Economic Policy: Raising the Minimum Wage :Public Policy 4th edition by Michael E. Kraft and Scott R. Furlong

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Read Chapters 1, 2 and 3 in Public Policy in Theory and Practice, then do the following exercises. If there is something you need to write, it will be highlighted . Click on the blue Exercise I title to go to the page where you can submit your assignment.

Important! Read the full assignment before you begin: Due June 16 at 7 a.m.

Approximately three (3) pages in total. Paste your assignment in the box below. Exercise I is due Monday, June 17 at 7 a.m. in the morning.

A good review of the legislative process for public policy is at:http://thomas.loc.gov/home/lawsmade.toc.html

Take time to review the legislative process--try to keep from humming "I'm just a Bill". 

Check for pending legislation at: http://thomas.loc.gov/home/thomas.html (You might want to type the public policy topic you picked in “D” below into the search box). 

Go to http://www.house.gov/ click on Find your Representative and put in your zip code in. Find the name of your U.S. Representative (NOT Texas but US). Check out their web site. Next go to http://www.vote-smart.org to find out more about your member of Congress. In a paragraph, describe what you found. 

From the Vote Smart site http://www.vote-smart.org (on the right you will notice voting record, interest group ratings, political courage, etc) get the information to: 

Write a brief (approximately 100 word) profile of your Representative including major contributors (Vote Smart will take you to Open Secrets) and interest group ratings . Go to your Member of Congress' website. What seems to be his/her policy priorities?

From what you know about your district, what else do you think she/he should have as a priority on his/her webpage?



B. Executive Branch 

The President of the United States has a web site http://www.whitehouse.gov. Look at the home page and describe two of the issues Barack Obama considers his current public policy priorities. Why do you suppose he choose these particular issues over all the others?

C. Public Opinion



a. Click on "20 questions Journalists should know about Polling Results"http://www.ncpp.org/?q=node/4 for a good summary of what to look for in judging the quality of poll results. Find a poll on the web (not from the sites listed here). In one paragraph explain how well the reporting adheres to the “20 questions”.

b. Here is another source for opinion polls http://www.pollingreport.com/

Choose one of the public policy issues in the Polling Report (not Hillary v Biden) and in a few sentences speculate if public opinion would make any difference in this issue's outcome. Why or why not? 



D. Topic

Economic Policy: Raising the Minimum Wage

a. Name some of the federal agencies (i.e. what part of the State Department, Interior Department, Department of Energy, etc.) that would be involved in the political process for that one policy you picked. http://www.loc.gov/rr/news/fedgov.html 

b. Did the president appear to take a stand on this issue? Was it on his website or in this year's State of the Union address http://www.whitehouse.gov/the-press-office/2014/01/28/president-barack-obamas-state-union-address

c. Was there pending legislation http://thomas.loc.gov/home/thomas.html ? Example.

d. Name two interest groups that target this topic (pro and/or con). What are their stands? According to their web sites, what are they doing to move the policy closer to their satisfaction?

e. Did it appear on your Representative's web site? If so, how so?

f. What did the public opinion polls say about the topic? Explain.

g. Does it make any difference to the treatment of your policy that this is an election year?

E. Various policy instruments are described in Chapter 3 (pp. 103-107). Which would you say is most appropriate for the policy issue you picked for this assignment? Why?

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