Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Election Strategy

A two-term president?
Today we will focus on the overall strategies chosen by the Republican and Democratic parties in the 2012 presidential campaigns. You will complete today's assignment by yourself. You may:
  • Type and print the assignment
  • Write it on loose leaf paper
Part 1: The GOP (10 points)
First, read the article "G.O.P’s 2012 Strategy Puts Focus on Timing". It is a little old, but it will help us discuss some key Republican strategies. Use it to respond to the questions below.

  1. According to the post, in what ways is the next presidential race comparable with the 1996 race? In what ways will this race be different?
  2. What are the two main strategies that Republicans are using to level the playing field in the campaign against President Obama? Do you think that these two strategies will work? Why or why not?
  3. Why are Republicans slowing down their potential candidates’ entry into the race? What are the benefits of this approach? What are the drawbacks?
  4. Why are Republicans slowing down the anointment of a nominee? What are the benefits of this approach? What are the drawbacks?
  5. If you were a campaign strategist for the Democratic Party, what would you do to counter these Republican strategies? Why?
Part 2: The Democrats (10 points)
When you're done with the first article, read"Obama begins re-election facing new political challenges". Use the article to answer the questions below:
  1. What types of messages about his candidacy is President Obama sending his supporters at the kickoff of his re-election campaign? Why?
  2. What are some good signs for President Obama at this early stage in the campaign?
  3. If you were President Obama, what would you be concerned about?
  4. What decisions did President Obama make during his presidency that might help or hurt him now that he is running for re-election?
  5. If you were a campaign strategist for a Republican candidate, what would you do to counter Mr. Obama’s approach to his re-election campaign?
Part 3: YOUR Strategy (10 points)
Now, go back to your partner(s) for your Republican candidate. Your goal, clearly, is to discredit President Obama and to win election (for yourself and your party). Based on all of the research you have done so far, as well as today's articles, create a 10-step list that will enable you to take America's top job.

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