Order Code: IIC131DV   
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The nature and conduct of election campaigns has changed in the United States as political parties have weakened and the role of individual candidates has grown. The parties lost influence over the campaigns with the introduction of the direct primary. Now free to pursue nomination for office on their own, with or without the support of party leaders, candidates are far more independent of their parties. The emergence of this new candidate-centered politics has shaped who runs for office and how campaigns are funded, organized, and run.

Learning objectives:

  • Explain how the use of primary elections strengthens the independence of individual candidates vis-a-vis political parties.
  • Discuss the nature, characteristics, and implications of candidate-centered campaigns.
  • Understand the importance of fundraising in modern campaigns, and the difficulties associated with campaign finance reform.
  • Explain the use of professionals and specialists in modern campaign organizations.
  • Describe the role of television and mass media in election campaigns.
  • Discuss how and why political competition is concentrated in open-seat elections.
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This title is part of the series: FRAMEWORK FOR DEMOCRACY




10 and up


Color and black-and-white

Run Time

26 minutes