Texas Government –

Political Party
an organization influenced by political ideology whose primary interest is to gain control by winning elections
a political system wherein power is diffused among and within levels of party organization
4 levels of political parties
national, state, county, precinct
Temporary Party
State convention (June, even years)
County or District Convention (3rd Saturday in March, even years)
Precinct Convention (immediately after polls close on primary election day)
Permanent Party
State Chair and Vice Chair – one man, one woman – elected by delegates
State Executive Committee – one man, one woman from each of states 31 senatorial districts. elected by delegates.
County Chair – elected by voters countywide
County Executive Committee – county chair and precinct chairs
Precinct Chair – elected by voters in precinct
Temporary Party Organization
primaries and conventions that function briefly to nominate candidates, pass resolutions, adopt a party platform, and select delegates to party conventions at higher levels.
a document that sets forth a political party’s position on issues such as income tax, school vouchers, or public utility regulation.
Precinct convention
at the lowest level of political party organization, voters convene in March of even-numbered years to adopt resolutions and to name delegates to county (or district) convention.
presidential preference primary
a primary in which the voters indicate their preference for a person seeking nomination as the party’s presidential candidate
a meeting at which members of a political party assemble to select delegates and make other policy recommendations
an unpledged party official or elected official who serves as a delegate to a party’s national convention.
Texas republican party
dominated by the right-wing social conservatives
Texas Democratic Party
influenced by not dominated by left-wing liberals.
a person who advocates minimal intervention by government in social and economic matters and who gives a high priority to reducing taxes and curbing public spending.
Texas two-step”
Texas democrats have combined the two delegate-selection plans into a primary-caucus.
A comprehensive set of beliefs about the nature of people and about the role of an institution or government. form the basis of a political system.
a political ideology that reflects fiscal conservatism, but accepts a limited governmental role in solving social problems.
A person who favors a political philosophy of progress and reform and the protection of civil liberties, a person who favors an economic theory of laissez-faire and self-regulating markets.
a political ideology that advocates less government regulation of business but supports more governmental involvement in social matters.
Woodrow Wilson, progressive movement
1840s to 1870s
Origin of the Party System – Republic of Texas
Pro-(sam)Houston and anti-Houston groups.
1850s – Pro – Jackson Democrats (unionists) anti – calhoun democrats – states rights and slavery advocate)
reconsttuction – Republican Party controlled texas politics. reconstrution acts purged anyone with a confederate past. and were denied the right to vote.
Governor Edmund J. Davis
former union army general. elected governor in 1869. took control of voter registration and appointed all public officials. placed republicans (some African Americans). condemned for corruption, graft and high taxation. after defeat in 1873, 100 years without republican governor.
led to weak executive government
one-party dominant system – democrats. Populist party – agrarian-based party
emerging two-party system: Bill Clements elected governor in 1978, Republican.
Voters trend away from allegiance to political parties, a process whereby voters are moved toward nonpartisanship thus weakening the structure of political parties
substantial and long-term shift in party allegiance by individuals and groups, usually resulting in a change in policy direction
straight-ticket voting
Voting for all the candidates of one party
Third Parties
Any political parties other than DP or RP
Achieve success in making the public aware of their issues, persuading major parties adopt some of their issues
La Raza Unida – co-opted by democrats
Reform Party
Libertarian Party
people who have no party affiliation
Who was the last independent candidate to be elected governor of Texas
Sam Houston
sound bite
a brief statement of a candidates theme communicated by radio or television in a few seconds.
candidates generally low ethical level of campaigning and avoidance of critical public issues.
Political Action Committees
PACs – organizations created to collect and distribute contributions to political campaigns
Texas Ethics Commission
created in 1993 – requires financial disclosure from public officials. enforces state standards for lobbyists including registration of lobbyists and reporting of political campaign contributions.
governor appoints 4, speaker appoints 2, lt. gov. appoints 2
Campaign Reform Act
enacted by congress and signed by GW Bush in 2002 – restricts the donations of soft money and hard money for election campaigns. effect has been limited by federal court decisions.
restriction on corporations’ and labor unions’ ability to ru electioneering ads close to election day.
Super PAC
independent expenditure-only committees that may raise unlimited sums of money from corporations, unions, nonprofit organizations and individuals.
La Raza Unida Party
Latino political organization founded in 1970 by Jose Angel Gutierrez. fielded candidates at state and local level and mobilized Mexican Americans who had been politically inactive.
