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Tuesday, 29 October 2013 09:55

United States Politics Featured

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United States Politics

The United States politics have become deeply partisan and this has affected development in the country.  Politicians do not show any interest in the arduous process of going via different levels and channels of discussion. In addition, politicians do not show interest in debate and negotiations and this has affected development in the country.  Politicians believe that debate, bipartisanship, fairness and deliberation prevent them from attaining political goals and policy goals.  Politicians have prepared various laws to manage debate and amendments in the house.  This has given them an opportunity to interfere with formation of new legislation and execution of legislations.  Politicians waive rules not stated in the constitution so long as the party members   agree with the Rules committee.  In addition, majority control the position of presiding officer and adopt less means to further their legislative agenda and weaken the minority (Skelley & Wiarda, 2006).

 Democrats have used their power for the last 40 years to control the minority republicans and also denied them the power to engage in important legislative process.  Republicans have continued to be controlled by the majority.   David Drier gave a report in 1993 stating the tactics utilized by the majority to prevent deliberative democracy.  The majority have controlled the agenda, schedule and used the legislative structure to further their policy goals. However, this has denied the minority a chance to express their views (Silbey, 1994).

 The elections held in 1994 changed the majority party in the parliament, but it had no effect on the decline of deliberative democracy.  The majority have enhanced their grip in the parliament for over a decade because of republican rule. This has led to marginalization of the minority. Moreover, the committee deliberation on controversial laws has become more partisan and formalistic.  The most important work is done by the chair of the committee, party leaders, lobbyists and administration officers. This is also evidenced in the conference committee (Skelley & Wiarda, 2006).

 Pork barrel refers to the appropriation of government spending for local projects secured mainly to bring funds to a representative district.  The term pork barrel spending was first used in the United States in 1870s. Article 1 section 8 of the constitution gives the congress power to lay and collect taxes, excises and duties (Bardes, Shelley & Schmidt, 2008). It also gives them power to provide for the general defense and welfare of the United States. Pork Barrel refers to spending measures that are proposed for political purposes and have not been evaluated in terms of their merit.  Members of congress get federal money for pork by skipping their proposals into immense spending bills. In 2006, there were more than 14,000 earmarks and this totaled to $47 billion. The pork barrel spending benefits very few people in the society   including citizens.  Pork barrel has benefits resulting from the projects developed.  The funds have been used in construction of buildings and museums in the society.  Legislators used the pork to develop their districts as they know where   to use the funds.   The increase in pork barrel has compelled the government to reduce pork so as to cut spending. Therefore, pork barrel spending benefit members of a certain district where the funds are to be used (Ragone, 2010).


Bardes, B.A., Shelley, M.C., & Schmidt, S.W. (2008). American Government and Politics Today. Cengage Learning

Feingold, S., & Mckenna, G. (2011). Taking Sides.  McGraw- Hill Education

Jansson, B.S. (2001). The Sixteen-Trillion-Dollar Mistake. Columbia University  press

Park, G. (2011). Spending Without Taxation.  Stanford university press

Ragone, N. (2010). The Everything American Government Book. Adams media

Silbey, J.H. (1994). American Political Nation, 1838-1893. Stanford University Press

Skelley, E.M., & Wiarda, H.J. (2006). The Crisis of American Foreign Policy. Rowaman & Littlefield

Skocpol, T., & Pierson, P. (2011). The Transformation of American Politics. Princeton  University Press


Last modified on Tuesday, 29 October 2013 10:05
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