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Presidential Elections

Strategies and Structures of American Politics, Fourteenth Edition

Nelson W. Polsby; Aaron Wildavsky; Steven E. Schier and David A. Hopkins

Hardback
Paperback
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Brimming with data and examples from the 2008 and 2012 elections, and laced with previews of 2016, the fourteenth edition of this popular text offers a complete overview of the presidential election process from the earliest straw polls and fundraisers to final voter turnout and exit interviews. The comprehensive coverage includes campaign strategy, the sequence of electoral events, and the issues, all from the perspective of the various actors in the election process: voters, interest groups, political parties, the media, and the candidates themselves.

Revised to give students the most up-to-date understanding of the electoral process, the fourteenth edition of
Presidential Elections

  • provides complete coverage of the 2012 election and presidential selection process changes for 2016;
  • offers a greater focus on 21st Century elections and increasing party polarization;
  • explains the new 2016 campaign finance rules and their implications;
  • explores the increasing demographic diversity of the presidential electorate and its possible 2016 impacts;
  • includes insight on the evolution and impact of new "microtargeting" campaign technologies; and
  • presents a revised and updated analysis of possible reforms of the presidential election process.
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Rowman & Littlefield Publishers
Pages: 360Size: 7 x 10
978-1-4422-5365-0 • Hardback • August 2015 • $95.00 • (£65.00)
978-1-4422-5367-4 • Paperback • August 2015 • $49.95 • (£32.95)
978-1-4422-5366-7 • eBook • August 2015 • $46.95 • (£31.95)
Nelson W. Polsby was Heller Professor of Political Science and past Director of the Institute of Governmental Studies at the University of California, Berkeley, where he taught American politics for forty years.
Aaron Wildavsky was Class of 1940 Professor of Political Science and Public Policy at the University of California, Berkeley, and founding dean of Berkeley's Graduate (now Goldman) School of Public Policy.
Steven E. Schier is Dorothy H. and Edward C. Congdon Professor of Political Science at Carleton College. He is the author or editor of eleven books and numerous scholarly and media articles.
David A. Hopkins is assistant professor of political science at Boston College.
PART I: THE STRATEGIC ENVIRONMENT
Chapter 1. Voters
Why People Don’t Vote
Why People Do Vote: A Theory of Social Connectedness
Party Identification as Social Identity
Parties as Aggregates of Loyal Voters
Ideologies, Candidates, and Issues in the Minds of Voters
Changes in Party Identification: Social Habit versus
Contemporary Evaluation
A Central Strategic Problem: The Attentiveness of Voters

2. Groups
The Presidential Vote as an Aggregation of Interest Groups
Variations Among Interest Groups
“Special” Interests, Campaign Spending, and Public Interest Groups
Political Parties as Organizations
Third Parties

3. Rules and Resources
Rules: The Electoral College
Thinking About Resources
Resources: Money
Resources: Control Over Information
Incumbency as a Resource: The Presidency
Incumbency as a Liability: The Vice Presidency
The Balance of Resources

PART II: SEQUENCES
4. The Nomination Process
Before the Primaries
Iowa and New Hampshire: First in the Nation
What Do These Historical Vignettes Teach?
State Primaries
State Caucuses
Superdelegates
The National Party Conventions
Party Delegates at the Conventions
The Convention as Advertising
The Vice-Presidential Nominee
The Future of National Conventions

5.The Campaign
The Well-Traveled Candidates
Persuading Voters
Getting Good Press
Campaign Professionals
Televised Debates
Getting Out the Vote
Campaign Blunders
Forecasting the Outcome
Counting the Vote

PART III: ISSUES
6. Appraisals
Reform upon Reform
The Political Theory of Policy Government
Reform by Means of Participatory Democracy
Some Specific Reforms
Party Platforms and Party Differences

7. American Parties and Democracy
Elections and Public Policy
Parties of Advocacy versus Parties of Intermediation

Appendixes
A. Vote by Groups in Presidential Elections, 1976–2012
B. Voter Turnout in Presidential Elections, by Population Characteristics, 1976–2012
C. Selections from the Democratic and Republican Party Platforms, 2012

Presidential Elections is the finest book of its type on the market. It is a wonderful teaching tool that presents accurate and up-to-date information on the election process. Highly recommended. (Previous Edition Praise)
Martin J. Medhurst, Distinguished Professor, Baylor University


...Presidential Elections continues to be an accessible, comprehensive 'must read' on the U.S. presidency. It is factually packed and provides a stimulating assessment of the American democratic system. (Previous Edition Praise)
Janet M. Box-Steffensmeier, Vernal Riffe Professor of Political Science, Ohio State University


• Provides complete coverage of the 2012 election and presidential selection process changes for 2016

• Offers a greater focus on 21st Century elections and increasing party polarization

Explains the new 2016 campaign finance rules and their implications

• Explores the increasing demographic diversity of the presidential electorate and its possible 2016 impacts

• Includes insight on the evolution and impact of new "microtargeting" campaign technologies

• Presents a revised and updated analysis of possible reforms of the presidential election process

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