Elections A to Z
Publication Year: 2012
Elections A to Z: is the ultimate 21st-century research tool for finding current, accurate information on U.S. elections. Elections A to Z explains how campaigns and elections, the hallmark of any democracy, are conducted in the United States. Entries cover the vital current elections topics that readers want to know about. They range from short definitions of terms like “front-runner” to in-depth essays exploring vital aspects of campaigns and elections, such as the right to vote, turnout trends, and the history, evolution, and current state of House, Senate, presidential, and some state-level elections.
- Publisher: CQ Press |
- Pub. Year: 2012 |
- Online Pub. Date: October 22, 2013 |
- DOI: 10.4135/9781452234144 |
- Print ISBN: 9780872897694 |
- Online ISBN: 9781452234144 |
- Series: CQ Press: American Government A to Z Series |
- See Other Editions |
- Print Purchase Options
- Subject: Elections & Political Campaigns, Elections
- Entries A-Z
Copyright by Sage Publications, Inc.
About the Authors
About this Book
Elections A to Z is part of CQ Press's five-volume American Government A to Z series, which provides essential information about the history, powers, and operations of the three branches of government; the election of members of Congress and the president; and the nation's most important document, the Constitution. In these volumes, CQ Press's writers and editors present engaging insight and analysis about U.S. government in a comprehensive, ready-reference encyclopedia format. The series is useful to anyone who has an interest in national government and politics.
Elections A to Z offers accessible information about the historical foundations of U.S. elections, including the constitutional amendments that expanded the franchise to minorities, women, and youth; qualifications for office; pivotal events and groundbreaking candidates; campaign regulations and strategies; and the roles of political consultants, the media, [Page xiv]and political parties. It also covers recent trends in House, Senate, presidential, and some state-level elections.
The fourth edition of Elections A to Z has been thoroughly updated to incorporate important contemporary events, such as the 2010 midterm elections that shifted party control in the House back to Republicans and brought into that chamber a new collection of deeply conservative members who, in 2011, used their influence to push the GOP even further to the right and in the process thwarted efforts at bipartisan agreement on major financial issues. The new edition discusses the emergence of the Tea Party movement that helped boost Republican candidates in 2010 elections and controversies over legislation in some states to require voters to show picture identifications to vote and to reduce opportunities for early voting. Editors have extensively updated developments in primary scheduling, campaign finance reform—including the important Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission decision in 2010—voting technology, and political participation. Also updated are discussions on reapportionment and redistricting for the next decade following the 2010 census. Also examined in more detail in this volume is the growing impact of social networking and new media, such as Twitter and Facebook, on the electoral scene.
The extensive appendix contains updated material on election topics including historical election returns, political party leadership and conventions, state government, and women, blacks, and Hispanics in Congress.
The first decade of the twenty-first century, as observed by those who participate in and chronicle elections as well as ordinary election buffs, was remarkable: tumultuous, volatile, angry, and unpredictable. And yet, as the nation headed into a national election in 2012 that promised to be one of the more important votes of recent times, the patterns and customs of the American system of choosing leaders—and in the process casting judgment on the leaders and their actions—was as recognizable as it was from the beginning of the nation.
As always, there is an accepted and peaceful transfer of power when the voters decide it is time for that to occur. The election process since the nation's early days has been defined largely by two dominant political parties, Republicans and Democrats or their predecessors—albeit with the periodic rise of third-party movements whose policies and ideas often find their way into the platforms of the dominant parties. Also, as has been frequently seen, elections may encompass significant differences of opinions among voters about the nature, the purpose, and the goals that should be pursued by the office holders elected by the voters.
The 2000s decade—if not a fundamental break from the past—stood out for the strains the nation encountered during the period. The election outcomes reflected those strains. Some traumatic events were unexpected, principally the terrorist attacks by Islamic extremists on September 11, 2001, even though similar—if far less serious—assaults on American interests had preceded it outside U.S. borders. Some were from decisions in the aftermath of September 11 to engage the nation in two lengthy and grinding wars from which the United States was still trying to find ways to extract itself as the 2012 voting approached. And others were self-inflicted, most notably the great economic recession that began in 2007 following the collapse of a vast housing bubble in which value seemed to go only up, until it burst.
