In this highly anticipated revision, editors Barbara Norrander and Clyde Wilcox expose students to the substance and process of public opinion research in an accessible way. Capturing the diversity of this research with 12 essays—10 new to this edition and 2 fully updated—well-respected contributors highlight the many approaches social scientists use to explore public opinion while citing actual research and teasing out the political implications of their findings.
Understanding Public Opinion expands on important ideas that basic textbooks cover only briefly, such as public views of those on trial for terrorist acts, public attitudes in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina, and the rise and fall of public support for George W. Bush. Part introductions provide important thematic context, and a statistics primer in the appendix offers students a handy reference. More relevant and thought-provoking than ever, Understanding Public Opinion is the ideal supplement for any public opinion course.
So who really contributes and why? How much and to how many candidates? What are the strategies used by political campaigns to elicit contributions and how do the views of significant donors impact the campaign-finance system? What do donors think about campaign-finance reform? This book investigates these vital questions, describing the influence of congressional financiers in American politics.
With an in-depth exploration of the five primary challenges facing the Church—theology and politics, secularization, the transition from serving as a nationalist voice of opposition, questions of justice, and accommodation to sometimes hostile civil authorities—this book will be of interest to scholars and students in religion and politics as well as Catholic Church clergy and laity. By demonstrating how national churches vary considerably in the emphasis of their teachings and in the scope and nature of their political involvement, the analyses presented in this volume engender a deeper understanding of the role of the Roman Catholic Church in the world.
The Christian Right in American Politics, under the direction of three of the nation's leading scholars in the field of religion and politics, recognizing the movement as a force still to be reckoned with, undertakes the important task of making an historical analysis of the Christian Right in state politics during its heyday, 1980 to the millennium. Its twelve chapters, written by outstanding scholars, review the impact and influence of the Christian Right in those states where it has had its most significant presence: South Carolina, Virginia, Texas, Florida, Michigan, Iowa, Kansas, Minnesota, Colorado, California, Maine, and Oregon and Washington.
Since 1980, scholars have learned a good deal about the social characteristics, religious doctrine, and political beliefs of activists in and supporters of the Christian Right in these states, and each contribution is based on rigorous, dispassionate scholarship. The writers explore the gains and losses of the movement as it attempts to re-shape political landscapes. More precisely, they provide in-depth descriptions of the resources, organizations, and the group ecologies in which the Christian Right operates-the distinct elements that drove the movement forward.
As the editors state, "the Christian Right has been engaged in a long and torturous 'march toward the millennium,' from outsider status into the thick of American politics." Those formative years, 1980-2000, are essential for any understanding of this uniquely American social movement. This rigorous analysis over many states and many elections provides the clearest picture yet of the goals, tactics, and hopes of the Christian Right in America.
While the second edition focused on the "post-reform" committee systems, addressed the shifts in the internal distribution of power, and hinted at the forces that had already begun to undermine the power of committees, this edition updates that analysis and looks at the reforms that evolvied under the Republicans. It offers complete coverage of the rules and structural changes to the House and Senate committee systems. It extends its discussion of committee power and influence in the context of the "Contract with America," Republican reforms, and the inter-party warfare on Capitol Hill.
This remarkable comparative study explores the interplay of sexual diversity and religious faith in the United States and Canada, and examines how interest group mobilization, political party ties to religious constituencies, court rulings, public policy, and debates over sexuality within faith communities have contributed to conflict and bridge-building in both countries. A timely discussion of faith, sexuality, and political conflict, Faith, Politics, and Sexual Diversity reveals that, despite the presence of tenacious anti-gay sentiment, religious adherence does not invariably entail opposition to the political recognition of queer rights.
The authors consider national mobilization and issues, and also explore the role of the Christian Right in specific states. Their evaluations contend that the "values campaign" was not an aberration but a consistent pattern of national politics, and that moral traditionalism will likely continue to be a significant factor in future elections.
A timely study of the 2004 elections, this volume will appeal to scholars and observers of electoral politics, state politics, and religion and politics.
The book focuses on elections on the state and local levels, where the Christian Right is most influential, and it describes the movement's niche in some detail. Although each campaign described in the book had its unique characteristics, the editors have drawn some broad conclusions about the 1998 elections. While the movement was weak in the areas of candidate recruitment and fundraising, they say, the outcome may have also been related to external factors including a broader turnout of typically Democratic constituencies and the country's boredom with the scandal that conservatives had made the centerpiece of their campaign. Despite the setbacks of 1998, the contributors argue, the Christian Right continues to have an enormous influence on the political dialogue of the country.
Written from an unbiased, nonpartisan perspective, this volume sheds light on a topic that is too frequently mired in controversy.
Brief in page count yet comprehensive in coverage, the book is flexible for different class settings. The book's rich content and lean size allows it to stand alone as the centerpiece of a course, or be assigned as one of several texts.
Here leading scholars explore the long-reaching constitutional and political implications of the scandal: how it will affect the presidency, the law, and the political process. A first group of chapters considers effects of the scandal on institutions: the presidency, Congress, the courts, the independent counsel statute, executive privilege, and the impeachment process itself. A second section addresses political factors: public opinion, the media, and presidential character and personality. A concluding essay broadly examines the implications of the scandal for governance.
These far-reaching essays address such issues as risks posed to Congressional political careers, the prospect of future presidents being subject to civil suits, the pros and cons of Kenneth Starr's investigation, the role of the media in breaking and then shaping the story, and ways of reforming the system to handle the unacceptable private behavior of future presidents.
A provocative book for readers concerned with how our government copes with such a challenge, and an essential reader for courses on the presidency or American government, this collection will stand the tests of both time and rigorous analysis.