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Rescooped by Reece Waddell 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 | Reece's POGO Stick |
Here's how President Obama's budget would grow our economy and expand #OpportunityForAll →

Via Christine Thompson
Reece Waddell'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 cites a reduction in the cost of healthcare as a reasin fir the rapid rate of decline in the deficit, or debt-GDP ratio.


 2. According to Mr. Deese, how would the president's proposed budget for 2015 affect future deficits? Explain.

The President proposes to advance infastructure and continually decrease healthcare costs. By doing these things and investing wisely, the deficit will continue to reduce all the way down to 1.6% in 2024.


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.

Mandatory spending is spending on the programs that are government funded, such as medicare/medicaid and social security.

Discretionary spending is where money is allocated to certain areas each year, differing each year. Last year, the Republicans and Democrats came together to compromise on discretionary spending. Not everyone got what they wanted, but it was a step in the right direction. Now, President Obama has led a program, known as the Opportunity, Growth and Security Initiative, in which Obama puts funds into programs he feels will best help the economy, like Early Childhood Learning and Promise Zones.


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?

There are several. Pros include balancing the budget, limiting spending and making sure enough money goes to the appropriate programs. Cons include but are not limited to, the US typically goes over budget, some compromises can lead to a lack in funding, and sometimes the budget has a shortfall anyway and funding is cut regardless.

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 Reece Waddell 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! | Reece's POGO Stick |
President pushing contractor changes with executive orders, moving without help from Congress

Via Christine Thompson
Reece Waddell's insight:

Why has President Obama chosen to enact an executive order regarding pay of federal employees?


President Obama has chosen to enact an executive order because he knows that going through Congress will get him absolutley no where. Since the House is controlled by Republicans, it is highly likely that any legislation he attempts to pass will fail and get show down.


What are the limitations on Obama’s executive order and executive orders in general?


Well, technically Presidents are only supposed to enact excecutive orders in times of crisis. Obama says that since nothing is getting done, he must act. The majority of politicains believe he is abusing is powers.


What criticism is being levied against presidents’ use of executive orders? What is the criticism of this specific executive order?


Republicans believe the President is over stepping his boundaries. Furthermore, many Congressman fear that his executive order on pay increases and wage garnishes will prompt several lawsuits. Obama claims he just want to get information out to the people, but letting almost anyone have access to pay records could be extremely dangerous.


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 and President Obama have chosen to take no action whatosever in the area of Gay rights. The White House has resisted pressure from gay rights advocates who want Obama to sign an anti-discrimination executive order that would protect gays and lesbians working for federal contractors. The White House wants the House to approve a Senate-passed bill extending those protections to all Americans. They are probably hesistant to address this area because it is one that is extremely risque. People are either on board with gay rights, or want nothing to do with it. Obama could lose even more support if he acts.

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 Reece Waddell 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
Reece Waddell's insight:

1) Politicians (more recently the majority party) have redrawn the district boundaries in order to secure more votes for their party. Furthermore, the boundaries are usually redrawn close to election in order to secure victories.


2) Gerrymandering has essentially caused politicians to pick their voters rather than voters picking their politicians. Moreover, Congress' approval rating was 15%, yet 90% of incumbents were reelected. This means that Congress does not have to worry about what they do in office because they know they will be reelected regardless.


3) Some people have suggested redrawing Congressional districts using mathematics and algorithms based on a regions population density alone. This would eliminate the politics in drawing boundaries, and more incumbents would have to try harder in office to get reelected. 


4) Yes. Since gerrymandering isn't "legitimate" it can affect the electoral college because not every district is accurately represented. If a district is redrawn to favor democrats but the region is historically republican, it could have an adverse reaction on an election.


5) No. Just because gerrymandering benefits one party one time and another party another time doesn't constitute the fact that it is horribly biased. It's like saying stealing is right because it doesn't affect you, but if you get stolen from it's okay too. Two wrongs don't make a right.

