Is This Any Way to Run a Democratic Election

Author: Stephen J. Wayne
Publisher: Routledge
ISBN: 1351383809
Format: PDF, ePub
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The 2016 elections are over, but the debate over the fairness and accuracy of our electoral process has never been more contentious. Hacking, fake news, a 'rigged system,' voter ID challenges, Super PACs, and an Electoral College defying the popular vote count all lead to a common question and concern: Is this any way to run a democratic election? New to the Sixth Edition New data and timely illustrations from the 2016 elections. Social media (Facebook, YouTube, Twitter) and their impact. Fake news vs. more objective and traditional election news coverage. Election integrity in the face of hacking, rumoring, and instantaneous news. Money—the role of Super PACs and billionaire donors as well as candidates. Updates and refinements to pedagogical features including chapter introductions, end of chapter exercises, and online references in the suggested readings.

Is This Any Way to Run a Democratic Government

Author: Stephen J. Wayne
Publisher: Georgetown University Press
ISBN: 9781589013490
Format: PDF, Docs
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Has our system of checks and balances between the three branches of our federal government undergone changes for good or ill over the years since the Constitution was set as the cornerstone of our nation? How stand our political traditions, our personal freedoms, our purported equality, our sense of governance "of, by, and for the people"? Are we the democratic nation we set out to be, or do we have a distance to go to achieve this ideal? Alternatively, is approaching a democratic ideal desirable today in the light of the smaller, more integrated, and dangerous world in which we live? Is This Any Way to Run a Democratic Government? examines the theory and practice of American democracy and the dichotomy that currently exists between them. The contributors assess both the reasons—and the consequences—of this division between the theory of democracy and how it is played out in actuality. Focusing on the here and now, this book is about the institutions, process, and politics of government: how well they work; whether they meet the criteria for a viable democratic system; and the extent to which they contribute to good public policy. As we begin the 21st century, with rancorous political partisanship and threats to domestic security and tranquility at an all-time high, Is This Any Way to Run a Democratic Government? asks us to think seriously about the state of our much-heralded democracy, and whether or not our political system can respond to the pressing needs of a new era without jeopardizing the basic values and beliefs that underlie its very foundation.

Electoral Integrity and Political Regimes

Author: Holly Ann Garnett
Publisher: Routledge
ISBN: 1315315106
Format: PDF, ePub, Docs
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Following a normative approach that suggests international norms and standards for elections apply universally, regardless of regime type or cultural context, this book examines the challenges to electoral integrity, the actors involved, and the consequences of electoral malpractice and poor electoral integrity that vary by regime type. It bridges the literature on electoral integrity with that of political regime types. Looking specifically at questions of innovation and learning, corruption and organized crime, political efficacy and turnout, the threat of electoral violence and protest, and finally, the possibility of regime change, it seeks to expand the scholarly understanding of electoral integrity and diverse regimes by exploring the diversity of challenges to electoral integrity, the diversity of actors that are involved and the diversity of consequences that can result. This text will be of key interest to scholars, students and practitioners of electoral studies, and more broadly of relevance to comparative politics, international development, political behaviour and democracy, democratization, and autocracy.

Against Elections

Author: David Van Reybrouck
Publisher: Seven Stories Press
ISBN: 1609808118
Format: PDF, ePub, Mobi
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A small book with great weight and urgency to it, this is both a history of democracy and a clarion call for change. "Without drastic adjustment, this system cannot last much longer," writes Van Reybrouck, regarded today as one of Europe's most astute thinkers. "If you look at the decline in voter turnout and party membership, and at the way politicians are held in contempt, if you look at how difficult it is to form governments, how little they can do and how harshly they are punished for it, if you look at how quickly populism, technocracy and anti-parliamentarianism are rising, if you look at how more and more citizens are longing for participation and how quickly that desire can tip over into frustration, then you realize we are up to our necks." Not so very long ago, the great battles of democracy were fought for the right to vote. Now, Van Reybrouck writes, "it's all about the right to speak, but in essence it's the same battle, the battle for political emancipation and for democratic participation. We must decolonize democracy. We must democratize democracy." As history, Van Reybrouck makes the compelling argument that modern democracy was designed as much to preserve the rights of the powerful and keep the masses in line, as to give the populace a voice. As change-agent, Against Elections makes the argument that there are forms of government, what he terms sortitive or deliberative democracy, that are beginning to be practiced around the world, and can be the remedy we seek. In Iceland, for example, deliberative democracy was used to write the new constitution. A group of people were chosen by lot, educated in the subject at hand, and then were able to decide what was best, arguably, far better than politicians would have. A fascinating, and workable idea has led to a timely book to remind us that our system of government is a flexible instrument, one that the people have the power to change.