Women to hold position of governor in Texas
Ma Ferguson 1925-1927, 1933-1935
Ann Richards 1990 –
expanded presence of women in public office is changing public policy
increased punishment for family violence and sexual abuse of children
renewed focus on public education
universal suffrage
voting is open for virtually all persons 18 years of age or older
Francis “Sissy” Farenthold
State Rep 1968, Member of the Texas House of Representatives, first woman to run for governor of Texas
Barbara Jordan
State Senator 1967, Watergate examination, first African-American woman from a southern state to serve in Congress when she was elected to the House of Representatives in 1973.
Anne Richards
Anne Richards was a Democrat elected governor of Texas in 1990. She chaired the 1992 Democratic presidential convention and was known for fulfilling her campaign promise of making the state government reflect the diversity of the state’s people. Anne Richards was very successful and epitomizes the arrival of women in national politics.
voter registration
System designed to reduce voter fraud by limiting voting to those who have established eligibility to vote by submitting the proper documents.
literacy test
A test administered as a precondition for voting, often used to prevent African Americans from exercising their right to vote. not used in Texas
grandfather clause
A clause in registration laws allowing people who do not meet registration requirements to vote if they or their ancestors had voted before 1867.
poll tax
a tax levied in Texas from 1902 until a similar Virginia tax was declared unconstitutional in 1962; failure to pay the annual tax ($1.75) made a citizen ineligible to vote in party primaries or in special and general elections.
white primary
the practice of keeping blacks from voting in the southern states’ primaries through arbitrary use of registration requirements and intimidation
racial gerrymandering
packing black voters in a given district or “cracking” them to make black voters a minority., redistricting to enhance or reduce the chances that a racial or ethnic group will elect members to the legislature
Voting rights act of 1965
has been renewed and amended by congress 4 times. abolishes the use of all literacy tests in voter registrations
prohibits residency requirements of more than 30 days in presidential elections
requires absentee or early voting
requires to obtain preclearance from US dept of justice before changing voting qualifications or prereqs to standards, practices, procedures.
reasons you cannot vote
a convicted felon – unless sentence, probation or parole completed.
mentally incompetent.
Nandita Berry
Secretary of State – atty from Houston, first Indian-American to fill the position.
Election Dates
The first Tuesday in March (as of 2013)
The first Tuesday after the first Monday in November
a preliminary election conducted within the party to select candidate who will run for public office in a subsequent general election.
direct Primary
a nominating system that allows voters to participate directly in the selection of candidate for public office.
general election
held in November of even numbered years to elect county and state officials from among candidates nominated in primaries or nominating conventions.
NAACP vs. Alabama
protected the right to assemble peaceably when it decided the NAACP did not have to reveal its membership list and thus subject its members to harassment
decentralized government
Achieved by dividing power between national and state governments and separating legislative, executive, and judicial branches at both levels.
economic interest groups
a group with the primary purpose of promoting the financial interests of its members. trade associations and labor unions – maximize profits and wages. MOST COMMON INTEREST GROUPS
business organization
economic interest group, such as a trade association that lobbies for policies favoring Texas businesses (eg. Texas association of builders)
Labor Groups
a union that supports public policy designed to increase wages, obtain adequate health insurance coverage, provide unemployment insurance, promote safe working conditions and otherwise protect the interest of the workers. AFL-CIO. great at getting out the vote.
Professional group
an organization of physicians, lawyers, accountants or other professional people that lobbies for policies beneficial to members.
Government Employee Groups
officers and ees of the state and local govent. to obtain better working conditions, higher wages, more fringe benefits, and better retirement packages. Texas State Employees Union, Teachers Association TSTA, etc.
Social interest groups
included among groups concerned primarily with social issues are organization devoted to civil rights, racial and ethnic matters, religion, and public interest protection.
Racial and Ethnic Groups
NAACP, LULAC, MALDEF (Mexican American Legal Defense and Education Fund
Women’s Organization
League of Women Voters, engages in lobbying and educational activities to promote greater political participation by women
Religious-based groups
lobbies for polices promoting its religious interests.
Texas Faith Network, Christian Coalition, Texas Freedom Network
Public Interest Groups
claim to promote teh general interests of society (broad public interest) rather than narrow private interest – envrionmental, consumer, political participation and public morality orgs.
