You Call This an Election?
America's Peculiar Democracy
By (author) Steven E. Schier
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You Call This an Election? by Steven E. Schier
Book DescriptionThose who do not have their heads buried too deeply in partisan sands will know that there is something awry with the American form of electoral democracy. Florida's continuing ability to misplace votes recently and in the 2000 Presidential election is only part of the iceberg we have been made privy to-and Steven Schier takes a good, hard, evaluative look not only at what is there in plain sight, but that which lurks below the surface (and not only in Florida and not only with the electoral college). He further proposes practical improvements that will make our surprisingly peculiar democratic processes healthy, whole, and responsive again. Identifying four essential evaluative criteria for a democracy that genuinely works, Schier asks us to examine the degree to which our system promotes political stability, the degree to which our elected officials are held accountable, what the problems are with voter turnout and how to improve it, and asks for a meaningful scrutiny of governmental policy. No look at our peculiar democracy would be complete without an examination of other established democracies, nor a look at how special interests warp political parties and the concept of majority rule. The solution to many of our electoral problems, Schier argues, lies in enhancing the roles and influence of political parties. Schier proposes reforms that include broadening voter registration; giving parties large blocks of free TV time; adopting one-punch partisan ballots, making it easier for voters to cast a straight-party vote; abandoning initiatives which clutter up the ballot; and utilizing party-based financing to boost voter turnout. With these proposals, he encourages the creative consideration of election reform, and shows how the Florida 2000 race may have played out had these suggestions been in place. Schier's book appeals to any and every citizen interested in our electoral system and its role in governmental politics. It is invaluable for professionals in political science and ideal for students in American government, political parties, elections, and political behavior courses, as well for political scientists. Any citizens concerned about the conduct of American elections will discover here a fresh and focused analysis of our problems at the ballot box.
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Book DetailsISBN: 9780878408955
(229mm x 152mm x 19mm)
Imprint: Georgetown University Press
Publisher: Georgetown University Press
Publish Date: 7-Feb-2003
Country of Publication: United States
Books By Author Steven E. Schier
Presidency and Political Science: Paradigms of Presidential Power from the Founding to the Present, Hardback (February 2014)
This history of presidential studies surveys the views of leading thinkers and scholars about the constitutional powers of the highest office in the land from the founding to the present.
American Elections of 2012, Paperback (June 2013)
The 2012 American elections were highly competitive, with the unusually close partisan balance making the elections an opportunity for each of the two major parties. This book assembles leading political scientists and political journalists to explain the 2012 election results and their implications for America's future.
Panorama of a Presidency, Hardback (October 2008)» View all books by Steven E. Schier
As the controversial presidency of George W Bush draws to a close, this work provides an assessment of Bush's years in office. It examines Bush's innovative electoral and governing strategies, ambitious foreign and domestic policy initiatives, and the bitterly divisive consequences of his mode of governance.
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Author Biography - Steven E. Schier
Steven E. Schier is the Dorothy H. and Edward C. Congdon Professor of Political Science at Carleton College. He is the author of eight books and numerous scholarly articles. He recently completed a Fulbright senior lectureship at York University in Toronto and serves on the board of The Dirksen Center for Congressional Studies. Schier has contributed articles to the New York Times, Washington Post, Los Angeles Times, and USA Today. He has commented on politics for national network and cable television and is a political analyst for KSTP television in Minneapolis.
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