Texas Government: Policy and Politics, 12th Ed Neal
Texas Government: Policy and Politics, 12th Ed Neal Tannahil Copyright @ 2012, 2011, 2009, 2007 Pearson Education, Inc WHAT WE WILL LEARN 1) The advantages and disadvantages of the long ballot 2) The various types of elections held in Texas 3) The factors affecting the redistricting process in
Texas 4) The factors affecting election campaigns in Texas 5) How each of the following factors affects voter choice: incumbency, political party identification, campaigns, retrospective and prospective voting, and national factors Copyright @2012, 2011, 2009, 2007 Pearson Education, Inc Case Study Texas Wins Big 2010 Census
Gained four seats in the U.S. House of Representatives From 32 to 36 (of 435) Reapportionment: Reallocation of House seats among the states Redistricting: Redrawing the boundaries of legislative districts If one political party controls the redistricting process, it can maximize the likelihood of its candidates success, while minimizing the prospects of the other partys
candidates. Copyright @2012, 2011, 2009, 2007 Pearson Education, Inc The Long Ballot Texas has the long ballot, which is an election system that provides for the election of nearly every public official. The ballot is especially long in the states urban counties. Example: In 2010, Harris County voters faced a ballot with more than 80 contested races.
The long ballot is controversial; it is defended as well as criticized. Copyright @2012, 2011, 2009, 2007 Pearson Education, Inc What Do You Think? Is the ballot too long for Texas voters to be able to make informed choices? Copyright @2012, 2011, 2009, 2007 Pearson Education, Inc
Types of Elections General Election: A statewide election to fill national and state offices Held the first Tuesday after the first Monday in November of evennumbered years Won by the candidate with the most votes (plurality); there is no runoff election State law allows split-ticket voting or straight-ticket voting. Split-Ticket Voting Voters cast ballots for candidates of two or more political parties for different offices during the same election.
Straight-Ticket Voting Voters cast ballots for the candidates of only one party. Copyright @2012, 2011, 2009, 2007 Pearson Education, Inc Copyright @ 2012, 2011, 2009, 2007 Pearson Education, Inc Types of Elections Primary Election: Intraparty election at which a partys candidates for the general election are chosen Closed Primary Limits primary election participation to registered party members
Open Primary Allows voters to pick the party primary of their choice without disclosing party affiliation In Texas, primary elections normally take place on the first Tuesday in March of even-numbered years. Figure 7.1 compares Democratic and Republican primary election turnout in statewide (nonpresidential) election years from 1978 to 2010. Copyright @2012, 2011, 2009, 2007 Pearson Education, Inc Copyright @ 2012, 2011, 2009, 2007 Pearson Education, Inc
Types of Elections Presidential Delegate Selection Process Selecting delegates to attend the national conventions to choose the partys presidential candidate Varies from state to state Presidential Preference Primary Party voters cast ballots for the presidential candidate they favor and help determine the number of convention delegates that candidate will receive Caucus Method Party voters participate in a series of
precinct, district, county, and/or state convention political meetings. Copyright @2012, 2011, 2009, 2007 Pearson Education, Inc Types of Elections Presidential Delegate Selection Process in Texas Republican Party Selects national convention delegates through a presidential preference primary election Democratic Party Combines the presidential preference primary and caucus methods (Texas Two-Step) The Texas legislature has periodically tinkered with the
timing of the spring primary Attempting (with little success) to increase Texas influence in the presidential selection process Copyright @2012, 2011, 2009, 2007 Pearson Education, Inc Types of Elections Local Elections Elections for city, school district, and special district officials Must be held on the second Saturday in May or the first Tuesday after the first Monday in November
Usually held in odd-numbered years to avoid coinciding with general elections for president, senators, and governor Most local elections are nonpartisan elections Candidates names appear on the ballot but not their party affiliations Copyright @2012, 2011, 2009, 2007 Pearson Education, Inc Types of Elections Special Election An election called at a time outside the normal election calendar Purpose
Special elections may be used to approve local bond issues or to fill unexpected vacancies in the state legislature or in the states congressional delegation Majority Vote Special elections are nonpartisan, and a candidate must receive a majority of the votes cast to win Copyright @2012, 2011, 2009, 2007 Pearson Education, Inc Types of Elections Noncandidate Elections Bond Election An election to obtain voter approval for a local
government going into debt Initiative Citizens can propose legislation by gathering a certain number of signatures on a petition. Referendum Citizens can oppose existing legislation by gathering a certain number of signatures on a petition. Recall Allows voters to remove elected officials from office before the expiration of their terms Many Texas cities (but not the state government) provide for initiative, referendum, and recall. Copyright @2012, 2011, 2009, 2007 Pearson Education, Inc
What Do You Think? Does Texas have too many elections? Copyright @2012, 2011, 2009, 2007 Pearson Education, Inc Election Districts and Redistricting Election Districts Texas voters select public officials in a combination of at-large and district elections.
At-Large Elections Every citizen of a political subdivision, such as a state or county, votes to select public officials District Elections A political subdivision, such as a state or county, is divided into districts and each district elects one official Copyright @2012, 2011, 2009, 2007 Pearson Education, Inc Election Districts and Redistricting Redistricting Every ten years after the national
census, election districts must be redrawn to adjust for changes in population. Redistricting applies to: Texas House districts Texas Senate districts U.S. congressional districts State Board of Education districts Districts of local governing bodies Copyright @2012, 2011, 2009, 2007 Pearson Education, Inc Copyright @ 2012, 2011, 2009, 2007 Pearson Education, Inc
One Person One Vote Judicial ruling that the Equal Protection Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution requires that legislative districts be apportioned on the basis of population Population Shifts The failure of legislatures in a number of states, including Texas, to redistrict, despite dramatic population shifts, led to a series of cases in which the Supreme Court established the doctrine of one person, one vote.
