Passed and Present Presidential Elections

Passed and Present Presidential Elections




Passed and Present Presidential Elections

The United States political scene has evolved over the years given the entrant of new players in politics and advancements in technology. Countries have varied political cultures, which are made up of shared beliefs, norms and values that give definition to a relationship between the people and the government and its institutions. In addition, economic beliefs and values held by the public also define a political culture given that political processes influence economic stability and wellbeing of a country. Thus, it can be assumed that the political culture and wellbeing in the United States has been influential towards the creation of the biggest economy in the world. The field of politics in the United States has evolved over the years in some ways but remained the same in other ways. The changes have been mainly towards expenditures among political candidates seeking elective national posts in the country. The costs of getting an elective post have increased significantly between the year 2004 and 2012.

            It is estimated by the Federal Elections Committee that PACs, political nonprofits that are active, parties and candidates spent more than $7billion in the year 2012[1]. In addition, congressional elections held in the year 2010 cost more than $4 billion according to estimates provided by the Federal Electoral Commission. Research indicates that extra wealthy individuals and leading corporations involved in political campaigns and lobbying receive between $6 and $200 for each dollar that is invested in elections. The returns accrued are tax breaks and other substantial financial interests that are in foreign nations. Such returns for wealthy individuals and corporations are clear illustrations of the factors that drive the costs elections upwards with each passing election. For example, the variations in the costs of the2004 elections and the 2012 elections are extremely significant. The 2008 elections in the United States were estimated to be worth $5.3billion whereas the costs in the year 2012 amounted to more than $7billion[2]. This indicates an increase in excess of $1.7billion in expenses in just four years.

            This has been termed by many critics as American capitalism at its best. The growing interests among different interests groups in political processes are driving up the costs of elections, and in the process distorting the entire political and electoral processes and structure in the country. In addition, it is evident that the liberal status of the United States has relatively remained the same over the years that provides for dignity of individuals and their respective rational abilities towards decision-making and controlling their lives. This explains the relatively calm nature of acceptance of election outcomes in the United States irrespective of the levels of competition in runoffs between candidates. It is largely acceptable in the United States for losers in elections to concede defeat in a mature and appropriate manner given that the institutions and legislation institution provide for fair electoral processes[3].

            The terror attacks of 9/11, the economic crisis in 2008, the affordable healthcare act and other legislations have been influential towards elections since the year 2004 to the previous elections of 2012[4]. It is largely evident that social issues and the proposals made by leaders towards providing the citizens with solutions for such problems have been central towards election of leaders at all levels of elective posts. Growing political tolerance has been essential towards the liberal status of the United States. The year 2008 saw the election of the first black president of the United States. Thus, it can be assumed that the United States has grown significantly towards diversity given its acceptance of a racially diverse president. Thus, political and diversity within political and elective positions in the country has increased over the years as the electorate grows in terms of understanding the essence of diversity and equality. Change in terms of governance and a focus on the needs of the electorate has become an important factor towards seeking elective posts.


Buchan, Bruce, and Lisa Hill. An intellectual history of political corruption: political corruption & governance. New York, NY: Palgrave Macmillan, 2014.

Miller, Debra A. US government corruption. Detroit: Greenhaven Press, 2012.

West, Darrell M. Checkbook democracy: how money corrupts political campaigns. Boston: Northeastern University Press, 2000.

Ortmeier, P. J., and Edwin Meese. Leadership, ethics, and policing: challenges for the 21st century. Upper Saddle River, NJ: Prentice Hall, 2010.

[1] Bruce Buchan and Lisa Hill, An intellectual history of political corruption: political corruption & governance, (New York, NY: Palgrave Macmillan, 2014) 11.

[2], Darrell M. West. Checkbook democracy: how money corrupts political campaigns (Boston: Northeastern University Press, 2000) 23.

[3] Miller, Debra A., US government corruption (Detroit: Greenhaven Press, 2012) 31.

[4] P. J Ortmeier and Edwin Meese, Leadership, ethics, and policing: challenges for the 21st century (Upper Saddle River, NJ: Prentice Hall, 2010) 24.

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