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Rescooped by Matei Panturu from AP Government and Politics - Assigned "Scoops"!

Here's What You Need to Know About the President's 2015 Budget - DUE 4/25

Here's What You Need to Know About the President's 2015 Budget - DUE 4/25 | Matei's RhsPogo |
Here's how President Obama's budget would grow our economy and expand #OpportunityForAll →

Via Christine Thompson
Matei Panturu's insight:

1. What are the reasons OMB Deputy Director Brian Deese gives for the rapid rate of decline in the deficit (debt-GDP ratio)? Brian Deese explains that that the rapid decline in the debt gdp ratio can be attributed to the nationalization of health care stagnating the rate of growth of health care cost.

2. According to Mr. Deese, how would the president's proposed budget for 2015 affect future deficits? Explain. Deese sees the proposed presidential budget as a way of reducing the deficit even more so than the fast track it is currently on by eliminating economic loopholes and investing in the growth of our economy through elements like infrastructure.

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. The president is trying to build on this effort to compromise in discretionary spending by “investing” in our economy with positive initiatives, one of which being the networking of American manufacturing, another being early childhood education which is said to have excellent return in the long run.

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? The pros of the budget proposal are fairly obvious. The debt seems to decrease and the investment in our economy would increase, giving us a high future return rate. The cons are found in the principle of nationalization of healthcare itself, which I am against. I believe it is not the government’s duty to be responsible for man’s healthcare, and I especially do not think that it should be forcefully given to all instead of made available to handfuls which need it.

Cole Hagar's curator insight, April 28, 2014 1:40 PM


1. OMB Deputy Director Brian Deese says that the reason for the rapid rate of decline in the deficit is due to healthcare being nationalized and constant job creation.

2. According to Mr. Deese, the proposed budget deficits will continue to fall through 2024 due to the President’s plans and policies that he thinks will do away with waste.

3. The President is distributing the discretionary funding by empowering in things such as research projects that will ultimately benefit our economy in the long run. His initiative is already paid for taking into consideration the deficits.

4. The cons include the nationalization of healthcare which hurts almost everyone except the people without healthcare. The pro is the investment in our future investments which will ultimately help the economy in the long run.

Lauren Smith's curator insight, April 29, 2014 11:50 PM

1. The rapid rate of decline in the deficit is due to a historic reduction in the rate of growth in health care costs. 

2. The President's budget for 2015 will affect future deficits by decreasing the deficit more each year. 

3. The President's budget is trying to build on Congress's effort to compromise in the allocation of discretionary policy by bringing the democrats and republicans to work together to agree on a budget that has set limits for discretionary spending. The President's proposal shows how he'd build on this compromise process and invest in potential resources that would strengthen the economy. 

4. Pros of the proposal:

The deficit would decrease while the opportunities for Americans would increase. it promotes more efficient government management, and with the help of American Opportunity Tax Credit 11.5 million families can pay for their children to go to college.

Cons of the proposal:

It will take years to see the solid changes in the deficit to take effect in the economy and the plan will need bipartisan party support to work, and right now the majority of the government is divided. 

Tanner Roan's curator insight, April 30, 2014 7:50 PM

1. The rapid decrease of the deficit comes from the lowered cost of things like healthcare.

2. According to Mr. Deese, the deficit would begin to fall to around 1.6% as long as they keep decreasing the costs of things like healthcare.

3. The new budget is proposing to focus more on infrastructure and early education, but even then no one program is getting special attention budget wise. a component is the increase of funding for preschool education.

4. The idea of splitting the budget to help in so man ways sounds like a good plan to help support growth in the nation, but at the same time it seems to be very idealistic about what it will actually be able to accomplish. when spreading the budget out over so many fields, it can be easy to overestimate the impact it will actually have on the nation.

Rescooped by Matei Panturu from AP Government and Politics - Assigned "Scoops"!

Obama going it alone, pressing ahead on reforms for federal contractors with executive orders - DUE 4/11!

