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5.15 MC Answers and Review

9 min readmay 3, 2023


AP US Government 👩🏾‍⚖️

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Answers and Review for Multiple Choice Practice on Political Participation

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STOP ⛔ Before you look at the answers make sure you gave this practice quiz a try so you can assess your understanding of the concepts covered in Unit 5. Click here for the practice questions: AP US Gov Unit 5 Multiple Choice Questions.
Facts about the test: The AP US Government exam has 55 multiple-choice questions and you will be given 1 hour and 20 minutes to complete the section. That means it should take you around 22 minutes to complete 15 questions.
The following questions were not written by CollegeBoard and although they cover information outlined in the AP US Government Course and Exam Description
1. Which of the following amendments was NOT directly tied to extending suffrage to African Americans, women, and other minorities?
A. 14th
B. 15th
C. 19th
D. 24th
Explanation: The 14th amendment granted citizenship to all people born or naturalized in the U.S. and extended equal protection of the laws to all citizens. Although this amendment was beneficial to former slaves, it did not grant voting rights to them.
📄 Read Unit 5.1: Voting Rights and Models of Voting Behavior

2. A voter that decides to vote for a presidential candidate from the opposing political party as a result of a declining economy during the incumbent's first few years in office would be exhibiting which of the following voting behaviors?
A. Party-Line voting
B. Rational choice voting
C. Prospective voting
D. Retrospective voting
Explanation: Retrospective voting occurs when a voter uses a candidate's or incumbent's recent track record to decide who to support at the polls on election day. Incumbent's who perform poorly are more likely to lose voter support from their own party, especially if poor performance is linked to a struggling economy.
📄 Read Unit 5.1: Voting Rights and Models of Voting Behavior

3. Which of the following is the most reliable factor in predicting a voter's habits?
A. Their religious affiliation
B. The college or university they attended
C. Their party identification
D. The number of campaign attack ads they view
Explanation: While each of the incorrect answers do factor into a person's voter habits, party identification is by far the most reliable tool to predict which candidates voters will support. Most voters are considered "party-line" voters, meaning they overwhelming support candidates from their own political party.
📄 Read Unit 5.2: Voter Turnout

4. Which of the following statements best summarizes voter ID laws in the United States?
A.  The Supreme Court has overwhelmingly supported voter ID laws.
B. Liberals support these laws because they tend to increase voter turnout.
C. Many conservatives support these laws due to concerns related to voter fraud
D. Progressives support voter ID laws since they tend to benefit Democratic Party candidates in state and federal elections.
Explanation: Voter ID laws are supported by many conservatives who identify with the Republican Party. These conservatives believe that requiring an ID at the polls will decrease the chance of unlawful voting behaviors and will increase the overall accuracy of election results. Supporters of voter ID laws argue that Americans are required to provide ID for other basic services, and thus should be required to do the same for voting.
📄 Read Unit 5.2: Voter Turnout

5. Which of the following would most likely increase the degree of political efficacy of voters?
A.  If a candidate they supported takes a more centric approach to policy after winning a general election.
B. Watching hundreds of political attack ads in the weeks leading up to a presidential election.
C. If an incumbent they voted for signs tax legislation after promising to cut taxes during their campaign.
D. If their preferred candidate wins an election, and follows through on most campaign promises.
Explanation: Voters who feel a sense of political efficacy believe their votes make a difference. There is a greater chance a voter will experience a higher degree of political efficacy if the candidates they support, once in office, take action on the promises they made during their campaign.
📄 Read Unit 5.2: Voter Turnout

6. Which of the following best characterizes Catholic voters in the United States?
A.  They vote heavily for Republican candidates as a result of the Papacy's denunciation of abortion.
B. They tend to vote for Democratic candidates, but many support the Republican party due to their conservative values.
C. They are the most reliable voting bloc within the Democratic Party.
D. They are primarily clustered in the states that share a border with Mexico, and vote for both Republican and Democratic candidates.
Explanation: Catholic voters in the United States vote for both Democratic and Republican candidates as a result of overlapping demographic factors. Catholics are clustered in urban and rural regions of the U.S., have many white and Latino followers, and come from a variety of socioeconomic backgrounds. This results in candidates from both parties having a good chance of garnering support from Catholics in any given election.
📄 Read Unit 5.2: Voter Turnout

7. Which of the following would most likely be included in the platform of the Democratic Party?
A. Policies that restrict campaign contributions from corporations.
B. Reduced taxes for multinational corporations headquartered in the U.S.
C. Legislation that would increase the federal minimum wage.
D. Elimination of the Department of Education
Explanation: Democrats typically believe that the government should be used to help solve problems throughout the country. Many people believe an increase in the minimum wage would contribute to solving the problem of income inequality in the United States, and therefore it would likely be something included in the platform of the Democratic Party.
📄 Read Unit 5.2: Voter Turnout

