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Glossary of Political Parties 2

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Australian ballot
A secret ballot prepared, distributes, and tabulated by government officials at public expense.
congressional campaign committee
Committee of members of the House and Sentate that organize and help finance election campaigns.
critical election
An election that establishes the dominance of a particular political party that lasts for a period of time.
Democratic party (Democrats)
A major American political party that evolved from the Democratic-Republican group supporting Thomas Jefferson.
divided government
In American government, a system in which presidential administrations of one party are opposed by Congressional majorities of the opposing party. Term is used to describe this happening over time.
franchise
The right to vote.
independent
Voter or candidate not affiliated with a political party.
linkage institutions
Institutions, such as political parties, that provide a link between citizens and the government.
multimember electoral districts
Electoral districts in which voters choose multiple officials to represent them, instead of just one.
national committee
A national political party's standing commitee that directs and coordinates the party's activities during the period between national party conventions.
national convention
The meeting held every four years by each major party to select presidential and vice presidential candidates, to write a platform, to choose a national committee, and to conduct party business.
New Deal coalition
A collection of groups who joined together to support FDR and his New Deal, including Catholics, Jews, union members, Southerners, people of lower income, middle-class urban liberals, and African Americans.
party dealignment
The term refers to a time characterized by the absence of a dominant political party.
party identification
The practice of aligning oneself with one pilitical party, including their beliefs, values, and agenda.
party organization
A politcial party's structures and leadership. It includes election committees; executives at local, state, and national levels; and staff.
party platform
A document prepared by a political party, outlining its policies and objectices and used to win voter support during a political campaign. Candidtates do not feel obligated to fulfill the items laid out in a platform if elected to office.
party-in-electorate
Citizens who identify with a specific political party or have a preference for one party over another.
party-in-government
All the elected and appointed political officials who identify with a particular political party.
patronage
Appointing government jobs and contracts to faithful party workers as a reward for their contributions.
platform
A statement of principles and objectives held by a party or candidate. It's used during a campaign to win support from voters.
political party
A group of people who hold similar political beliefs and goals and organize to win political elections, set political policy, and take power over the machinery of government.
political ward
The division of a city for purposes of electing mebers to the city council.
precinct
Cities and counties are divided into precint polling districts.
proportional representation
An electoral system in which parties receive a share of seats in a legislature proportional to the popular vote they win in elections.
Reagan coalition
A coalition that came together to elect Ronald Reagan president in 1980 and 1984. It included people from middle-class suburbs, social and religious conservatives, white Southerners, business people and professionals, and blue-collar workers who had once been Democrats.
realignment
the shifting of public sentiment that puts one party ahead of a previously dominant other party.
Republican party (Republicans)
The Republican party emergred in the 1850's as a party opposed to slavery. It succeeded two former parties, the Federalists and the Whigs. Conservative in nature.
Republican Revolution
Refers to the 1994 Congressional election in which Republicans turned around the 1992 Democratic gains, gaining 52 seats in the House and 8 seats in the Senate.
single-issue party
Political parties that focus on one issue.
single-member district
An electoral district from which a single legislator is chose, usually by plurality vote, in contrasst to proportional representation or at-large system.
splinter party
A party composed largely of people who have broken away from one of the major parties.
sustaining election
An election in which voters reaffirm thier support for the party in power and its policies.
spin-off party
A new party created when a faction within an earlier party becomes dissatisfied with that party and forms their own.
third party
A political party other than the two main parties in a two-party system. Third parties are usually made up of independent voters and dissatisfied members of one or both majore parties. They are larger, have more influence, and have more effect on election results than minor parties.
ticket splitting
Voting for a candidate from one party for one office and a candidate(s) from another party for another office.
two-party system
A political system with only two parties that have realistic chances of winning. While other parties exisst, their political power is small.
Whigs party (Whigs)
One of the most influential and important US political organizations during the first half of the 19th century. Formed in 1836 by forces opposed to Andrew Jackson and the National Republican faction of the Democratic-Republicans (Jeffersonians).

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