Obama going it alone, pressing ahead on reforms for federal contractors with executive orders - DUE 4/11! | Matei's RhsPogo |
President pushing contractor changes with executive orders, moving without help from Congress

Via Christine Thompson
Matei Panturu's insight:
The president believes that nothing is getting done in Congress. The executive order he is enacting aims to end discrimination among federal contractors without drafting a bill to pass through Congress. His limit on his own executive order, like all other executive orders, is that to get funding on this initiative, he will eventually have to ask congress for the necessary appropriations of funds. There will come a time when the president will be at the mercy of Congress to see to it that this program is funded.Common complaints against executive orders lie in the idea that to use them is simply a strategic move to draw attention to an issue rather than a real initiative. Some suggest that to pass legislation over the heads of Congress is to disregard the separation of powers spelled out in the constitution. In particular, this executive order is criticized for being used in a time of peace—most orders are advocated in a time of war, but as of recent time, presidents have taken to using orders to take initiatives rather than emergency directives. Critics argue that Obama knows that this legislation will soon rely on Congress for funding.Obama’s White House has chosen not to address Gay and Lesbian Rights advocacy with any executive orders.  This is most likely due to it being such a “hot” issue right now. With a country very divided on the issue, to enact an executive order favoring either side of the issue would serve to segregate supporters of the other side of the issue and could hurt the president’s public approval. Taking such a large decision without going through Congress would be seen as unconstitutional.
Ivan Dominguez's curator insight, April 14, 2014 9:02 AM

Obama is enacting an executive order to raise the pay for federal employees,and so women get paid equally as men. The order needs to get approved by the senate,and Obama is lacking congressional support. The limitations are that the president is limited to feral government contacts and has to be approved by congress. The major criticism is that the executive order will affect the basic cost of a product because they have to find a way to pay those employees, and overall the result will be inflation. The White House decided to not include an executive order on gay right issues because the Obama doesn’t want to interfere if Congress may give support in new legislation because that as that may make Congress give due to redundancy

Alex Speed's curator insight, April 16, 2014 11:54 AM

1.) Obama was forced to use an executive order because he does not have the support of congress, however he can pass legislation that will have the same effect by using an executive order. However,the limit of using an executive order is that it does not effect all US citizens.

2.) The general population is skeptical of executive orders because they do not require congressional approval, which seems like a manipulation of government. This specific order faces scrutiny for its potential with lawsuits on private companies 

3.) The Obama administration has chosen not to enact orders that will effect sexual discrimination because that is congress's situation. Obama doesn't want to create sort of bias in congress that will negatively impact this legislation

Taig Lyons's curator insight, April 17, 2014 9:59 AM


Why has President Obama chosen to enact an executive order regarding pay of federal employees?
The president can have an impact over the part of the economy he directly controls. This move looks good and can have an impact with federal contractors in the broader economy.

What are the limitations on Obama’s executive order and executive orders in general?
Executive orders apply pretty much only to sectors the president has direct control over, like the bureaucracy and the military.

What criticism is being levied against presidents’ use of executive orders? What is the criticism of this specific executive order?
The criticism is that the order will effect very few people and that it's really just an example more than anything. There's no pressure for non-federal contractors to follow suit.

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?
The White House has not made an executive order regarding the protection of gays and lesbians in the federal bureaucracy, because it hopes to get a law passed that would cover this topic nationwide.

Rescooped by Matei Panturu from AP Government and Politics - Assigned "Scoops"!

Gerrymandering: the recipe for dysfunctional government? - DUE 3/28

Video on 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...

Via Teresa Herrin, Kelly Grossman, Christine Thompson
Matei Panturu's insight:

1. The majority party is given the right to redraw congressional districts  every ten years at reapportionment after the census. They do so to ensure that their seats in the house will be safe in reelection based on the mapping instead of the public's approval rating.

2.Incumbency is no longer related to public approval. To be reelected, a congressman does not have to gain the approval of his or her public but simply fall in accordance to the districts redrawn every ten years and keep his party satisfied.

 3. The solution to this problem lies with the ability to draw congressional districts with geographically factored algorithms done based on population distribution instead of manually drawn by the majority party.

4. The electoral college and gerrymandering share the similarity of being outdated systems which are no longer as helpful as they are hindering. Originally installed to help the growth of a developing nation, now both are exploited by politicians for personal gain and lead to an unfair representation of the public in congress and the White House.

