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If the governor's office is vacant and the lieutenant governor becomes the governor, what happens to the lieutenant governor's position?

A new lieutenant governor is selected by the Texas Senate.

The governor of Texas may be elected to

an unlimited number of four-year terms.

Who is the longest serving governor in Texas history?

Rick Perry

The only Texas governor to be impeached by the Texas House and convicted by the Texas Senate was

James Ferguson

Which of the following was the strongest factor leading to the increased restrictions being placed on the power of the Texas governor in the 1876 Constitution?

A reaction to the Reconstruction administration of Republican Governor E.J. Davis

If an attorney general is appointed by the governor, reports to the governor, and serves at the discretion of the governor, the attorney general likely serves in

a Cabinet-style executive.

How do the constitutional executive powers of the governor of Texas compare with the constitutional executive powers of other state governors?

They are among the weakest in the nation

The Texas governor

lacks any significant independent removal power over his appointments

The term "senatorial courtesy" refers to the practice where

the governor will only make an appointment if given the go-ahead from the Senator in whose district the nominee resides

Which group is most overrepresented in gubernatorial appointments?

Anglo men

While campaigning, ________ promised that his/her administration would "look like Texas" to increase diversity in government.

Ann Richards

In terms of personal ideology, most Texas governors have been


Which of the following is NOT a power the governor can use to influence the Texas legislature?

Appointing a political ally as lieutenant governor to control the Senate on the governor's behalf

The ability of the governor to reject one or more items of an appropriations bill is the

line-item veto

The lieutenant governor and the heads of six state agencies are

elected independently of the governor by the voters of Texas.

The chief legal counsel for the State of Texas is the

attorney general

Why is the comptroller of public accounts considered a powerful state official and significant legislative player?

The legislature is constitutionally required to pass a balanced biennial budget each regular session and must use the comptroller's estimate of state revenue to make that budget

The state official in charge of supervising the oil revenues from state-owned land is the

land commissioner

Which of the following regulates the oil and gas industry in Texas?

Texas Railroad Commission

The state executive official who is the chief elections officer for Texas, manages corporate charters in Texas, and maintains many of the state's records is the

Texas secretary of state.

A government regulatory agency or commission that consistently makes decisions favorable to the interests of the private sector interests that it regulates is considered

a captured agency

The continuing need for a Texas bureaucracy is evaluated through a process known as

sunset review

A phenomenon that tends to reinforce close relationships between private interests and public regulators is

the revolving door

The Texas Constitution requires the governor to deliver messages to the legislature, such as the budget message and the State of the State address.


The Texas governor is the president of the Texas Senate.


Almost every constitution in Texas history provided for

the popular election of some judges.

Which court has ultimate authority to interpret Texas laws and the Texas Constitution?

The Texas Supreme Court has ultimate authority in all civil cases and the Texas Court of Criminal Appeals has ultimate authority in all criminal cases.

Which of the following arguments is given by those who support the current structure of the Texas supreme courts?

The current system allows members of the supreme courts to specialize in either criminal or civil law.

The Texas judicial system incorporates ____ levels of courts.


A judge on which of the following courts would have the most prestige?

Texas Court of Criminal appeals

You have received a traffic ticket from a Dallas police officer. You decide to contest it and must appear in the court which exercises original jurisdiction over limited criminal violations of Dallas city ordinances. What court is that?

Municipal court

All of the following can be issued by a municipal court EXCEPT

jail time.

The local county trial court for minor criminal offenses (less serious misdemeanors) and civil suits involving small claims is the

justice of the peace court

How many constitutional county courts exist in Texas?


A new trial, necessary for an appeal from a court that is not a court of record, is called a(n)

trail de novo

Constitutional county courts are also known as

county courts at law.

County courts at law were created to

relieve county judges in urban Texas counties of their judicial duties to allow them to focus on their county administrative duties as presiding officer of the commissioners court.

Assume that after the death of your parents you and your siblings enter into a protracted dispute over the distribution of your late parents' estate, a dispute that requires you to file suit against your siblings in court over the contested will. In what court will the issue likely be settled in?

District court

Assume you have been convicted of felony auto theft in state district court in Houston. You have appealed to the 1st District Court of Appeals in Houston and lost in that court also. You now plan to appeal to one of Texas' highest appellate courts. Where are you going to file your appeal?

Texas Court of Criminal Appeals

How many courts of appeals (state intermediate appellate courts) are there in Texas?


