What are midterms elections?
-Midterms elections are held halfway through a Presidential term of office.
-They tell us the attitude of the electorate to Congress.
-What people might think of Presidents performance after two or possibly 6 years in office.
-Its an warning shot to the President
-Its unusual on these occasions for the Presidents party not to lose a few seats
'What is the significance of the pre/invisible pri
intro: One of the cornerstones of a democracy is the holding of regular fair elections.-The rights of citizens to be represented and to vote was entrenched in the constitution of the USA, with the exception of women, who had to wait over a century for that right
.-And their groups such as ex-slaves and Native Americans became citizens, they too were offered the right to vote. 1. If federal elections have become 'non-stop', nothing shows this better than the so-called pre or invisible primaries.-The importance of these has been recognizes recently, whereby Presidential candidates effectively begin their campaigns up to four years before the general elections.-This is particularly true of candidates who are not incumbent Presidents, or not familiar to the public, and they will take every media opportunity to become well known.2. The crucial factor about these is that the candidates who have entered the primaries as favorites in public opinion polls have in nearly all cases gone on to win their party's nomination and this throws some doubt on the worth of the primaries.-This pattern did not happen for 2008, but threw ere many special factors about these elections.3 These 'invisible' primaries can greatly increase the length and cost of Presidential campaigns. By 2003, Bush had already spent well the official primary elections that began in January 2004.
What is Electoral College?
Voters are voting for electors from their state to vote in the Electoral College, selecting a President on their behalf.
The idea of electors is mentioned in the Constitution in Article 2 and Amendment 12 and represents the Founding Fathers' basic mistrust of allowing the people to vote directly for the President.
How does Electoral College work?
1. Each state will have the same number of electors as it has representatives in Congress.
- The smallest state will have a minimum of three votes in the Electoral College, and this can an issue. Washington DC, which is not a state, is allowed electors.
-The way that the electors are chosen in different states varies, but often is the party that chooses them at state conventions.
-No senator or congressman is allowed to be an elector.
- After the general election, they will meet in their own states in December to 'select' the state's choice of candidates for President and Vice-President.
What are Electoral College weaknesses?
Many of the states make it compulsory for the elctors to vote accoriding to the popular vote in that state, but not all of them do.
The big fear is that there may be a very close decision there, and that if just one or two can be persuaded to change their minds, then the whole result could change.
This did nearly happen in 2000, when the Electoral College vote boiled down to a difference of threww between the two candidates, and tumours dpread that the Democrats had changed the minds of three Republican electors.
When the contest is this close, many freat that Electoral College system might break down, although it hasnt done so yet.
- 48 states use the 'winnter takes all' voting systemThis means that Electoral College vote may not reflect the popular vote.There have been our occasions, including 2000, when the winner of the popular vote has gone on to lose the crusical Electoral College vote.
What is Electoral College strenght?
Electoral College contributes to the political stability of the nation by encouraging a two party system.
There can be no doubt that the Electoral College has encouraged and helps to maintain a two party system in the United States.
This is true simply because it is extremely difficult for a new or minor party to win enough popular votes in enough States to have a chance of winning the presidency.
Even if they won enough electoral votes to force the decision into the U.S. House of Representatives, they would still have to have a majority of over half the State delegations in order to elect their candidate - and in that case, they would hardly be considered a minor party.
What is the National Party Convention?
Intro: The primaries are followed in the election year by the National Party Nominating Conventions, where for the only time the two main parties put on a show of national unity.
-The traditional purpose of these used to be for the partt to select its candidate and to declare its party platform. It is the only real opportunity for the state parties to meet nationally.
-With the winning candidate known the events have becomes media circus, to give the party candidate the maximum publicity.
What is the point of National Party Convention?
1. The choose the party's 'ticket'; their presidential and vice presidential candidates. They approve the 'planks' that make up the party's platform. They also elect a national committee to organise the convention and to manage the party in the intervening period.
2. The rise of primaries and 'committed delegates' had meant that the winning candidate is normally known before the convention starts. The 'platform' has also become less of an issue as campaign have become more candidate-centered.
3. Parties use modern conventions to raise campaign finance, court the media and present a unified front.
When are the Congressional Elections?
House elections take place every 2 years in November.
They occurs in presidential election years (leap years) and in the middle of each presidential term (mid-term elections).
Senate elections also take place every 2 years. but only third of the Senate is up for election each time.
What is the point of Congressional Elections?
2. Congressional elections tend to be more focused on state issues and on the incumbents voting record in Congress than on national issues.
3. In 2010, incumbent liberal Democrat House member for California's 23 District, Lois Capps, was unchallenged in the primary but faced a challange from Republican Tom Watson in of Novemeber election. Capps was first elected to the House of Representatives in 1998