5. No; in the same way that two wrongs do not make a right, the same can be said about gerrymandering assisting both parties. Rather than attempt to justify an extremely apparently outdated system, we should strive to abolish it and work toward a fairer representation of the public's needs and wants.

Mason Paul Lyman's curator insight, April 2, 2014 9:41 PM

1. The House redraws the congressional districts every 10 years on the census in an attempr to make the districts lend their support to whoever the current party majority is.

2. Gerrymandering allows incumbents to get reelected multiple times. 

3. Have a computerized, neutral program that would create districts based on geography and demography. A program such as this would make it more difficult for incumbents to get reelected.

4. Yes, there are. One party could earn more votes than another but still lose the election.

5. No because it is an unhonorable way to earn the respective benefits.

Jessica Markle's curator insight, April 12, 2014 2:09 PM

gerymandering is the act of redrawing a district and its has gotten its name from Albridge Garry who redrew a district in the beginning of our country in order for him to win a vote. The redrawing of the districts almost guarantees a win in voting because it allows the politicians to choose their voters. In the video, suggested possible solutions to gerrymandering would be to redraw district lines according to geography, demographics, and population density but it would cause a disruption in the current system and would make it very difficult for a representative to be reelected to a district that doesn't have the same advantages. Gerrymandering can be compared to the electoral college because these systems don't work in the favor of the public, or the majority vote because with the representatives picking the districts containing people they know will vote for them along with the electoral college being able to override the public vote, it has caused question in the democratic system of the United States.

Lauren Sargent's curator insight, April 17, 2014 9:47 PM

The term gerrymandering comes from an 1810 law that was created by Elbridge Gerry, Governor of Massachusetts, which repositioned and defined congressional districts based on population changes. After the law was passed, newspaper articles came out with pictures of the re-drawn districts in concerning shapes, such as a salamander. They linked the two words “salamander” and “Gerry” and called it gerrymandering. As time has gone on, gerrymandering has been manipulated by both the Republican and Democratic parties by them re-drawing districts specifically to change the possible outcome of their “political cartoon” if you will. House seats are being re-apportioned every presidential election year. The video suggested that these means of politics have made it so that “the politicians are choosing their voters, rather than the voters choosing their politicians”. This is causing major distrust in candidates and decrease in voter participation. Gerrymandering has been beneficial to incumbents because they change their districts to work in favor of their election. Both the Electoral College and gerrymandering can be seen as unfair or corrupt government practices because they can sometimes both not accurately depict the peoples' votes by changing their districts. With the Electoral College, they could win a majority of the electoral votes, but not the majority vote. With gerrymandering, a politician would be elected just because of the re-drawn, manipulated districts, which is ridiculous. 

Rescooped by Matei Panturu from AP Government and Politics - Assigned "Scoops"!

Larry J. Sabato's Crystal Ball » 2016 presidential ratings update: Nothing but questions on the Republican side

Larry J. Sabato's Crystal Ball » 2016 presidential ratings update: Nothing but questions on the Republican side | Matei's RhsPogo |

Via Christine Thompson
Matei Panturu's insight:

1. Based on this article, what would you say that the media is looking for in an ideal candidate for 2016? Is it the same for both parties?

2. To what extent is Sabato focused on the issues (platform) of the candidates?

3. Sabato refers to the “permanent presidential campaign.” What does this mean, and what are the implications for government?

4. Do you think that there is an advantage to being identified as an early leader in the presidential race? Why or why not?


1. In 2016, the media seems to be looking for a strong, energetic leader who is beloved by the people and has more advantages than disadvantages according to their “research” on the hopeful’s character and interactions with the people. According to Sabato, it is nearly the same for both parties. It differs only in that the Republican Party seems to be more invested in the search for their next candidate as they have more running and more detailed research on their candidates than the Democratic party, which is focused around the idea that Hillary Clinton will most likely run.

2. Sabato barely concerns himself with the actual platforms of the candidates and instead chooses to report on their qualities as politicians, both positive and negative, and any sort of misgivings they have so far had with the people or the media which might prove to hurt them.

3. The permanent presidential campaign is an idea which suggests that there is an ongoing relationship between the person holding office and his or her people; to maintain good relations with them, they can never truly be done campaigning. Their past will be scrutinized by the people, as well as their current behavior and future endeavors. This means that the president, even after being vetted and elected, must strive to keep the people fond of him. The president must be of completely noble aspirations to succeed in office.