Texas Power Groups
business-oriented trade associations, professional associations, and labor unions; also brewers, truckers, automobile dealers, bankers, and realtors
headquarters in Austin – Texas Medical Assoc. – most influential
communicating with legislators or other government officials on behalf of an interest group for the purpose of influencing decision makers.
interest group technique
an action such as lobbying, personal communication, giving favors and gifts, grassroots activities, electioneering, campaign financing by PAC, bribery and other unethical practices intended to influence government decisions .
active campaigning by an interest group in support of, or opposition to, a candidate; actions urging the public to act on an issue.
publishing or publicizing candidates political records, providing candidate with mailing lists and info. public endorsements. getting out the vote.
TRMPAC and Tom Delay
Texans for a Republican Majority PAC organized under Tom DeLay. involved in raising money for GOP candidates seeking seats in the Texas House. indicted in 2005 for money laundering and conspiracy to launder $190,000 of campaign contributions from corporate contributors.
Randall “Duke” Cunningham
US House of Representatives from CA. March 3, 2006, he received a sentence of eight years and four months in prison and was ordered to pay $1.8 million in restitution on charges of bribery. kept crib sheet.
Interest Group
An organization of people sharing a common interest or goal that seeks to influence the making of public policy
Difference between interest groups and political parties.
Political Parties seek to win elections and put candidate in office. Interest groups try to influence policy and officials.
what ideology seeks strengthen the rights of the labor unions
Liberal democrats
what ideology looks for reduction or elimination of graduated income tax?
Which political label would favor governmental of economy
what were the political alliances during the Republic of Texas
support for Sam Houston. Based on personality and not liberal or Conservative ideologies.
what are some possible reasons that Anglo voters opposed E.J. Davis
He gave rights to slaves. former confederates were unable to vote or hold office.
Allen Shivers
1949-1957 Former state senator and lieutenant governor. Campaigned for Dwight Eisenhower. Conservative democrat who fought to keep liberals out of office. “Shivercrats”
Kay Bailey Hutchinson
Elected in 1993 to the US Senate as a Republican of Texas and the first women elected to represent Texas in the senate. In favor of the right to bear arms, strengthened the enforcement of immigration laws, tax relief for working families
John Tower
was the first Republican United States senator from Texas since Reconstruction
Citizen United v. Federal Election Commission (2009
was a landmark decision by the United States Supreme Court holding that corporate funding of independent political broadcasts in candidate elections cannot be limited under the First Amendment.
what % of African Americans self identify as democrats
14th amendment
Citizenship and due process rights for all (black and white) (Abraham Lincoln)
15th amendment
Citizens cannot be denied the right to vote because of race, color , or previous condition of servitude
motor voter law
register to vote when you update your license (1993)
National Voter Registration Act
this act passed in 1993 and frequently called the “Motor Vehicle Act” is a piece of legislation that includes a provision that makes it possible to register to vote when applying for or renewing your drivers license.
What is the most important influence of voting
Sotomayor on Labeling Illegal Immigrants
Sotomayor characterized the issue as a regulatory problem and said labeling immigrants criminals seemed insulting to her.
Wendy Davis
position on open carry laws – politically expedient switch. Running in Texas and needs to bring in conservative votes.
Political Parties are not mentioned in the constitution
William Clements
first republican governor since EJ Davis
The history of the Texas political party system has tended toward
Texas being a one-party state.
“During the period of Reconstruction that followed the Civil War (1865 – 1873), the _____________ Party controlled Texas politics.” **
Who was the first Texas Republican elected in a statewide vote in the last half of the twentieth century? **
Senator John Tower
“In the 2002 general election, Republicans lost the support of Anglos.
“Most liberal Democrats, like Wendy Davis, support “”open carry”” laws.”
“James “”Pa”” Ferguson was the only Texas governor to be impeached.”
The trend of voters abandoning their traditional political party allegiance is referred to as realignment
“In which case did the Supreme Court overturn a ban on unlimited independent expenditures made by corporations, unions, and nonprofit organizations in federal elections?”
Citizen United v. Federal Election Commission (2009
The Voting Rights Act of 1965 and its subsequent amendments were aimed primarily at increasing political participation among
ethnic minorities.
The term “”midterm election”” refers to those
not in a presidential election year
“For most Texans, their principal political activity consists of going on Talk Radio to complain.” **
“Current Event: The top Democratic and Republican candidates running for the office of Governor of Texas are Wendy Davis and Gregg Abbott, respectively.”
The United States achieves a decentralized governing structure through
federalism and separation of powers.
“In recent years, registered lobbyists in Texas”
have exceeded 1800
“In Texas, corporations and labor unions may provide campaign contributions directly to the candidates.” **