American and Texas Government: Policy and Politics / Edition 9

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Known for its student-friendly, jargon-free style, American and Texas Government: Policy and Politics, Tenth Edition, introduces the essentials of American and Texas government in a way that all students can understand and appreciate.

By emphasizing public policy throughout, this Longman Study Edition relates chapter material to major events and critical issues of the day, showing students the impact government has on their everyday lives. This new edition features the results of the 2008 elections and information on the Obama administration, and it includes a new chapter on Texas criminal justice. Some of the hottest political issues of the day are also discussed, such as immigration reform and the challenge posed by nuclear programs in Iran and North Korea.


Learning Outcomes at the beginning of each chapter help students organize their study by identifying the most important points in the chapter. These bulleted lists also provide instructors with easily accessible suggestions for organizing lectures and classroom activities.

Getting Involved activities encourage students to learn by active participation and are designed to foster student retention in college. Activities include service-learning projects, visiting political party headquarters, volunteering at a local government office or nonprofit agency, or attending a meeting of a student organization.

Let's Debate boxes promote classroom discussion and serve as a starting point for term papers by examining various sides of a contemporary political issue. Topics include the implementation of the recommendations of the 9/11 Commission, the use of polling by the media, congressional war powers, and therole of the Internet in political campaigns.

What is Your Opinion? Each chapter includes a number of highlighted focus questions that ask students their opinions on some of the political controversies discussed in the text. The questions are designed to help students relate to the material as they read.

Global Perspectives/National Perspectives essays in each chapter provide a snapshot of the government and politics of another country, allowing students to compare the different ways policies are structured and approached around the world, and providing insight into American government. In the Texas chapters these essays examine policy and policymaking in other states.

Key Terms appear in bold type followed by a clear, straightforward definition. These terms and definitions are also highlighted in the margin of the text for easy reference.

Multiple-Choice Questions at the end of the book focus on the most important points of each chapter and allow students to assess their understanding of the chapter content. These questions challenge the students to think critically and apply concepts to real-world situations.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780205573073
  • Publisher: Longman
  • Publication date: 8/13/2007
  • Edition description: Older Edition
  • Edition number: 9
  • Pages: 1088
  • Product dimensions: 7.38 (w) x 9.20 (h) x 1.32 (d)

Table of Contents

To the Instructor xvii

To the Student xxiii

Part 1 American Government

Introduction Government, Politics, and the Policymaking Process 1

Learning Outcomes 1

The Importance of Government 2

Government and Politics 3

The Public Policy Approach 5

Getting Involved: Government and You 9

Chapter 1 A Changing America in a Changing World 13

Learning Outcomes 13

Political Culture 15

The International Environment 17

The Demographic Environment 18

Global Perspective: Immigration Policy and Politics in France 22

The Economic Environment 23

Conclusion: The Cultural, International, and Socioeconomic Context for Policymaking 27