The volatile political landscape to the decade was reflected in the mirror of elections beginning in 2000, almost a year before the September 11 attacks, when Republican George W. Bush won a disputed and extraordinarily narrow victory in the presidential Electoral College when contested vote counts in one state, Florida, were awarded to him by a 5–4 ruling of the Supreme Court, even though the national popular vote was won by his opponent, Democrat Al Gore.
The Bush administration then embarked on controversial actions that became the foundation for increasing national discord for the decade, [Page xvi]most notably a military invasion of Iraq to topple dictator Saddam Hussein on grounds that his regime was developing weapons of mass destruction, a presumed threat that turned out to be false. Bush, and the Congress that was controlled by Republicans for more than half the decade, stated a commitment to conservative fiscal principles but oversaw a rapid expansion of the national debt by enacting significant cuts in taxes, even while military spending was rapidly escalating, and creating expensive new programs in education (“No Child Left Behind”) and health care (the Medicare prescription drug benefit).
Initially, Americans of both parties rallied behind Bush in his self-proclaimed “war on terror,” and election judgments reflected that support. With the exception of a short time in the Senate, Republicans retained a congressional majority won first in 1994 and the president won reelection in 2004, this time by a small but clear majority.
It was after his reelection that the nation's voters began to shift, first as the Iraq war and a lesser conflict in nearby Afghanistan, which had provided a safe haven for the al Qaeda terrorists who committed the September 11 attacks, dragged on without an end in sight, then in 2005 when the federal government stumbled in providing relief to the human misery in New Orleans and elsewhere on the Gulf Coast caused by Hurricane Katrina, and especially by 2008 when the housing bubble burst and the economy—nationally and globally—all but collapsed. The first judgment by voters was rendered in 2006 when Democrats recaptured control of Congress for the first time since 1994. The second, and more decisive judgment, came in 2008 when Barack Obama won the presidency for the Democrats and his party significantly increased its congressional majorities.
Fully in control of two of the federal government branches for the first time in more than a decade and a half, Democrats undertook an aggressive and largely progressive agenda in a variety of areas but most notably in economic stimulus involving billions of federal dollars, financial support for banks and the troubled domestic auto industry that also totaled in the billions, tough financial regulation in the wake of economic collapse, and—most controversially—complex and far-reaching changes in the nation's health care system.
For their efforts, Democrats were punished two years later, in 2010 midterm elections, by the iron law of retrospective voting in which a deeply disaffected group of angry voters went to the polls and tossed out fifty-four House incumbents, all but two Democrats, thereby returning control of that chamber to the GOP. It was the largest number of incumbents sacked in one election since at least 1952. Voters also dismissed a bevy of Senate Democrats allowing a Republican pickup of six seats—not enough for majority control but ample to block Democratic initiatives and appointments.
The world of pundits concluded that the volatility came from the absence of devoted Democrats who backed Obama two years earlier, an energized Republican base that had moved more dramatically conservative, the continuing economic troubles with unemployment still at or above 9 percent, and a less quantifiable but nevertheless perceptible anxiety among some voters that a distant national government was intruding on their lives as never before.
Still, as the preface to this volume noted in 2007, much about American government at the beginning of a new century had not changed even with the roller coaster of voter sentiment of the 2000s. The tripartite government structure—executive, legislative, and judicial branches—was unchanged. The fundamental principal of federalism that defined America's political structure—federal and state governments dividing powers while sharing loyalty from citizens—was as vibrant as ever. And the nation remained a basically market-oriented society that eschewed other social and economic systems tried elsewhere. All this and more was still true in 2012.
