GOVERNMENT & ELECTIONS

Background and Context

These resources will help students develop a thorough understanding of Government & Elections and make connections between historical events, current conversations, and current policy proposals surrounding the issue. This section includes all of the context and content previously included in Close Up’s public policy chapters.  

 

U.S. Government in Context

What are the ideas and institutions that make up U.S. government? Learn More >

U.S. Elections in Context

How does the U.S. electoral system work? Learn More >

Current Issue Debates

Current Issue Debates are framed by a central question and followed by historical context, an overview of both sides of the topic, and discussion questions to facilitate deliberation in the classroom.

 

Voting by Mail

Available for Middle & High School

Should all states conduct elections entirely by mail? Learn More >

The Electoral College

Available for Middle & High School

Should states join the National Popular Vote pact? Learn More >

Voter ID Laws

Available for Middle & High School

Should states require voters to present a government-approved ID? Learn More >

Understanding the Media

When we refer to "The Media", what do we mean? Learn More >

Gerrymandering

Should the federal government mandate that states end partisan gerrymandering? Learn More >

Youth Voting

Available for Middle & High School

Should the voting age be lowered to 16? Learn More >

Videos from Policymakers

Brought to you by ASP HOMEROOM, through a collaboration between Close Up Foundation and A Starting Point, these supplemental videos are an introduction to policy areas that provide an opportunity for students to hear different perspectives directly from lawmakers.

 

Voting Rights

State Representatives Jasmine Clark (D-GA) & Robert Dickey (R-GA) 
April 16, 2021

Electoral College Certification

Congressman Jodey Arrington (R-TX)
January 6, 2021

Shaping the Future of Information, Technology & Media

Senator Maria Cantwell (D-WA)
October 26, 2020

Lesson Plans

These ready-to-use lesson plans can be utilized in conjunction with any of our resources to enhance the quality of student discourse in the classroom. Our supplemental Civic Readiness Guide provides a recommended lesson plan sequence for using our Current Issues resources.

 

Additional & Archived Resources on Government & Elections

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Filibuster

Time to Reform the Filibuster?

Post | April 6, 2021

The Senate is again considering changing its rules regarding the filibuster, a parliamentary procedure that gives individual senators the power to shape—and even block—legislation. The filibuster is “a loosely defined term for action designed to prolong debate and delay or prevent a vote on a bill, resolution, amendment, or other debatable question.”1 The filibuster is […]


Building Bridges – Women’s History Month – Part 2

Podcast | March 31, 2021

In this episode of Building Bridges we look at some additional remarkable women in American history: Lucy Parsons, Margaret Chase Smith, and Donna Brazile.


Andrew Harnik Press Pool

Women: A Majority in the United States, A Minority in U.S. Government

Post | March 29, 2021

The year 2021 has already been a ground-breaking one for women in national politics. Vice President Kamala Harris became the first woman and person of color to hold the office, the 117th Congress includes the largest number of female members in U.S. history, and President Joe Biden’s cabinet will ultimately include 11 women, setting a […]


Close Up Conversations – The 26th Amendment – 50 Years Later

Videos | March 26, 2021

 During this Close Up Conversations webinar, Close Up’s, Mia Charity discusses the 26th Amendment with distinguished guest speakers: Les Francis, Patricia Keefer, and Yael Bromberg, Esq. This year marks 50 years since the passage and ratification of the 26th Amendment which lowered the voting age to 18 in all states. Check out this conversation […]


Women's History Month

Building Bridges – Women’s History Month – Part 1

Podcast | March 22, 2021

In this episode of Building Bridges looks at some remarkable women in American history: Belva Lockwood, Jeannette Rankin, and Shirley Chisholm.


student-protests-26th-amendment

The 50th Anniversary of the 26th Amendment

Post |

Congress passed the 26th Amendment in March 1971; it was ratified by the states and signed by President Richard Nixon by July of that same year.1 The amendment lowered the voting age to 18. It reads: Section 1 The right of citizens of the United States, who are eighteen years of age or older, to […]


An In-Depth Look at Thomas Jefferson’s Legacy

Videos | March 12, 2021

During this Close Up Conversations webinar, Close Up’s, Mia Charity, discusses environmental justice issues with Dr. Regan F. Patterson of the Congressional Black Caucus Foundation.


Restoring Confidence or Destroying Democracy? The Fight Over Access to the Ballot

Post | March 8, 2021

The past several election cycles have seen high-stakes fights over access to the ballot and the rules that govern elections. In 2013, the Supreme Court invalidated provisions of the Voting Rights Act, thus making it easier for states to change their voting laws.1 In the years since, conservatives in Congress and in state legislatures have […]


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