American Government and Politics: Deliberation, Democracy and Citizenship Book by John J. Pitney and Joseph M. Bessette. This book has three underlying principles: Citizenship, History and Democracy.American Government and Politics depends on the possibility of “deliberative democracy and government”: political systems work best when educated residents and open authorities conscious to distinguish and advance the benefit of all. Accentuating citizenship, the content analyzes the manner in which that municipal culture and migration sway understudies and shape the nation. It offers strong authentic inclusion and a nearby take a gander at community duty.inspect the manner in which that urban culture influences understudies and shapes the nation, and investigate community obligation.
Joseph M. Bessette, Ph.D.
Joseph M. Bessette is the Alice Tweed Tuohy Professor of Government and Ethics at Claremont McKenna College in Claremont, California.
John J. Pitney Jr.
John J. Pitney, Jr., is the Roy P. Crocker Professor of American Politics at Claremont McKenna College.
American Government and Politics Deliberation, Democracy and Citizenship
PRINCIPLES AND FOUNDATIONS OF AMERICAN DEMOCRACY
CHAPTER 1 Deliberation and Citizenship in Service of Freedom and Democracy
CHAPTER 2 The American Constitution
CHAPTER 3 Federalism
CHAPTER 4 E Pluribus Unum: American Citizenship
CHAPTER 5 Civic Culture
LIBERTIES AND RIGHTS
CHAPTER 6 Civil Liberties
CHAPTER 7 Civil Rights
DEMOCRATIC POLITICS AND PUBLIC DELIBERATION
CHAPTER 8 Public Opinion and Political Participation
CHAPTER 9 Interest Groups
CHAPTER 10 Political Parties
CHAPTER 11 Elections and Campaigns
CHAPTER 12 Mass Media
ORGANIZATION OF THE BOOK
This book has five parts, each consisting of several chapters.
Part I, “Principles and Foundations of American Democracy,” examines basic ideas of the American system. As one might expect. it includes a discussion of the Declaration of Independence, the Constitution, and federalism, in Chapters 1 through 3, respectively. Nevertheless, it differs from other textbooks in its breadth of coverage of the principles of the founding and in its emphasis on the Federalist and other writings of the founding era.
Part I includes a unique chapter. Chapter 4, “E Pluribus Unum: American Citizenship and Civic Culture,” focuses on both the legal status of American citizenship and the deeper sense of national unity that ties together a large and diverse population.
The chapter links citizenship to broader ideas about attachments and duties. It shows, for example, how the naturalization process highlights both the rights and obligations of American citizenship. The chapter describes the unique set of beliefs that Americans have their relationship to government, their country’s place in the world. and their duties to one another. These beliefs show up in distinctively American traditions and include individualism, religion. patriotism, and community service. One can find these things in other countries. of course, but they have special force in American political life. Many American government overlook these subjects, which is unfortunate. Because immigration has risen sharply in recent years. about one out of every eight
residents of the United States was born in another country. In some states, the ratio is much higher: in California. it is at least one out of four. Accordingly a large number of students are not yet citizens or have parents who are not yet citizens. For these students. questions surrounding the legal status Of citizens and resident aliens are central to their lives, and for all people in the United States, whether they were born here or elsewhere, immigration remains a key public policy issue. Similarly, civic culture both touches students individually and shapes the country in which they live. Readers Of this text will learn how the American tradition of community Service has influenced issues ranging from tax law to welfare reform.
Part II, “Rights and Liberties: includes a chapter each on civil liberties and civil rights. Each chapter roots its topic in the founding principles and draws attention to how those principles unfolded over time. Chapter 5. “Civil Liberties.” includes an extensive treatment of the tension between civil liberties and the demands of war, with particular attention to the war on terrorism. Chapter 6, -Civil Rights,” elaborates key debates on major contemporary issues and focuses attention on whether the Constitution and laws should be “color-blind.”
Part III, “Democratic Politics and Public Deliberation,” looks at the structures that
enable ordinary Americans to take part in politics. Although the topics are the usual ones found in most American government texts, as the titles of Chapters 7 through II Opinion and Political Participation,” Interest Groups,” “Political Parties,” “Elections and Campaigns,” and “Mass treatment is strongly tied to our particular themes of civic responsibility and deliberation.
Part IV, “Governing Institutions,” has chapters on Congress, the presidency, the bureaucracy, and the courts. These chapters give special attention to deliberative processes. showing how presidents, bureaucrats, lawmakers. and judges reason on the merits of law and public policy. More often than many people acknowledge. the decisions of public officials are the product of reasoned judgments about the public interest. not simply the result of political pressures.
Part V, Issues of American Politics,” looks at public policy in the fields of social welfare, economics, and national security. Responsible citizenship requires knowledge of the content of American public policy and the issues at stake in major policy debates. In American deliberative democracy, public opinion about social welfare, economic regulation, and national security both informs and constrains deliberation by the governing institutions. As Abraham Lincoln once wrote, “In this and like communities, public sentiment is everything. With public sentiment, nothing can fail; without it, nothing can succeed.
Some Text with this Book
Theories of American Democracy :
The study Of American government as a deliberative democracy is a relatively new approach within political science. Until the middle of the twentieth century, political scientists emphasized constitutions and laws when analyzing government. They gave short shrift to actual political behavior, But the decades after World War II ushered in a “behavioral revolution” within political science. New studies appeared that measured public opinion and voting behavior and linked them to broader theories of American democracy. Scholars examined why men and women sought to serve in government and how they behaved once they got there. Political scientists especially highlighted the power of organized interest groups in influencing legislators and bureaucrats. The leading interpretations of Congress at the time reduced lawmaking to bar- gaining among groups, with legislators trading support for each other’s proposals (a practice called logrolling). As one of the leading works on American politics noted, “The very essence of the legislative process is the willingness to accept trading as a means.”” Interest groups were the fundamental elements of American politics, and vote trading was the only way to accommodate their competing desires. In the end, there was no public interest, just group interests: “In developing a group interpretation of politics, therefore, we do not need to account for a totally inclusive interest, because one does not exist.”
Constitutional Foundations and the Early Debate Neither the Constitution nor the Judiciary Act said anything about the courts’ power to strike down federal or state laws as unconstitutional. Yet some members of the Constitutional Convention seemed to assume that the Supreme Court would have such a power. As Hamilton wrote in Federalist 78, Congress derives all its authority from the Constitution, which is the sovereign act of the people and, therefore, “fundamental law.” Congress, thus, has no right to violate the Constitution’s provisions. If it does, the courts must defend “the power of the people” against the legislature. Despite Hamilton’s public defense of judicial review, the Supreme Court did not cerise such authority until the landmark case Marbury v. Madison in 1803. This complicated case began after Thomas Jefferson defeated incumbent President John Adams in the election Of 1800. In those days, presidents served for nearly three months after the electoral vote was counted in December, even if they had lost. President Adams used this time to appoint Federalists to the judiciary—the so- called midnight appointments. One was William Marbury, nominated to serve as a justice of the peace in the District of Columbia. Although the Senate confirmed the appointment and the president signed the commission, Adams’s secretary Of State John Marshall failed to deliver the commission to Marbury before he left office. In the final days of his term,Adams also appointed Marshall to serve as chief justice of the United States. These last-minute appointments incensed the incoming Democratic-Republicans. Because James Madison became Jefferson’s Secretary Of state, it fell to him to deliver Marbury’s commission. Yet, concerned that Adams had attempted to load the judiciary With Federalists, he refused to do so. Marbury then asked the Supreme Court to issue a write Of mandamus a judicial command to a public official to do his or her duty— ordering Madison to deliver the commission.
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