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11/13/10 5:57 PM I. Money and Elections • High cost of campaigns o 2008: $24 billion pres. Candidates  Obama-McCain $1 billion • Federal Election Campaign Act (1971+74) o In response to Watergate Scandal o Limited spending by campaigns] ** o Limited campaign donations ] * o Mandated public disclosure of contributions o established Fed. elections commission to enforce. o Created Fed financing of election. Gov’t/ public $$ would match what individuals donated to campaign.***  comes with spending limit o Purpose: To level playing field between wealthy + nonwealthy candidates. • Buckley c. Valeo (1976) o SC: regulating campaign $ is = regulating free speech o protected under 1st amendment o *Congress does have a compelling interest in preventing corruption of government officials => so limiting contributions is unconstitutional. o ** Strikes down limit on spending of campaigns as unconstitutional -> no danger of corruption o ***Except if you decide to participate in fed. Matching funds program. Spending limits CAN be imposed • Bipartisan Campaign Reform Act (2002) o Ban on soft money (major loophole): unlimited donations to parties for “party building activities” – like voter mobilization + issue ads educating voter. COULD NOT be given directly to candidates. Indirectly helps candidates. o Hard money contribution limits doubled $1000->$200 • Getting Around the Soft $ Band o Bundling- one individual asks 100 people for $1000 for Bush campaign; Bush 2000: “pioneer” -$100,000  2004: bundled $200,000 ~ "ranger"  Technically legal but violated spirit of campaign finance laws. o 527 groups: organizations that can raise + spend unlimited  

Amounts on issue ads*- cannot say vote for or don’t vote for. Ex. Swiftboat veterans for truth


o Citizens United v. FEC (2010)  Struck down ban on spending by corporations in elections 20 days before election  Corporation’s free speech= person’s free speech I. MEDIA Functions + motivations of press • Linkage institutions  convey info. between citizens and government • Corporate ownership o Consolidation of ownership o Raise their profile through increase in ad revenue (prominence ratings circulations) o Effect on News Coverage  INCREASE Soft (lifestyle, consumer advocacy, celebrities stories) vs. Hard news (substantive political context.  INCREASE in info-tainment  news may not report on wrongdoing by parent company o New Media/ Internet  NYT, Talking Points Memo Blog, different kinds of journalism  readers play a role they give tips- take on assignment (sifting through government docs, find important elements) that blog give them. CROWD SOURCING- readers know more than you do  less constrained by time and space ongoing dispatcher  synthesizes work of other sources, link to those other sources. LOCAL JOURNALISM, LOCAL SOURCES about US attorneys Media and Public Opinion • Agenda setting: more media cover a story, the more important the public regards this issue. o Ex. 1990’s- nat’l crime rates declines but media INCREASED focus on crime related stories. • Priming- if media emphasizes an issue constantly, politicians will be evaluated on how well they deal with it. o Ex. 1990’s- Politician: “I am tough on crime” • Framing: media emphasizes some aspects of issue and deemphasizes others to promote a specific interpretation of the issue. Politicians will often try to affect* o ex. Healthcare reform


LOW costs for Americans vs. greedy insurance companies, HIGH access  Step toward socialized medicine gov’t intrusion into lives too expensive. Media Coverage of Elections • Patterson: elections tend to be covered by the media as a gameo Candidates are depicted as players, all actions portrayed as strategic action with goal to win the game. o Horse race coverage- media constantly emphasize polls, who is ahead and who is behind instead of telling about their issues. • Miscast + Institution o Media replaced parties in elections. Instead of parties talking, it’s all media. o What role is media expected to play?  Inspect candidates’ platform  Determine electability  Inform voters about candidates  What is at stake in choosing 1 over another o Why is the media ill-suited for this role?  More concerned with profit, ratings  “good, new, sensational, juicy” news stories.  May be trivial, unimportant stories.  Concerned with new stories, that have novelty, and are interesting RATHER THAN political values.  Ex. Edmund Muskie (1972) Democratic candidate  “crying” incident- started to cry in defending his wife.  Media focused on excessively: Emotional, instable, support died out. Derailed his candidacy.  Trivial  Significant impact on election  Can’t be held accountable by public like parties  In theory, citizens boycott the channel but never really happened. • Sound bites: actual time candidate shown speaking on news DECLINES o 1968- 42.3s o 2004- under 8 s. o instead: replaced by voices/ interpretation of journalists who tell the public, here is what the politicians said.


