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Chapter 1 Test: PLS 101
PLS Chapter 1
Terms in this set (62)
What are some fundamental differences between the US(presidential system) and other Western democracies(parliamentary system)?
In the US system, there are multiple branches of government, the people pick the president, and it is harder to get laws and policies passed
What are the different definitions of democracy? How do they differ from each other?
Democratic Centralism: government is democratic if it serves the true interest of the people, without societies input aka used to be communist governments. Direct Democracy: All citizens participate in big events, Recalls and Referendums, not super practical. Representative Democracy(Republic): Dominates in the USA, People elect representatives to act on their behalf.
What are the arguments in favor of representative democracy over direct democracy? (What makes the rep democracy better than direct)
Direct Democracies make compromise harder and it is impossible to have every individual vote on every issue and public opinion can be easily swayed. Republic is more effective for our system.
Liberalism Ideology & its attachment to values of freedom, order, and equality.
Believe that government should play an active role in community, but not in personal life.
Explain the basic differences between the majoritarian versus pluralist models of democracy.
Majoritarian Model of Democracy: Values participation by the people as a whole and assumes that people are rational, involved, and informed. Pluralist Model of Democracy: People participate in groups that compete to influence the government.
According to the text, does it matter if Americans trust their government? Why? What might be some of the effects of long-term distrust?
It matters if Americans trust their government because Americans rely on government for a range of services and laws that can be taken for granted. Long term distrust results in refusal to pay taxes necessary fo these services.
According to the text, why is it important for citizens to be informed about government?
Democracy functions best when citizens are informed and have the knowledge to participate in political debate.
Conservative Ideology & its attachment to the values of freedom, order, and equality.
Believe the opposite of liberalism, the government should not regulate the economy.
Libertarianism Ideology & its attachment to the values of freedom, order, and equality.
Believe that government should not play a role in the economy or in private life. Basic Service Government.
Populist Ideology & its attachment to the values of freedom, order, and equality.
Believe that government should have intervention in the economy and our private life.
What is the purpose behind having a constitution?
It spells out the rights of government and people and limits and defines political authority
Describe our political system under the Articles of Confederation. What were the inherent problems with the Articles?
Our political system under the AOC was Designed as a friendship among states, loose alliance, established congress and president was held closely in check, and each state had one vote. Problems with the AOC were that government was made weak and didn't have enough power, fear of states government failing, and that the British was still strong and could invade anytime from Canada.
What factors generated the need to replace the system of government under the Articles of Confederation?
Government was weak, fear of states government failing, British invading
What were the essential differences between the Articles of Confederation and the constitution we adopted?
AOC followed a unicameral system where the Constitution followed a bicameral system. In the AOC a single vote was given to each state, in the constitution every legislative member has a vote.
Strong National Government, Government w 3 branches, Bicameral Legislature. Larger States had more power
New Jersey Plan
Unicameral Legislature, basically the AOC, Large states and small states are equal
Great Compromise(Connecticut Compromise)
Bicameral Legislature(House of reps and senate), electoral college
What are the basic principles embodied in the Constitution?
Federalism(division of power), checks and balances, separation of powers.
How can each branch check the power of the other two branches? Examples?
Branches can check on each other through checks and balances. Ex: Congress sends a bill to president, president doesn't like so he vetos. Ex: Congress can impeach the president.
Explain how Madison dealt with the concept of factions. Why were factions a problem? What was Madison's Constitutional solution?
Madison dealt with them by preventing the existence of the same passion at the same time or render a faction unable to act, basically control the effects of factions because they will happen.
Explain the Anti-Federalist versus Federalist argument regarding the size and scope of government. How does each one deal with the issue of preserving liberty? How did their respective solutions differ?
Federalist said that national government needed to be strong to control states that don't cooperate, Anti-Federalist said the national government should not be strong and a strong national government would threaten states power.
Delegated (expressed) Powers & Example
Powers explicity given to congress
Reserved Powers & Example
powers reserved/held for the STATES
Examples: set up schools
set up local governments
Implied Powers & Example
Necessary and Proper Clause, Congress makes laws necessary and proper to uphold the constitution
Where in the Constitution are the powers found?
Delegated: Article I, Implied: Article I, Reserved: 10th amendment
McColluch v Maryland and its signifcance
Court case where does congress have the right to establish a national bank and does Maryland have the right to tax this bank? Supreme Court decided that congress does have the right and Maryland does not have the right to tax because it would make the states more powerful than the national government.
Marbury v Madison and its significance
Supreme Court case that established the principle of judicial review
, The power of federal courts to declare legislative and executive acts unconstitutional.
In what ways does the constitution embody the philosophy of Locke and Montesquieu?
Montesquieu believed that a government should not be controlled by a certain group and influenced the 3 branches of government and separation of powers and influenced the federal system. Locke's ideas were the basis of the Declaration of Independence and believed in the natural rights of the people.
