In Alaska ;transportation bill, nearly $1 billion went to Alaska, 47th populous state just behind California and Illinois -ultimately eliminated for the bridges, but still got the funding Congress’s inability to pass significant legislation regarding issues about which the public Is worried -Congress Is unrepresentative, do not get equal say in government – not satisfied with the outcomes 1 .
Ruthless partisan gerrymandering in the House, electoral districts drawn to maximize the probability that the party drawing lines will elect its candidates-? overbore selecting their electors, process reversed -Representatives need to only appeal to the “base” of their own parties rather than to “centrist” voters in the middle -Minority parties in gerrymandered districts are Irrelevant to representative 2. Bicameralism, and Veto Points -united States, strongly bicameral legislature: two legislative houses equal in power – Bicameralism Is not necessary to achieve Preamble e. G.
Western Europe -Argument for second house: subordination of strictly “majorities broader constituency base to support legislation Consensually, broad participation in overspent and broad agreement on polices -Defend for the upper house: longer terms allow a valuable corrective to the responsiveness of member of the lower house to the passions of the moment because of their fear of losing votes in imminent election Also greater population represented, decision is less parochial – But: harder to pass legislation, two bodies rather than one agree on legislation-? prevents bad and also good legislation 3.
President Veto Power Trilateral system-?president has a constitutionally assigned veto power ;A threat forcing congress to modify legislation before it is presented to the president -More Han 95 percent of all presidential vetoes are successful -Some of bills may be passed with the hope of a veto, officials depend on other institutions to take the heat for blocking legislation supported by a local constituency -Original intention: president should veto those raised constitutional questions, but now Just veto on any grounds he sees fit e. . Ford, 75 percent veto ;Pocket veto power of the president: simply place a bill in the days immediately prior to its adjournment in his pocket, secure in the knowledge that it will not become law without his signature-?simply do nothing, still veto -President becomes a one-person hired legislative chamber -Argue: President represents the entire American people, single member takes a national perspective, but there are presidents not receiving popular votes, not correlated with the capture of the congress by the political opposition 4.
Illegitimate Senate Two senators from each state, each senator having one vote Seven smallest states have same power as seven largest states, excess of power-? unequal representation California seventy times less than Wyoming Impacts: -Senate can exercise a veto power on majorities legislation passed by the House hat is too costly to the interests of small states, which are overrepresented in the senate-?too many veto points can block the wishes of an energize majority – Government will systematically redistribute income from large states to small states – Racial minorities a voice in federal lawmaking process that is disproportionately small relative to their numbers Filibuster: 41 -senator minority to block legislation, the participants may disproportionately from small states -Small-state senators greater incentives to concentrate on a few issues central to constituents, tend to seek assignment to committees that help them obtain particularize benefits for their constituents.
Also spend less time on constituency contact, less time raising campaign funds, more likely to become party leaders -Coalition leaders have incentives to seek out senators from less populous states to build winning coalitions -?small states advantage enjoying benefits, especially with guarantee that all states given a minimum of funds regardless of population
Importance of political parties in our political system Modern political parties and the divided institutional structure of government has robbers Divided government: One party controlled the White House while the other party controlled at least one house, and quite possibly both houses of the congress Conduits: Constitution discourages effective government -Frequency of election of house impairs the achievement of a strong consensus among president, house and senate as to what the country wants -Many problems derived from presidential veto power, if not, disputes would solved within congress, veto power creates three institutions -Extending the terms in house to four years, presidential election years, fewer divided governments Ineligibility Clause: No person can serve in the executive and legislative branches at the same time-? safeguard against corruption of the legislature, legislators may create unnecessary offices for them to fill But: -Broaden the range of talent available to president when he assembles his administration -Authors of law invited to take responsibility for their execution 6.