4. To me, being identified as an early leader in the race is definitely a disadvantage. The media is a vicious thing; it seeks to take a nominee and heavily scrutinize them and try to break them and dig into their past and such. The more attention one receives from the media, the more likely they are to be victimized by it. I realize that extra attention from the media also gives them a leg ahead in the race, however I like to think that the media has no allies, so getting closer to them only leaves the candidate more exposed.

Sean Kelly's curator insight, March 6, 2014 10:19 PM

1. The media is, overall, looking for a candidate that is somehow associated with government, and not associated with the government at large. The candidate needs connections, but not popular connections - they need to have a name of themselves without latching on to anyone elses name. They also are looking for a good personality, and an appeal to both sides of the political parties. This is true for Democrats and Repbulicans, except for tiny details - mainly Democrats need to have a steady, but not heavy, tone of liberalism while the Repbulicans need to tone down their conservatism.

2. Sabato does not mention party platforms for the candidates, except with Brian Schweitzer when his conseravtism on guns and the environment are listed as disadvantages.

3. the "permanent presidential campaign" refers to the tendency of government officials to always be vying for the presidential slot in the closest election year. There is always consideration for who would be the next president.

4. I would say it would be a disadvantage to be labeled as an early leader - people like the idea of an underdog story, of someone who has taken a rise to power. To be labeled as an early leader would be to be put as an "obvious choice," and so would be to be put in a bad light with the public as they feel their opinion is being downtrodded by that specific candidate.

Christine Thompson's comment, March 18, 2014 4:10 PM
I noticed that some people have the same/very similar wording on the "permanent presidency" question. Please do not "borrow" another student's work... and please be careful of plagiarism.
Lauren Smith's curator insight, March 19, 2014 6:44 AM

1. The media is looking for someone who is nationally known and has political experience, supported by some poplitical group, and they must be dynamic in speeches and campains. In addition, the canditate should have beliefs that are well alligned with their political party and have fundraising resources.

2. Sabato is focused more on the basic qualities of the politicians and has pointed out positive and negitive aspects for each potential candidate. He is not focused on each potential candidate's entire political platform yet because the point of his article is to introduce the candidates as potential, not certain, runners.

3. When Sabato refers to  the "permanent presidential campaign" he is refering to the presidential campaign in 2016 where the candidates for each party are surely running for president. These are the people that have decided to run and are no longer potential candidates.

4. I do not think there is an advantage in being identified as an early leader in the presidential race because the media can draw negitive attention to the candidate before they can defend or explain themselves. It doesn't matter who is the leader at the beginning of the race, it only matters who is the leader at the end of it. Therefore, it would be pointless to take any lead before the presidential race has begun because no one cares about that yet.

Rescooped by Matei Panturu from AP Government and Politics - Assigned "Scoops"!

Texan Hispanics Tilt Democratic, but State Likely to Stay Red - DUE 2/20

Texan Hispanics Tilt Democratic, but State Likely to Stay Red - DUE 2/20 | Matei's RhsPogo |
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.

Via Christine Thompson
Matei Panturu's insight:

1. Why are Democrats hopeful of a party realignment in Texas? How is this related to the concept of minority majority?
With the influx of Hispanic immigration, the Democratic party is experiencing an increase in support in Texas, the new Hispanic citizens usually voting Democratic. As more Hispanics pour into Texas, the Party hopes to become the preferred political party in Texas. This demonstrates the power of minority majority; a once mostly-white Texas, which favored a Republican Party, is now subject to major political change just because there are (or might soon be) more Hispanics than whites in Texas.
2. What are the trends in party identification within the state of Texas?
Hispanics are decidedly a Democratic group (49% : 27%), though less so than the Hispanic populations of other states. The white population is decidedly Republican (61%: 26%), more so than the white populations of other states. A minority of each ethnic group chooses to align themselves with as independent.
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?
Gallup suggests that political realignment is unlikely to happen, referencing the fact that in the past five years, the growth of the Hispanic Republican Party in Texas has grown more so than the Hispanic Democratic Party. The Hispanic population of Texas is mostly Democratic, however, the Republican faction of the Hispanic population is much more profound than those of other states. Furthermore, the “trajectory” of Hispanic political support is impossible to gauge or predict because though the Hispanics of Texas are mostly Democratic, not all Hispanics choose to participate in the political process. Regardless of a minority majority in population, the fact that more whites demonstrate political participation may mean a continuation of the Republican alignment in Texas.
4. What steps were taken to ensure a low sampling error in this poll?
The sample is completely randomized between cellular and landline phones, ensuring no selection bias. The interviews are conducted in both Spanish and English to ensure unbiased responses. There are quotas on the number of cellphones and landlines dialed with other regional quotas. The responses are weighted according to more advanced statistics factors to remove the biases of volunteerism, selection, and nonresponse. Finally, they are reweighted to meet the demographic of the region, including ages, races, genders.


