Partisan alignment, parties, core voters and socioeconomic factors influencing voting behaviour

Why is voting behaviour in the USA regarded as much more complex than in other democracies?
Because of the variables involved and the fragmented and changing electorate to which the candidates have to appeal
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What does the party identification model stress?
The importance of partisanship in explaining voting behaviour
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What are the long-term factors as to why individuals develop strong attachments to parties?
Family socialisation and socioeconomic status
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What do these long-term factors result in?
Individuals not changing their vote from election to election, regardless of changing candidates and issues
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What do these voters with long-term attachments make up?
The core voters or the base of the parties
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What do high levels of partisanship lead to?
Stable and fairly predictable patterns of voting behaviour
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What is voting behaviour closely related to?
A voter's perception of his or her group interests and whether these are best represented by Republicans or Democrats
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What factors of each party have made diverse groups of voters attracted to them?
Each party's history, ideology and policies
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What type of party is the Democratic Party perceived more as?
The more liberal party
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What groups of people are associated with the Democratic Party?
The less affluent and minorities
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Where was the Democratic Party most popular until the 1960s?
The South
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Why is the Democratic Party no longer associated with the South?
Due to the breakdown of the New Deal Coalition
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What position does the Democratic Party take on issues and policies?
A liberal position
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What does this position result in?
The attraction of more intellectual and progressive voters to its voting coalition
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What type of party is the Republican Party perceived more as?
The more conservative party
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What groups of people are associated with the Republican Party?
The richer and the WASPs (White Anglo-Saxon Protestant)
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What do the Republican Party's policies favour?
Business, free markets and fiscal and social conservatism
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Who does the Republican Party attract to its voting coalition?
More wealthy, white, rural and suburban voters
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What is the correlation between income levels and voting behaviour?
More affluent voters tend to vote Republican and less affluent tend to vote Democrats
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What is an example of occupational differences in voting?
Unionised car workers are more likely to vote Democrat than business executives
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What do the occupational differences relate to?
The economic policies of the two parties
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Who were the first immigrants to the USA?
The WASP settlers
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Who were the second wave of immigrants to the USA?
Europeans
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Who have been the most recent group of settlers to the USA?
Asians and Latin Americans
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Which group of people have been the most overwhelmingly solid group of Democrat voters and since when?
African-Americans since the 1930s
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In the 1930s, who had the black vote mainly gone to and since when?
The Republicans since the days of Abraham Lincoln
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Why did the black vote realign to support the Democrats?
In response to the policies of Franklin Roosevelt
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What is the usual percentage of black voters voting Democrats at each election?
Over 90%
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Where is the black vote heavily concentrated?
In certain states, districts and multi-ethnic cities
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What is the first reason as to why the black vote is so heavily Democratic?
The New Deal and Great Society legacy of activist government and welfare programmes, benefitting poorer groups of voters
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What is the second reason as to why the black vote is so heavily Democratic?
The Democratic Party's support for the Civil Rights Movement and civil rights legislation
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What is the third reason as to why the black vote is so heavily Democratic?
The Democrats' support for, and extension of, affirmative action programmes
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What is the fourth reason as to why the black vote is so heavily Democratic?
Democratic black role models, including members of Congress, governors, mayors and the first black president
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What is the fifth reason as to why the black vote is so heavily Democratic?
The Republican Party's failure to support or represent black interests and its image as the white party supported by white voters
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How have the last 50 years seen increased mobilisation of the black vote?
Through the work of the nAtional Association of Coloured People (NAACP), Jesse Jackson's Rainbow Coalition and the Black Caucus in Congress
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What has been a problem for black voters?
The Republican Party ignores them because it cannot win their vote and the Democratic Party takes them for granted because it can
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How have the Republicans tried to attrat the votes of the black middle class?
Through economic and socially conservative policies, appealing to richer or religious black voters
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How much success has this attraction of black voters had and what is an example of this?
Very little success, as seen in the 95% vote for Obama in 2008
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What is the Hispanic vote now regarded as?
The sleeping giant of US politics
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Why is the Hispanic vote regarded as this?
As a result of a demographic change and with the Hispanic population as the USA's fastest growing minority
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Where are Hispanic voters concentrated?
In several key districts and states with large Electoral College votes, e.g. Florida
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What does the location of Hispanic votes mean?
They are politically significant and their votes are sought by both parties
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What do the Hispanic voters speak?
Most are Spanish speaking
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What percentage of Hispanic voters are Roman Catholic?
Over 70%
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What has their religion led to?
Vote switching from the Democrats to the Republicans over issues such as abortion
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Who do the majority of Hispanic voters vote for?
The Democratic Party
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Why do the majority of Hispanic voters vote this way?
For social rather than religious reasons
