Updated in a new 14th edition, this book has been long considered the gold standard of political parties texts. It covers the historic 2008 Presidential campaign and election while looking ahead to assess what the shifting political winds have in store for the future of the major political parties and Americans' political views.
Table of Contents
Foreword by John H. Aldrich Preface Part 1: Parties and Party Systems Chapter 1: What Are Political Parties? The Three Parts of Parties The Party Organization The Party in Government The Party in the Electorate What Parties Do Electing Candidates Educating (or Propagandizing) Citizens Governing The Effects of Party Activity How Do Parties Differ from Other Political Groups? Parties Are Paramount in Elections They Have a Full-time Commitment to Political Activity They Mobilize Large Numbers They Endure They Serve as Political Symbols How the American Parties Developed The Founding of American Parties A National Two-Party System Emerges The Golden Age of the Parties The Progressive Reforms and Beyond What Do the Parties Stand For? Parties Are Shaped by Their Environment Voters and Elections Political Institutions Laws Governing Parties Political Culture The Broader Environment Chapter 2: The American Two-Party System The National Party System The 50 State Party Systems Measuring State Party Competition Limits on Competitiveness: Incumbency !And Other Reasons for Declining Competitiveness What Causes a Two-Party System? Institutional Forces "Dualist" Theories Social Consensus Theories Party Self-Protection (The Best Defense Is a Good Offense) Exceptions to the Two-Party Pattern Nonpartisan Elections Areas of One-Party Monopoly Third Parties Differences in Ideology Difference of Origins Differing Purposes What Difference Do They Make? The Rise of Independent Candidates Will the Two-Party System Continue? Part 2: The Political Party as an Organization Chapter 3: The State and Local Party Organizations What Is a "Strong" Party? State Regulation of the Parties Levels of Party Organization Local Party Committees State Central Committees The Legendary Party Machines How the Party Machines Developed How Machines Held on to Power Local Party Organizations Declined and Then Rebuilt Local Parties in the 1970s Local Parties Today: Richer and More Active The State Parties: Gaining Money and Services Traditional Weakness Increasing Strength in Recent Years Fund-raising Campaign Services Republican Advantage Allied Groups The Special Case of the South National Party Money Summing Up: How the State and Local Party Organizations Have Transformed Chapter 4: The Parties' National Organizations The National Parties The National Committees National Party Chairs Presidents and Their National Parties Other National Party Groups Congressional Campaign ("Hill") Committees Women's and Youth Groups Democratic and Republican Governors' Associations Two Paths to Power The Service Party Path The Democrats' Procedural-Reform Path Both Parties Take the Service Path Rising to the Challenge of New Campaign Finance Rules Party Money and Activism in the 2008 Elections What Is the Impact of These Stronger National Parties? Effects on Candidates' Campaigns Effects on State and Local Parties The Dean 50-State Strategy Effects on the Presidency Effects on Congress Relationships within the National Party The Limits of Party Organization Chapter 5: Party Activists What Draws People into Party Activity? Material Incentives Patronage Elected Office Preferments Solidary (Social) Incentives Purposive (Issue-Based) Incentives Mixed Incentives Professional and Amateurs How Do Parties Recruit Activists? Finding Volunteers: Is Anybody Home? Means, Motive, and Opportunity What Kinds of People Become Party Activists People from "Political Families" Better Educated and Wealthier Than Average Different Agendas More Extreme Views Party Activists and Democracy The Problem of Representation Amateurs and Pressure for Internal Party Democracy Activists, Party Strength, and Democracy Part 3: The Political Party in the Electorate Chapter 6: Party Identification How People Develop Party Identifications Childhood Influences Influences in Adulthood Patterns of Partisanship over Time Has There Been a Decline in Partisanship? The Recent Rise in Democratic Party ID Party Identification and Political Views Party Identification and Voting Party Voting Party Versus Candidates and Issues Partisanship as a Two-Way Street