Correct.
"Pronounced" has many definitions. In the passage, "pronounced" is contrasted with "gradual" ("gradual but pronounced") and describes a shift in power. The only option that fits this context is "marked," or noticeable.









































































































































Incorrect.
Note that the stem directs you to select the meaning of the underlined word as it is used in the passage. You can't simply pick any one of the dictionary definitions for "pronounced." Reread the target sentence, substituting "outspoken" for the underlined word. Political candidates could be outspoken, but a "shift of power" can't be outspoken.









































































































































Incorrect.
Note that the stem directs you to select the meaning of the underlined word as it is used in the passage. You can't simply pick any one of the dictionary definitions for "pronounced." Reread the target sentence, substituting "recited" for the underlined word. Political statements could be recited, but a "shift of power" can't be recited.









































































































































Incorrect.
Note that the stem directs you to select the meaning of the underlined word as it is used in the passage. You can't simply pick any one of the dictionary definitions for "pronounced." Reread the target sentence, substituting "uttered" for the underlined word. Political statements could be uttered, but a "shift of power" can't be uttered.









































































































































Incorrect.
Political commentators and the media may see low voter turnout as "anything but natural" -- which may imply alarm. However, the gist of the passage indicates that the author does not share that attitude. Note that he says, "We should not [feel guilty about it]."









































































































































Correct.
The author describes low voter turnout as "a natural consequence of the shift from a representative to a participatory democracy" (lines 17-19) and suggests that we should not feel guilty even though the media criticizes us (lines 20-25). He points out that low turnout does not mean the end of democracy and that, in fact, high turnout occurs in undemocratic nations (lines 25-36). Finally, he argues that low turnout is a result of a deliberate, informed decision not to participate in national level politics (lines 39-44). In sum, his attitude is accepting.









































































































































Incorrect.
The general public feels guilty about low voter turnout (lines 23-24), but this is not the best description of the author's attitude. Don't be misled by the author's comment that "we all feel even guilty." "We all" is used as an informal way of saying "the general public." Note that the author says, "we should not [feel guilty about it]."









































































































































Incorrect.
Political commentators, the media, and the general public may be worried about low voter turnout in a national election, but the author isn't.









































































































































Correct.
It is implied that political commentators and the media have a negative view of the declining interest in national elections; thus, "upbraided" must indicate a negative action. However, the option "punished" is too negative and does not fit the context. "Criticized" is the only option that makes sense in the context of the paragraph.









































































































































Incorrect.
Reread the sentence containing "upbraided," substituting "punished" for the underlined word. Consider who would be doing the punishing, who would be punished, and for what. Political commentators and the media have neither the authority nor the power to punish people for not voting in national elections. This option is much too negative.









































































































































Incorrect.
Reread the sentence containing "upbraided," substituting "recognized" for the underlined word. Consider who would be doing the recognizing, who would be recognized, and for what. The media recognize (take formal notice of, express appreciation for) individuals for positive actions, and this context (apathy, taking democracy for granted) is clearly negative. This option, therefore, is inappropriate to the tone.









































































































































Incorrect.
Reread the sentence containing "upbraided," substituting "rewarded" for the underlined word. Consider who would be doing the rewarding, who would be rewarded, and for what. Political commentators and the media are reacting to what they see as "apathy and taking democracy for granted" (lines 22-23). Both of these are clearly nega tive. It would not make sense for them to reward voters for behavior they dislike. This option, therefore, is inappropriate to the tone.









































































































































Correct.
Clues are given in the contrast that the author establishes between what low voter turnout does not indicate (trouble for democracy, lines 25-27) and what high voter turnout may indicate (highest in totalitarian states, lines 27-31). By showing that the highest voter turnouts are found in totalitarian rather than democratic countries, the author supports his view that high turnout is not necessarily a sign of democrary.









































































































































Incorrect.
Although voter turnout in other countries mentioned is higher than in the U.S., this information is provided not to show that the U.S. turnout is low but to show that turnout is high in countries that aren't democracies.









































































































































Incorrect.
The point made in this option is neither stated nor implied anywhere in the passage. In contrast, the author suggests that Americans choose whether or not to vote (see lines 37-44) -- a very democratic notion. He notes also that low turnout doesn't mean our democratic form of government is in danger. The highest turnout is in the least democratic nations.









































































































































Incorrect.
This option does express a stated concern of political commentators and the media. This concern would be shared by many readers. However, it does not explain why the author mentions the extremely high voter turnout in totalitarian countries. The highest turnout is in the least democratic nations.









































































































































Incorrect.
Reread the question, noting that you are to identify the main reason few people vote in national elections. Now look at paragraph seven, which mentions ignorance. Pay special attention to the time frame described in this paragraph: political analysts used to associate (implying that they no longer do so) ignorance and low turnout; as voters become better educated, more informed...(meaning voters are no longer ignorant). In sum, ignorance of the issues is no longer a reason for low turnout, so it certainly cannot be the main reason.









































































































































Incorrect.
Reread the question, noting that you are to identify the main reason few people vote in national elections. Now look at paragraph seven, the only place in the passage that education is mentioned. The first thing you should notice is that the author says people are becoming "better educated," in other words, the opposite of this option. If you connected "ignorance" with "lack of education," notice the time frame described in paragraph seven. Ignorance is no longer considered a reason for low turnout ("used to associate low turnout with apathy or ignorance").









































































































































Incorrect.
Reread the question, noting that you are to identify the main reason few people vote in national elections. Now reread this choice, noting that it includes all politics, national and local level. The point of the passage is that people are interested at the local level even though they are no longer interested in the national level. In other words, this option is inaccurate because it is too broad -- it inaccurately includes local level politics. An inaccurate statement (based on the passage information) couldn't logically be the answer.









































































































































Correct.
The answer is contained in the first three paragraphs of the passage, particularly in the third paragraph. Notice the two explicit cues to the reason: "So there is a declining interest in national political elections. It is a natural consequence of the shift from a representative to a participatory democracy." The answer simply summarizes the shift "in political focus," a substitution for the words "shift from a representative to a participating democracy." The first paragraph establishes low voter turnout nationally, described in the third paragraph as "declining interest."









































































































































Incorrect.
An opinion is a statement that cannot be proven to be true or false. This statement is not an opinion because it could be proven to be true or false -- we simply have to be able to find out what political analysts do.









































































































































Incorrect.
An opinion is a statement that cannot be proven to be true or false. This statement is not an opinion because it could be proven to be true or false -- we simply have to determine the number of eligible American voters and how many of these do not vote. This information is available from a number of sources, including political science textbooks, almanacs, and government records. It is not necessary for the passage to include the actual information for the statement to be a fact. The point is that we can prove or disprove it. In this case, the passage implies the truth of the statement (lines 4-5, 25, 37-38).









































































































































Incorrect.
An opinion is a statement that cannot be proven to be true or false. This statement is not an opinion because it could be proven to be true or false -- we simply have to determine the percentage of voters in North Korea.









































































































































Correct.
This statement is an opinion, that is, it reveals how the person making the statement feels about the matter. "Should" is the word in the statement which alerts you to the opinionated nature of the statement. No matter how many readers might agree, the statement remains an opinion because agreement is not "proof."