare and Medicaid, as well as supporting Civil Rights
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Who started winning Southern states for the Republicans in 1964?
Barry Goldwater
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Who continued to win the South in 1968 and what was the effort called?
Nixon's Southern Strategy (knew he needed the south to win P- and he did)
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What did Reagan talk about in 1980 campaign, instead of civil rights?
States rights
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How did Reagan make the party significantly more conservative?
Tax cuts and spending cuts, opposed affirmative action and abortion
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When is partisanship very clearly seen on the electoral map?
1992 Clinton map is split - not sweeping victory
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How does the media refer to the states from 2000?
As red and blue states
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Who do African Americans usually vote for?
The democrats (Obama 2008 95%)
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Which way do Hispanics generally lean and why?
It's a wide group, but lean Democrat. Usually socially R but against their immigration policies
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Which way do Jewish lean?
Democrats (socialist labour/trade unions)
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Who was the first Catholic president and what % of Catholic vote did he receive?
JFK in 1960 - 80%
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What is the Catholic split like today?
About an even split today
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What's the two main factions of Protestant voters?
Mainline and Evangelical
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What's mainline?
They evolve to time and are more liberal
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What's evangelical?
They take the bible as the literal word of God and are much more socially conservative
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When was the rise of the religious right?
The 70s
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How did Reagan appeal to Evangelics? What portion of votes did he get?
Supported school prayer and right to life. 2/3 of evangelical vote
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Which way do the two protestant groups lean?
Mainline is evenly split, Evangelics lean Republican
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What increases the lean of protestants to Republicans?
If they attend church weekly. Goes from about equal split to 70% for Romney
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How does age affect voting behaviour?
Youth vote D, older vote R
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What other factors overlap with age?
Youth are more ethnically diverse and are less likely to attend weekly religious service (both things that lean D)
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How does the youth vote of 1992 contrast today?
1992 was about even split to parties (generation grew up under Reagan) vs. today vote significantly Democrat (grew up with Clinton's economics and Bush's controversial foreign policy)
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How does gender affect voting behaviour? Is it the same in the UK?
Female much more likely to vote Democrat - the UK's gap is insignificant
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When was the record gender gap?
2016 - 24% gender gap
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What core ideas of the Democrats attract female voters?
Pro-welfare, healthcare and gun-reforms. Less supportive of overseas intervention
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How does income create a lean to certain parties, but why is the gap not huge?
Wealthier voters tend to vote R (for tax cuts) while poorer households vote D (for welfare). The gap isn't huge because economy is not the only voting factor
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What region does the Republican party have as a solid base at presidential elections?
The deep south
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What states do Democrats rely on?
The 'solid North-East' and pacific coast
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What's the 'purple America' theory?
When broken down into districts, the divide is much less clear than specific states. Started by Vanderbei in 2000, the map shows a much less partisan America
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What's the lean of rural areas v. large cities?
The Democrats take the large cities (tend to be younger, more diverse), while Republicans take rural (often older, white and more religious)
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What's the reasoning for voting with the Rational Choice model?
Personal benefits vs costs of party/candidate and self interest
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When are presidential debates held?
September to October
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How long are they and how many? (including VP)
90 minutes each, the Presidential candidates have 3 while the Vice-Presidents have 1
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What types of debates did they use in 2016?
Two podiums and one town hall
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When was the first TV debate ever held?
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Who was the 1960 debate between?
Nixon v JFK
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Who seemed to win the first debate?
JFK for TV viewers, as Nixon looked ill (recent operation) vs. Radio listeners felt Nixon won
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What did this suggest about TV debates?
Style is as important as substance
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Why can debates help the younger candidates with less experience?
They appear more legitimate and Presidential
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What did the 1976 TV debates teach future candidates?
Don't make verbal errors, will be repeated by media/news.
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Who made the error in 1976?
Ford said there was no Soviet Union rule in the East (Carter won)
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How did Reagan have an advantage in the 1980s debates?
Film star - more confident and relaxed in front of cameras
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How did Reagan close a debate?
Asking questions to audience like "Are you better off now than 4 years ago?" (worked against incumbent Carter)
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When was the most recent debates to have 3 candidates and who are they?
Clinton, Bush and Perot in 1992
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Who was considered to win the first debate? Who won the election?
Perot largely won first debate - got good coverage. However Clinton favourite throughout, wins election
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Why was 2000 so controversial?
Very close - Gore won popular vote by 500,000 votes, but Bush won Electoral college
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How did Gore behave in debates?
Sighing and interrupting - so Bush gained
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Why was Obama's 2012 performance at the first debate so different to 2008s?
He seemed tired and bored - most felt he lost first debate
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Why are debates probably not very impactful?
Late in the year so most decided, they just reinforce held beliefs- about 10% undecided (could be 4%) and these won't matter if they're in solid states
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What are the different types of campaign ads?
Positive or attack
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What's the famous 1964 attack ad?
"Daisy" on Goldwater (from LBJ) that suggested nuclear war could begin with Goldwater while the country would be safe with Johnson
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What's the famous 1984 positive ad?
"Prouder, Better, Stronger" - for Reagan, reinforcing his work already with patriotic, happy scenes
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What was the divide of positive to attack ads in 2012?
130,000 positive to 880,000 negative
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There's no evidence to prove ads work - how does 2004 prove this?
Kerry ran 200,000 more ads than Bush and still lost
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When did an advert backfire?
