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Congress and the Presidency
Terms in this set (46)
the redistribution of Congressional seats after the census determines changes in population distribution among the states
Redistricting (Congressional Districting)
the drawing by state legislatures of congressional districts for those states with more than one representative
drawing congressional districts to favor one political party or group over another
Voters are more likely to recognize the officeholder than the challenger
allows members of congress to send mailings to constituents postage free
the officeholder may have brought government projects and money into the state or district
casework for constituents
officeholders may have helped constituents solve problems involving government and the bureaucracy
more visible to constituents
members can use the "perks" of the office to communicate with constituents. Franking, the privilege of sending official mail using the incumbent's signature as postage, provides communication with constituents.
incumbents are more likely to gain free publicity during a campaign through the media
it is generally greater for incumbants
experience in campainging
incumbents have already experienced the campaign process
voters can evaluate their performance based on their record
tendency of those already holding office to win reelection. stronger for house of representative than the senate
permanent committee that deals with specific policy matters (agriculture, energy and natural resources, veterans' affairs).
temporary committee appointed for a specific purpose. most are formed to investigate a particular issue, such as the senate Watergate committee.
made up of members of both houses of congress. it may be a select committee (iran-contra committee) or perform routine duties (joint committee on the library of congress).
temporary committee of members form both houses of congress, created to resolve the differences in house and senate versions of a bill. it is a compromising committee.
informal groups formed by members of congress who share a common purposes or set of goals
make public policy through the passage of legislation
delegate- members vote based on the wishes of constituents, regardless of their own opinions
trustee- after listening to constituents, members vote based on their own opinions
help constituent with problems
serve on committees
work to support their political party platform and get reelected
power to make laws
powers specifically granted to congress, mostly found in article I, Section 8 of the Constitution
powers that may be reasonable suggested to carry out the expressed powers; found in Article I, Section 8, Clause 18, "necessary and power" or elastic clause; allows for the expansion of Congress' powers
limitations on powers
powers denied congress by Article I, Section 9 and the Tenth Amendment
selection of the president by the House of rep and/or vice president by the senate upon the failure of the electoral college to achieve a majority vote
congress may propose amendments by a two-thirds vote of each house or by calling a national convention to propose amendments if requested by two-thirds of the statelegislatures
the house may bring charges, or impeach, the president, vice president or any civil officer; case is tried in the senate with the senate acting as the jury (Andrew Johnson and Bill Clinton were both impeached by the House but not convicted by the Senate)
executive powers of Senate
the Senate shares the appointment and treaty-making powers with the executive branch; the Senate must approve appointments by majority vote and treaties by two-thirds vote
investigative/ oversight powers
investigate matters falling within the range of its legislative authority; often involves the review of policies and programs of the executive branch
may form voting blocs
the committee system
plays a major role in the passage of legislation; bills may die if committees fail to act upon them or reject them
filibuster and clothure
filibuster is unlimited debate in an attempt to stall action on a bill. it occurs in the senate only, and is possible because the senate's rules for debate are almost unrestricted. Cloture is the method by which the Senate limits a filibuster. It involves a petition to end debate and requires the vote of at least 60 senators.
pork barrel legislation
an attempt to provide finds and projects for a member's home district or state
an attempt by members to gain the support of other members in return for their support on the member's legislation; "ill support your bill, if you will support mine."
additions to legislation which generally have no connection to the legislation; generally legislation that would not pass on it own merit; when a bill has lots of riders it becomes a "Christmas tree bill".
additions or changes to legislation that deal specifically with the legislations
trying to influence members of congress to support or reject legislation
the rejection of a presidential or executive branch action by a vote of one or both houses of Congress, used mostly between 1932 and 1980 but declared unconstitutional by the Supreme Court in 1983 (Immigration and Naturalization Service v. Chadha) stating that Congress cannot take any actions having the force of law unless the president agrees.
members, especially those who hope to win reelection, often take into consideration the opinions of their constituents and voters back home in their district or state
other lawmakers and staff
more senior members often influence newer members; committee members who worked on legislation often influence other members; and staff often research issues and advise members
each party's platform takes a stand on major issues, and loyal members often adhere to the "party line". Members in the House are more likely to support the party position than are Senators.
Presidents often lobby members to support legislation through phone calls, invitations to the White House, or even appeals to the public to gain support from voters to bring pressure on members
lobbyists and interest groups
often provide members with information on topics relating to their group's interest or possible financial support in future campaigns.
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