Holland Coleman's curator insight, February 20, 2014 11:28 PM

1. Democrats are hopeful of a party realignment in Texas because of the state's growing Hispanic population--Hispanics are consistently left-leaning--which represents an influx of blue voters that could tip the scales of the state. Soon, the state's white cititzens will make up less than half of the population, and the state will have a minority majority.


2. The party identification trend in Texas is that any given demographic will be more right-leaning than nationally. For instance, even though Hispanics in Texas still lean left, the margin by which Hispanic blue voters outweigh Hispanic red voters is much smaller. 


3. Despite any meteoric rise in Texas' Hispanic population, this demographic is unlikely to exercise its newfound political clout because Hispanic voters are much less likely to participate in elections than other demographics. The real challenge for Democrats therefore is not to win over the Hispanic population--they already lean left--but to get them to register and vote.


4. The study was a random survey conducted by telephone. Respondents were found using random-dialing methods in an even geographical spread. 50% of respondents were reached by landline, and the other 50% of respondents were reached by cell phone, to control for demographic trends regarding phone use. 

Lauren Smith's curator insight, February 21, 2014 12:22 AM

1. Democrats are hopeful for a party realignment in Texas because Texas is predominantly a Republican state, yet this poll suggests that the democrats are pulling more weight in Texas than before. If Texas were to become a more democratic state, then the Democrats would have a larger advantage in the number of voters and influence. The population of Hispanics in Texas is increasing in Texas and, along with African Americans in the state, are voting more democratic. However, the majority of Texans are white and vote republican. This shows that the minority majority struggle that the minorities are beginning to surpass the number of majority people in Texas. 

2. The trends in party identification in Texas are that the white Texans vote mostly republican, while the minorities vote more democratic. The Hispanic Texans were mostly republican in 2008 during the time of Obama's election, but now they have tended to follow the national trend to vote more democratic.  

3. Gallup suggests that the current situation of small percentages of Hispanic adult registered voters will unlikely cause a realignment of Texas to a democratic state. This is related to political participation in that there is a low percentage of Hispanic Texans who are actually registered to vote. This causes the Hispanic democrats to be poorly represented in the state.  Therefore the republicans who vote will keep Texas a more republican state.

4. Steps that were taken by Gallup to reduce sampling error were to conduct recent telephone interviews (in Spanish as well if needed to communicate to the respondent) with a random sample that included over 178,000 adults in all 50 states and in D.C., the interviews were 50% on cell phones and 50% on land lines, and there were weighted samples based on unequal selection probability and national demographics. 

Jordan Nguyen's curator insight, February 23, 2014 5:04 PM

1. If Texas has a party realignment it could be a huge change to the republican-democrat ratio. Texas is the largest republican majority state.  The minority Hispanic population as a cumulative has become the larger majority. The population is under the democratic influence more than anything else. 

2. The larger white majority will identify republican. The rest of the population will identify as democratic. 

3. Even though the minority is slowly becoming a majority the minority Hispanic population does not yet build the larger portion of population.The smaller Minority groups that makeup a majority combined are least likely to vote as well. This hinders the democratic party because there is no political participation.

4. There are several different groups looked at and not a single controlled specific type targeted, but the idea that the poll only targets people in Texas and divides them by race is not helping low sampling error. 

Rescooped by Matei Panturu from AP Government and Politics - Assigned "Scoops"!

