the institution through which a society makes and enforces its public policies.
body of fundamental laws setting out the principles, structures, and processes of a government.
supreme and absolute power within a territory.
government is restricted in what they may do
a document created by the English that limited the power of the king, and provided for trial by jury and due process of the law.
life, liberty, and the right to own property
life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness
author of the Declaration of Independence
refusal to buy or sell certain products or services
Articles of Confederation
this document established a "firm league of friendship," and called for strong state governments, and an extremely limited national government
the group of delegates who wrote our Constitution, and are considered the Founding Fathers of our nation
called for a government with three separate branches, a bicameral legislature wtih representation in both houses based on population or wealth, Congress would choose a national executive and judiciary
New Jersey Plan
called for an equal unicameral Congress that would be in charge of national tax and trade, more than one executive, federal judiciary chosen by the executive
also known as the "Great Compromise," an agreement that would create a bicameral Congress with one house based on population and the other equal.
provided that all "free persons" should be counted as three-fifths of a person toward the population count for the house of representatives
included James Madison and Alexander Hamiltion; this group believed in a strong national government.
included Patrick Henry and Samuel Adams; this group believed in a Bill of Rights, the mention of God, and stronger state governments.
introduction to the Constitution
Separation of Powers
basic principle of the American system of government that the powers of the three branches are divided throughout the government
checks and balances
system of overlapping the powers of the three branches to permit each branch to check the actions of the others
power of the coutrs to determine whether what the government does is in accord with what the Constitution provides
to declare illegal, specifically within the government
the division of power amon a central government and several regional governments
changes int he written word to the Constitution
Bill of Rights
first ten amendments
a pact made by the president directly with the head of a foreign state
a formal agreement between two or more sovereign states (in the U.S. it must be approved by the Senate)
the group that makes the formal selection of the nation's President
an advisory body to the President, traditional made up of the heads of the Executive Departments and other officials
writ of habeas corpus
court order directed to prevent unjust arrests and imprisonment; commands the court to rule before a person can be imprisoned for a crime
ex post facto laws
laws passed after the fact
powers given to the government in the Constitution
powers expressely spelled out in the Constitution (examples are veto, impeachment, declare war, etc.)
not expressely stated, but suggested by the Constitution; includes the "Necessary and Proper Clause" (examples are highways, gambling and smoking laws, etc.)
powers that belong to the National Government because it is a sovereign nation (examples include immigration, deportation, protecting the nation, etc.)
powers that are not granted to the national government by the Constitution, meaning they are granted to the States (examples include education, marriage laws, gambling laws, etc.)
powers granted to both the national and state governments (examples include taxes, establishing courts, borrowing money, etc.)
federal money granted to a state for a specific purpose
federal money given to states or other local governments with fewer-than-usual strings attached
federal money or resources given to states or local governments
full faith and credit clause
the constitutional idea that each state accepts the laws and court matters of other states
the constitutional idea that states will return criminals to the state where the crime occurred for trial
current office holders
parties that have split away from a major party (Bull moose party)
parties based on a particular set of beliefs
group of people who seek control of the government by winning elections
firm allegiance to a political party
a political party without wide support
a country that does not have any dominate parties but is ruled by many different parties
in the U.S. it is the elected leader in the two major political parties
an elected body in each national party that creates a party platform
the party meeting where both parties officially nominate a person to run for president
a person votes for multiple parties on their ballot
economic protest parties
third parties that focus only on economic issues
thid parties in the U.S. that focus only on one important issue
practice of drawing electoral district lines in order to limit the voting strength of a particular group or party
the right to vote
all of the people entitled to vote in a given election
Civil Rights Act of 1964
government act that banned racial discrimination
Voting Rights Act of 1965
government act that banned the use of the poll tax and literacy test
Motor Voter Law
Directs every state to allow eligible citizens to register to vote when they get their drivers license, by mail and make registration forms available at locals offices.
congressional elections held in the even-numbered years between presidential elections.
the process by which people gain their political attitudes and opinions
measureable differences between the partisan choices of men and women today
General Citizenship Act
grants all Native Americans the rights of citizenship, including the right to vote in federal elections.