# american government and organization ps1301 friday, 24 october

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• Slide 1
• American Government and Organization PS1301 Friday, 24 October
• Slide 2
• Measuring Public Opinion Non scientific Straw polls Straw pollsScientific Based on probability sampling Based on probability sampling
• Slide 3
• The Logic of Probability Sampling Difference between a population and a sample Homogeneity V. Heterogeneity If everyone were the same we would not need to sample. If everyone were the same we would not need to sample. One person could be surveyed to find out the characteristics of the entire population. One person could be surveyed to find out the characteristics of the entire population. Variation in what we study; precisely why we study it For a sample to be useful in providing information of the population from which it is drawn must be representative Essentially the sample must contain the same variation as in population
• Slide 4
• Principle of Probability Sampling A sample will be representative of the population from which it is selected if all members of the population have an equal chance of being selected in the sample. We can do this by selecting respondents randomly; each respondent has an equal chance of being selected Accuracy is a function of sample size (and proportion). Accuracy is also a function of the way the question is worded (more on this later) as well as context
• Slide 5
• Question wording: Example of Abortion Hard reasons womens health seriously threatened womens health seriously threatened rape rape birth defects birth defects Soft reasons low income low income not married and does not want to marry not married and does not want to marry married but does not want more children married but does not want more children interfered with work or education interfered with work or education
• Slide 6
• Question wording Should abortion be legal as it is now, or legal only in the cases of rape, incest, or to save the life of the mother, or should it not be permitted at all? 48% legal as it is now 48% legal as it is now 43% limited to rape, incest, health of mother 43% limited to rape, incest, health of mother 9% not permitted at all 9% not permitted at all Source: CBS/NYT January 1989
• Slide 7
• Question wording Do you think abortions should be legal under any circumstances, legal under certain circumstances, or illegal under all circumstances? 28% legal 28% legal 53% under certain circumstances 53% under certain circumstances 19% illegal 19% illegal Source: Gallup/Newsweek January 1989
• Slide 8
• Differences Same time, same sample. Why the difference? Respondents were not given the same alternatives. Explicitly state circumstances that fit the hard reasons.
• Slide 9
• Other Examples If a woman wants to have an abortion and her doctor agrees to it, should she be allowed to have an abortion or not? Yes 65% Please tell me whether or not it should be possible for a pregnant woman to obtain a legal abortion if she wants it for any reason? Yes 36% Do you agree or disagree with the following statement: Every woman who wants to have an abortion should be able to have one? Agree 61% Please tell me whether or not it should be possible for a pregnant woman to obtain a legal abortion if she wants it for any reason. Yes 41%
• Slide 10
• Views on Abortion by Religion
• Slide 11
• Ideology A package of ideas, a way of organizing ones thinking about political issues and leaders. Anchored by core values that serve to structure other ideas
• Slide 12
• Liberal vs. conservative A core value that distinguishes them and influences their positions on a variety of issues is whether government should actively promote individual equality. Liberals favor active government intervention to ensure equality flat rate vs. regressive rate flat rate vs. regressive rate income tax vs. sales tax income tax vs. sales tax
• Slide 13
• Right vs. Left Direction comes from French political tradition Those who generally supported the policies of the monarch were seated to his right and those who proposed changes in the system were arranged to his left. At the extremes individuals are extremely dissatisfied and want revolutionary change
• Slide 14
• Distribution over time
• Slide 15
• Who are the Liberals? Poor Low Education Low Strata Occupation MinorityUrban Jew, Catholic Democrats
• Slide 16
• Who are the Conservatives? Wealthy High Education High Status Occupation WhiteSuburbanProtestantRepublican
• Slide 17
• Quiz What is the difference between liberals and conservatives?

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