1. What are the reasons OMB Deputy Director Brian Deese gives for the rapid rate of decline in the deficit (debt-GDP ratio)?
-Deese says that there has been a reduction in the rate of health care costs.
2. According to Mr. Deese, how would the president's proposed budget for 2015 affect future deficits? Explain.
-His plan is built on policies that help lower health care costs. It would allow us to make investments on important things such as infrastructure, education, and innovation.
3. How does the president’s budget try to build on Congress’s effort to compromise in the allocation of discretionary spending? Provide a description of at least one component of this initiative.
-Democrats and Republicans got together and set levels for the budget of discretionary spending last year. The president tries to build on this wihle impleenting his own policies. Early Education and Learning is one of the areas that would open up 100,000 new slots for kids for early learning.
4. Knowing that you do not have all of the pertinent information to make a fully-informed decision, what do you see as the pros and cons of this budget proposal?
-Pros of this is that it will allow more opportunities for education, building up our defense, and grants. A con would be that this would not take effect until next year.
1.Why has President Obama chosen to enact an executive order regarding pay of federal employees?
-congress isn't agreeing with Obama, but this is supposed to be a first step in closing the pay gap between men and women. He also wants to raise minimum wage to $10.10.
2.What are the limitations on Obama’s executive order and executive orders in general?What criticism is being levied against presidents’ use of executive orders? What is the criticism of this specific executive order?
-this bill is to close the gap between the pay of men and women. Gay and lesbians find it hypocritical that Obama will sign a bill for women but not for them. Congress doesn't approve of Obamas actions regarding this bill. He is issuing an executive order.
3.What policy area has the White House chosen not to address with executive orders? Why might the Obama administration be hesitant to address this area?
-they haven't addressed any orders on gay and lesbians and this is because it is a controversial topic right now. The administration might be hesitant to address this due to the upcoming election.
Video on msnbc.com: The age-old practice of politicians re-drawing Congressional districts to find friendly voters, or, gerrymandering, has allowed members of the House of Representatives from both sides of the aisle to stay in power regardless of...
Texas remains a Republican-leaning state because its white residents are becoming increasingly Republican and its large Hispanic population, though solidly Democratic, is less so than Hispanics nationally.
1. Why are Democrats hopeful of a party realignment in Texas? How is this related to the concept of minority majority?
-Hispanic Texans are more likely to vote Democratic. They are gradually increasing in numbers in Texas and as a result this could cause Texas to shift more towards a Democratic view.
2. What are the trends in party identification within the state of Texas?
-The majority of white people in Texas vote Republican as opposed to more hispanics who vote Democratic. Right now Texas is considered a Republican state although that could change in the future.
3. Why does Gallup suggest that the current situation is unlikely to result in party realignment in the near future? How is this related to the concept of political participation?
-Majority of the people who live in Texas are non-hispanic whites. They tend to vote Republican. Texas-Hispanics have also showed more support for the republican party over the last five years. Texas-Hispanics are more likely to vote republican than in any other state. Through the serveys people have been able to observe that hispanics are more likely to vote democratic.
4. What steps were taken to ensure a low sampling error in this poll?
-Many different groups were serveyed during this process such as whites, non-hispanic whites, hispanics, and african americans. Also people who supported both the republicab and democrats were serveyed.
1. Who/what has been consistently favored in Roberts court decisions? Cite evidence to support your answer.
-Business cases have been constantly favored. "Anyone doubting that the most important story of the Roberts court is its business rulings has not been paying enough attention.” It also favors arbitration.
2. What is precedent and in what ways has the Roberts court largely made rulings based on precedent?
-Precedent is basing a case on a past exmple and following its lead. In business cases the court didn't attempt to make new laws, they just stuck with the decisions they made in their prior cases. The rejected attempts at contorting federal law.
3. Why does the Obama administration have an overall poor record in defending their interest in the Supreme Court? What strategy(ies) might the President pursue to see greater success in the Court?