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 Reece Waddell 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 | Reece's POGO Stick |

Via Christine Thompson
Reece Waddell's insight:

1. The media is looking for multiple things when picking an early front runner for the 2016 campaign. For one, they are looking for a candidate with previous political experience. They are also looking for a candidate that is able to handle the pressure and longevity of a national campaign. These expectations differ because the media is much for critical of the Republican Party, with many less experienced candidates emerging. Since the front runner for the Democratic Party is Hillary Clinton, the media already assumes she can handle  these responsibilities. 

2) Sabato is narrowly focused on the issues. He briefly mentions each candidates stances, but Sabato is primarily focused on each candidates image and media appeal.

3. The "Permanent Presidential Campaign" refers to the candidates acting out every facet of their lives carefully, contemplating each decision and how it correlates to their campaign. They basically live their lives and do absolutely nothing to damage their image. This could potentially hurt the government or inaccurately reflect how someone feels about an issue, which could hurt the government later.

4) As you put it, Mrs. Thompson, there  is not an advantage to being named an early front runner. If anything, the early front runner is sometimes the earliest to drop out of the race. Early pressure often causes a candidate to break down and fold to the insane amounts of pressure.

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 Reece Waddell 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 | Reece's POGO Stick |
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
Reece Waddell's insight:

1)  Democrats are hopefull for a political realignment in Texas because for the longest time Texas has been a Republican state. Furthermore, if the state was realigned it would favor Democrats in gubernatorial races. Finally; this relates to "minority majority" because Texas is slowly gaining more immigrants, which had caused Texas to have the 2nd largest Hispanic population in the US. The Hispanic population may soon surpass the white population.


2) Typically, White citizens in Texas identify Republican. Hispanic and Black citizens identify democrat. The reason Texas remains mainly republican is that  not many Hispanics or blacks register to vote.


3) As stated previously, the Gallup poll suggests threre is unlikely to be a realignment because the minorities (Hispanics and Blacks) register to vote far less than whites. This leads to lower participation in voting from minorities. If not everyone participates in government elections, the accuracy decreases.


4) Gallup eliminates errors by weighting their surveys based on race and ethnicity. Furthermore, they conduct surveys at random and via cell phone and land liine, leading to more random and accurate results

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 Reece Waddell 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! | Reece's POGO Stick |
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
Reece Waddell's insight:

1) Business has been consistently favored throughout the Roberts' court. The Chamber of Commerce was particularly successfull last year, and in the lower profile cases, Judge Roberts has almost always sided with good business.


2) Aside from Judge Roberts siding with business, he also seems to "plant the seeds for success in the future". Since he is only 54, he is almost certain to lead the courts for another 2 decades. With this in mind, the courts have been being particulary harsh on the Voting Right Act, in order to cite these rulings in future court decisions. Judge Roberts says that its not about scoring points now, but about winning in the long run.


3) The Obama Administration has had a poor record of defending decisions and laws in the Supreme Court because the Obama Administration has drastically diffrrent views than the Judges on the bench, almost polar opposites in fact. It was said that "Obama has a terrible record because his ideaology is too far to the right to compromise".


4) Judge Kennedy has recently been the swing vote, however, it is usually the judge that is the most neutral. This means if one judge is not very liberal or not very conservative, it is about convincing him or her to side with the majority.


5) Of course there is bias with this article. Because the author believes that Judge Roberts is doing an overall good job, there is bias. There will always be someone that disagrees (in this case, the other political party) that will think otherwise.

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 Reece Waddell from AP Government and Politics - Assigned "Scoops"!

Senate Balks at Obama Pick for Surgeon General

Senate Balks at Obama Pick for Surgeon General | Reece's POGO Stick |
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
Reece Waddell's insight:

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 like any other interest group. It is very powerful and extremely influential. It has the ability to flex its muscle and ultimately keep a nominee out of office, or even control the Senate in states like Alaska, as mentioned in the article. The NRA's specific concern with Dr. Murthy is that he supports bans on firearms and ammunition sales, something the NRA strongly disagrees with, since they are in fact the National Rifle Association.