Indeed, the 2000s elections provided many instances of the continually evolving strengths of deciding matters at the ballot box, albeit not always neatly and without ambiguity.
Two events in 2008 built on the long, sometimes painfully slow, march of broadening participation in the electoral process, from an early understanding of “the people” to mean propertied white men to the modern concept that also includes women, minorities, and young adults. One of those events was the election of Obama, the first African American chosen for the highest office in the land. The second was the success of his principal opponent for the Democratic nomination, Hillary Rodham Clinton, a New York senator at the time and former first lady during the presidency of her husband Bill Clinton. Although she eventually came up short in the nomination contest with Obama, she became the first female in American history with a legitimate chance of being elected president, and ended up being chosen by Obama to serve as his secretary of state.
Making sense of these ever-changing electoral trends is a primary purpose of Elections A to Z. The user will find in the more than 225 entries an approachable but definitive explanation of the nation's electoral process, from the historical developments leading to today's headlines to examinations of events behind those headlines.
The vast majority of the articles have been updated to reflect new information and more than half have been extensively revised. Campaign financing, for example, is discussed in multiple entries, including a description of the much discussed—and highly controversial—Supreme Court decision in 2010 (Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission) giving new free speech rights to corporations and unions that may—or may not—result in vast new political advocacy spending that could markedly alter campaign strategies and the flow of money into elections. New to the book is a separate entry on the Tea Party movement that emerged in 2009 and played a big role in Republican activism in 2010. Whether the Tea Party proves to be a limited-time event or a model of a future and much more conservative Republican Party may be seen in 2012 voting.
Among the dozens of articles that Elections A to Z editors have revised to account for changing issues in elections are the following: the impact of the decennial census in 2010 on reapportionment of House seats between states and redistricting within states that may alter political power balances for the next decade; changes in the political makeup of both major political parties and the growing role of independent voters; the rapidly expanding influence and use of the Internet and new media in politics; controversies over voter identification at the ballot box and early voting [Page xviii]before the normal election day; the huge role of money in politics; and the increasing stampede among states to hold early presidential primaries.
The first decade of the twenty-first century was unlike any other since the 1930s and 1940s swept away an old global order and made possible more than a half century of social, economic, and political changes. Historians are not likely to credit the 2000s with that outsized role in the years that follow, but the decade has illuminated both the change and the continuity in the American electoral system. The volatility of the period leading up to the important 2012 national election may also prove to have cast a bright light on the American voters' attitude toward the never fully answered—or answerable—question of the fundamental nature and purpose of government and the government's proper role in society.
List of Entries
- Absentee Voting
- Absolute Majority
- American Independent Party (1968–) and American Party (1972–)
- American National Election Studies (ANES)
- American Party—Know Nothings (1856)
- Anti-Federalists (1789–1796)
- Anti-Masonic Party (1832–1836)
- Australian Ballot
- Baker v. Carr
- Ballot Access
- Ballot Types
- Bandwagon Effect
- Beauty Contest
- Bilingual Voters
- Bipartisan Campaign Reform Act (BCRA) of 2002
- Black Suffrage
- Blanket Primary
- Blue Dog Democrats
- Boll Weevil
- Border States
- Brass Collar Democrat
- Brokered Convention
- Buckley v. Valeo
- Bull Moose
- Bullet Vote
- Bush v. Gore
- Campaign, Basic Stages of
- Campaign Buttons
- Campaign Finance
- Campaign Slogans
- Campaign Strategies
- Candidate-Centered Campaigns
- Candidate Image
- Canvassing Board
- Citizens Party (1979–1984)
- Citizenship and Voting
- Civil Rights Acts
- Club for Growth
- Communist Party U.S.A. (1924–)
- Compulsory Voting
- Congressional District
- Congressional Elections
- Conservative Party of New York