Getting Involved: A Changing Nation, Changing Communities 28

Chapter 2 The American Constitution 33

Learning Outcomes 33

The Background of the Constitution 35

Constitutional Principles 40

The Living Constitution 47

Global Perspective: The British Parliamentary System 49

The Constitution, Politics, and Public Policy 52

Conclusion: The Constitutional Environment for Policymaking 54

Getting Involved: Service Learning 55

Chapter 3 The Federal System 59

Learning Outcomes 59

The Constitutional Basis of Federalism 61

Federal Grant Programs 70

Global Perspective: Education Policy and Federalism in Germany 73

Conclusion: Federalism and Public Policy 75

Getting Involved: Federal Programs and You 77

Chapter 4 Public Opinion 81

Learning Outcomes 81

Political Socialization 83

Measuring Public Opinion 89

Political Knowledge 94

Support for Democratic Principles 95

Global Perspective: Civil Unions in Denmark 98

Political Trust and Political Legitimacy 99

PoliticalEfficacy 99

Political Philosophy 100

Conclusion: Public Opinion and Public Policy 106

Getting Involved: Family Politics 107

Chapter 5 Political Participation 113

Learning Outcomes 113

Forms of Participation 114

Explaining Participation 116

Patterns of Participation 117

Nonvoters 120

Trends in Voter Turnout 121

Participation Rates in Comparative Perspective 121

Increasing Voter Turnout 123

Global Perspective: Compulsory Voting in Australia 124

Participation Bias 125

Conclusion: Political Participation and Public Policy 127

Getting Involved: Registering to Vote 128

Chapter 6 The Media 133

Learning Outcomes 133

The Media Landscape 135

Global Perspective: Government Control of the Media in Cuba 137

Government Regulation of the News Media 137

Covering the News 141

Media Biases 144

Conclusion: The Media and Public Policy 145

Getting Involved: Favorite News and Information Links 146

Chapter 7 Interest Groups 149

Learning Outcomes 149

Why People Join Groups 151

Types of Interest Groups 152

Global Perspective: Church and State in Mexico 156

Interest Group Tactics 160

Getting Involved: Participating in a Student Group 167

The Strength of Interest Groups 168

Conclusion: Interest Groups and Public Policy 170

Chapter 8 Political Parties 175

Learning Outcomes 175

The Party System 176

Global Perspective: The Israeli Party System 178

Party Organization 179

Political Cycles and Party Realignment 182

The Party Balance: Democrats, Republicans, and Independents 183

Voting Patterns 184

Issues Orientation 189

Divided Government 192

Conclusion: Political Parties and Public Policy 195

Getting Involved: Party Politics at the Grassroots 196

Chapter 9 Elections 199

Learning Outcomes 199

Types of Elections 200

Election Districts and Redistricting 202

Election Campaigns 206

Congressional Elections 213

Global Perspective: Legislative Elections in Brazil 215

Presidential Elections 216

The Voters Decide 236

Conclusion: Elections and Public Policy 237

Getting Involved: In-Person Politics 238

Chapter 10 Congress 245

Learning Outcomes 245

Bicameralism 247

Membership 248

Organization 254

Global Perspective: The Indian Parliament 259

The Legislative Process 261

Getting Involved: Sending E-Mail to Your U.S. Representative 273

Conclusion: Congress and Public Policy 273

Chapter 11 The Presidency 277

Learning Outcomes 277

The Constitutional Presidency 279

Presidential Powers 286

Two Presidencies Thesis 293

The Development of the Modern Presidency 293

The Organization of the Presidency 295

Global Perspective: The Russian Presidency 298

Theories of Presidential Leadership 300

Presidential Popularity 304

The Presidency in Context 306

Getting Involved: Why Do They Run? 307

Conclusion: The Presidency and Public Policy 308

Chapter 12 The Federal Bureaucracy 313

Learning Outcomes 313

Organization of the Bureaucracy 315

Personnel 321

Rulemaking 324

Politics and Administration 325

Global Perspective: The Egyptian Bureaucracy 330

Subgovernments and Issue Networks 331

Conclusion: The Federal Bureaucracy and Public Policy 333

Getting Involved: Working for Uncle Sam 334

Chapter 13 The Federal Courts 339

Learning Outcomes 339

Judicial Policymaking 340

Political History of the Supreme Court 341

The Federal Court System 345

Global Perspective: Islamic Law in Nigeria 356

Power, Politics, and the Courts 360

Conclusion: The Courts and Public Policy 362

Getting Involved: A Day in Court 363

Chapter 14 Economic Policymaking 367

Learning Outcomes 367