Necessary and Proper Clause and its importance
To make all laws that are necessary and proper for upholding the constitution. Allowed congress to make legislation and reinforce separation of powers.
According to the text, what are some of the specific powers of the president outlined in Article II of the Constitution?
Power to negotiated treaties, power to receive ambassadors from other countries, grant pardons, appoint major departmental personnel, veto.
Writ of Habeas Corpus
A court order that requires police to bring a prisoner to court to explain why they are holding the person
Bill of Attainder
a law that punishes a person accused of a crime without a trial or a fair hearing in court, right to fair jury
Ex Post Facto Law
a law that makes an act criminal although the act was legal when it was committed
What is the purpose of the Missouri Constitution?
To spell out the rights and privileges for people and government
# of Missouri Constitutions
4 Constitiutions: 1820, 1865, 1875, 1945
In what ways is the Missouri Constitution similar and different from the US Constitution?
The MO & US Constitution both spell out the rights and privileges of people and the government, and the MO Constitution is easier to amend because its as a state put on the ballot
How do we amend the Constitution?
Proposed by 2/3 of both houses and ratified by ¾ of the states
An argument can be made that our original Constitution was not particularly democratic in nature. Examples?
This argument has been made because slavery was embodied in our original constitution, female and black Americans could not vote, and senators were elected by the state, not the people.
What is a confederal system of government?
Powers of government are concentrated at the state level. A loose union of states.
What is a federal system of government?
Power is divided between central government and state government, combo of confederal and unitary systems. Both governments act directly with citizens, both must agree on constitutional changes.
What is a unitary system of government?
Central Power held at national level
Advantages of federal system
1. variations among states can be good
2.because states have more power, states and local government can take the reigns for things that may not have a national policy
3. Widespread opportunities for political participation
Disadvantages of federal system
1. States have a lot of power, states can block important national policies
2.Power at state level isn't being overlooked, some people don't get justice
3. because states have a lot of power, they can enact laws that seem fair
4.because states have variation, some states can lack expertise and money to accomplish important goals
Why was McCulloch v Maryland important in terms of federalism?
This case was important because the Supreme Court decided because of implied powers, congress had the right to establish a bank and Maryland does not have the right to tax the bank because it would make the states more powerful than the federal government. This case affirmed supremacy of the federal government over states and affirmed national centered federalism.
Why was Gibbons v Ogden important in terms of federalism?
This case was important because Supreme Court said New York did not have the right to pass a law that gave a monopoly to a company in New York because interstate commerce. This affirmed National government over state government.
How did the concept of "states rights" and the doctrine of nullification fit into the debate about federalism?
The Doctrine of Nullification states that states have the rights to declare a federal law null, if it goes against the constitution. The doctrine basically implies that states become the final say of the constitution which would make states more powerful than the Supreme Court. This would invalidate MvM and it was ruled that Supreme Court is final say. The Union Victory put the doctrine to sleep.
Idea that national and state government should not interfere with eachother
Nation Centered Federalism
a theory holding that the national government is dominant over the states
A system of government in which powers and policy assignments are shared between states and the national government. They may also share costs, administration, and even blame for programs that work poorly.
When did cooperative federalism begin and what were some of its unique features?
Cooperative Federalism began in 1901. Basically the marble cake, with the national and state governments sharing power. Power was not centralized at any level.
Privileges and Immunities Clause
Part of Article IV of the Constitution guaranteeing that the citizens of each state are afforded the same rights as citizens of all other states.
Full faith and credit clause
Constitution's requirement that each state accept the public acts, records, and judicial proceedings of every other state. Ex: Honoring a marriage in Missouri in Iowa
The supremacy clause
Article VI of the Constitution, which makes the Constitution, national laws, and treaties supreme over state laws when the national government is acting within its constitutional limits.
A doctrine under which certain federal laws preempt, or take precedence over, conflicting state or local laws.
Federal laws that require the states to do things without providing the money to do so. Examples: ADA (wheelchair ramps), NCLB (AIMs testing)
Shifting responsibilities from the federal government to the states
Deals with the division of government functions and financial relations among levels of government
Several categorical grants combined into one general grant. Allows for more flexibility with grant money.
Grants provided by the government for a specific purpose from the government.
General revenue sharing
federal aid to the states without any conditions on how the money is to be spent
Marble Cake Federalism
Conceives of federalism as a marble cake in which all levels of government are involved in a variety of issues and programs, hard to see the difference/divide of the two.
Layer Cake Federalism
a way of describing the system of dual federalism in which there is a division of responsibilities between the state and the national governments, distinct difference between the two
Recommended textbook explanations
Magruder's American Government
United States Government: Our Democracy
Donald A. Ritchie, Richard C. Remy
United States Government: Principles in Practice (Florida)
Luis Ricardo Fraga
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