Partisan de-alignment

What does an alternative model model stress about voting behaviour?
The increasing importance of short-term factors in explaining voting behaviour
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What does the process of de-alignment show?
Voters losing, or having weaker, party attachments
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What is the result of de-alignment?
These voters are more inclined to respond to specific candidates or issues than to vote on the basis of party loyalty
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What are the four things that increased de-alignment leads to?
To more volatility, a greater likelihood of ticket-splitting, increased numbers of 'swing' voters and more abstention
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What does this mean for the parties?
The parties must work harder to win votes, especially independents, as they can no longer rely on large numbers of core, aligned voters to always turn out and vote for them
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What are the three short-term (recency) factors influencing voting?
Candidate voting, issue voting and performance voting
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What characteristics of a candidate mean that an independent voter is more likely to vote for them?
The candidate's personality, image and experience
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Why dpes candidate voting occur more nowadays?
This is the age of media-dominated politics focusing on candidate-centred campaigns
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What is an example of candidate voting in the 2000 and 2004 elections?
A factor in Bush's wins in 2000 and 2004 was that voters liked him more than Gore (seen as wooden) and Kerry (seen as elitist)
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What was particularly important about Reagan in his 1980 and 1984 wins?
His image
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What was McCain and Obama seen as in the 2008 elections?
McCain was seen as too old and 'grumpy' and Obama waseen as the more impressive candidate
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Why are voters more likely to vote for candidates for their views on specific issues?
Because this is the age of single-issue politics, with economic issues usually being the most significant
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What was not the issue in 2004 elections?
'The economy, stupid' as in Bill Clinton's 1992 campaign
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What was the issue of 2004 elections?
Moral values were uppermost when 'wedge' issues such as abortion and gay marriage were used to energise the base of the Republican Party to vote
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What is the issue that is against the argument that moral issues have been important in influencing voters?
There is evidence of a backlash against religious right values and they may now be vote-losers rather than winners
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What is an example of when moral issues have not been as important in influencing voters?
In 2008, when a severe economic crisis linked to the Republicans reduced prominence for moral issues in the campaign
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What was the widespread sense among the electorate in 2008 and what did this help?
It was 'time for change' which helped Obama's win and McCain's loss
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What may voters vote on according to rational choice theories?
The performance or record of an incumbent or a future president
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What does retrospective voting suggest?
Voters make judgements on past performance and vote against politicians with a poor performance in office or they make a judgement on prospective performance
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What is an example of voters voting against politicians with a poor performance in office?
George H W Bush in 1992 after recession
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What is an example of voters voting for politicians on prospective performance?
Obama in 2008
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What may happen if voters are happy with the president's performance?
The incumbent may be elected to a second term in office
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What are two examples of an incumbent being elected for a second term?
Bill Clinton in 1996 due to the economic boom and George W Bush in 2004 for being the war president
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What is it that is argued about what voters are now more of?
Voters are now more educated and informed on political issues and make rational choices according to the candidates, the issues they support and the events of the time
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What do candidates rarely appeal to and why?
Party loyalty because they know they must reach out to influence the independent voters and those with a weak party identification in order to win
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What do US voters face as a result of the separation of powers and federalism?
They face a choice from a range of candidates, for several offices, on the same ballot paper on the same day
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What is voting the 'staight ticket'?
Voting for the same party for each office
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What is 'split-ticket' voting?
Voting for candidates for office from different parties on the same ballot paper at the same election
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Why do voters 'split their ticket'?
Because they can, voter de-alignment and the influence of different candidates and issues
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When was split-ticket voting high?
In the 1970s and 1980s
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What is an example of split-ticket voting?
In 1984, 55% of Democratic identifiers voted for Reagan but he was faced with a Democrat majority in the House
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What has happened to split-ticket voting in recent elections?
It has fluctuated
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What is the main consequence of split-ticket voting?
Divided government in Washington, leading to legislative gridlock
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Why may the outcome of split-ticket voting be positive for voters?
It can mean they get the best of both worlds through their votes
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What is an example of a positive outcome of split-ticket voting?
Voting for a Republican president can mean low taxes but strong defence and voting for a Democrat member of Congress can mean higher spending on welfare
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What does split-ticket voting help to prevent and why?
An 'elective dictatorship' because the voters' choices result in more effective checks and balances
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Other cards in this set

Card 2

Front

What does the process of de-alignment show?

Back

Voters losing, or having weaker, party attachments

Card 3

Front

What is the result of de-alignment?

Back

Preview of the front of card 3

Card 4

Front

What are the four things that increased de-alignment leads to?

Back

Preview of the front of card 4

Card 5

Front

What does this mean for the parties?

Back

Preview of the front of card 5
View more cards

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