Monthly Archives: May 2013

2012 Congressional Results

According to results posted by the Clerk of the House of Representatives, the voting results for Congress in 2012 were as follows:

Democratic Party candidates – 59,626,252 votes
Republican Party candidates – 58,212,650 votes
Libertarian Party candidates – 1,365,721 votes
Independent candidates – 486,887 votes
Green Party candidates – 369,221 votes
Others – 2,285,289 votes

Yet, even with the Democratic candidates receiving more votes than Republican candidates on a nationwide basis, the Republicans still held the House of Representatives by a 234 to 201 seat count.  What matters more:  The number of votes on a nationwide basis or the number of seats won by a party?

Federalism: Where Do You Stand?

Federalism is the sharing and distribution of power and resources between the federal government and the states.  You can also add “…and the local governments” when you discuss the separation of powers between the levels of government.  For the purposes of this discussion, let’s examine two different views.  The first view, the decentralist view contends that the Constitution is a compact among the sovereign states which gave the central government a limited framework to work from.  Those who oppose such a framework would be centralists.  Centralists see the Constitution as the supreme law of the land and that the states are not the representative of the people.  Centralists claim that the representative of the people is the national government.

Where do you stand on the idea of federalism?

Media Bias

Michele Bachmann’s Retirement

Congresswoman Michele Bachmann (R) of Minnesota (Photo Credit:  Congressional Page-Congresswoman Bachmann)

Congresswoman Michele Bachmann (R) of Minnesota (Photo Credit: Congressional Page-Congresswoman Bachmann)

Congresswoman Michele Bachmann announced that she will not be seeking re-election to Congress in 2014.  The former 2012 GOP Presidential candidate and winner of the 2011 Iowa Straw Poll for President, was considered to be a leader amongst Tea Party supporters. 

Current Events Quiz

This week’s quiz is live in MySearchLab.  Good Luck!

Nominating Conventions vs. Primaries

The following is the opening paragraph from a column written by the Washington Post Editorial Board dated May 20, 2013.

More than a quarter of Virginia’s electorate considers itself Republican, which translates to almost 1 million voters. Of that number, about 8,000 — less than 1 percent — showed up at the party’s convention in Richmond over the weekend to choose the GOP candidates in this November’s races for governor, lieutenant governor and attorney general.

As I have written before, most states have the conventional open and closed primary systems are used. In each case, a nominee is chosen by the public for each party. In open states, party affiliation is not a prerequisite for voting in either party’s primary. In closed primary states, you can only vote in the party primary under the label you are registered.

Why then would a state want to have a convention, which is more “closed” than a closed primary?

For more information about the Virginia Republican Party Convention, read this Washington Post column.

What Makes A Negative Ad…Negative?

Not all negative political ads have to be accompanied by the requisite gloom and doom music and grainy black and white photos of a candidate.  Take this ad, for example, run by an independent organization (independent expenditure) for a US Senate race in Utah.

What makes this ad, “negative”?