This is a class discussion post that needs to be approximately 2-5 paragraphs in length.
***Discussion Post should be followed accordingly each question asked needs to be answered.
********I will post the students response below. With the Student response it should be 1-2 paragraphs in length reply to the students disccusion.
R = PB + D – C
This formula is presented within the Alrich reading for this week. This is Downs’ famous calculus of voting formula, with modifications by Riker and Ordeshook.
1) Explain each of the formula’s terms in your own words.
2) Give one real-world example of the C term.
3) Explain what political parties or individual candidates can do to strategically increase or decrease the C term. Do you see this strategy being used today?
*Note: Reaction posts should be approximately 2-5 paragraphs in length.
************************ Student Response***************************
R represents the overall gain or reward the voters gets from actually voting. If this is positive, then you should vote and if it is not then you should not vote. P represents how likely it is that your one vote will count toward the overall outcome of the election. B is the benefit that the voter receives from the more preferred candidate being elected. D is the reward that the voter gets or feels from participating in the election and being a part of our government process. C is the actual cost of voting, which can be the value of one’s time or the actual cost of gas and the registration process.
I believe a good example of the “C” term is the cost to go vote. Much of our population works typical business hours and finding the time to go vote is difficult. While all citizens are afforded the ability and right to go vote, some people simply can’t afford to give up the hours lost from working in order to possibly stand in long lines and vote. Thus, this could make one’s “C” value much higher than another’s.
I think that political parties can strive to retain positive images for themselves and not sway to dramatically on their ideology. This in turn will benefit individual candidates because like the reading stated, these candidates benefit from affiliation with major parties and this is less expensive in the long term for them. The candidates can then use this value of being affiliated with a major party and spend money in the areas where they may differ slightly from the party or where they are trying to reach the people in the “sway group” of our populous. I believe this strategy as a whole is used all of the time and that contributes further to our issue of only having a two-party system. With the current state of our political arena it is simply too costly for an independent candidate to support a long term and highly visible campaign.
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