- Constitutional Union Party (1860)
- Constitution Party (U.S. Taxpayers Party) (1992–)
- Contested Elections
- Crossover Voting
- Cumulative Voting
- Dark Horse
- Democratic Leadership Council
- Democratic National Committee
- Democratic Party (1832–)
- Democratic-Republican Party (1796–1828)
- Direct Election
- District of Columbia
- Districts, Wards, and Precincts
- Election Cycle in America
- Election Day
- Election Fraud
- Electoral Anomalies
- Electoral Behavior
- Electoral College and Votes
- Equal Time and Rebuttal Rules
- Exit Polls
- “527” Political Organizations
- Favorite Son
- Federal Election Commission
- Federal Workers' Political Activity
- Federalist Party (1789–1816)
- Forecasting Election Results
- Free Soil Party (1848–1852)
- Get Out the Vote
- Grandfather Clause
- Green Party (1996–)
- Greenback Party (1876–1884)
- Hard Money
- Help America Vote Act of 2002
- Home Rule
- House of Representatives, Electing
- House of Representatives, Qualifications
- Independent Expenditures
- Initiatives and Referendums
- Interest Group
- International and U.S. Elections Compared
- Internet Politics
- Iowa Caucus
- Issue Voting
- Judicial System
- Know Nothing (American) Party (1856)
- Lame Duck
- Liberal Party of New York
- LaRouche Movement (U.S. Labor Party, 1973–)
- Liberal Republican Party (1872)
- Libertarian Party (1971–)
- Liberty Party (1839–1848)
- Lieutenant Governor
- Literacy Tests
- Mandatory Voting
- Media Coverage of Campaigns
- Media Use by Campaigns
- Mid-decade Redistricting
- Midterm Election
- Minority-Majority District
- Minority Presidents
- Motor Voter Act
- Multimember Districts
- National Democratic Party (1896)
- National Election Studies
- National Party Conventions
- National Republican Party (1828–1832)
- National Unity Party (1980–1988)
- Natural Law Party (1992–2004)
- Nature of Representation
- Negative Campaigning
- New Hampshire Primary
- One Person, One Vote
- Open Primary
- Oregon v. Mitchell
- Party Endorsement of Candidates
- Party Identification by Voters
- Peace and Freedom Party (1967–)
- People's Party (1970s)
- Pocketbook Voting
- Political Action Committees
- Political Advertising
- Political Consultants
- Political Culture in America
- Political Party Development
- Political Party System
- Political Socialization of the Public
- Poll Taxes
- Popular Vote
- Populist (People's) Party (1891–1908, 1984–)
- Postconvention Bounce
- President, Nominating and Electing
- President, Qualifications
- Presidential Draft
- Presidential Elections Chronology
- Presidential Primaries
- Presidential Selection Reforms
- Primary Types
- Progressive Party–Bull Moose (1912)
- Progressive Party (1924)
- Progressive Party (1948)
- Prohibition Party (1869–)
- Proportional Representation
- Public Financing of Campaigns
- Public Opinion
- Push Poll
- Racial Redistricting
- Radical Republicans
- Realignments and Dealignments
- Reapportionment and Redistricting
- Reform Party (1995–)
- Registration Laws
- Removal from Office
- Republican Government
- Republican Main Street Partnership
- Republican National Committee
- Republican National Convention
- Republican Party (1854–)
- Residency Requirements
- Retrospective Voting
- Right to Vote
- Running Mate
- Runoff and Preference Primary
- Safe Seat
- Second Midterm Elections (“The Six-Year Itch”)
- Senate, Electing
- Senate, Qualifications
- Seventeenth Amendment
- Shaw v. Reno
- Single-Issue Voting
- Single-Member Districts
- Socialist Labor Party (1874–)
- Socialist Party (1901–)
- Socialist Workers Party (1938–)
- Soft Money
- Sophisticated Voting
- Sore Loser Laws
- Southern Democrats (1860)
- Southern Primary
- Special Elections
- Split and Straight-Ticket Voting
- Stalking Horse
- State and Federal Election Responsibilities
- State Legislatures
- States' Rights Democratic Party (1948)
- Straight-Ticket Voting
- Straw Vote
- Super Tuesday
- Swing District
- Swing Voter
- Tea Party
- Term Limits
- Terms of Office
- Third Parties
- Threshold Rules
- Twentieth (Lame-Duck) Amendment
- Twenty-Second Amendment
- Twenty-Sixth Amendment
- Two-Party System
- Two-Thirds Rule
- Union Party (1936)
- Unit Rule
- United We Stand America (Independent Ross Perot) (founded 1992)
- U.S. Labor Party
- U.S. Taxpayers Party
- Vacancy in Office
- Vice President
- Voter Apathy
- Voting: Early and
- Voter Identification
- Voter Registration
- Voter Turnout
- Voting Machines
- Voting Rights Act
- Watershed Elections
- Whig Party (1834–1856)
- Whistle Stop
- White Primary
- Winner Take All
- Women in Politics
- Women's Suffrage
- Workers World Party (1959–)
- Write-In Vote
- Yellow Dog Democrat
- Youth Suffrage
AppendixChanges in Democrats' Nominating Rules
