AP Government Chapter 8

party cooperation

the battle of the parties for control of public offices. Ups and downs of the two major parties are one of the most important elements in American politics

political party

according to Anthony Downs, a " team of men/women seeking to control the governing apparatus by gaining office in a duly constituted election.

linkage institutions

the channels through which people's concerns become political issues on the government's policy agenda. In the Us, linkage institutions include elections, political parties, interest groups, and the media.

rational-choice theory

a popular theory in political science to explain the actions of voters as well as politicians. it assumes that individuals act in their own best interest, carefully weighing the costs and benefits of possible alternatives

party image

the voter's perception of what the Republicans, or Democrats stand for, such as conservatism, or liberalism

party identification

a citizen's self-proclaimed preference for one party or the other

ticket splitting

voting with one party for one office and with another party for other offices. It has become the norm on American voting behavior

party machines

A type of political party organization that relies heavily on material inducements, such as patronage, to win votes and to govern


one of the key inducements used by party machines. A patronage job, promotion, or contract is one that is given for political reasons rather than for merit or competence alone.

national convention

the meeting of party delegates every four years to choose a presidential ticket and write the party's platform

national committee

one of the institutions that keeps the party operation between conventions. The national committee is composed of representatives from the states and territories

national chairperson

the national chairperson is responsible for the day-to-day activities of the party and is usually handpicked by the presidential nominee


a group of individuals with a common interest on which every political party depends.

party eras

historical periods in which a majority of voters cling to the party in power, which tends to win a majority of the elections

critical election

an electoral "election" where new issues emerge, new coalitions replace old ones, and the majority party is often displaced by the minority party. Critical election periods are sometimes marked by a national crisis and may require more than one election t

party realignment

the displacement of the majority party by the minority party, usually during a critical election period.

new deal coalition

a coalition forged by the democrats, who dominated american politics from the 1930s to the 1960s. Its basic elements were the urban working class, ethnic groups, catholics and jews, the poor, southerners, african americans, and intellectuals

party dealignment

the gradual disengagement of people and politicians from the parties, as seen in part by shrinking party identification

third parties

electoral contenders other than the two major parties. American third parties are not unusual, but they rarely win elections.

winner-take-all system

an electoral system in which legislative seats are awarded only to the candidates who come in first in their constituencies. In US presidential elections, the system in which the winner of the popular vote in a state receives all the electoral votes of th

proportional representation

an electoral system used throughout most of europe that awards legislative seats to political parties in proportion to the number of votes won in an election

coalition government

when two or more parties join to form a majority in a national legislature. This form of government is quite common in the multiparty systems of europe

responsible party model

a view favored my some political scientists about how parties should work. According to the model, parties should offer clear choices to the voters, who can then use those choices as cues to their own preferences of candidates. Once in office, parties wou

Closed primaries

elections to select party nominees in which only people who have registered in advance with the party can vote for that party's candidates, thus encouraging greater party loyalty.

Open primaries

elections to select party nominees in which voters can decide on election day whether they want to participate in democratic or republican contests

Blanket primaries

elections to select party nominees in which voters are presented with a list of candidates from all the parties. Voters can then select some democrats and some republicans if they like.