POLI 308: Review Sheet Two: Fall 2016

Bill Newmann


The exam will consist of two parts:

Part One: (40 points): short answer/identifications: You can choose two of nine or ten: Each worth 20 points.

Part Two: (60 points): Essay: Choose one of two, maybe three.


You will have three hours to do the exam, but the exam is written to be taken in one hour and 15 minutes.


List of terms: Those terms preceded by an asterisk (*) are primarily found in the readings.

Ford and Carter

Two incumbents beaten in a row

The Problem

Imperial Presidency


American people's feelings about Presidents

New Media view of Presidents -- Woodward and Bernstein


*Rise of interest group power

Congressional Power:

                War Powers Resolution

                Clark Amendment

                Congressional Budget and Impoundment Act 1974

                Goals of New Congress

1976 election

Carter campaign themes



Carter's theory of Governing

                Politics vs. what is right

                Trusteeship Presidency

                Carter's idea vs. LBJ model

Alienating the Democrats in Congress

Economic Problems

Crisis of Confidence speech

Iran Hostage Crisis

Carter's misunderstanding of leadership

A Crisis of Leadership?



Reagan's past:

                Happy Midwestern upbringing?


                Anti-Communist Democrat

                Goldwater supporter

                Governor of California

Reagan (conservative wing) vs. Bush (moderate wing) in New Hampshire

Landslide over Carter

*Reagan as Republican FDR -- confidence, hope, leadership

*Reagan Beliefs (four priorities) Very important

*Reagan economic philosophy

*Criticism of the New Deal and Great Society

*Principles of Reaganomics

                *Government vs. the Market

                *Return to laissez-faire; rejection of Keynes

*Supply-side economics

*The Reagan revolution

*The impact of the tax cuts, but continued government spending: deficit

Reagan and US political spectrum

*Reagan realignment

*Reagan Coalition

*Undoing the New Deal and Great Society


Reagan and the media

The Teflon President

                Reagan’s slight reality problem

Popularity of Reagan vs. Popularity of his policies


Reagan political strategy

LBJ-style Bargaining compared to Reagan style

Elements of Reagan Media Strategy:

                *Bully Pulpit

                *Stage Events in controlled settings

                Feed the Media

                *Consistency of message -- Line of the Day/Sound Bites

                *Selling the President

                *Popularity = Power


Weapons to Contras

Arms to Iran

lying to Congress

Congressional reaction: enraged


Party Philosophy 1990s


*mobilizing voters by emphasizing differences

*Newt Gingrich strategy


BUSH 41:

1980s Changes

*Reagan realignment

*Reagan success

*Discrediting of Keynes economics in many eyes

Reagan vs. Bush in philosophy and political experience

Bush as Insider

*Small “c” vs. capital “C” conservatives

Bush and party loyalty

"The Vision Thing"

Bush history:

                Moderate Republican

                Appointed jobs for Republican party -- loyalty

1988: No New Taxes

1990: Budget Deal

1992: a mistake to raise taxes

Gulf War

Wasting opportunities after the Gulf

Bush and failure to remake the party

Bush and leadership



Democratic Party after 1984 election

*Old Democrats vs. new Democrats

Why the growth of a moderate center?

                *Democrats lost South

*Impact of Reagan revolution (shifting US politics to the right)


                tax revolts of 1970s and 1980s

                economic slowdown since 1970s

                perceived failure of:

                                1. Democratic New Deal/Great Society

                                2. Reaganomics  

Fight in each Party

                *Democrats: centrist vs. liberal – centrists win

                *Republicans: moderate vs. conservative – Movement conservatives win

*New Democrats – Democratic Leadership Council

                *Socially liberal

                *Fiscally Conservative


                Government has limited, but important role

*Clinton as New Democrat

Education reform in Arkansas

The logic of Clinton's election

1992 election: Three way race

*Ross Perot

*President elected with only 43% of the vote

*Is Clinton really a New Democrat?

                *Gays in the military

                *Health care        


                *Triangulation and Welfare reform


                Economic world order building and globalization

                Pro-business Democrat

                                *Aggressive promotion of free trade

*economic policy as the key to foreign policy

*Republicans take the House and Senate

*The trust issue

*Slick Willie

*Scandals and accusations

*Investigations and evidence

*Clinton and his spin team's defense against the accusations

*Clinton's relationship with the media

*Clinton haters


Whitewater investigations (not the details)


House impeaches

Senate acquits     

Transforming the Democratic Party

but impeachment means that Clinton’s innovations did not become dominant 



George W. Bush (Bush 43)

*2000 Election

*Bush as uniter and divider

*Goal of Republican unity instead of bipartisanship

*strategy of division or polarization


Pre-modern presidency vs. modern presidency

Modern presidency as crisis presidency

Post-Modern Presidency?

                Cold War ends

Fate of Bush 41, Clinton, and Bush 43 before 9/11

Impeachment of Clinton

Modern presidency really a crisis presidency and crisis has ended

Characteristics of Post-Modern Presidency

Weak executive

Powerful Congress

Madisonian style checks and balances

Governor of the USA?


Then 9/11

*Crisis presidency reborn/New imperial presidency

*Unitary Executive Theory

                *Executive power

                *National security

*The fight against presidential power (there is a slide on how Bush increased presidential power and a slide on how congress and the judicial branch fought back against presidential power)

1.       *Bush homeland security institutions in EOP

2.       *Asking Congress for Authority

3.       Surveillance

4.       Detainees

5.       Signing Statements


Use of the new crisis presidency the way GW Bush has


Terms from Edwards book

*Alternative to Neustadt’s views

*Presidents don’t persuade; they don’t change anyone’s mind

*Presidents can only take advantage of opportunities; they can only exploit existing opportunities

*Obama’s mistake: believing he could persuade people to support his agenda, an agenda that did not have public support or congressional support.

*the impact of polarization

*Obama believed he could transcend party lines at a time when polarization is growing

*Americans are more conservative

*Obama’s agenda increases government role (stimulus, health care, climate change)

*Obama’s aggressive bully pulpit, but it changes no one’s mind

*The amazing misperceptions on health care reform


Terms from Brownstein relating to Red and Blue thesis

*Brownstein’s main thesis:

                *The Democratic and Republican parties had both been coalitions of conservative and moderate/liberal elements

*In the 1960s this began to change (Civil Rights, Great Society, Vietnam, collapse of the New Deal Coalition and rise of the Reagan Coalition)

*Conservatives Democrats began to move to the Republican Party; Moderate Republicans began to move to the Democratic Party

*This led to a new party system: A conservative party faced off against a liberal party

*The result is greater polarization

The PPT presentation on Red and Blue states is something we did not get to this semester.  But it is helpful in understanding the context of Brownstein’s thesis.  For that reason, I will annotate the PPT (under the slides there is space to add comments).  I will add comments below the slides and then you can read them if you have questions about the Brownstein thesis.  For the exam, you’ll only need to know the basic Brownstein thesis.