AppendixDemocratic Party's Reform Commissions on Presidential Selection
AppendixRepublican Party's Reform Committees on Presidential Selection
AppendixPolitical and Election Websites
Thousands of Internet sites provide information about elections and politics. They are operated by candidates, political parties, interest groups, think tanks, trade associations, labor unions, businesses, government agencies, news organizations, polling firms, universities, and individuals.
These sites can have very short lives. Many spring up just before a particular election and then disappear once the ballots are counted. The sites listed below, however, have proven themselves to be stable sources of ongoing election information—at least as of mid-2011.American National Election Studies
ANES conducts questionnaires and public opinion polls to determine why Americans vote as they do on election day. This website offers a rich collection of data on voting, public opinion, and political participation.Ballot Access News
The full text of the newsletter Ballot Access News from early 1994 to the present is available at this site. The newsletter publishes news about efforts around the country to overturn laws that restrict ballot access by candidates. It is run by Richard Winger who has been one of the most tireless advocates of broader ballot access. The site also contains extensive information on minor parties nationwide.Ballot Watch
A database at Ballot Watch has details about initiatives and referendums that are moving toward qualification on state ballots or that have already qualified in states around the country. You can search the database by subject, status, state, and type of measure.Census: Voting and Registration Data
The U.S. Census Bureau operates this site, which has data about registration and voting by various demographic and socioeconomic groups. Data are available from 1964 to the present.Center for Public Integrity
Investigative reports and databases on lobbying firms and political spending are among the features on this site. CPI emphasizes government transparency and investigative journalism.CQRollCall
This website resulting from the merger of Congressional Quarterly, long-time publisher of the CQ Weekly magazine, and Capitol Hill newspaper Rollcall examines congressional activity including elections and election maps, candidate lists and ratings, and other detailed overage of Washington political news.CQMoneyLine
This site, from CQRollCall, presents data on campaign finance and lobbying from the 1979–1980 election cycle to the present. It also includes quick links to information on contribution limits and filings calendars. Most information is free, although some sections of the site are limited to subscribers.Electionline.org
This site is produced by the Pew Center on the States' Election Initiatives. A nonpartisan, non-advocacy site, http://Electionline.org provides current news and analysis on election reform.Electoral College Home Page
Background information about how the Electoral College operates is available at this site. It also has results for popular votes and Electoral College votes in presidential elections from 1789 to the present and provisions of the U.S. Constitution and federal law pertaining to presidential elections.Federal Election Commission
This site's main feature is a database of campaign finance reports filed from May 1996 to the present by House and presidential candidates, political action committees, and political party committees. The site also includes Senate reports, which are first filed with the Senate public records office. Another valuable resource is the Combined Federal/State Disclosure and Election Directory, which provides detailed information about every federal and state office that collects campaign finance data or regulates election spending. For each office, the publication lists the types of data that are available and complete contact information, including a link to the office's website.Federal Election Reform Network
This site is the home of the National Commission on Federal Election Reform, organized in the wake of the 2000 presidential election by the Miller Center of Public Affairs at the University of Virginia and the Century Foundation. Available on the site is the full text of the bipartisan commission's 114-page final report, issued July 31, 2001. Many of the commission's recommendations were incorporated in the Help America Vote Act signed by President George W. Bush on October 29, 2002.The Hill
The Hill is a newspaper focused on congressional activity. It publishes daily when Congress is in session, focusing on business, lobbying, campaigns, and legislative activity.International Foundation for Election Systems