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What is an example of when many Hispanic voters were mobilised to vote?
Over the divisive issue of illegal immigration in 2008, when Obama won 66% of the Hispanic vote
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What does the Asian population represent?
A growing group of voters not united by language or culture, having their origins in a number of countries
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Which countries do the Asian voters originate from?
Vietnam, Japan and Korea
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What is an example of the Asian vote of 2004?
In the 2004 election, they votes 56% Democrat and 44% Republican
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Why is the USA unusual due to religion?
Religious and ethnic identity has strongly influenced voting behaviour
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Who does the WASP vote go to and why?
Always strongly Republican because the early white settlers were Protestant
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What kind of voters are Catholics?
Of Irish, Italian and Hispanic descent
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Who have Catholics historically identified with and why?
The Democratic Party as minorities
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Why did some Catholics switch votes in 2004?
They were attracted by the social conservatism of the Republicans on 'wedge' issues such as abortion and gay marriage
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What happened to the Catholic vote in 2008?
They voted Democrat in large numbers again
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Who do Jewish voters traditionally vote for?
The Democrats
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Why do Jewish voters usually vote this way?
Because of their minority status and liberal views and are usually active in support of pro-Israel candidates
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Where are the Jewish voters a key voting bloc?
New York and Florida
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What type of voters are the Christian fundamentalists?
The cultural and social conservatives and strongly Republican
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Where can Christian fundamentalists find voting guides?
On religious cable channels
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Where are Christian fundamentalist voters strong?
In the Bible belt, the South, small towns and rural areas
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What has the Christian fundamentalist voters influenced?
The Republican Party to alienate more moderate Republican voters who do not share their social conservatism
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What is an example of Christian fundamentalists in 2004 election?
In 2004, one in four voters were evangelical Christians and almost 80% voted for Bush
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Who are regular churchgoers likely to vote for?
Republicans
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Who are secular voers more likely to vote for?
Democrats
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Which gender are more likely to vote for Republicans?
Men
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Which gender are more likely to vote for Democrats?
Women
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Which gender turn out to vote the most?
Women
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How was the regcognition of the female vote relfected as important demographic groups of voters in 2004 and 2008?
The attention given to 'security moms' in 2004 and 'hockey moms' in 2008
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Why is gender not as strong as showing who they vote for as other characteristics?
Men and women can be rich or poor, black or white, liberal or conservative so it depends on their background more than the gender
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What is the first reason as to why women are more likely to vote Democrat?
Women are more pro-choice on abortion, more pro-gun control and anti-death penalty
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What is the second reason as to why women are more likely to vote Democrat?
Women place more emphasis on health, education and welfare issues and benefit from Democrat policies such as childcare
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What is the third reason as to why women are more likely to vote Democrat?
Women dislike much Republican social conservatism and hawkish views on foreign policy and place less emphasis on lower taxes than men
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What is the fourth reason as to why women are more likely to vote Democrat?
Women are more environmentally aware, wanting more regulation
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Is age a significant variable affecting voting behaviour?
No, there is little evidence to show this
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What age group are more likely to have a party identification?
Older voters
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What does party identification mean voters are more likely to do?
Turn out to vote
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What does this party identification of older voters mean the parties do?
They place an emphasis on the 'grey vote' and issues that affect older voters such as Medicare
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What characteristics do younger voters have?
They are more de-aligned and volatile and not reliable voters
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What campaigns tried to help these characteristics?
'Rock the Vote' campaigns
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What is an example of young voters in 2008?
In 2008, Obama won the votes of 68% of first-time voters and 66% of the 18-29 year old voters
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Is where a voter lives in the USA an important influence on their voting?
Yes
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What is it about the area of where someone lives that makes it important?
The different social and economic characteristics of states and areas within them
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Where were solidly Democratic until the 1960s?
The southern states
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Which party have been solidly supported by the southern states since the 1960s?
The Republican Party
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Where do people come from if they are more likely to vote Democrat?
The rust belt, the industrial states, the coastal states and the cities ('blue America')
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Where do people come from if they are more likely to vote Republican?
The Bible belt, the mountain states and the rural and suburban areas wihin the states ('red America')
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How is it easier to predict voting behaviour patterns?
If the characteristics of voters reinforce one another
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What is an example of a likely Republican voter?
A high-income, white, male, Protestant executive living in a Texas suburb
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What is an example of a likely Democrat voter?
A low-income, female, athiest, black waitress living in an inner city in Ohio
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When is voting behaviour harder to predict?
When there are cross-cutting identifications of voters
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Front

What does the party identification model stress?

Back

The importance of partisanship in explaining voting behaviour

Card 3

Front

What are the long-term factors as to why individuals develop strong attachments to parties?

Back

Preview of the front of card 3

Card 4

Front

What do these long-term factors result in?

Back

Preview of the front of card 4

Card 5

Front

What do these voters with long-term attachments make up?

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