Debating Reform

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  • Format: Paperback
  • Copyright: 2010-02-01
  • Publisher: Cq Pr

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As much as policy topics like abortion and same-sex marriage elicit spirited reactions from your students, aren't you looking for ways to get them out of their partisan corners? Ellis and Nelson have found that debating concrete proposals for reforming the political system encourages undergraduates to leave ideology behind and instead sift through competing claims and evidence.

Author Biography

Richard J. Ellis is Mark O. Hatfield Professor of Politics at Willamette University. Among his recent books are Presidential Travel: The Journey from George Washington to George W. Bush (2008) and To the Flag: The Unlikely History of the Pledge of Allegiance (2005). In 2008 he was named the Carnegie Foundation for Advancement of Teaching Oregon Professor of the Year. Michael Nelson is Fulmer Professor of Political Science at Rhodes College, where he teaches courses on U.S. politics, the presidency, and southern politics. He is also a nonresident senior fellow of the Miller Center of Public Affairs at the University of Virginia and a former editor of the Washington Monthly. His recent books include The American Presidency: Origins and Development, 1776-2007 (with Sidney M. Milkis, 5th ed., 2008); How the South Joined the Gambling Nation: The Politics of State Policy Innovation (with John Mason, 2008), which won the Southern Political Science Association's V.O. Key Award for the outstanding book on southern politics; The Elections of 2008 (2010); and The Presidency and the Political System (9th ed., 2010).

Table of Contents

Prefacep. xi
Contributorsp. xv
The Constitution
Resolved, Article V should be revised to make it easier to amend the Constitution and to call a constitutional conventionp. 1
Prop. 5
Conp. 11
Resolved, Congress should restore each state's freedom to set its drinking agep. 19
Prop. 21
Conp. 28
Public Opinion and Political Participation
Resolved, the United States should adopt a national initiative and referendump. 36
Prop. 39
Conp. 46
The Media
Resolved, broadcasters should be charged a spectrum fee to finance programming in the public interestp. 53
Prop. 55
Conp. 62
Political Parties
Resolved, political parties should nominate candidates for president in a national primaryp. 70
Prop. 72
Conp. 79
Resolved, the electoral college should be abolishedp. 86
Prop. 88
Conp. 96
Resolved, proportional representation should be adopted for U.S. House electionsp. 103
Prop. 105
Conp. 112
Interest Groups
Resolved, the “no cup of coffee” rule should be adopted in Washingtonp. 119
Prop. 122
Conp. 129
House of Representatives
Resolved, the size of the House of Representatives should be increased to 675 seatsp. 135
Prop. 138
Conp. 144
Resolved, the redistricting process should be nonpartisanp. 151
Prop. 154
Conp. 161
Resolved, the Senate should represent people, not statesp. 172
Prop. 174
Conp. 180
Resolved, Senate Rule XXII should be amended so that filibusters can be ended by a majority votep. 187
Prop. 189
Conp. 196
Resolved, the president should be granted a line item vetop. 204
Prop. 207
Conp. 212
Resolved, the government should scale back the outsourcing of government jobs to private contractorsp. 219
Prop. 222
Conp. 229
Resolved, the terms of Supreme Court justices should be limited to eighteen yearsp. 237
Prop. 239
Conp. 245
Civil Liberties
Resolved, the United States should adopt an “emergency constitution” to preserve civil liberties in an age of terrorismp. 251
Prop. 254
Conp. 259
Civil Rights
Resolved, residents who are not citizens should be granted the right to votep. 265
Prop. 267
Conp. 274
Domestic Policy
Resolved, the government should require national service for all youthp. 282
Prop. 285
Conp. 291
Economic Policy
Resolved, the federal government should ensure that no firm is too big to failp. 297
Prop. 300
Conp. 306
Foreign and Defense Policy
Resolved, Congress should pass the War Powers Consultation Actp. 314
Prop. 316
Conp. 324
Notesp. 333
Table of Contents provided by Ingram. All Rights Reserved.

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