Political leaders have at their disposal a great deal of patronage, in the sense that they make decisions on the appointment of officials inside and outside government (for example on quangos). Patronage is therefore a recognized power of the executive branch. In most countries the executive has the right to make many appointments, some of which may be lucrative (see also sinecures). In some democracies, high-level appointments are reviewed or approved by the legislature (as in the advice and consent of the United States Senate); in other countries, such as those using the Westminster system, this is not the case. Other types of political patronage may violate the laws or ethics codes, such as when political leaders engage in nepotism (hiring family members) and cronyism such as fraudulently awarding non-competitive government contracts to friends or relatives or pressuring the public service to hire an unqualified family member or friend.Further information: political machine, pork barrel, and no-bid contract
Read more about this topic: Patronage
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“The average Kentuckian may appear a bit confused in his knowledge of history, but he is firmly certain about current politics. Kentucky cannot claim first place in political importance, but it tops the list in its keen enjoyment of politics for its own sake. It takes the average Kentuckian only a matter of moments to dispose of the weather and personal helath, but he never tires of a political discussion.”
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