8. Political parties link people to the government in all of the following ways EXCEPT
A. Managing campaigns
B. Recruiting candidates
C. Lobbying members of Congress
D. Helping register voters
Explanation: Although lobbying does link some people to the government, it is performed by a different linkage institution - political parties. Lobbying involves the persuading of lawmakers in an attempt to influence public policy, and is usually carried out by professional lawyers.
📄 Read Unit 5.6: Interest Groups Influencing Policy Making

9. A Republican running for an open seat in Congress would most likely receive support from which of the following types of interest groups?
A. Groups interested in promoting policies that would implement a flat income tax for citizens in place of more progressive taxes.
B. Groups that promote the use of sustainable energy.
C. Groups that advance policies to achieve income equity for men and women.
D. Groups that support using increasing government funds to reform law enforcement agencies.
Explanation: Republican generally receive support from interest groups that promote economic free enterprise and a reduction in taxes. Progressive tax policies increase the amount of money an individual will pay as they earn higher wages and salaries; flat taxes are viewed as a more fair method of taxation by many Republicans since everyone would pay the same rate, regardless of income level.
🎥 Watch: Campaign Finance

10. The National Rifle Association (NRA) investing money in a TV and internet campaign to encourage its members to contact their local representatives to oppose gun control legislation proposed shortly after a mass school shooting would be considered a form of
A. Platform endorsement
B. Electioneering
C. Direct lobbying
D. Grassroots lobbying
Explanation: Grassroots lobbying occurs when an interest group uses one or more forms of media to persuade their members to put pressure on legislators to influence policy. This approach can be especially useful for large groups that focus on single issues, such as gun rights. It is frequently used in place of direct lobbying, since the group does not have to pay for members to contact lawmakers.
🎥 Watch: Campaign Finance

11. Which of the following accurately explains a difference between caucuses and primaries?
A. Primaries are used in presidential elections, while caucuses are used in senate elections.
B. Both caucuses and primaries involve voters expressing their support for their preferred candidates in a public setting.
C. Caucuses are used during the general election, while primaries are used in the nomination process.
D. Caucuses have lower participation rates than primaries, but both play a role in nominating candidates.
Explanation: Caucuses and primaries are the two primary methods used to nominate candidates in presidential elections. Causes tend to have lower participation rates since participants are required to meet and discuss their preferred candidates - a process that can take several hours. Primaries tend to attract more voters since they are private and only take a few minutes once in the voting booth.
📄 Read Unit 5.8: Electing a President

12. Which of the following is true regarding the winner-take-all component presidential elections?
A. All 50 states use the system as part of the Electoral College process outlined in the constitution.
B. Candidates that earn a plurality of the popular vote are awarded all of the state's electoral votes.
C. The system encourages popular third party candidates to run against major party candidates.
D. It requires candidates to win a majority of the popular vote in each state in order to earn that state's electoral votes.
Explanation: All states but Maine and Nebraska use the winner-take-all system to award electoral votes to candidates that win a plurality of the popular vote in the state. This system discourages third party candidates from running against major party candidates because the electors are not distributed in a proportional manner. Maine and Nebraska are the only two states that award electors differently, dividing up their electors by congressional district.
📄 Read Unit 5.8: Electing a President

13.  Modern campaigns involve all of the following EXCEPT
A. Microtargeting of potential voters via social media applications.
B. The integration of professional consultants to plan and coordinate all phases of the campaign.
C. A heavy reliance on political parties to nominate candidates and run their campaigns.
D. Televised debates sponsored by media corporations and non-profit groups.
Explanation: Although political parties still have a role in campaigns and elections, it has evolved over time as campaigns have become far more "candidate-centered." Candidates typically support the platforms of one of the major parties, but hired their own professional consultants to craft their image, raise funds, and showcase the candidate.
📄 Read Unit 5.10: Modern Campaigns

14. Political action committees that are allowed to receive unlimited financial donations as long as they remain independent of a candidate's campaign were established as a result of which of the following?
A. Bipartisan Campaign Reform Act (2002)
B. Buckley v. Valeo (1976)
C. Citizens United v. FEC (2010)
D. McCutcheon v. FEC (2014)
Explanation: The Supreme Court's decision in Citizens United led to the creation of "Super PACs" - political action committees that are allowed to collect unlimited independent expenditures for electioneering purposes. The majority of these funds are typically used to create advertisements to influence election results, without coordinating with candidates.
🎥 Watch: Campaign Finance

15. Which of the following statements most accurately describes how most Americans consume daily political news?
A. AM radio shows have increasingly attracted liberal and progressive listeners.
B. Print newspapers have are experiencing a rebirth due to a lack of trust of online news.
C. The internet is the most dominant news source for the majority of Americans.
D. Most Americans still consume political news on TV
Explanation: Most Americans continue to obtain political news on TV - mostly through cable news programs on major networks such as MSNBC, CNN, and Fox News. Internet news sources are gaining in popularity, especially as major news outlets have increasingly transitioned from print to digital reporting.
📄 Read Unit 5.1: Voting Rights and Models of Voting Behavior
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