Roberts Pulls Supreme Court to the Right Step by Step - DUE 4/18!

Roberts Pulls Supreme Court to the Right Step by Step - DUE 4/18! | Matei's RhsPogo |
Chief Justice John G. Roberts Jr. may work slowly, but he has a long-term strategy for putting his mark on the Supreme Court.

Via Christine Thompson
Matei Panturu's insight:

1. Conservatism and big business has been consistently favored in Roberts court decisions. This can be seen in his track record of siding more with conservatives vs liberals or can be observed in his entanglement with Obamacare in which he gave states the individual privilege to reject different aspects of Obamacare.
2. Precedent is using the interpretations of previous court decisions to come to conclusions for future court cases. The Roberts court acts widely on precedent rather than judement to support extremely conservative policy from previous cases. The effect is an ever growing conservative support which feeds on itself.
3. Much like with Congress, the president is faced with a supreme court comprised of conservatives where he, as a democrat, favors a more liberal policy. The result is the inability to gain traction in the supreme court. The president may either modify his interests to appease the court justices or may work to get the senate to approve the appointment of a more moderate justice.
4. Justice Kennedy can be considered the swing vote for he is, of all the judges, the most likely to sit on the fence. Not leaning one way or another, he can be swayed to vote one way or another depending on his judgment of the case itself rather than predisposed conservative or liberal sentiment or agendas.
5. The article seems to carry bias in favor of a conservative agenda. This is evident in that the article expresses favoritism for the Roberts court and deliberately discusses conservative ideals much more than it does the Obama administration or liberal policy in general. Even the subtext implies that the author sees Roberts as a positive figure in the judicial branch. 
"Chief Justice John G. Roberts Jr. may work slowly, but he has a long-term strategy for putting his mark on the Supreme Court."

Anna Fisher's curator insight, April 21, 2014 11:56 PM

1. The opposite party has been favored in Robert's court conditions. "He took pains to note that eight members of the court, including its four liberals, had already agreed that “things have changed in the South” and that the voting law seemed at odds with principles of federalism and “equal sovereignty” among the states."

2. "In the last term, the court issued 73 signed decisions in argued cases, in line with recent terms and about half the number the court routinely issued two decades ago. Justice Kennedy was in the majority 83 percent of the time in divided cases, trailed by Chief Justice Roberts at 73 percent. Justice Scalia brought up the rear, at 58 percent." So, Chief Robert's precedent would be Justice Kennedy and the majority does not typically rule in Robert's court.

3. “Obama’s poor overall record,” Professor Winkler added, “is largely due to philosophical differences with the court’s conservative majority.” The way this could be fixed is through compromise in parties, maybe not being too liberal and considering some of the conservative ideas. 

4. Justice Salina is considered the swing vote. Salina said that the majority needs to respect the President and the views of this. People still needs the power to govern themselves.

5. No, this article is factual and simply allows the reader to make their own opinion on the matter. 

Stephanie Shirley's curator insight, April 23, 2014 12:35 AM

1.The Roberts Court has a very conservative record that has been beneficial for business interests and detrimental to consumers and employees. They  cut back on class action lawsuits and favored arbitration. 

2. Precedent is making a decision based on prior decisions. In business cases, the court largely reaffirmed its prior decisions.
3. Obama's poor record is due to philosophical differences with the Supreme Court Justices. One strategy that the President could pursue to see greater success in the Court would be to compromise on issues and try to get legislation passed that is more bipartisan. 4. Justice Kennedy is considered the "swing vote" on the court because in some cases he votes liberal and in some he votes conservative. There are four liberals and four conservatives on the Court. 5. Yes, because it describes Chief Justice Roberts and his accomplishments in a positive way. "His patient and methodical approach has allowed him to establish a robustly conservative record."  
Ivan Dominguez's curator insight, April 24, 2014 12:41 AM

Roberts strongly supports conservative parties and decisions; “seven justices, including two liberals, agreed to sign an opinion that over time could restrict race-conscious admissions plans at colleges and universities.” This court has been the most pro-business in the past few years. A precedent is citing a previous case in order to successfully win a similar one. And Roberts court looks at all precedents set before any case is tried. The Obama administration has an overall poor record in defending their interests in the Supreme Court because the philosophical ideal differences within the administrations is very high. Justice Anthony Kennedy is most often the swing vote of the court. He typically goes back and forth between the conservatives and liberals. This article seems biased in favor of liberal stand points, but also gives credit to the Chief Justice  Roberts.

