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Study Notes

Unit 3 Essay Examples: "To what extent is the presidential nomination process too long, hugely expensive and lacking in substance?"

AQA, Edexcel, OCR

Last updated 22 Mar 2021

This Study Note contains the key terms that you would need to include if you chose to answer this question, along with 10 great examples that you could use to support your arguments.

So, before having a go at answering the question, make sure you can explain what each of the following terms mean:

  • Presidential Nomination Race
  • National Nominating Convention
  • Open Primary
  • Invisible Primary
  • Closed Primary
  • Closed Caucus
  • Open Caucus
  • Party Debates
  • Super Tuesday
  • Front loading
  • Turnout
  • Republicans
  • Democrats
  • Fundraising
  • Establishment figures
  • Anti-Establishment figures

Contemporary Examples

The nomination process is too long

  1. The 2008 primary campaign was long due to the front loading of primaries meaning it began on January 3rd.
  2. The 2008 campaign for nomination was costly with the Democrats raising $633 million in donations, where was the Republicans raised $320 million, with the total spend being over $1 billion in the primaries alone.
  3. The 2016 campaign has focused on Washington Outsiders or Anti-Establishment figures who can labelled with criticism of lacking substance. Trump is this candidate for the Republicans and Sanders for the Democrats

The nomination process is not too long

  1. In 2010 the Campaign by Republican’s against the PelosiReid Agenda may have been a significant factor in the Republican success
  2. The process forces weaker candidates who would be ill suited to the Presidency out like Herman Cain in 2012 or Carly Fiorina in 2016.
  3. The preparations that a candidate goes through prepares a candidate for the Presidency such as Barack Obama in 2008 who was relatively untested in a national political sphere.

Historical Examples

The nomination process is too long

  1. The 2000 primary process ran from January 24th right through until June 6th for both the Democrats and the Republicans.
  2. In the 2000 primaries the right wing commentator Pat Buchanan entered the race as a Reform Party candidate.

The nomination process is not too long

  1. In 1968 the party bosses in the Democrats chose the nominee in the form of Humphrey even though McCarthy had won a number of the primaries.
  2. Primaries in the Republican Party for 2000 saw that Bush was tested fully as he was relatively untested in the national political arena being only Governor of Texas.

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