Ch. 1 Roots of American Government
Terms in this set (44)
the institution through which a society makes and enforces its public policies
a political system in which the supreme power lies in a body of citizens who can elect people to represent them
Laws and government programs designed to improve current conditions
The document which established the present federal government of the United States and outlined its powers. It can be changed through amendments.
a form of government in which the ruler is an absolute dictator (not restricted by a constitution or laws or opposition etc.)
a centralized government in which all government powers belong to a single central agency
A form of government in which powers are divided between a central government and several local governments
an accommodation in which both sides make concessions
A group of individual state governments that band together for a common purpose
Governance according to the expressed preferences of the majority.
a legislature consisting of two parts, or houses
In this type of government everyone, including all authority figures, must obey laws. Constitutions, statements of rights, or other laws define the limits of those in power so they cannot take advantage of the elected, appointed, or inherited positions.
rule by the people
Articles of Confederation
The nation's first constitution, adopted by the Second Continental Congress in 1781 during the Revolution. The document was limited because states held most of the power, and Congress lacked the power to tax, regulate trade, or control coinage.
making something valid by formally ratifying or confirming it
Group of delegates who drafted the United States Constitution at the Philadelphia Convention in 1787
Virginia delegate James Madison's plan of government, in which states got a number of representatives in Congress based on their population
New Jersey Plan
Opposite of the Virginia Plan, it proposed a single-chamber congress in which each state had one vote.
Compromise agreement by states at the Constitutional Convention for a bicameral legislature with a lower house in which representation would be based on population and an upper house in which each state would have two senators
Commerce & Slave Trade Compromise
Congress was forbidden the power to tax the exports of goods from any state and forbidden the power to act on the slave trade for at least 20 years
supporters of the constitution during the debate over its ratification; favored a strong national government
Opposed to a strong central government; saw undemocratic tendencies in the Constitution and insisted on the inclusion of the Bill of Rights.
Rule of Law
principle that the law applies to everyone, even those who govern
Separation of Powers
the division of power among the legislative, executive, and judicial branches of government
Checks and Balances
A system that allows each branch of government to limit the powers of the other branches in order to prevent abuse of power
the power of the Supreme Court to declare laws and actions of local, state, or national governments unconstitutional
not agreeing or consistent with the constitution
a system in which power is divided between the national and state governments
change or addition that becomes part of the written language of the constitution itself through one of four methods set forth in the Constitution
Bill of Rights
a statement of fundamental rights and privileges (especially the first ten amendments to the United States Constitution)
Division of Powers
Basic principle of federalism; the constitutional provisions by which governmental powers are divided on a geographic basis (in the United States, between the National Government and the States).
Powers specifically given to the federal government by the US Constitution, for example, the authority to print money.
powers that congress has that are specifically listed in the constitution
Powers inferred from the expressed powers that allow Congress to carry out its functions
Powers that belong to the national government simply because it is a nation.
Powers that belong strictly to the states
those powers that can be exercised by the National Government alone
powers that are shared by both the federal and state governments
constitutional declaration (Article VI) that the Constitution and laws made under its provisions are the greatest law of the land
A giving of funds for a specific purpose
An agreement among two or more states. Congress must approve most such agreements.
Full Faith & Credit Clause
Constitution's requirement that each state accept the public acts, records, and judicial proceedings of every other state
the surrender of a fugitive from one state to another
Privileges & Immunities Clause
Citizens are , no State can draw unreasonable distinctions between its own residents and those persons who happen to live in other States
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