-Obama's poor overall record is due to philosophical differences with the court's conservative majority. The Obama administration needs to attempt to compromise with the conservatives in the court system.
4. Which Justice is considered the “swing vote” on the court and
-Justice Kennedy because in the last term the courts issued 73 decisions in argued cases. Kennedy was in the majority 83% of the time divided in cases.
5. Is there discernible bias in the way this article was written? Why, or why not?
-Yes because the person who wrote this article talks like he already knows what the outcome will be on the voting of new laws that are trying to come into play, such as gay rights. He also tended to focus more on liberals tha conservatives.
1. How is an interest group (the NRA) exercising its influence on this appointment? What are the NRA’s specific concerns with this nominee?
-The NRA is opposing this appointment and sending "grass-root alerts" to subsribers with emails telling them to ask their senators to oppose the nomination for surgeon general. They think the nominee is too radical. They want Democrats to keep control of the Senate, but this is being jepardized.
2. What is at stake for Senators, and where is the concern greatest?
-Senators face the threat of not being reelected at the upcoming election. Their concern of the president's appointment is that the possible new appointment supports gun control laws.
3. How does the President/White House play a role in the confirmation process?
-The president can appoint someone, but the senate has to approve his appointments.
4. What strategies could the White House pursue in relation to this appointment? What did the White House learn from recent nominations that were not confirmed?
-The White House could try to persuade members of the senate to vote in their favor, especially the Democrats. The White House can't afford to have more than 6 democrats vote against this appointment.
Mo Rocca, host of the film "Electoral Dysfunction" airing on PBS, helps us understand just what the Electoral College is, how it affects our choosing the president, and introduces us to one lawmaker's plan to abolish it.
Footage from "Electoral Dysfunction" courtesy of Trio Pictures.
Christine Belcher's insight:
What is the constitutional basis for the Electoral College and why was the system put in place?
-The founding fathers didn't want the common man to have a say in elections, they wanted the elite to be in control.
2. What is the common strategy to get to 270, and what role do “safe” and “swing” states play?
-The safe and swing states are important for people running for elections because this could help determine how the electoral college will vote. They are important to winning an election.
3. How is a president chosen when none of the candidates receives a majority of the electoral college vote?
-The electoral college is based off of how the majority of people voted in one state and each state gets a number of electoral votes.
4. Why did the 2000 election reenergize critique of the Electoral College?
-George W. Bush did not win the popular vote, but he did win because of the electoral college.
5. Are you satisfied with the current system? Explain why or why not.
-No because the people should directly be able to elect who they want as president and not have other people do this for them.
More Americans today are satisfied with where the nation stands on acceptance of gays and lesbians, federal taxes, and healthcare availability than were satisfied in 2001. But Americans' satisfaction with the economy has declined.
1. The article explains why Gallup chose a 13-year comparison. Do the historical events of this period explain the changes in public opinion? Why or why not?
-Yes because the events such as the baby boom explains why the American economy was more accepted than it is now, because the U.S. was going througha period of economic gain. Incidents such as 911 explain why Americans today are less satified with the government and the economy. Drastic changes have taken place since that event and many Americans are now accepting issues such as gay and lesbian marriage because they have bigger issues to deal with such as the government and foreign affairs.
2. Examine the chart comparing Democrats' and Republicans' levels of satisfaction. Do these results coincide with your expectations (based on the textbooks' depiction of American liberalism and conservatism)? Why or why not?
-Yes because Democrats can be considered more liberal than Rapublicans. More changes over the last few years have been in favor of the Democrats because our president is a democrat.
3. Based on these results, which public policy changes are likely to be supported by each party?
-Republicans are more likely to support economic policies, the quality of the enviornment, and gun control. Democrats are more likely to support issues related to the military and national security.
4. The sampling error for this poll is +/- 4%. What does this mean, and how might it impact your interpretation of the data presented?
-The error for this sample was small. This means that the data that was accounted for is very accurate.
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