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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 | AP Government & Politics | Scoop.it
Here's how President Obama's budget would grow our economy and expand #OpportunityForAll → http://go.wh.gov/ctxpdE

Via Christine Thompson
Kirsten Clark's insight:

1. Mr. Deese explains that the significant decline in the deficit is the result of the reductions in healthcare costs. This is the product of government programs such as Medicare and Medicaid.

 

2. The President’s proposed budget would result in a gradual reduction of the deficit to 1.6% by 2024. Without his budget put into place, the deficit would reduce to about 3% by that same year.

 

3. The plan is titled “Opportunity, Growth and Security Initiative”, which includes funding to factors such as early childhood learning, research funding for medical advancements, a growth of manufacturing capabilities in the U.S. and the creation of “promise zones”. These together create the 30% of the budget allocated to discretionary spending, which incorporate what President Obama believes should be invested in to assist the economy in the long run.

 

4. Definite positives of the budget proposal is that there will be an elimination of “wasteful loopholes” and an emphasis on “common-sense spending”. Also, the budget will be fully paid for, to prevent even more addition to the current federal debt. A con is that there is not much explanation of how each of the new discretionary spending “categories” will be implemented; it could take a long time for the positives of each of these to be realized. Another con is that there is not much discussion of what exactly may be cut out of mandatory spending, if there will be reductions from this 70% of the budget at all.

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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.

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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! | AP Government & Politics | Scoop.it
President pushing contractor changes with executive orders, moving without help from Congress

Via Christine Thompson
Kirsten Clark's insight:

President Obama seeks to help the economy by providing compensation for federal employees based on gender and race. He understands that this is a large part of America’s working population. Also, in February, the President signed off on increasing the minimum wage for federal workers to $10.10. The primary limitation of his executive order is that he lacks the full support of Congress.


Most criticize Obama because he isn’t working with Congress, which makes the President seem as though he has too much power. Specifically, people are critical of the fact that employers are not receiving this compensation and that there may be wage-related lawsuits in the future.


There is hesitation to act upon the wishes of gay right’s activists who are asking for an anti-discrimination order to protect gays and lesbians employed by federal contractors. The Obama Administration knows that this is a touchy subject nationally; there’s immense support and fervent opposition. It can be challenging for a President to handle a situation that is very modern, as sexual orientation has not been put into the same category as race, gender, ethnicity, etc. when it comes to equality in a broad sense in any period prior to now.

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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.

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

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...


Via Teresa Herrin, Kelly Grossman, Christine Thompson
Kirsten Clark's insight:

1. The majority party in the state legislatures redraws the congressional district lines. The goal is to redraw the districts in such a way that they will gain more votes for their party, winning more districts or preventing the other party from winning.

 

2. By gerrymandering, the House majority can maintain it's place by making sure there are more districts that will vote for their party versus for the other party. 

 

3. It is suggested that mathematicians use algorithms to redraw the districts based on geography and population. This will most likely prevent incumbents from reelection on the grounds that there is a current high disapproval rating; the new method will better reflect the true will of the voters.  

 

4. Yes, both the Electoral College and the practice of gerrymandering place the elections of our leaders in the hands of the federal government versus of the people by making it so the popular vote does not decide. 

 

5. No, there is no true justification to gerrymandering. It is a method that does successfully keep a certain party in power in Congress. Yet, this does not reflect the will of those who the Congress is supposed to represent and that is not just. 

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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. 

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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 | AP Government & Politics | Scoop.it

Via Christine Thompson
Kirsten Clark's insight:

1.  An ideal candidate for 2016 is a person who embodies a strong sense of citizens’ rights, who is both reliable and responsible and has experience in leading. These values are relatively the same for both parties, except the Republicans favor a more conservative candidate while the Democrats identify with a liberal-leaning candidate. There are several possible Republican candidates; no one is really sure who is going to run. But for the Democrats, Hillary Clinton is receiving most of the attention at this point.
2. The writer of this article is not focused on the individual platforms of the candidates, primarily because that is not the “interest” as of 2014. Right now, people are interested in simply who might be in the running for the election in 2016. There is discussion of the positives and negatives of each possible candidate concerning their qualities and history, not so much what they plant to do as President.
3. There is always emphasis on who is going to be the next president, seen in the early beginnings of each campaign season. The job is big, and people want the security of having a man or woman in that executive position who can efficiently carry out all necessary duties. Regardless of who is actually in office, the public will always be concerned with what is to come in the next race, especially as public opinion changes or if there is party realignment.
4. The benefit to being identified early on is that people will begin to focus on that person and will look deeper into their values and history. The negative is that there is more pressure to run, even if that isn’t a goal of the assumed candidate. Thus, he or she would need to provide an explanation for not running (if that’s the case).

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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.

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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 | AP Government & Politics | Scoop.it
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
Kirsten Clark's insight:

1. Texas is a known Republican state, and thus, Democrats in the state are at a disadvantage because they are in the minority. Though, with the rapidly increasing Hispanic population in Texas, it has been predicted that Texas may realign, becoming a blue state, because nationally, Hispanics tend to identify or lean Democrat. As Texas currently has the second largest Hispanic population in the country, this minority majority may sway the entire political alignment of the state.

2. White Texans typically identify with the Republican party (61%) while Hispanics and blacks typically identify with the Democratic party (46%). This reflects national percentages of party alignment based on race.

3. The largest percentage of registered voters remain white Texans, while less than half of the Hispanic population is registered to vote. While there may be a large and growing population of Hispanics, this group is not participating (by not voting) and therefore cannot change Texas from red to blue. Also, current white Republicans in Texas are remaining Republican, which does in turn influence Hispanic Texans; Hispanics in the state are more likely to vote Republican in comparison to other statistics from other states.

