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Is There Too Much Democracy in America or Too Little?

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"Politicians chosen by membership-based mass parties have been replaced by politicians selected by donors and sold by advertising to voters. Also, the decline of neighborhood party machines turning out the vote has resulted in declining participation by lower income and less educated voters. The Americans who do vote are disproportionately affluent. A 2016 Presidential Election Panel Survey by the RAND Corporation revealed that the single factor that best predicted voter support for Donald Trump among likely Republican voters was not income, education, race, gender or attitudes toward Muslim or illegal immigration, but agreement with the statement “people like me don’t have any say.” What if these and other voters who feel powerless really are? Over the last few generations, the number of policy outcomes that voters can actually influence through the ballot box has steadily declined."

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At www.nytimes.com

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