One of this site's highlights is its collection of links to websites operated by election commissions and other election-related organizations in countries around the world. It also provides a worldwide election calendar, links to news about current elections, and a newsletter titled Elections Today.The New York Times: Politics
Political stories from the current day's issue of the New York Times are available through this site. It also offers breaking Washington news stories from the Associated Press, archived Times stories about specific political topics, results from political polls, and political cartoons by a variety of artists.Opensecrets.org
Both raw data about money in politics and reports that analyze all the numbers are available at this site. It is operated by the Center for Responsive Politics, a nonprofit research group. Numerous databases provide detailed campaign finance data for federal candidates and information about contributions by political action committees. The site also has lists of the top federal contributors by industry, profiles of every political action committee registered with the Federal Election Commission, data about soft money contributions, links to sources of state campaign finance data, reports with titles such as Influence Inc.: The Bottom Line on Washington Lobbyists and The Politics of Sugar, and much more.The Pew Research Center for the People & the Press
The Pew site presents the results of polls regarding the press, politics, and public policy issues conducted from 1995 to the present. The polls measure public attitudes about topics such as China policy, Congress, the economy, elections, and the Internet's impact in elections.Political Resources on the Net
Links to more than 24,000 election and politics-related websites around the world are presented at this site. The links lead to sites operated by political parties, organizations, governments, media outlets, and others. You can browse the links by region or country, and you also can search the whole site.Political Science Resources: United States Politics
This site of the University of Michigan Documents Center offers links to hundreds of websites about politics and elections. The listings are divided into more than two dozen categories, including campaign finance, cybercitizenry, elections, foreign policy, lobbying groups, news sources, political parties, primaries, public opinion, public policy issues, statistics, and think tanks, among others.Politico
http://POLITICO.com is a multiplatform news source that reports on events in Congress, lobbying in Washington, and election campaigns. The site maintains a sizeable reporting staff in Washington and also is published in print form.Politics1
Politics1 provides a huge set of annotated links to websites operated by candidates, political parties, election offices, and election news sources in states across the country. It also has links to sites for presidential candidates, the two major parties, third parties, and political news sources.PoliticsOnline
This site's highlight is its large collection of links to news stories about how the Internet is being used in elections and politics around the world.Project Vote Smart
The Project Vote Smart site provides biographies of thousands of candidates and elected officials in offices ranging from state legislator to president, voting records for members of Congress, detailed campaign finance data for members of Congress, the texts of ballot initiatives from states around the country, links to thousands of other political websites, and lots more.U.S. Election Atlas
This site features maps detailing the results of recent presidential, senatorial, and gubernatorial elections by state. It also includes polling information and predictions for upcoming elections. Note to users: the site reverses the use of blue and red colors often employed by news organizations to designate Republicans and Democrats.Voter Information
This League of Women Voters site has links to information about state and local candidates around the country, details about how to register to vote, voter registration contact numbers for every state, and links to other election sites.Washingtonpost.com: Politics
The latest political news from the Washington Post and the Associated Press highlights this page. It also has archived stories about dozens of political issues, such as gun control and health care, election coverage, and more.Yahoo! News: Politics
Hundreds of news stories about politics and elections are available through this Yahoo! page. Sources include the Associated Press, Reuters, and other news organizations.
