LO 3.A.1:Explain the core American beliefs, values, and norms that define the relationship between citizens and government and citizens with each other. Core ideals among the American population include but are not limited to liberty, unity, popular sovereignty, a love for freedom, equal opportunity, and the will to progress through difficult times. Many of these ideals were derived from John Locke and put into the Constitution, and to this day govern the U.S.
LO 3.A.2:Evaluate the influence of various factors in political attitudes and socialization. Most political socialization stems from family. The ideals that an individual’s family holds are very likely to be passed onto that individual, for moral, logical, or philosophical reasons. This of course, depends on the family’s political history as well. For example, a family of farmers in Idaho that are all Christian are going to hold more conservative values than an urban family of artists living in Los Angeles.
LO 4.A.1:Evaluate the impact that public opinion and scientific polling have on elections and policy debates. Over time, public opinion has played a huge role in influencing the new voters alike and Congress in making political decisions. Polling of the public must be conducted carefully however; the results might lead to a misrepresentation of what the American population actually does think. For example, the order of a question matters (one party might be trying to bash another’s political views) or the size of the population (an isolated population vs. a larger non-isolated one). These polls reflect what the majority of the public wants to see happen or change, so Congress generally consents to the majority opinion.
LO 3.B.1: Analyze how political culture influences the formation, goals, and implementation of public policy. Political culture stems from ideals. A large number of individuals sharing the same ideals ultimately manifest this political culture. People with more liberal views tend to seek change and total equality, and social programs with the assistance of the federal government in order to make so possible. People with more conservative views tend to be more traditional in that change should be carefully accounted for, everyone should have to work for what they want, and that the federal government should stay out of everyone’s personal affairs.
LO 3.C.1:Compare how political ideologies vary on the role of government in regulating the marketplace. Liberal ideals tend to want a more regulated market, meaning: allow the federal government to intervene on its own will to “level” the playing field. Conversely, conservative ideals to want a more open market, and that everyone should do what they best can in order to build their own success, with little government intervention.
LO 3.C.2:Compare how political ideologies vary with regard to the role of government in addressing social issues. Liberal ideals tend to want more equal treatment for all, regardless of personal conditions. For example, illegal citizens should be able to acquire social welfare. Conservative ideals tend to want equality in that everybody is putting in their amount of work. For example, illegal citizens shouldn’t be able to acquire social welfare until they’ve become legal citizens, or at least have obtained a green card.
LO 4.D.1:Summarize the voting rights protections in the Constitution and in legislation. The Constitution and legislation are pretty straightforward with voting rights. One must be at least eighteen years of age and a legal U.S. citizen. During the early twentieth century, the nineteenth amendment was added to the Constitution which allowed for women to vote in political elections. Regardless of race, all citizens that meet the requirements are allowed the freedom to vote, so no prejudices exist within the process.
LO 4.D.2:Analyze the roles that individual choice and state laws play in voter turnout in elections. Individuals play a large role in voter turnout and what the state allows for them to do. Many younger people have become politically apathetic, and as a result don’t vote. Some states have offered public transportation for those who lack their own vehicle; however natural occurrences like harsh weather have proven to stop people from coming to the voting site. Other states might have an overwhelmingly large support for one political party, so voters of other parties feel alienated to vote for whom they want to win.
LO 4.D.3:Analyze U.S. voter turnout and compare it with that in other democracies. The low voter turnout in the U.S. is disappointing to say the least. Other democracies such as the absolute form in ancient Greece, allowed people to directly elect their officials by majority vote. The U.S. has nearly come to absolute democracy, yet so many people are apathetic of the freedom they’re given. Democracy is such an effective form of government, but the vast majority of American youth take this freedom for granted, so it seems as if we’re almost worst off than we were fifty years ago.
LO 4.D.4:Explain the factors that influence voter choices. Multiple factors influence voter decisions, especially for Independent voters. Social connectedness, political mobilization from party candidates, political socialization from an individual’s family, the stances that candidates take on certain issues, candidates’ views’ on the economy, the location an individual lives in (urban vs. rural), the reality to the individual of the election (if the election isn’t very competitive), and personal benefits for the individual.
LO 4.D.5:Compare different models of voting behavior. Voting behavior for the 2001 election between Bush Jr. and Al Gore was vastly different than the 2008 election between McCain and Obama. The vast majority of the U.S. in 2001 voted Republican, with the exception of a few coastal states. Conversely, in 2008, most the U.S. voted Democrat, with the exception of some of the more rural states.
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