o Obama: YES WE CAN o Exception {lengthy speeches}- web, cable news networks- CNN, MSNBC • Photo- ops ~ shown in positive scenarios o With present military/ veterans  Except, 1988- GWB criticizes Dukakis for being weak in military  19992 campaign GWB vs. Clinton- grocery shopping and out of touch with technology. o Environmental causes, fostering some interests o With average Americans o With their family, kids, elderly • Televised debates o 1st 1960: JFK + Nixon  importance of image o heavily prepared for o style • INCREASE usage of soft news formats vs. hard news programs o More viewers o Easier questions -Less attentive to politics o Larry King/ meet the press Interest Groups in Sec. 2


Interest Groups

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I. Interest Groups • Introduction o Definition: organization with specific policy goals that enter policy process at various points. o vs. Parties:  run candidates win elections  IG’s – affect policy  focus on specific policy o Interest groups vs. Social Movement  Work within institutions, established channels (lobby Congress, Court cases) ex. NAACP litigation  Characteristics of Social Movements  Civil Rights Movements: boycotts, marches, strikes  Transforms consciousness • Feels like they can create change • Start to view the system as wrong, unjust, system as illegitimate.  Changes behavior: • Collective behavior that are defiant and disruptive. ex. Strikes and riots • Disruption: withhold their contribution from institutions  More significant the contribution, larger effect on system • Free Rider Problem o Potential members may not join  incentive to free ride on works of others. o IG’s often work for collective goods- can’t be denied to nonmembers  Ex. Clean water and air- Environment issues you have an interest but you do not do anything about it. •


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Free Rider Problem: SAVE THE WHALES • To overcome problem, groups get o Selective benefits/incentive  go to members only  Material incentives- discounts, T-shirts, umbrellas, totebags o Social selective- meeting, conferences, online forums o Expressive Incentive- participate on the cause may bring about personal satisfaction Modern Interest Groups • “explosion” • Interest groups have always been around o Abolitionist groups • 1930s- The New Deal Coalition o Labor unions, Democratic allies 1960’s-1970s • no of the groups increased sharply decline of political parties • IGS filled the void • Growing middle class o $ and leisure time to contribute to groups Expanded government: • New groups form in response to government policies: in favor and in opposition New technology • Direct mail + email • Internet + email Congress’s subcommittees • Increase access to key governing institutions • Courts also made it easier for groups to file lawsuits. 1960’s• Civil Rights Movements; Anti-war protests; Consumer- advocacy groups; environmental groups; women’s + gay rights • “Rights revolution” 1970’s-1980s • Conservative/ Religious groups • Pro-life • Business organized too: Anti-regulation


Federalist #10 Faction- a group with a common interest of passion “extended republic” • control the effects of factions ( it cannot be eliminated) • many groups will appear and be in competition with one another Groups compete with one another for influence in government (Pluralist view) • Elite view- difference in resources available in different kinds of groups ( this is a negative) o Business groups have advantage that public interest groups may not have Interest Groups’ Activities A. Lobbying • Communication directed by government officials especially legislators • Cultivating access • Providing information to legislators • “Political information”- public’s potential response to proposed legislation • Lobbyists can suggest policy ideas • Lobbyists may also help form legislative strategy to win support for a ill B. Electoral activities • Campaign donations • PACs (Political Action Committees) • Gain access • Endorse candidates and prepare voters’ guides. C. Litigation • Courts o Influence judicial appointment  Federal justices appointed by President and Senate approves. o Sponsor litigation, provide attorneys, provide amicus briefs to courts o NAACP used the courts  Separate but unequal candidates  Brown v. Board of Ed. Of 1954 D. Mobilize the public: • Changing public opinion; get members and public to contact policy makers.


• Often used by groups without sufficient resources to access high levels of government


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Poli Sci Notes  

Notes from the last three days. Sorry, I couldn't send it via email they said the file was too big because I recorded her.

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