2. What is at stake for Senators, and where is the concern greatest?


In states like Alaska where the NRA is prominent, a vote for this nominee could result in that Senator not getting reelcted. Basically, if you are a Senator in a state that supports gun rights, and you vote Yes to Dr. Murthy, the people (including the NRA) will be angry with you and probably won't reelect you, which is their biggest concern.


3. How does the President/White House play a role in the confirmation process?


All the White House can do is alter their strategy for getting this nominee elected. For instance, the White House and its officals can postpone the vote while they garner more support from Senators (mainly Democrats) which they full intend t do. The President could alsoultimately make a seech endorsing his candidate, but other than this, there isn't much they can do.


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?


Well, as forementioned, the White House could delay the vote, which they fully anticipate doing. The White House also will look to get more support from Senators of the President's party. Finally, the White House learned that certain scandals and recent events (like Debo P Abdegail's defense of the slaying of a Philadelpia Police Officer) can completely alter a vote and get a nomination shut down quick. The White House will try to hide their dirty underwear and talk up Dr. Murthy all they can in hopes for his nomination to pass.

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 Reece Waddell!

Does your vote count? The Electoral College explained - Christina Greer

Does your vote count? The Electoral College explained - Christina Greer | Reece's POGO Stick |
You vote, but then what? Discover how your individual vote contributes to the popular vote and your state’s electoral vote in different ways--and see how votes are counted on both state and national levels.
Reece Waddell's insight:

1) Essentially, the Electoral College was created by the founding fathers to serve as a medium between the people and the actual election. The founding fathers believed the general public was "too stupid" to elect the President by themselves. So, the people vote for a representative of each party, and that representaive votes for the President.

2) Each state, for the most part, has a particular way they vote. For instance, Texas almost always votes Republican. For that reason, the Republican GOP almost never spends any time campaigning in Texas. Moreover, that characterizes Texas as a "safe" state. Swing states are states that can vote Democrate or Republican, and vary from election to election. Ohio, Florida and sometimes California are the most common swing states, and therefore both GOP candidates spend most of their time there.

3) When none of the Presidential candidates are elected via the Electoral College, the vote goes to the House of Representatives, and the House elects the President.

4) The 2000 Election between George W. Bush and Al Gore reenergized critique of the Electoral College because of the discrepancy between the counting of Electoral votes in the state of Florida. Ultimately, the votes were recounted twice, and a winner wasn't decided. The vote went to the house and George W Bush won. Al Gore claimed that the votes were miscounted, which caused the firestorm.

5) I absolutely hate the Electoral College. It is an outdated system that needs to be replaced. It was put into place as a precaution, but in a time when a candidate wins the popular vote but does not win the election, something is wrong. Hey, America. Fix it.

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Rescooped by Reece Waddell from AP Government and Politics - Assigned "Scoops"!

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

Americans' Satisfaction With Economy Sours Most Since 2001 - DUE 2/24! | Reece's POGO Stick |
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
Reece Waddell's insight:

1) Yes. In the past 13  years,  America has experienced 9/11 and a major economic recession. Both of these things have contributed to the public'a opinion on different topics because they affected almost everyone in the nation.

2) Yes they do. Since the government as of right now (2014) is run by mostly Democrats, it makes sense that they are more satisfied than Republicans on many issues. Furthermore, Democrats push for liberal changes, such as gay rights and abortion. Republicans tend to be dissatisfied because they are not running the government and  favor more conservative issues.

3) The Democrats are currentls dissatisfied with the environment so they would probably push a Green or Eco friendly legislation. The Republicans want more free markets and less government interference, so they would probably push for less government regulation of the economy.

4) The +-4% means that the results could have been over corrected, or even been changed to look more dramatic than they actually are.  For me, it just means that the results might not be as close or as spread as they appear, and it makes me scrutinize the results even more. 

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.