AppendixNational Party Chairs, 1848–2011
AppendixMajor Platform Fights1860 Democratic.
A minority report on the slavery plank, stating that the decision on allowing slavery in the territories should be left to the Supreme Court, was approved, 165 to 138. The majority report (favored by the South) declared that no government—local, state, or federal—could outlaw slavery in the territories. The acceptance of the minority report precipitated a walkout by several dozen southern delegates and the eventual sectional split in the party.1896 Democratic.
The monetary plank of the platform committee, favoring free and unlimited coinage of silver at a ratio of 16 to 1 with gold, was accepted by the convention, which defeated a proposed gold plank, 626 to 303. During debate, William Jennings Bryan made his famous “Cross of Gold” speech supporting the platform committee plank, bringing him to the attention of the convention and resulting in his nomination for president.1908 Republican.
A minority report, proposing a substitute platform, was presented by Sen. Robert M. La Follette of Wisconsin. Minority proposals included increased antitrust activities, enactment of a law requiring publication of campaign expenditures, and popular election of senators. All the proposed planks were defeated by wide margins; the closest vote, on direct election of senators, was 114 for, 866 against.1924 Democratic.
A minority plank was presented that condemned the activities of the Ku Klux Klan, then enjoying a resurgence in the South and some states in the Midwest. The plank was defeated 542 7/20 to 543 3/20, the closest vote in Democratic convention history.1932 Republican.
A minority plank favoring repeal of the Eighteenth Amendment (Prohibition) in favor of a state-option arrangement was defeated, 460 2/9 to 690 19/36.1948 Democratic.
An amendment to the platform, strengthening the civil rights plank by guaranteeing full and equal political participation, equal employment opportunity, personal security and equal treatment in the military service, was accepted, 651 1/2 to 582 1/2.1964 Republican.
An amendment offered by Sen. Hugh Scott of Pennsylvania to strengthen the civil rights plank by including voting guarantees in state as well as in federal elections and by eliminating job bias was defeated, 409 to 897.1968 Democratic.
A minority report on Vietnam called for cessation of the bombing of North Vietnam, halting of offensive and search-and-destroy missions by American combat units, a negotiated withdrawal of American troops, and establishment of a coalition government in South Vietnam. It was defeated, 1,041 1/4 to 1,567 3/4.1972 Democratic.
By a vote of 1,852.86 to 999.34, the convention rejected a minority report proposing a government guaranteed annual income of $6,500 for a family of four. By a vote of 1,101.37 to 1,572.80, a women's rights plank supporting abortion rights was defeated.1980 Democratic.
The platform battle, one of the longest in party history, pitted President Jimmy Carter against his persistent rival, Sen. Edward M. Kennedy of Massachusetts. Stretching over seventeen hours, the debate focused on Kennedy's economics plank, which finally was defeated by a voice vote. Yet Carter was forced to concede on so many specific points, including Kennedy's $12 billion antirecession jobs programs, that the final document bore little resemblance to the draft initially drawn up by Carter's operatives.1992 Democratic.
A tax fairness plank offered by former senator Paul E. Tsongas of Massachusetts was defeated by a vote of 953 to 2,287. The plank called for a delay in any middle-class tax cut and tax credit for families with children until the deficit was under control.
