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Politics of the United States
Social Studies - Test 1
Terms in this set (63)
A document in which the laws, principles, organization, and processes of a government are established
The elected head of a Republican or Democratic government
A group of delegates who edit the constitution and came up with the three branches
The two houses of the legislative branch- the House and the Senate
a person elected to represent others
a person who is a legal resident of a place and is entitles to certain rights and priviledges
a member of a senate who aids in the making of laws and bills, who was elected by the people
Articles of Confederation
the original draft of the constitution of the US, ratified in 1781, which was replaced by the US Constitution in 1789
a person chosen or appointed to act or speak for another
the principle that the government has only the powers that the Constitution
the principle that citizens elect representatives to carry out their will instead of direct perticipation
Bill of Rights
The first ten amendments to the Constitution that guarantees the rights of the people
the system by which the government requires or takes money from people to pay for the expenses for all
Separation of Powers
when the Constitution divided the government into three branches and each branch has its own duties
people who were leaders who laid groundwork for the US
the highest judicial court in a country or state
a system that divides up power between a strong national government and smaller local governments
Checks and Balances
Each branch of government has the power to check, or limit, the actions of the other two
revision or addition to a bill, law, or constitution
asserts that the people are the primary source of the government's authority
Division of power between the federal government and the states
What makes up the legislative branch?
Senate and House of Representatives
What makes up the Executive Branch?
President, Vice President, Cabinet
What makes up the Judicial Branch?
When was the Constitution written?
-written in 1787
What is the Constitution often called and what does it mean?
The "highest law of the land" meaning that no state, branch of government, person, or elected official-not even the president or Congress-can make a law or enforce a condition that goes against the Constitution.
What is the first principle of Principles and Powers? What is it called? Why did the writers write it?
-the government is created and gets its power from the people
-they wanted to emphasize that the ability to set up and start a new government came from the people
What is the second principle of Principles and Powers? What is the purpose of it?
-divides power, giving some power to the central or national government and some power to state
What are delegated powers?
things the national or federal government can do
What are concurrent powers?
things both the national and state government can do
What are two examples of Delegated/National powers?
What are two examples of Both/Concurrent powers?
What are two examples of Reserved/State powers?
-set up schools
-make marriage laws
What does Amendment 10 state in the Constitution?
states that powers not given to the national government and not forbidden to the states are reserved to the states
What do the first three Articles divide into?
the national government's three branches: legislative, executive, and judicial
Why did the writers of the Constitution want three separate branches of government?
they didn't want one part of government to become too powerful
Each branch of government has the some limits placed on it by ______.
by another branch
All the delegates wanted to have ________ to make laws.
Why did the delegates argue on a Congress to make laws?
they couldn't decide how many reps. each state should have because states with fewer people didn't want the other states to have more power in Congress then they had
What did the delegates settle with for a Congress?
that the Congress would have two parts: a Senate and a House of Representatives
Who is Madison?
-"Father of the Constitution"
-responsible for the first 10 Amendments to the Constitution
-"Father of the Bill of Rights"
What is the Constitution made up of?
Preamble, 7 articles, 27 amendments
When was the Constitution signed?
September 17, 1787
What are the first 10 amendments called? When were 17 more added?
-Bill of Rights
What does the Bill of Rights do?
sets up a federal government which means power is shared between the national government and state governments
What does the legislative branch do?
What does the executive branch do?
Carries out the laws
What does the judicial branch do?
settles any arguments or disagreements that arise
Who is the presiding officer of the Senate?
Vice President unless he is absent then the Pres. Pro Tempore
What special duties does Congress have?
-approves or disapproves treaties made with other countries
-approves or disapproves presidential appointments
How many people does the House of Representatives have and how do they figure out however many reps. of each state?
-always 435 members
-states with larger populations have more members than states with smaller populations
What are the requirements to be a member of the House of Reps.?
-must be 25 years old
-must be a US citizen for 7 years
How long can you be in term of office for the House of Reps.?
Who is the presiding officer of the House of Reps.?
Speaker of the House
What are the House of Reps. special duties?
-impeach, or bring charges against the president or federal official
-choose a president if no candidate receives a majority of electoral votes
What are the House of Reps. regulations?
-create and run post office
-build and maintain highways
-admit new states and territories to the US
What are the House of Reps. foreign relations?
approve or disapprove treaties with other countries
What are the House of Reps. changes to the Constitution?
propose amendments to the Constitution
What is the House of Reps. commerce?
-control business between states
-control trade between the US and other countries
What are the powers forbidden to Congress?
-cannot pass ex post facto
-cannot pass bill of attiander
-cannot suspend writ of habeas corpus
What does ex post facto mean and do?
-means "after the fact"
-makes an act illegal after it has been done
What does the bill of attainder do?
it is a law that punishes a person without a trial
What is the writ of habeas corpus?
it is a law that cannot put a person in jail or prison until he or she has appeared before a judge
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