Party Identification and Political Activity Party Identification and Attitudes toward the Parties The Myth of the Independent Attitudinal Independents Behavioral Independents Are Independents a Likely Source of Support for Third-Party Candidates? Change in the Impact of Party ID A More Candidate-Centered Politics The Continuing Significance of Party Chapter 7: Party Coalitions and Party Change The American Party Systems The First Party System The Second Party System The Third Party System The Fourth Party System The Fifth Party System The Social Bases of Party Coalitions Socioeconomic Status Divisions Sectional (Regional) Divisions Age Religion and Religiosity Race Ethnicity Gender The Central Role of Issues in the Group-Party Linkage Polarization of the Polarization of the Two Parties' Coalitions on Issues The Development of the Sixth Party System Major Changes in the Parties' Supporting Coalitions From Democratic Majority to Close Competition How Can We Characterize These Changes: Realignment, Dealignment, or What? Problems with the Idea of Realignment Chapter 8: Parties and Voter Turnout Elections: The Rules Affect the Results Expansion of the Right to Vote Rules Affecting Access to Voting Rights The Secret Ballot Citizenship Residence Residence Registration The Special Case of Voting Rights for Black Americans The Long Struggle for Voting Rights From Voting Rights to Representation Getting Blacks' Votes Counted Efforts to Liberalize Voting Rules Election Day Registration "Motor Voter" Laws Early and No-Excuse Absentee Voting The Voter ID Controversy Voter ID Laws Proof of Citizenship Voting Systems: Are Votes Counted Fairly? The Low Turnout in American Elections Why Don't More Americans Vote? Individual Differences in Turnout Education Youth Gender and Race Social Connectedness Political Attitudes The Impact of the Current Campaign The Excitement of the Election Close Competition Party Efforts to Mobilize Voters Do Party Efforts Diversify the Electorate? The Challenge to the Parties Part 4: Parties, Nominations, and Elections Chapter 9: How Parties Choose Candidates How the Nomination Process Evolved Nominations by Caucus Nominations by Convention Nominations by Direct Primaries The Current Mix of Primaries and Conventions Types of Primaries Closed Primaries Open Primaries Blanket Primaries Why Does the Type of Primary Matter? How Candidates Qualify How Do Candidates Get on the Ballot? Runoffs: When Too Many Candidates Get on the Ballot What Parties Don't Like About Primaries Difficulties in Recruiting Candidates The Risk of Unattractive Nominees Divisive Primaries Problems in Holding Candidates Accountable The Party Organization Fights Back Persuading Candidates to Run (or Not to Run) Endorsing Candidates Providing Tangible Support Candidates and Voters in the Primaries Many Candidates Run Without Competition ...And Voters Are in Short Supply The Impact of the Direct Primary Has It Made Elections More Democratic? How Badly Has It Harmed the Parties? Is the Primary Worth the Cost? Chapter 10: Choosing the Presidential Nominees The Move to Presidential Primaries Turbulence in the Democratic Party Presidential Primaries and Caucuses Today The Race to Win Delegate Votes The "Invisible Primary" Candidates' Strategic Choices Win Early or Die Comparing the Clinton and Obama Strategies What Is the Party's Role? Voters' Choices in Presidential Nominations Who Votes? Are Primary Voters Typical? Do Voters Make Informed Choices? Do Primaries Produce Good Candidates? On to the National Conventions Roots of the Conventions What Conventions Do Approving the Platform Formalizing the Presidential Nomination Approving the Vice-Presidential Nominee Launching the Presidential Campaign Who Are the Delegates? Apportioning Delegates among the States How Representative Are the Delegates? Demographics Political Experience Issues Amateurs or Professionals? Who Controls the Delegates? How Media Cover Conventions Do Conventions Still Have a Purpose? Should We Reform the Reforms? What Could Be Done? Chapter 11: The General Election Campaign Strategy How Campaigning Has Changed Professional Consultants Sources of Information Computers Polls Methods of Persuasion: the Air War Television The Internet Social Networking Sites E-mail The Ground War: "Under the Radar" Direct Contact by Mail, Text, and Twitter Direct Mail Text Messaging Twitter Canvassing and Phone Banks MicrotMicrotargeting Negative Campaigning The 2004 