AppendixDemocratic Conventions, 1832–2008
AppendixRepublican Conventions, 1856–2008
AppendixChief Officers and Keynote Speakers at Democratic National Conventions, 1832–2008
AppendixChief Officers and Keynote Speakers at Republican National Conventions, 1856–2008
AppendixGeneral Election Debates, 1960–2008
AppendixU.S. Presidents and Vice Presidents
AppendixSummary of Presidential Elections, 1789–2008
Appendix2008 Popular Vote Summary, Presidential
AppendixDistribution of House Seats and Electoral Votes
AppendixLaw for Counting Electoral Votes in Congress
Following is the complete text of Title 3, section 15, of the U.S. Code, enacted originally in 1887, governing the counting of electoral votes in Congress:
Congress shall be in session on the sixth day of January succeeding every meeting of the electors. The Senate and House of Representatives shall meet in the Hall of the House of Representatives at the hour of 1 o'clock in the afternoon on that day, and the President of the Senate shall be their presiding officer. Two tellers shall be previously appointed on the part of the Senate and two on the part of the House of Representatives, to whom shall be handed, as they are opened by the President of the Senate, all the certificates and papers purporting to be certificates of the electoral votes, which certificates and papers shall be opened, presented, and acted upon in the alphabetical order of the States, beginning with the letter A; and said tellers, having then read the same in the presence and hearing of the two Houses, shall make a list of the votes as they shall appear from the said certificates; and the votes having been ascertained and counted according to the rules in this subchapter provided, the result of the same shall be delivered to the President of the Senate, who shall thereupon announce the state of the vote, which announcement shall be deemed a sufficient declaration of the persons, if any, elected President and Vice President of the United States, and, together with a list of votes, be entered on the Journals of the two Houses. Upon such reading of any such certificate or paper, the President of the Senate shall call for objections, if any. Every objection shall be made in writing, and shall state clearly and concisely, and without argument, the ground thereof, and shall be signed by at least one Senator and one Member of the House of Representatives before the same shall be received. When all objections so made to any vote or paper from a State shall have been received and read, the Senate shall thereupon withdraw, and such objections shall be submitted to the Senate for its decision; and the Speaker of the House of Representatives shall, in like manner, submit such objections to the House of Representatives for its decision; and no electoral vote or votes from any State which shall have been regularly given by electors whose appointment has been lawfully certified to according to section 61 of this title from which but one return has been received shall be rejected, but the two Houses concurrently may reject the vote or votes when they agree that such vote or votes have not been so regularly given by electors whose appointment has been so certified. If more than one return or paper purporting to be a return from a State shall have been received by the President of the Senate, those votes, and those only, shall be counted which shall have been regularly given by the electors who are shown by the determination mentioned in section 51 of this title to have been appointed, if the determination in said section provided for shall have been made, or by such successors or substitutes, in case of a vacancy in the board of electors so ascertained, as have been appointed to fill such vacancy in the mode provided by the laws of the State; but in case there shall arise the question which of two or more of such State authorities determining what electors have been appointed, as mentioned in section 5 of this title, is the lawful tribunal of such State, the votes regularly given of those electors, and those only, of such State shall be counted whose title as electors the two Houses, acting separately, shall concurrently decide is supported by the decision of such State so authorized by its law; and in such case of more than one return or paper purporting to be a return from a State, if there shall have been no such determination of the question in the State aforesaid, then those votes, and those only, shall be counted which the two Houses shall concurrently decide were cast by lawful electors appointed in accordance with the laws of the State, unless the two Houses, acting separately, shall concurrently decide such votes not to be the lawful votes of the legally appointed electors of such State. But if the two Houses shall disagree in respect of the counting of such votes, then, and in that case, the votes of the electors whose appointment shall have been certified by the executive of the State, under the seal thereof, shall be counted. When the two Houses have voted, they shall immediately again meet, and the presiding officer shall then announce the decision of the questions submitted. No votes or papers from any other State shall be acted upon until the objections previously made to the votes or papers from any State shall have been finally disposed of.
Section 6 provides for certification of votes by electors by state governors.
Section 5 provides that if state law specifies a method for resolving disputes concerning the vote for presidential electors, Congress must respect any determination so made by a state.
AppendixElection Results: Congress and the Presidency, 1860–2010
AppendixIncumbents Reelected, Defeated, or Retired, 1946–2010
AppendixBlacks in Congress, 41st–112th Congresses, 1869–2011
AppendixHispanic Americans in Congress, 45th–112th Congresses, 1877–2011
AppendixWomen in Congress, 45th—112th Congresses, 1877–2011
AppendixSenate Votes Cast by Vice Presidents
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