4. First, the poll was conducted as a random sampling of the population (which is key to a low sampling error). This is expressed in the use of presenting the polls in both English and Spanish so to not restrict groups of people from participating. Second, both landlines and cell phones were used, reaching a larger variety of people. Third, the random sampling was weighted to reflect national demographics (age, gender, race) and to combat "unequal selection probability,".

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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. 

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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! | AP Government & Politics | Scoop.it
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
Kirsten Clark's insight:

1. Roberts' court decisions have favored conservative-leaning ideas, the result of his "patient and methodical approach" in persuading liberal-leaning justices to agree with his opinion; he is often in the majority. Examples include Roberts' persuasion of two liberal justices to agree with his idea of allowing "states to opt out of the [health care] law's expansion of Medicaid," and the elimination of Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act.

2. Precedent is "how similar cases have been decided in the past", meaning that previous rulings influence how the current court will make decisions. The Roberts court has been consistently conservative and supportive of business interests, not creating new law but upholding previous decisions. This ensures their "purposes" are taken care of.

3. With opposing party ideals between the executive and the Supreme Court, it seems as though the Obama Administration has been very unsuccessful in achieving their desired legislation and promotion of the President's ideas. Perhaps one method of mending this unsuccessful streak is to draft legislation that is moderate; by not making each severely liberal-leaning there will be more hope for compromise.

4. Leaning on both liberal and on conservative decisions, Justice Kennedy is considered the "tie breaker" in the often closely divided court. He has joined conservative justices on ten occasions and joined liberal justices six times.

5. I did not pick up on a liberal/conservative bias while reading through this article because there was no emphasis on celebrating or criticizing the Roberts court. It was relatively factual versus opinion-based.

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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.

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Senate Balks at Obama Pick for Surgeon General

Senate Balks at Obama Pick for Surgeon General | AP Government & Politics | Scoop.it
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
Kirsten Clark's insight:

1. The NRA is adamant about preventing President Obama’s appointment from becoming Surgeon General because of his support of gun-restriction legislation. Specifically, the NRA is calling on constituents to tell their congressmen to vote against Dr. Murthy’s appointment. Senate Democrats are also influenced by the NRA, giving additional opposition to Murthy.

2. Senators who vote “yes” for Murthy are to be hurt later; their annual group rating will be negatively affected. Also, Senators risk not being reelected in states that support the NRA.
3. The White House can delay a vote or completely “withdraw the nomination altogether”, such as in the situation with Murthy. The relationship between the President and the Senate is the President chooses the nominee, and the Senate makes the final vote.
4. In order to have Murthy become Surgeon General, there must be more Democratic support because very little support will come from Senate Republicans. By gaining more Democratic votes, there may be success for the President’s nominee. To ensure that more appointments are confirmed, there needs to be compromise to please both Democrats and Republicans, to allow for more support from each party for the candidate.

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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.

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

View full lesson: http://ed.ted.com/lessons/does-your-vote-count-the-electoral-college-explained-christina-greer You vote, but then what? Discover how your i...
Kirsten Clark's insight:

1. The initial intent of the framers of the Constitution in the establishment of the Electoral College was to ensure that those deciding on the nation's leader were educated and responsible. The framers did not want people who had little knowledge of politics, etc. to decide who the President and Vice President would be. 

 

2. The common strategy of the candidates is to "ignore" the already-decided states (i.e. Republican Texas and Democratic California) and focus on winning over several smaller states. Also, "swing states" (which have switched between voting Democratic and Republican) are important to win over to help boost numbers to exceed 270 electoral votes. 

 

3. The House of Representatives votes to decide the winner. This has only happened twice, in the elections of 1800 and 1824.

 

4. Simply, Al Gore won the popular vote but George Bush won the electoral college vote, and therefore became President. Citizens became critical because it seemed that their opinion/vote did not matter.

 

5. I understand that the Electoral College maintains the stability of the two-party system and of the federal government, but it does not accurately represent the will of the people. There is no lack of uneducated citizens who are totally ignorant to politics and to the candidates. We should have the true say in who is our leader. Thus, no, I am not satisfied with the Electoral College system. 

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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! | AP Government & Politics | Scoop.it
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
Kirsten Clark's insight:

1. The 13 year span of time between satisfaction polls illustrates how much the United States has experienced, the main events being an increase in technology, 9/11, the recession of 2008 and the gradual homecoming of our troops. These events have affected directly influenced the U.S.' role in the world as well as our domestic economy, primarily in negative ways. This is reflected in the changes in public opinion with the state of the economy and our foreign policy with the drop in Americans' satisfaction. In conclusion, yes, the poll reflects the changes in opinions as a result of historic events.

 

2. Yes, the results make sense to my understanding of the typical differences in the Democratic and Republican parties. It is not surprising, for example, that less Republicans are satisfied with our current military preparedness compared to Democrats, based on my correlation with the Republican mindset of providing more funds to the military. Also, it is expected that more Democrats would be more satisfied with the current state of the abortion issue than Republicans because of the Democratic emphasis on tackling social issues.

 

3. With such a low satisfaction rate concerning immigration, Republicans would support a remodel of the immigration system. Democrats would support stricter gun control laws, as only 33% of Democrats are satisfied with the current policies.

 

4. With 95% confidence in the data and the use of random sampling, this relatively small sampling error does not change my interpretation of the poll results. As stated before, the statistics coincide with my understanding of each party's platform; I do not doubt the relative accuracy of this poll. The sampling error could be the result of people being uninformed about certain issues.

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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.