AP US Government : Factors That Influence Beliefs in Politics

Study concepts, example questions & explanations for AP US Government

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Example Questions

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Example Question #1 : Factors That Influence Beliefs In Politics

Which of the following is an influence on a person's political beliefs and ideology.

Possible Answers:

educational background.

religious affiliation.

career field.

All of the other answers.

Correct answer:

All of the other answers.

Explanation:

A person's political beliefs, being multifaceted and complicated, are shaped by a variety of factors, including religious background, education, employment history, and income level. In fact, almost anything, from homeownership to family size, has a direct influence on a person's voting behavior and political involvement.

Example Question #2 : Factors That Influence Beliefs In Politics

Which of these election issues is most likely to demonstrate a gender gap in voting?

Possible Answers:

Taxes

Income equality

Gay rights

Women's rights

Gun rights

Correct answer:

Gun rights

Explanation:

The issue of gun ownership and gun rights is most likely to create a massive gender gap in the pattern of voting. Women are generally against gun ownership, whereas men are generally in favor of it; of course, this is a broad generalization. Perhaps surprisingly, there is a small, but not massive, gender gap on issues such as women’s rights and gay rights.

Example Question #3 : Factors That Influence Beliefs In Politics

Followers of which of these religions are most likely to have liberal attitudes in contemporary America?

Possible Answers:

Catholicism

Mormonism

Islam

Judaism

Protestantism

Correct answer:

Judaism

Explanation:

Followers of Judaism are by far the most likely religious group in contemporary America to have liberal opinions on issues and to vote for liberal candidates. The religious right, predominantly Southern Protestants, are the most likely group to vote conservatively on issues.

Example Question #4 : Factors That Influence Beliefs In Politics

Which of these statements about the gender gap is true?

Possible Answers:

Men are less likely to support foreign intervention by the United States military.

Women are more likely to vote for reducing government involvement in higher education.

Women are more likely to support increased social spending.

Women are more likely to support gun ownership rights.

Men are more likely to support prohibition of drugs or alcohol.

Correct answer:

Women are more likely to support increased social spending.

Explanation:

"Gender gap," refers to the consistent differences between the voting patterns of men and women. For example, women are much more likely to vote for increased restrictions on gun ownership. Women are also, particularly in contemporary times, less likely to vote conservative than men. The only statement above that is true is that women are more likely to support an increase in government spending on social welfare.

Example Question #5 : Factors That Influence Beliefs In Politics

African-American voters have recently been more likely to support __________.

Possible Answers:

Independent candidates

moderate Democrats

liberal Democrats

moderate Republicans

conservative Republicans

Correct answer:

liberal Democrats

Explanation:

African-American votes have shown a strong tendency in recent years to support Democratic Party candidates who lean heavily to the left. Unlike white Democratic Party voters, who are more likely to support a moderate candidate.

Example Question #21 : Fundamental Political Beliefs

Women are currently more likely than men to support all of the following issues EXCEPT __________.

Possible Answers:

tighter restrictions on gun ownership

affirmative action to encourage racial equality

an end to United States military involvement in the Middle East

Women are more likely to support all of these issues.

an increase in the social security program

Correct answer:

Women are more likely to support all of these issues.

Explanation:

There is a growing gender gap in American politics. To oversimplify, women are more likely to vote Democratic and support liberal positions on economic and social issues, while men are more likely to vote Republican and support conservative positions on economic and social issues. The greatest gender gap can be evidenced in the large majority of women who favor major restrictions on gun ownerships, versus far fewer men.

Example Question #6 : Factors That Influence Beliefs In Politics

Which of these statements about the voting gender gap is most true?

Possible Answers:

Men are more likely to vote for gun ownership rights, whereas women are more likely to vote for decreased role of government.

In recent elections women have been much more likely than men to vote for the Democratic Party.

Men vote roughly equally for Republicans and Democrats, whereas women’s voting patterns change dramatically every election cycle.

In recent elections women have been much less likely than men to vote for the Democratic Party.

Men are more likely to support affirmative action to encourage racial and social equality.

Correct answer:

In recent elections women have been much more likely than men to vote for the Democratic Party.

Explanation:

Since the 1980 election, there has been a very clear voting pattern in American general elections, where women are much more likely than men to vote for a candidate from the Democratic Party. The two largest gender discrepancies in American history have occurred during the successful elections of Bill Clinton and Barack Obama. Men are more likely to vote for gun ownership rights, but men are also more likely to vote for a decreased role of government. Women are more likely to support affirmative action to encourage racial and social equality.

Example Question #7 : Factors That Influence Beliefs In Politics

The term, Solid South, historically refers to __________.

Possible Answers:

the fact that the South always supported southern candidates

the degree of wealth equality that emerged in the southern society in the twentieth century

the degree to which racial prejudice and segregation proved impossible to eliminate in southern society

the fact that the South had more candidates for President than any other region of the United States

the fact that, historically, the South always voted for the Democratic Party

Correct answer:

the fact that, historically, the South always voted for the Democratic Party

Explanation:

The term, Solid South, was historically used, from the end of the Civil War until the middle of the 1960s, to refer to the fact that the South almost always voted for the Democratic Party. This was born, in part, out of the South’s response to the Republican party’s northern associations during the Civil War and its aftermath. These days, the "Solid South" could just as easily be applied to the fact that the South very consistently votes Republican.

Example Question #8 : Factors That Influence Beliefs In Politics

Fiscal conservatives favor which of the following?

Possible Answers:

More government regulation

Acquiring national debt

More government spending

More taxation

Lowered and balanced budgets

Correct answer:

Lowered and balanced budgets

Explanation:

Modern fiscal conservatives favor reducing spending, reducing taxation and regulation, lowering national debt, and lowering and balancing budgets.

Example Question #25 : Fundamental Political Beliefs

John Locke wrote in the Second Treatise on Government (1689) that “Whoever has the…supreme power…is bound to govern by established standing laws," reinforcing the idea that?

Possible Answers:

Rulers should govern with unlimited power

All governments should be democratic

Governments should be based on laws of God

Rulers must be subject to the law

Correct answer:

Rulers must be subject to the law

Explanation:

This question is designed to test reading skills as well as subject knowledge. John Locke wrote extensively about the legitimacy of government as well as ways in which it should operate. All information needed is contained within the question. Locke is clearly stating his views regarding a rulers place within the law. 

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