Campaign Democrats Regain the Advantage in 2006 The Old and the New in 2008 Do Campaigns Make a Difference? The Argument That Campaigns Matter The Argument That They Don't Some Tentative Answers Candidate-Centered or Party-Centered Campaigns? Party Influence in Competitive Campaigns The Continuing Struggle between Candidates and Party Organizations Chapter 12: Financing the Campaigns How Much Money Is Spent on Campaigns? Presidential Campaigns Congressional Campaigns State and Local Campaigns What Is the Impact of Campaign Spending? Where Does the Money Come From? Individual Contributors Political Action Committees Parties The Candidates Themselves Public Funding Money in State and Local Campaigns Reform of the Campaign Finance Rules Contribution Limits Public Disclosure Public Funding of Presidential Campaigns Spending Limits The Loopholes That Ate the Reforms Independent Spending Soft Money Issue Advocacy Ads 527 and 501(c) Advocacy Groups What Did the 1970s Reforms Accomplish? Intended and Unintended Effects Effects on the Parties Another Try: The Bipartisan Campaign Reform Act (BCRA) Big and Small Contributions in 2004 and 2008 The Parties Survived BCRA State Regulation and Financing Money in American Politics Part 5: The Party in Government Chapter 13: Parties in Congress and State Legislatures How the Parties Are Organized in Congress Changes in the Power of House Party Leaders The Revolt Against "Czar" Cannon Growing Party Coordination The Gingrich Revolution ! And the Change to Democratic Control What Caused This Stronger Party Leadership? Parties in the "Individualist Senate" Parties in the State Legislatures Methods of Party Influence Carrots and Sticks Agenda Control Party Influence on Legislative Voting How Unified Is Each Legislative Party? Party Votes Party Support Greater Polarization of the Congressional Parties When Are the Parties Most Unified? Issues That Touch the Interests of the Legislative Parties The Executive's Proposals Policies Central to the Party System Comparing Party Power in Congress and State Legislatures Party Polarization and Cohesion Greater Interparty Competition No Competing Centers of Power Other Needed Resources Lesser Legislative Professionalism Styles of Individual Leaders The Power of Legislative Parties Chapter 14: The Party in the Executive and the Courts Presidents and Governors as Party Leaders The President as Campaigner-in-Chief The President as the "Top of the Ticket" Coattail Effects Coattails Even without the Coat Party Leadership and Legislative Relations Legislative Support for Executives Divided Control of Government Party Influence in Executive Agencies Limits on Presidential Influence: Bureaucrats Have Constituents Too Party Experience Among Bureaucrats Changing Political Outlooks in the Federal Bureaucracy Traces of Party in the Courts Judicial Voting Along Party Lines What Causes Partisan Behavior on the Courts? Party and Judicial Appointments Federal Judges State Court Judges The Party within the Executive and the Judge Chapter 15: The Semi-Responsible Parties The Case for Responsible Party Government How Would Party Government (Responsible Parties) Work? The Case Against Party Government It Would Increase Conflict It Wouldn't Work in American Politics The Gingrich Experiment: A Temporarily Responsible Party Party Cohesion and Ideology Are the American Parties Ideological? Do They at Least Offer Clear Choices? But Internal Divisions Remain Ideology and the American Voter How Ideological Is the American Public? Differences among Voters, Activists, and Candidates When Is Party Government Most Likely? When There Is Strong Presidential Leadership In Times of Crisis When the Parties' Supporting Coalitions Realign Party Government and Popular Control Chapter 16: The Place of Parties in American Politics Parties and Their Environment The Nature of the Electorate Political Institutions and Rules Societal Forces Party Decline in the 1960s and 1970s The Parties in the Electorate Party Organizations The Party in Government Shifting Power Centers within the Parties Party Renewal Change in the Parties' Electoral Coalitions A Return to Democratic Party Dominance? The Rise of More Cohesive Parties in Government The New "Service" Parties The Future of Party Politics in America A Changing Intermediary Role The Need for Strong Parties How to Make the Parties Stronger Conclusion: The Parties' Prospects Party Politics on the Internet Appendix Endnotes Index