|The Presidency and Political Parties
By Sidney Milkis
Complete the following activities using p. 280-296 in your Woll books.
Part One: Answer the following questions in your notebook.
1. What does Milkis mean by an isolated president? Does the fact that presidents have been divorced from party support mean that parties have declined in importance? Are there aspects of government in which party politics are still important? Has politics become centered on the executive, or are important aspects of governance taking place at other levels? Does this add to the isolation of the president?
2. If modern presidents are increasingly isolated from the support of traditional political parties, what might replace that support? Can we trace the rapid decline in support for George Bush to the absence of traditional support, making the president vulnerable to shifts in public opinion, or were other factors involved? Is the direct link between the president and the public through rhetorical appeals necessarily a weaker support than that given by parties? What consequences follow this new connection?
3. According to Milkis, how can party loyalty and political parties help and/or hurt a candidate’s chances of being elected? Provide examples from the selection.
Part Two: Multiple Choice
1. Milkis argues that the modern presidency
a. is increasingly tied to political parties.
b. is increasingly isolated from the public.
c. has forged a new and direct relationship with the public.
d. has usurped the traditional role of Congress.
2. According to Milkis, modern presidents must increasingly rely on which type of action to further their goals?
3. According to Milkis, the Nixon presidency was an important landmark in the development of the modern presidency because
a. Nixon reversed many New Deal programs.
b. Nixon followed the New Deal and Great Society trends by centralizing administrative power in the executive branch.
c. Nixon’s resignation showed the strength of the New Deal coalition.
d. Nixon added foreign affairs to the growing responsibilities of the president.