The Goals of Economic Policy 369

Global Perspective: Healthcare in Canada 373

Tax Revenues 374

Budget Deficits and Surpluses 381

Government Expenditures 383

Fiscal Policymaking 391

Monetary Policymaking 393

Conclusion: Economic Policymaking 393

Getting Involved: Tax Breaks for College Students 397

Chapter 15 Civil Liberties Policymaking 401

Learning Outcomes 401

The Constitutional Basis of Civil Liberaties Policymaking 403

Civil Liberties Issues and Policies 405

Global Perspective: Population Policy in China 406

Getting Involved: Talking About Miranda 425

Conclusion: Civil Liberties Policymaking 426

Chapter 16 Civil Rights Policymaking 431

Learning Outcomes 431

The Constitutional Basis of Civil Rights Policymaking 432

Civil Rights Issues and Policies 433

Global Perspective: Women's Rights in Saudi Arabia 441

Getting Involved: Voices from the Past 453

Conclusion: Civil Rights Policymaking 453

Chapter 17 Foreign and Defense Policymaking 461

Learning Outcomes 461

The International Community 464

The Ends and Means of American Foreign and Defense Policy 466

The History of American Foreign Policy 470

Foreign Policy 478

Defense Policy 480

Global Perspective: Nuclear Weapons in Pakistan 482

Conclusion: Foreign and Defense Policymaking 484

Getting Involved: America in the Eyes of the World 485

Part 2 Texas Government

Chapter 18 The People, Economy, and Political Culture of Texas 493

Learning Outcomes 493

The People of Texas 494

Internet Research: Foreign-Born Residents 498

The Texas Economy 499

Political Culture 504

National Perspective: Legal Prostitution in Nevada 505

Getting Involved: Volunteering 507

Conclusion: The Socioeconomic Context of Policymaking 507

Let's Debate: Is Illegal Immigration Good or Bad for Texas? 508

Chapter 19 The Texas Constitution 513

Learning Outcomes 513

State Constitutions 515

Getting Involved: Joining a Student Club or Organization 516

Background of the Texas Constitution 518

Constitutional Convention of 1875 520

Overview of the Texas Constitution 522

Internet Research: The Freedom of Worship Provision of the Texas Constitution 523

Constitutional Change 524

National Perspective: Gay Marriage in Massachusetts 530

Individual Rights and the Texas Constitution 531

Conclusion: The Constitutional Context of Policymaking in Texas 532

Let's Debate: Gay Marriage 533

Chapter 20 The Federal Context of Texas Policymaking 537

Learning Outcomes 537

Role of the States in the Federal System 538

National Perspective: Drilling for Oil in Alaska 540

States, the Courts, and the Constitution 541

Prison Overcrowding 542

Getting Involved: Contacting Your Representative in Washington, DC 543

States and Federal Law 544

Federal Grant Programs 547

Conclusion: The Federal System and the Policy Process 553

Internet Research: Profile of a Grant 554

Let's Debate: Does Texas Law Restrict Access to Abortion Too Much or Not Enough? 555

Chapter 21 Political Participation in Texas 559

Learning Outcomes 559

Voting Rights and Minority Participation 560

Participation in Texas Politics 564

National Perspective: Mail Voting in Oregon 569

Internet Research: Tracking Election Turnout 573

Conclusion: Participation and Policymaking 574

Getting Involved: Become a Volunteer Deputy Voter Registrar 576

Let's Debate: Would the Adoption of the Initiative Process Enhance the Quality of Democracy in the State? 577

Chapter 22 Interest Groups in Texas 581

Learning Outcomes 581

Interest Groups in Texas Politics 583

Internet Research: Profile of an Interest Group 588

Getting Involved: Joining a Group 591

Interest Group Tactics 593

National Perspective: Campaign Contribution Limits in Minnesota 596

Conclusion: Interest Groups and Policymaking 599

Let's Debate: Would Public Funding of Elections Enhance the Quality of Democracy in the State? 603

Chapter 23 Political Parties in Texas 607

Learning Outcomes 607

The Party System 608

National Perspective: Minor Parties in New York 609

Party Organization 610

History of the Texas Party System 613

Internet Research: Political Parties in Texas 614

The Party Balance 617

Voting Patterns 619

Interest Group-Political Party Alliances 620

Issue Orientation 621

The Impact of Partisan Change 625

Getting Involved: Volunteer to Support Your Political Party 626

The Future of Party Politics in Texas 627

Conclusion: Political Parties and Policymaking 629

Let's Debate: Do Religious Conservatives Have Too Much Influence in the Texas Republican Party? 630