Significant impact on policymaking in Texas Redistricting caused urban areas to gain in representation and rural areas to lose ground. Copyright @2012, 2011, 2009, 2007 Pearson Education, Inc Voting Rights Act Federal law designed to protect the voting rights of racial and ethnic minorities Illegal for state and local governments to enact and enforce election rules and procedures that diminish minority voting power
Preclearance: state and local governments in areas with a history of voting discrimination must submit redistricting plans to the U.S. Department of Justice for approval Mid-1990s: The Supreme Court ruled that maximizing the number of minority districts was not a sufficient reason to justify race-based redistricting. Copyright @2012, 2011, 2009, 2007 Pearson Education, Inc The Politics of Redistricting Redistricting is a highly political process.
Gerrymandering Legislative districts drawn to give advantage to one political party over another, or one candidate over another After the 2000 census, the political landscape was considerably different, and neither party controlled the redistricting process. Redistricting in Texas thereafter became a highly charged and contentious political process. Copyright @2012, 2011, 2009, 2007 Pearson Education, Inc The Politics of
Redistricting Legislative Responsibility the 2001 session ended without passage of redistricting plans for either of the two houses of the state legislature or Congress. Legislative Redistricting Board (LRB) Failure of the legislature and governor placed the responsibility for drawing new district lines on the LRB New LRB Redistricting Plan Officially adopted, with some modifications imposed by a federal court, in 2002 Copyright @2012, 2011, 2009, 2007 Pearson Education, Inc
The Politics of Redistricting 2002 Election Republicans captured a majority in the Texas House for the first time in more than a century and kept their majority in the Texas Senate. Congressional Delegation Republicans failed to capture a majority in the states congressional delegation, prompting a revisiting of the issue of redistricting. 2003 Congressman Tom DeLay proposed a congressional redistricting plan that could increase the number of Republicans in
Congress and lead to a Republican majority Copyright @2012, 2011, 2009, 2007 Pearson Education, Inc The Politics of Redistricting DeLays 2003 proposal was highly controversial and bitterly opposed Democrats fled to Ardmore, Oklahoma, to prevent a quorum and to prevent the plan from passing the House. Special Legislative Session Governor Perry called a 30-day special session to consider congressional redistricting. Failed when 11 Senate Democrats refused to debate the bill
In the second special session 11 Senate Democrats fled to Albuquerque, New Mexico, to prevent a quorum. After three special sessions, a new redistricting plan was approved. 2004 elections Republicans gained six seats Copyright @2012, 2011, 2009, 2007 Pearson Education, Inc Copyright @ 2012, 2011, 2009, 2007 Pearson Education, Inc The Politics of Redistricting Supreme Court Consideration In late 2005, the Court agreed to
hear a legal challenge to the midcycle redistricting. Legal Issues Violation of VRA Constitutionality of midcycle redistricting Violation of the one-person, one-vote doctrine Unconstitutional gerrymandering The Supreme Court upheld the basic redistricting plan, but ruled that District 23 violated the VRA, requiring the boundaries of that district to be redrawn. Copyright @2012, 2011, 2009, 2007 Pearson Education, Inc
Reforming the Redistricting Process Critics argue that the modern redistricting process has the following flaws Quality of Democracy undermines the quality of U.S. democracy Competitive Elections produces legislative districts that are safe for one party, depriving voters of the opportunity to participate in competitive elections Political Extremes produces legislators who represent the
extremes of the political spectrum Copyright @2012, 2011, 2009, 2007 Pearson Education, Inc Election Campaigns The Role of Money 2010: Campaigns for governor, other statewide executive offices, and the legislature cost nearly $235 million Governor Perry spent $39 million winning reelection, more money than any other candidate. The largest single item in the big-time campaign budget is media, especially television.
A weeks worth of television advertising that covers all of the states major markets costs around $1.5 million. Copyright @2012, 2011, 2009, 2007 Pearson Education, Inc Election Campaigns Sources of Campaign Money Campaign money comes from a relatively small number of contributors. Individuals and Political Action Committees 2008: Most of the money came from individuals and political action committees (PACs; organizations created to raise and
distribute money in political campaigns). Campaign contributions and campaign expenditures are unlimited for candidates for executive or legislative office. Limits on judicial races are voluntary. Copyright @2012, 2011, 2009, 2007 Pearson Education, Inc Election Campaigns Electoral Success and Money Money is indispensable to major campaign efforts. In general, candidates who spend the most money get the
most votes. Money does not always guarantee victory. 2010: Businessman Farouk Shami spent over 9 million dollars of his own money trying to win the Democratic nomination for governor. He received less than 13 percent of the vote. Copyright @2012, 2011, 2009, 2007 Pearson Education, Inc Election Campaigns Campaign Organization and Strategy Requirements of a successful political campaign:
Professional campaign organization Money Name recognition for the candidate Favorable impression for the candidate Unfavorable impressions of the their opponents Supporters going to the polls Copyright @2012, 2011, 2009, 2007 Pearson Education, Inc Copyright @ 2012, 2011, 2009, 2007 Pearson Education, Inc The Voters Decide
Political scientists identify a number of factors influencing voter choice. Past Performance and Future Expectations Citizens make voting decisions based on their evaluations of the past and expectations for the future. Retrospective Voting Based on the perception of an incumbents past performance in office, or the performance of the incumbent party Prospective Voting Evaluating the incumbent officeholder and the incumbents party based on expectations of future developments
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