Rescooped by Matei Panturu from AP Government and Politics - Assigned "Scoops"!

Senate Balks at Obama Pick for Surgeon General

Senate Balks at Obama Pick for Surgeon General | Matei's RhsPogo |
The White House is considering putting off a Senate vote on Dr. Vivek H. Murthy, who has come under criticism from the National Rifle Association, or withdrawing the nomination altogether.

Via Christine Thompson
Matei Panturu's insight:
The NRA cannot directly prevent the appointment of Dr. Murphy but can (and is) encouraging citizens to show a lack of support for Murphy. In doing so, the citizens’ respective senators know that if they vote for the appointment of Murphy they will lose favor with their people so they are influenced to vote against it. The NRA is specifically against the nominee’s position on gun-control, namely how he is in favor of a ban on assault weapon sales to the public and other precautions that he wants to install. Senators’ greatest concern is that if they don’t bend to this tactic being used by the NRA, they may distance themselves from the public and not be reelected. This bears particularly true in states that are primarily anti-gun control.The president may appoint who he or she chooses fit for the office, but the senate can override and deny this appointment if they can get a 2/3 majority approval.After seeing many appointments be denied in the Senate, the White House may consider appointing more moderate candidates that won’t be subject to being attacked by the NRA. They may also choose to hold off on this appointment until after the midterm elections, when reelection is a less pressing issue and senators are less likely to be externally influenced. They may consider abandoning the candidate all-together if they know that the vote will not turn out in their favor. 


Sam Johnson's curator insight, April 7, 2014 9:59 AM

The NRA is exercising it's influence by basicaly telling democratic Senators in Conservative States if you support Obama's nomination, you will loose our support. The loss of the NRA's support could keep those democrats from being reelected. The White House could offer a compromise to get Murthy approved. For example they could offer to consider a ballanced budget bill in exchange for supporting Murthy.

Jordan Nguyen's curator insight, April 8, 2014 1:24 AM

1. The NRA is using it's influence in order to persuade the senators to disapprove of the appointment made by President Obama. With ties between the senate democrats and the White House already wearing thin, and the majority of the Democratic senators up for election, the senators are put in a tough situation.The nominee 'Dr. Murthy, who has voiced support for various gun control measures like an assault weapons ban, mandatory safety training and ammunition sales limits" which is upsetting to the NRA.

2. The senators have reached the beginning of the midterm election season and need to get reelected in order to climb to greater power. The NRA having so much influence to certain politics will have a major affect of campaigners who have already decided to approve of the appointment of Dr. Murthy. 

3. The President is the individual who nominates whomever to get appointed by the senate. Through confirmation the President may have a  "guestimate" at who will approve the appointment. 

4. The White House with its' influence may try to use that as bargain in rebuttal to the NRA which is threatening the Senators.  Dr. Murthy will probably be appointed but the completion of the official appointment itself will have to wait until after midterm elections. 

Zachary Smart's curator insight, April 8, 2014 11:52 PM

1.An interest group like the NRA is using its power to influence the appointment of the Attorney General because he opposes guns, therefor he is for gun regulation.

2. Senators who vote for Murphy are more likely to not be reelected in the states where the NRA holds power. This makes it to where their approval rating drops, and to where their constituents are likely to vote against them.

3. The White House/President has the ability to delay an appointment or remove the candidate from the process entirely. The Senate must approve/vote for the appointee, so the president and the senate have a tight relationship.

4. The president must have more support from the democratic senators over republicans if he is to have his appointment approved. The president recently found out that he has to make a compromise between both parties of the house.

Scooped by Matei Panturu!

Disney Educational Productions: The Electoral College - YouTube

All about the Electoral College. This original video from Disney Educational Productions tackles one of the most interesting elements of U.S. presidential el...
Matei Panturu's insight:


1. The Constitutional basis enlies in the idea that the founding fathers did not necessarily trust all of its people to participate in government. It also needed to balance out the power of states based on sizes. 

