Political Parties

What are political parties?
Organisations of like-minded people who come together in order to win political power so that they can put their ideologies into effect and achieve their collective policy goals
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What happened even though the Founding Fathers were suspicious of political parties?
Factions united into the Federalists and Anti-Federalists and a two-party system was born
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What did these factions later develop into?
The Democratic and Republican Parties
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What did these new parties demonstrate?
An ability to reinvent themselves in respone to changing circumsstances which continues to this day
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What is the first thing that the two US parties have a broad political consensus on that means they are described as similar?
The constitution and the political system it created
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What is the second thing that the two US parties have a broad political consensus on that means they are described as similar?
A capitalist economic system, with (greater or lesser) commitment to private enterprise and free markets
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What is the third thing that the two US parties have a broad political consensus on that means they are described as similar?
The 'dominant ideology' in the USA, with (greater or lesser) commitment to individualism, liberty, equality and the American Dream
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What are the two parties described as?
Pragmatic, 'big tent', catch-all internal coalitions
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What is the two parties aim at elections?
To maximise their vote in order to gain office rather than to put into practice an ideological blueprint or 'ism'
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What is alleged about the two parties?
They usually operate in the middle ground of politics, rarely straying out of this comfort zone
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What happens when a party moves outside the mainstream?
They are heavily defeated
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What are two examples of defeat from straying outside the mainstream?
The very conservative Republican Barry Goldwater in 1964 and the very liberal Democrat George McGovern in 1972
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What was the lesson learnt from straying outside the mainstream?
Parties must build broad coalitions of voting support to achieve electoral success
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What criticism do the parties get for taking this political position?
US parties offer 'fudged' positions without giving a clear choice to voters, creating the impression that they simply want to get into government rather than offering a coherent policy programme
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What is the old view towards the two main US parties?
They are almost indistinguishable
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What is the old view towards the main two parties viewed as today?
Very oversimplified
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What are the differences between the two parties in terms of?
Their ideologies, values and policies and their voting support
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Why is the choice to voters greater or lesser at different elections?
Depending on who the candidates are and which issues are dominant
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Other cards in this set

Card 2

Front

What happened even though the Founding Fathers were suspicious of political parties?

Back

Factions united into the Federalists and Anti-Federalists and a two-party system was born

Card 3

Front

What did these factions later develop into?

Back

Preview of the front of card 3

Card 4

Front

What did these new parties demonstrate?

Back

Preview of the front of card 4

Card 5

Front

What is the first thing that the two US parties have a broad political consensus on that means they are described as similar?

Back

Preview of the front of card 5
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