Readings on Parties and Elections in the United States
This historic book may have numerous typos, missing text or index. Purchasers can download a free scanned copy of the original book (without typos) from the publisher. 1912. Not illustrated. Excerpt: ... American party system. It accounts for that seeming indifference and inactivity on the part of the people generally, which have allowed a small selfish minority to seize the party machinery and use it for private ends... 3. THE NECESSITY OF STRONG PARTIES IN THE UNITED STATES l The federal nature of our government makes party control difficult. The dispersion of authority, however, increases the number of office holders who can be mustered to the support of a party. A strong organization must be formed to enable the party manager to control the extensive machinery by which voters and men in office can be kept loyal to the party. (Government) can be solidified and drawn to system only by the external authority of party, an organization outside the government and independent of it. Not being drawn together by any system provided in our constitutions, being laid apart, on the contrary, in a sort of jealous dispersion and analysis by Whig theory enacted into law, it has been necessary to keep the several parts of the government in some kind of workable combination by outside pressure, by the closely knit imperative discipline of party, a body that has no constitutional cleavages and is free to tie itself into legislative and executive functions alike by its systematic control of the personnel of all branches of the government. Fortunately, the federal executive is not dispersed into its many elements as the executive of each of our States is. The dispersion of our state executive runs from top to bottom. The governor has no cabinet. The executive officers of state associated with him in administration are elected as he is. Each refers his authority to particular statutes or particular clauses of the state constitution. Each is responsible politically to his 1 Wilson...
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