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AP Gov Free Response (2004)
Transcript of AP Gov Free Response (2004)
Grassroots lobbying/ mass mobilization (b) Select one of the following groups and identify the primary technique it uses from the list in part (a). Explain why the group you selected would employ that technique over the other two techniques.
American Medical Association (AMA)
National Rifle Association (NRA)
National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) (b) Identify and explain how two rules of the United States electoral system act as obstacles to minor-party candidates winning elections. (c) Minor parties make important contributions to the United States political system in spite of the institutional obstacles to their candidates' success. Describe two of these contributions. Trust and Confidence in government have declined in recent decades. (a) Explain how divided government has contributed to the decline in trust and confidence in government. Be sure to include a definition of divided government in your response. (b) Explain how the increased cost of election campaigns has contributed to the decline in trust and confidence in government. (c) Explain two specific consequences of the decline in trust and confidence in government for individual political behavior. Two formal and constitutional powers of the President in making foreign policy are appointment of ambassadors and negotiating and making treaties. Other constitutional powers include power to commit troops as Commander-in-chief, recognition of nations, and receive other ambassadors and other public ministers. Two formal constitutional powers of Congress in making foreign policy are declaring war and ratifying treaties. Other acceptable answers include confirming ambassadors, power of purse in military/foreign policy matters, pass laws, and regulate foreign commerce. With executive agreements the President has to persuade Congress and make negotiations. In meeting with world leaders, the President has to persuade the public and be convincing regarding foreign policy. Other possible answers include: executive agreements, access to media/bully pulpit/morale building, agenda setting, crisis manager, international coalition building, and having access to more information, knowledge, or expertise than Congress. Litigation is an action brought in court to enforce a particular right. Litigation is when people go to court in order to get a positive rule for their cause. If there is a law that hurts a certain group of people, they can go to court and say that it is unlawful, and that violates their rights.
Campaign contributions is the attempt for interest groups to gain access to candidates when he or she wins by giving funds to candidate to help him/her win in an election. The newly elected public official will in return support or help the interest group that helped with the election.
Grassroots lobbying is an attempt to influence government decision making by inspiring constituents to contact their representatives. Mass mobilization is when an organization or group increases their amount of followers and as a large unit, act to raise awareness through the media. This technique is less expensive and does not have complicated legal procedures to follow. Civil rights groups like the NAACP use litigation to force lawmakers to bring forth fair regulations as guaranteed in the constitution. The NAACP used litigation to stop civil right violations. The most famous example is the Supreme Court case, Brown vs. Board of Education, that ended segregation. This technique is best for the NAACP because a court would be the best setting for correcting an impingement on someone's rights. The point of view expressed about minor parties in the political cartoon is that a vote for a minor party is like throwing away a vote and is a waste. One rule is that winner takes all because if minor parties cannot get a majority vote in the electoral college, they will not be represented in the election. The other rule is that the third party candidates cannot participate in presidential debates and therefore get less exposure to the general public. Other possible answers include ballot access, rules/limits of campaign financing, federal funding of presidential elections, and exclusion from presidential debates. Two contributions are new or different ideas or issues and pushing major parties to include otherwise underrepresented concerns and groups. Other acceptable answers include voice for fringe, safety valve for discontent, enhanced participation, room for critical voices, and clarify major-party candidates' positions. Divided government is when one party controls the White House while another party controls one or both houses of Congress. A divided government creates heightened partisanship, decline of the middle, frustration with the governmental process, slowed confirmation process, and gridlock. The fighting power in the various branches and the lack of work done decreases the trust and confidence people have in the government. Candidates must spend more time raising money. Interest groups, corporations, and wealthy donors get connections. Good people decide not to run for office due to the costs. Small contributions wouldn't matter. It seems like there is a lot of wasteful spending.
Spending more time getting money means less time spent planning for America's future which lowers people's confidence in the government. Also, the ways candidates get their money are suspicious to the people and this leads to distrust. A decline in trust and confidence in government leads to protests against the government.
There is a decline in voting since less people want to participate in a system they don't trust.
There is an increase in independents or third party identifiers since many people associate the Democrats and Republicans with the government they lost confidence in
There are indications of less conventional participation and could be limited to local nonpartisan or community action to avoid participating in a government they don't trust. AP United States Government and Politics 2004 Free-Response Questions With the help of: Ria Minawala, Omar Shokoor, Emily Wong, and Cynthia Wu