Hoose one from two topics in the attached Instructions
Answer one of the following questions.
1. Consider the following statement:
a?Congress does a better job of representing voters than the President because members of Congress are subject to more frequent elections and do not have term limits. Thus, the increasing power of the President in our political system has been a bad development for American democracy.a?
Do you agree or disagree? Why?
2. American policy-making currently combines polarized parties with super-majority requirements for successful legislation. Some argue that this combination forces compromise and thus should encourage stability and sensible, consensus solutions. Others argue that it makes effective governance impossible. Which perspective is closer to being correct? Are there particular circumstances (such as the type of issue involved, or characteristics of other parts of the political environment) that make the positive or negative effects of the polarization/supermajority combination more likely to appear?
Draw on the textbook, other readings, lectures and section discussions in answering the question you select. You should write 4-6 pages. The paper should be written in a standard-size Times New Roman 12-point font with one inch margins and should be double-spaced.
This is a just a quick email aimed at those doing the second paper prompt, on
Congress and the President. A few of you have been stuggling with the idea of
Respresentation”, and what is Goodand Bad”
I think a useful way to look at it is to break it down into the Trustee”
model of representation and the Delegatemodel. Depending on which you
prefer, your assessment of what is good or bad representation will differ.
Briefly, on the delegate model the eleted representative is supposed to just act as
a mouthpiece for the views of his/her constituents, whereas on the tustee model the
elected representative is given more discretion to make up their own mind on an
issue and do what they think best for their constituents (or possibly the country as
a whole), even if their constituents disagree.
There isnt that much on the web on this. Wikipedia has two very brief articles,
but they dont give you much more than I have here. Also, you could look at
Political representationon the Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy, but
if you do so Id only read up to the stuff on trustee/delegate after that it gets
more complicated than you need for this paper.
If you are writing on the second prompt you will have to have some idea of what you
think good and bad representation is, and I think the delegate vs trustee
distinction would be quite a useful one to use. You wouldnt need to spend ages on
it, but it will give you a clearer line on the representation issue.