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American Political Parties Congress and the Presidency Discussion



Write a full paragraph discussing the following question:

What are some of the political conflicts you see taking place around COP26?


American Political Parties, Congress, and the Presidency.

Please respond to five of the following six short response questions posted below. Your answers should be short, focused, and complete, ranging from two to three paragraphs. Please make sure to answer each specific part of every question. Successful answers will reflect your own thinking and understanding of the material. These answers will provide details and context that support your arguments and explain your position to the readers. You may also want to provide real world examples taken from the readings, lectures, group discussions, or your own independent thinking. Only the first five responses you enter will be graded (there is no benefit to answering all 6 questions).

Finally, each question is broken up into parts. Please be sure to address every part of the question!

I strongly recommend answering 2 questions a week to help you space out your work.

Each answer will be worth 20 points, for 100 points total. The Question Set is due on Canvas at 11:59 pm on Monday November 8th. You should plan on uploading your response as a docx file or PDF to this Question Set #2 assignment tab. We will be using Turnitin for the assignment.

1. Why do we have parties? What roles do they play in a representative democracy? How can these roles be beneficial? How can they be harmful?

2. a) Why does the US have only two major political parties? Make sure and describe Duverger’s law and strategic behavior on the part of voters, politicians, and parties. b) Explain why it would be hard for a third party to be electorally successful. c) What institutional/electoral reforms could be made to create more viable opportunities for additional parties in American politics? d) Would these reforms be helpful? Why or why not?

3.a) ) How does the desire for reelection shape the behavior of members of Congress? b) How do these electoral incentives help explain what elected officials do while in office and what they want to avoid? c) How do electoral incentives make individual Congresspeople individually responsive but Congress as a whole collectively irresponsible? d) How does the leadership in Congress help overcome the problems of collective action to make Congress work?

4. a) What are the benefits of the Congressional committee system? b) What are the possible downsides? c) How do the parties use this structure to their advantage?

5. a) In your view, what are the most important factors that contributed to the rise of presidential power in modern American Government? (for this question, please choose two or three factors from the readings and lectures that you personally found most interesting/persuasive). b) Do you think the Presidency is too powerful today? Why or why not? What reforms (if any) would you recommend to address presidential power?

6. Neustadt & Kernell both describe ways in which a President can deal with Congress & others outside of the executive branch. a) What are their central arguments? b) How does Kernell’s theory update Neustadt’s idea? c) Are they compatible?

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