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AP U.S. Government and Politics Notes- Chapter 13 Chapter 13 Identifications

Mandate: A command, indicated by an electorate's votes, for the elected officials to carry out their platforms.

Retrospective Judgment: A voter's evaluation of the performance of the party in power.

Prospective Judgment: A voter's evaluation of a candidate based on what he or she pledges to do about an issue if elected.

Primary Election: Election in which voters decide which of the candidates within a party will represent the party in the general election.

Closed Primaries: A primary election in which only a party's registered voters are eligible to vote.

Open Primaries: A primary in which party members, independents, and sometimes members of the other party are allowed to vote.

General Election: Election in which voters decide which candidates will actually fill elective public offices.

Initiative: An election that allows citizens to propose legislation and submit it to the state electorate for popular vote.

Referendum: An election whereby the state legislature submits proposed legislation to the states voters for approval.

Caucus: Under this system, party members meet in small groups throughout a state to select the party's delegates to the national convention.

Regional Primary: A proposed system in which the country would be divided into five or six geographic areas and all states in each region would hold their presidential primary elections on the same day.

Super Tuesday: When the southern states allied and held their primaries on the same day to have a greater influence on presidential politics. Conservative democrats wanted a more moderate candidate but they were disappointed when Michael Dukakis and Jesse Jackson came out on top.

Front-loading (s): The tendency of states to choose an early date on the primary calendar. This causes many states to try to push their way up the calendar to have an earlier primary, thus increasing their overall effect. Front-loading benefits the front runner in presidential campaigns, and benefits the candidate who gains the most money and support before the campaign officially begins.

Invisible Primary: The year or so prior to the start of the official nomination season when candidates begin raising money and unofficially campaigning.

Superdelegates: Delegate slot to the Democratic Party's national convention that is reserved for an elected party official.

Electoral College (s): Representatives of each state who cast the final ballots that actually elect a president. The significance of this is that the popular vote can differ from the actual president, and that the electors are not bound to vote as the public does. Constructed to work without political parties and elect a non-partisan president.

Constituency Services (s): The term used to describe a wide array of assistance provided by a member of congress to voters in need. The members of the House receive an average of $750,000 a year for these services. The more people that benefit, the more likely they are to vote for him/her, which increases his or her chances of re-election.

Reapportionment: The process by which states gain or lose congressional seats due to shifts in the national population.

Gerrymandering: The legislative process through which the majority party in each statehouse tries to assure that the maximum number of representatives from its political party can be elected to Congress through the redrawing of legislative districts.

Coattail Effect: The situation in which successful presidential candidates usually carry into office congressional candidates of the same party in the year of their election. It has declined in recent years due to ticket splitting.

Midterm Elections: Elections in the middle of presidential terms.

26th Amendment: Ratified in 1971, it lowered the voting age to 18.

Motor Voter Act of 1993: Required states to permit individuals to register by mail, not just in person. It also allows citizens to register to vote when they visit any motor vehicles office, public assistance agency, or military recruitment division.