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Robert G. Moser, Chair BAT 2.116, Mailcode A1800, Austin, TX 78712 • 512-471-5121

Fall 2008

GOV 357M • Law of Politics

Unique Days Time Location Instructor
39472 TTh
3:30 PM-5:00 PM
MEZ 1.306
Sager, A

Course Description

This course is about the legal structures that control the way the democratic political process operates in the United States. Using primarily federal and state court cases, we will study the consti-tutional and statutory aspects of political participation, voting, apportionment, campaign finance, vot-ing rights, and political party organization. In our study, we will assess both the philosophical founda-tions for such legal control as well as the impact of it. Ultimately, everything we study is thought to af-fect the voting process and the outcome of that process. This course is designed for government majors regardless of field of interest. Knowledge of this material is essential for informed participation in the American political process. "Political junk-ies" will find the course a perfect fit for better understanding the 2008 Fall election processes. Students are expected to write a short brief for each case prior to coming to class and to con-sider the questions presented in the notes by the textbook authors.

Class Participation and Attendance This part of your grade consists of the following: A. Demonstrating a reasonable level of daily preparation and understanding of the material covered. B. Contributions made to class discussion and analysis. C. Overall attendance Prizes The student or students with the highest grades on each hour exam will receive a Supreme Court coffee mug. . The student with the highest overall average in the course will receive an en-graved plaque containing a gavel and a seal of the Supreme Court.

Grading Policy

3 Hour Exams approx 65%(19, 22, 24%) 1 Paper(3 pages or so) approx 18% Class participation, quizzes and attendance approx 17%


Textbook The Law of Democracy: Legal Structure of the Political Process. Samuel Issacharoff, Pamels S. Kar-lan, Richard Pildes, 2nd ed. Revised Foundation Press The Law of Democracy: 2006 paperback supplement


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