Romney (2012) accused Obama of sending car jobs overseas, but manufacturers publicly disagreed
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How did Obama have a headstart in 2012?
As incumbent he was already nominated but Romney needed to be officially nominated at Convention
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How did Romney's stance change from primaries to Presidential race?
He was significantly more conservative during primaries to attract base, while moderate at race to have wider appeal to nation
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How did Romney's wealth cause him problems?
Pressured to release tax returns - had only paid 14% tax rate on huge wealth
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What was the 2012 'October surprise' and how did it affect the P race?
Hurricane Sandy - Obama responded well, gave him a boost
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What was the 2016 'October surprise'?
Comey released letter reopening FBI investigation into Clinton's emails
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Examples of failing companies that got bail outs from Obama?
Billions given to General Motors and Chrysler
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Why did giving money to car industry help in key states?
Swing state Ohio = 1 in 8 jobs related to car industry (Romney had disagreed with plan)
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What's a 'get out the vote' campaign?
Very few swing voters, it's about getting your party's base out to vote (need the turnout of your party)
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What was Obama's analytics project name and what did it do?
Project Narwhal - targeted emails, they were tailored to interests of receiver
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Voting Age Population vs. Voting Eligible Population?
Turnout is measured on the number of people over 18 or the number of those eligible to vote over 18
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What makes someone not eligible to vote?
Not citizen, criminal
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What was 2008 turnout?
62.3% VEP
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Why does divided gov make it hard at elections?
Voters have to work out who to blame - president or congress majority party
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What's political efficacy?
How much impact a voter feels they'll have on the final result
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Why is political efficacy so low in the US?
Very few competitive states so lots of wasted votes (winner-takes-all) and wealthy donors give impression money gives the power
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Where's the highest turnout?
In swing states (Ohio 71% vs Texas 42%)
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What can alienate voters within their party?
The negative attack ads - discourages voters within a party
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How does a two party system create political efficacy?
If not interested in two main parties, they will have little impact with vote. (1992 Perot - 5% turnout spike from previous year)
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What's voter fatigue?
Too many elections, get fed up of voting. Presidential (4), Congress (2) and some states hold state and local on odd number years
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What's hapathy?
The idea voters are reasonably content these days, as basic needs are covered
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Why aren't elections accessible?
Open 7am to 8pm on Tuesday and difficult registration
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Why is registering to vote different to most countries?
It's voluntary
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Why did the number of AA registered in the South rocket from 1960 to 1970?
The 1965 Voting Act blocked literacy tests
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What changed in 1993 in regards to registering to vote?
Must be allowed to register by mail
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What was added to voting in 2002?
Provisional ballots - officials check if it's eligible afterwards
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Why are registration deadlines restrictive?
Often close 25-30 days before election - people become most interested in the election in final weeks
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What are young voters often restricted by for registration?
Often have to re-register when you move house, and they are much less likely to be settled
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What proof is there allowing registration on election day improves turnout?
in 2012 11 states and DC allowed it, turnout was average 12% higher
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What 2013 decision undermines 1965 Voting Act?
Shelby County v. Holder (2013)
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Who does photo ID affect?
Poor, minority voters
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Why is photo ID not necessary to prevent voting fraud?
It rarely happens - Bush had 5yr investigation into voter fraud and little evidence was found
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What's differential turnout or abstention?
It's the varying levels of turnout/abstention between social groups
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Who did the drop in AA turnout affect in 2016?
Worked against H.Clinton
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How much did young voter turnout increase from 2000 to 2012?
From 40% to 50%
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What's the gap between under 50k and under 75k, what was it previously?
Has been 20% but now 15% (less of a factor)
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By how much are eligible white voters decreasing and who does this benefit?
8% less white than 20yrs ago (benefits D - minorities on increase)
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What's the Democratic project in Texas?
Battleground Texas - getting Hispanics to register, could be majority ethnicity in 10yrs
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Why is the Southern Strategy not really working for Republicans now?
White population of US decreasing - was 90% in the 1960s, now 72%
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What's a split ticket?
Voting for different parties for different seats in the same election
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What's a straight ticket?
All the same party
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How does it compare to UK?
Lords unelected, PM indirectly elected and local elections are on different years - not an opportunity
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What did America seem to prefer in 70s and 80s with split gov?
Republican President for foreign policy and Democrat Congress for welfare (Reagan Democrats)
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What's cognitive madisonianism?
Like James Madison, consciously splitting ticket as they feel divided government is superior (very unlikely)
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How can US candidates distance themselves from party?
They run their own campaigns, ads, team. Regional differences show this
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What are regional differences in candidates?
Southern Democrats often against gun reform, tougher immigration policies
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Why are incumbents likely to be reelected?
Got a record - been bringing home the bacon
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Proof that split ticketing is ending?
2016 - all states that voted R for President, voted R for Senate (same for D)
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Why doesn't divided government always come from split tickets?
Wasted votes from gerrymandering and winner-takes-all
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What has lead to more straight tickets?
Ideological gap has grown so people unlikely to support opposite parties (much less overlap)
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Other cards in this set

Card 2


What factors are sociological?


Class, age, race, region, gender and religion

Card 3


What's the short term voting model?


Preview of the front of card 3

Card 4


What are the rational choice model factors?


Preview of the front of card 4

Card 5


What's socialisation?


Preview of the front of card 5
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