Institutions of American Democracy

Author: Joel D. Aberbach
Publisher: Oxford University Press
ISBN: 0199883955
Format: PDF, ePub, Docs
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The presidency and the agencies of the executive branch are deeply interwoven with other core institutions of American government and politics. While the framers of the Constitution granted power to the president, they likewise imbued the legislative and judicial branches of government with the powers necessary to hold the executive in check. The Executive Branch, edited byJoel D. Aberbach and Mark A. Peterson, examines the delicate and shifting balance among the three branches of government, which is constantly renegotiated as political leaders contend with the public's paradoxical sentiments-yearning for strong executive leadership yet fearing too much executive power, and welcoming the benefits of public programs yet uneasy about, and indeed often distrusting, big government. The Executive Branch, a collection of essays by some of the nation's leading political scientists and public policy scholars, examines the historical emergence and contemporary performance of the presidency and bureaucracy, as well as their respective relationships with the Congress, the courts, political parties, and American federalism. Presidential elections are defining moments for the nation's democracy-by linking citizens directly to their government, elections serve as a mechanism for exercising collective public choice. After the election, however, the work of government begins and involves elected and appointed political leaders at all levels of government, career civil servants, government contractors, interest organizations, the media, and engaged citizens. The essays in this volume delve deeply into the organizations and politics that make the executive branch such a complex and fascinating part of American government. The volume provides an assessment from the past to the present of the role and development of the presidency and executive branch agencies, including analysis of the favorable and problematic strategies, and personal attributes, that presidents have brought to the challenge of leadership. It examines the presidency and the executive agencies both separately and together as they influence-or are influenced by-other major institutions of American government and politics, with close attention to how they relate to civic participation and democracy.

The Routledge Handbook of Elections Voting Behavior and Public Opinion

Author: Justin Fisher
Publisher: Routledge
ISBN: 1317494806
Format: PDF, ePub, Mobi
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The study of elections, voting behavior and public opinion are arguably among the most prominent and intensively researched sub-fields within Political Science. It is an evolving sub-field, both in terms of theoretical focus and in particular, technical developments and has made a considerable impact on popular understanding of the core components of liberal democracies in terms of electoral systems and outcomes, changes in public opinion and the aggregation of interests. This handbook details the key developments and state of the art research across elections, voting behavior and the public opinion by providing both an advanced overview of each core area and engaging in debate about the relative merits of differing approaches in a comprehensive and accessible way. Bringing geographical scope and depth, with comparative chapters that draw on material from across the globe, it will be a key reference point both for advanced level students and researchers developing knowledge and producing new material in these sub-fields and beyond. The Routledge Handbook of Elections, Voting Behavior and Public Opinion is an authoritative and key reference text for students, academics and researchers engaged in the study of electoral research, public opinion and voting behavior.

Vital Signs

Author: David A. Dulio
Publisher: Brookings Institution Press
ISBN: 9780815797906
Format: PDF, Kindle
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It was the best of elections; it was the worst of elections. The 2004 presidential contest mobilized a record number of voters, with 121 million Americans showing up at the polls. But in many eyes, the 2004 race also plumbed new depths. It was the most expensive presidential election in history, with a price tag of $2.2 billion. It was also marked by unprecedented negativity—for example, both George W. Bush and John Kerry came under fire for their activities during the Vietnam War, which ended three decades ago. In V ital Signs, David Dulio and Candice Nelson analyze the Bush and Kerry campaigns and use them as the springboard for a broader exploration of the current U.S. campaign system and its strengths and weaknesses. The book addresses four key issues: Who's in charge of modern campaigns? How effective are the key players? What role does money play? And are campaigns being conducted in an ethical manner? In answering these questions, Dulio and Nelson draw on a wide range of sources, including focus groups, interviews with campaign professionals, and a unique dataset based on multiple surveys of political consultants, party operatives, and the public. The culmination of the seven-year "Improving Campaign Conduct" project, Vital Signs should become an integral part of the debate about American campaigns and elections.

Electoral Dysfunction

Author: Victoria Bassetti
Publisher: New Press, The
ISBN: 1595588213
Format: PDF, Kindle
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Imagine a country where the right to vote is not guaranteed by the Constitution, where the candidate with the most votes loses, and where paperwork requirements and bureaucratic bungling disenfranchise millions. You’re living in it. If the consequences weren’t so serious, it would be funny. An eye-opening, fact-filled companion to the forthcoming PBS documentary starring political satirist and commentator Mo Rocca, Electoral Dysfunction illuminates a broad array of issues, including the Founding Fathers’ decision to omit the right to vote from the Constitution—and the legal system’s patchwork response to this omission; the battle over voter ID, voter impersonation, and voter fraud; the foul-ups that plague Election Day, from ballot design to contested recounts; the role of partisan officials in running elections; and the anti-democratic origins and impact of the Electoral College. The book concludes with a prescription for a healthy voting system by Heather Smith, president of Rock the Vote. Published in the run-up to the 2012 election, Electoral Dysfunction is for readers across the political spectrum who want their votes to count.