Legislative DBQ - Lindbergh School District

Legislative DBQ
Doc A
• Author: David Mayhew
• Place and Time: US, 1974
• Prior Knowledge: Should know that
Congressman would like to keep their jobs
• Audience: Interested people
Doc A
• Reason: Seems critical of what motivates
politicians, somewhat critical of what the
government then accomplishes
• Main Idea: Express an opinion of what the
author believes motivates politicians
• Significance: Negative view of representatives
Doc B
• Author: Common Cause
• Place and Time: 1998
• Prior Knowledge: It takes money to run a
successful campaign, purchase television spots,
travel to places, etc.
• Audience: Interested citizens, graph
Doc B
• Reason: Displays the difference in resources ($) each
of the candidates have,
• Main Idea: Incumbents enjoy a big advantage in the
amount of money they can raise to fund a campaign
• Significance: The amount of money and other
resources a candidate has can be a good predictor of
whether they will win an election
Doc C
• Author: Kim Fridkin Kahn
• Place and Time: ASU, 1993
• Prior Knowledge: Importance of media (tv,
radio, internet)
• Audience: Interested citizens
Doc C
• Reason: Shares info on why people vote the way they
do, what influences people, how important the media
is in getting out a message
• Main Idea: Incumbents enjoy more media coverage,
have more exposure, an dare generally better-known
• Significance: Many people do not think about all of the
issues, may rely on the portrayal of the candidates that
they see on TV or the internet, status is important
Doc D
• Author: ???
• Place and Time: US elections 1964-2008
• Prior Knowledge: Should know that reps serve
for 2 year terms and Senators for 6. Need to
be able to read a bar graph (histogram)
• Audience: Interested people
Doc D
• Reason: Illustrates reelection rates, displays
percentages of members of Congress and the rate
at which incumbents win
• Main Idea: Incumbents have shown to be very
successful in elections, need to make note of the
reasons listed above the first graph
• Significance: Statistics may be misleading, but
these numbers are pretty obvious. Why might
the House be higher than the Senate?
Doc E
• Author: Paul Duginski
• Place and Time: US 1994
• Prior Knowledge: Know what an incumbent is,
understand meanings in a political cartoon
• Audience: Interested people, subscribers,
Doc E
• Reason: Inform readers using illustrations and humor,
while it is funny it does describe the present situation
• Main Idea: Incumbents feel very confident that they
will be reelected. They are often protected by
resources and money from several areas that ensure
they are reelected
• Significance: Incumbents are usually unwilling to
change because they know they have an advantage in
the election. How might this affect the job they do???
Doc F
• Author: Citizens for United States Direct
Initiatives Website
• Place and Time: unknown
• Prior Knowledge: What is a “perk”? How do
campaigns work? Who typically runs for
office? What is a day like for an elected
official while they are serving in office?
• Audience: interested people
Doc F
• Reason: Inform readers about two reasons why
incumbents have an advantage
• Main Idea: Incumbents have many advantages from $
to the ability to meet with constituents on a daily basis,
they do not have to juggle their job and the campaign
• Significance: Incumbents are able to focus more time
on the campaign, get their message out to the voters,
and finance their campaigns more effeciently

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