Chapter 24 Texas Elections 633

Learning Outcomes 633

The Long Ballot 635

Types of Elections 636

National Perspective: The Open Primary in Louisiana 641

Election Districts 643

Redistricting 643

Internet Research: Legislative Districts and State House Elections 650

Money 651

Campaigns 654

The Voters Decide 656

Getting Involved: Campaigning 659

Conclusion: Elections and Policymaking 659

Let's Debate: Should a Nonpartisan Commission, Rather Than the Legislature, Draw Legislative District Boundaries? 661

Chapter 25 The Texas Legislature 665

Learning Outcomes 665

Structure 667

Membership 671

National Perspective: Repealing Term Limits in Idaho 675

Organization 676

The Legislative Process 679

Internet Research: Tracking Legislation Online 684

Legislative Policymaking 685

Getting Involved: Contacting Your State Legislators 690

Conclusion: The Legislature and the Policymaking Process 690

Let's Debate: Should the Texas Legislature Meet in Regular Session Every Year? 692

Chapter 26 The Executive Branch in Texas 695

Learning Outcomes 695

The Governor 697

Getting Involved: Forming a Study Group 699

The Executive Bureaucracy 709

Internet Research: Profile of a State Agency 713

National Perspective: California Addresses Global Warming 718

Administrative Oversight 720

Conclusion: The Executive Branch and the Policymaking Process 722

Let's Debate: Should Texas Have a Cabinet System Rather Than the Plural Executive? 724

Chapter 27 The Judicial Branch in Texas 727

Learning Outcomes 727

Types of Legal Disputes 728

Court Procedures 730

The Texas Court System 732

Internet Research: Shirley Neeley v. West Orange-Cove Consolidated Independent School District 738

Judges 739

Judicial Selection 740

National Perspective: Drug Courts in Florida 747

Conclusion: The Judicial Branch and the Policymaking Process 748

Getting Involved: Volunteer to Become a Court-Appointed Special Advocate 749

Let's Debate: Should State Judges Be Elected or Appointed? 751

Chapter 28 City Government in Texas 755

Learning Outcomes 755

Legal Status of Texas Cities 757

Forms of City Government 759

Election Systems 764

National Perspective: Municipal Elections in New York City 766

Public Policies in Texas Cities 768

Internet Research: Profile of a City Government 769

Getting Involved: Contacting City Officials 779

City Politics in Texas 779

Conclusion: City Government and Policymaking 782

Let's Debate: Should Cities Use Tax Money to Build Sports Stadiums? 782

Chapter 29 Texas Counties, School Districts, and Special Districts 787

Learning Outcomes 787

County Government 789

School Districts 800

Internet Research: Comparing School Districts 806

Getting Involved: Helping a Child Learn 808

National Perspective: School Choice in Cleveland, Ohio 809

Special Districts 811

Conclusion: Local Government and Public Policy 814

Let's Debate: Do Basic Skills Tests, Such as Taas and Taks, Help or Harm Public Education? 816

Chapter 30 State Budget Policy in Texas 819

Learning Outcomes 819

Revenues 820

Expenditures 833

National Perspective: Universal Healthcare in Massachusetts 836

Getting Involved: Appealing a Property Appraisal 842

The Budget Process 844

Internet Research: The Texas Sales Tax 848

Conclusion: Budgetary Policymaking 849

Let's Debate: Is the Texas Tax System Fair or Unfair? 853

Chapter 31 Criminal Justice in Texas 859

Learning Outcomes 859

Crime Statistics 860

Criminal Prosecution Process 864

Capital Punishment 869

National Perspective: Civil Commitment of Sexually Violent Criminals in Kansas 871

Juvenile Justice 872

Corrections 873

Conclusion: Criminal Justice Policymaking 877

Let's Debate: Offender and Ex-Offender Voting Rights 878

Appendix 883

Glossary 907

Photo Credits 925

Index 926

Practice Test PT-1

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