60 terms

Texas Legislature

In 2003, the first Republican House Speaker since Reconstruction was
Tom Craddick
What was the primary reason for legislative partisanship in Texas in 2003?
congressional redistricting fights
How does the leg set priorities?
Thru the budgetry process
The Texas Senate influences policy by
approving or rejecting appointments made by the governor
In the context of political science, the development of a legislative body into a formally structured system with stable membership, complex rules, expanded internal operations, and the delineation of staff functions is known as
bicameral, part time, and has 31 Senators
The Texas legislature is
Special sessions of the legislature are NOT
limited in the number that may be called
In order to be elected a state senator (Austin) a person must be
a qualified voter
The base pay of the House and Senate members is $_____ per year
When the legislature is in session, access to the floor of each chamber on the second floor of the Capitol is restricted to
lawmakers, accredited media representatives, and certain other state officials
The Texas House of Representatives has _____ members
Compared to other states, the turnover in the Texas legislature is
relatively low
Legislative turnover is caused by redistricting and by
the personal costs of running for office
Legislative turnover is caused by redistricting and by
the personal costs of running for office
Apportionment and redistricting address fundamental questions of who should be represented and
how they will be represented
Equity in redistricting finally came to Texas as a result of
federal court intervention by the one person, one vote decision in Reynolds v. Sims, enforced in Texas in 1965
The presiding officer of the House, elected by the members, is the
speaker of the House
The powers of the House presiding officer includes
appointing a president pro tempore
The lieutenant governor of Texas does NOT
serve at the will of the Senate
Generally thought of as a consensus builder, Lieutenant Governor Bill Hobby changed tactics to force approval of
a presidential primary bill opposed by most Democratic senators
Lieutenant Governor Bob Bullock surprised his friends just after the close of the 1997 session by announcing he would
not seek reelection in 1998
The lieutenant governor and the speaker do NOT have the power to
appoint statewide officials
The _____ cannot vote on legislation unless there is a tie
lieutenant governor
The backbone of the legislative process is
the committee system
Of the 6,374 bills introduced during the 2007 regular session, only about _____ finally passed both chambers
The bills that failed to be enacted in the 2007 legislative session generally died
in either a House or Senate committee
The House Calendars Committee historically has had more life-and-death power over legislation than any other committee because
it sets the order of debate on the House floor
In 2009, the Senate had _____ standing committees, while the House had _____.
18; 35
If a bill passes both the House and Senate but in different forms, the bill is sent to
conference committee
_____ committees are appointed by the governor, lieutenant governor, and the speaker to study major policy issues
In order for a bill to become a law its first step must pass
the first reading
At first reading, a bill is introduced, numbered, and then sent
to a committee
A bill that wins committee approval can be considered by the full chamber on the
second reading
During the third reading, a bill may be amended by
two-thirds approval
After a successful third reading in the originating chamber, a bill is
sent to the opposite chamber
When a bill leaves the second chamber after its third reading, it
goes to the governor if it is in the identical form passed by the first chamber
When a governor gets a bill, he may
sign it, veto it, or let it become a law without his signature
Only one type of bill must originate in the House of Representatives, bills that
raise revenue
To bring a bill to the floor of the Senate for debate requires
a two-thirds approval vote by the Senate
The closing weeks of the regular legislative session can
be derailed by a filibuster in the Senate
In the 2003 Texas legislature,
Republicans had a majority the House for the first time since Reconstruction
In 1989, Republicans organized their
first caucus in the House
In 2009, Democrats retook some of their lost seats in the House and joined with moderate Republicans to unseat __________ and replace him with_________
autocratic Speaker Tom Craddick; Joe Strauss
Hispanic and African American House members formed their own caucuses in the
A favorite voter-contact tool of many legislators is
a newsletter they can mail to households in their districts at state expense
In addition to the formal rules of the legislature, there are unwritten rules that shape legislators' behavior called
The legislative process is designed to institutionalize
The wishes of constituents are considered, particularly if there is
a groundswell of dominant opinions coming from a legislator's district
At the inception of each regular session, the governor summarizes his legislative priorities in a
State of the State Address
The most meaningful threat that the governor can hold over a legislator is
the possible veto of legislation of importance to the legislator
The dominant consideration for lawmakers when deciding on legislation is to
get reelected
Members of the legislature who pursue issues to produce personal or political benefits for themselves are considered
The growth and development of the legislative staff reflects
an emerging professionalism in lawmaking
A direct result of the Sharpstown stock fraud scandal was
the limitation of speaker powers to appoint members to standing committees
Which of the following was part of the changes to ethics laws passed in 2003?
Municipal officeholders in large cities are required to file personal financial disclosure statements
The legislature in Texas can be described as
part time, with low pay
The governor can use the line-item veto to veto specific spending provisions from
appropriations bills
The most important power of the speaker and lieutenant governor is
the appointment of House and Senate committee members
The legislative rules and the heavy volume of bills considered _____ enables lawmakers to sneak major, controversial proposals into law by adding little noticed amendments to other bills
Legislators' decisions are influenced by
constituents, interest groups and the media