Assume that you are a justice on the Texas Supreme Court and are in the process of determining whether to hear an appeal. How many of your colleagues must you convince to vote with you in order to agree to hear the appeal?

Three (making a total of four votes needed to hear the case on appeal)

Cases in the intermediate courts of appeals are usually heard by how many justices?


What is the court of last resort for criminal cases in Texas?

Texas Court of Criminal Appeals

Other than municipal court judges, trial judges in Texas serve ____ terms, and appellate judges and justices serve ____ terms.

four-year /s ix-year

Assume that you wish to become the county judge in the county of your residence. You are not an attorney, nor do you have a law license. Can you serve as a county judge in Texas?

Yes, but you must be well informed in the law of the State and complete at least thirty hours in substantive, procedural, and evidentiary laws and in the administrative duties of the office.

The Texas Constitution requires that justices of the Texas Supreme Court be

at least 35 years of age and a practicing attorney or judge for a court of record for at least 10 years.

Which of the following is a criticism of the partisan process of electing judges in Texas?

Financial contributions to judicial campaigns often come from those who have business with the court

A body impaneled by a district judge to sit and consider felony criminal cases presented by the prosecutor for possible indictment in a given jurisdiction is known as a

grand jury.

Assume you are a criminal defendant. During your arraignment before the judge, you inform the judge that you have agreed to admit guilt to a crime in order to receive a lesser punishment. This procedure is called

a plea bargain.

You are an attorney and prior to trial you are attempting to establish the trial's scope with questions about what evidence is admissible and what witnesses may testify about. These and other similar issues are determined in the

pretrial motions

A 1912 constitutional amendment in Texas allowed some municipalities to adopt "home rule" status, which made it possible

for some cities to decide their own structure and powers under certain limitations

Texas has how many counties?


Which of the following statements is NOT reflective of the multifunctional nature of Texas county governments?

Counties provide public education to their citizens from kindergarten through grade 12

The legislative body of a county in Texas is known as the

commissioners court

The county judge in Texas not only sits as a member and chair of the county commissioners court and considered the chief administrative officer of the county government, he or she also

holds the judicial position of judge of the constitutional county court of that county.

You were married in Williamson County, Texas and would like a copy of your marriage certificate. Which Williamson County official should you contact to obtain a replacement?

County clerk

Where is the authority of Texas county governments established?

Both the Texas Constitution and in Texas statutes

The most significant portion of county revenue comes from

property taxes

Who is given extensive powers to govern a home-rule city?

The city

Complete the analogy: What a city charter is to a home-rule city, a

constitution is to a state

Texas adopted a constitutional amendment in 1912 which authorized

home-rule cities

Some cities in Texas operate their own electric companies. These cities have the authority to do this because

the local governing authority afforded them as home-rule cities

As mayor of your small hometown, you cut ribbons at store openings and speak at Rotary Club luncheons. You preside over your city council meetings, but your vote is no more significant than that of any other member of the council which, as a body, runs the city. You have no executive power, nor is there any city manager with executive power. What kind of city government are you serving under?

Weak mayor-council

An official who is elected city-wide, presides at city council, hires, manages, and fires city staff, and may have veto powers over some council actions functions in what type of municipal government?

Strong mayor-council system

Which of the following is true of the council-manager form of city government?

It is the most popular form of city government in Texas for home-rule cities

After the 1990 hurricane, Galveston created a __________ form of city government where elected members of the governing body also served as head administrators of city programs.

city commission

Enlargement of a city's corporate limits by incorporating surrounding territory into the city is known as


An extraterritorial jurisdiction is the area

outside a city's boundaries over which the city may exercise limited control

An election system in which a candidate runs from and represents one district, rather than the entire geographic area encompassed by the government, is known as an

single-member district system

Until the 1970s, city council elections in Texas tended to be

at-large-by-place elections

A method of voting in which voters have a number of votes equal to the number of seats being filled, and voters may cast their votes all for one candidate or split them among candidates in various combinations, is known as

cumulative voting

Special districts in Texas usually focus on

a single governmental function

Which of the following is an example of a special district?

Independent school districts

Municipal utility districts are usually created at the request of

developers who seek to provide water, sewage, and other utility services to new subdivisions and developments outside a city's limits

The idea behind home-rule is that city leaders need tools to address their local problems, which gives them greater flexibility than cities operating under the general laws of Texas.


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