2. The most common strategy is to rally the swing States, the  undecided States which could turn the election. The safe States refer to the ones which are certainly going to maintain their voting trend and vote for the same party. Candidates don't invest time into campaigning In safe States for there is usually no way to turn a state 

3. The decision is taken to the house of representatives to elect the president. 

4. The electoral system was criticized after Bush won the electoral vote but not the popular. 

5. It was a positive system for the time being but now that the nation has developed it may be time to switch to the popular vote. The entire state system should be remediated to be based on the individual and not the state. 



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Americans' Satisfaction With Economy Sours Most Since 2001 - DUE 2/24!

Americans' Satisfaction With Economy Sours Most Since 2001 - DUE 2/24! | Matei's RhsPogo |
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.

Via Christine Thompson
Matei Panturu's insight:
Historical events, as Gallup suggests, can mirror the changes in results but I believe that this does not necessarily mean they can explain them. Statistics teaches us that correlation does not imply causation. Though you can infer that it was repercussions from the events of 9/11 that skewed the data in some way or another, for example,  it is a fallacy to say that this must be why the data appeared like this. Other issues of the times or just public tastes could have impacted the data as well.These results did not coincide with the depiction of liberalism and conservatism found in my text book; the book and my own natural understanding of the two schools of thought paint them to be polar opposites of one another. In saying that, I would naturally assume the differences in satisfaction rates, based on a particular issue, to be exponentially greater than they actually came out to be. It is surprising to me that there was only a ten point discrepancy between treatment of gays and lesbians in the nation. I would have assumed a much larger difference, as liberals and conservatives are supposed to have opposite thoughts.Public policy changes that are likely to be supported by each party are the ones in which the discrepancy between the satisfaction rates between the two are the smallest. In this case, it is likely that public policy change will soon be supported in regards to “the nation’s policy to reduce or control crime” and “the quality of public education” as the discrepancy between these two was only one percent.With a sampling error of four percent, that means that the surveyors are ninety five percent confident that a true sample of the population, which could not ever be realistically taken, would yield results within four percent of these. This only serves to bolster my newly formed images of what bipartisan politics truly looks like in a real setting, as explained in answer two. A four percent sampling error means that the results could be even closer together than they already were. Some may actually have no discrepancy between the two.
Anna Fisher's curator insight, February 24, 2014 1:41 PM

1. The historical events do change the opinions of the people, specifically 9/11, because it makes people lose trust in the government. The people are much less satisfied with the world affairs.

2. They do coincide with my expectations, because liberal/conservative usually go with republican and democratic ideas. Liberals believe that the state shouldn't play such a big role, while conservative believes in more strict law.

3. Republicans believe that the environment is doing pretty well, while the Democrats disagree. Democrats think that health care is doing great, while Republicans differ. The key points that Republicans and Democrats believe in, they disagree on.

4. This is the margin of error, so the people interviewed are fairly confident in their answer. Smaller the margin of error, the more reliable the poll. 

Sean Kelly's curator insight, February 24, 2014 11:34 PM

1. The terror attacks and the dot-com boom changes do explain the changes in public opinion because the relative feelings of safety and economic immunity, i.e. no one will mess with the US, are gone.

2. These results do coincide because the Democrats liberal views fit in with the government doing more to intervene with certain policies, and the conservative Republican views fit into the idea of Conservatives limiting government controls across all fronts, and their "return to the good times" attitude.

3. The Democrats would be more likely to support gun control and penal system reform, while the Republicans would enjoy a cut on the higher income bracket taxes and the loss of gun control laws.

4. The 4% error potential means that the sampling is most likely within 4% of the general popluations overall view. This means the data is not exactly precise, but does give a good ball park idea to work in for the numbers.

Mason Paul Lyman's curator insight, March 3, 2014 4:32 PM

1. For the most part, yes, due to the war in the Middle East, however, not all social factors would be.


2. Yes. Democrats are more satisfied with liberal issues, and Republican favor conservative issues.


3. Democrats would probably push for more concern for global warming and tighter gun laws, as democrats are generally liberal. Republicans would probably push for less government intervention, as republicans are generally conservative.


4. The results could be shifted +/- 4%, which is relatively small. It puts into mind the thought that much of our information in corrupt.