Ch 6: Congress Flashcards Preview

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Flashcards in Ch 6: Congress Deck (40):
1

bicameral legislature

two house legislature

2

apportionment

the process of allotting congressional seats to each state according to proportion of the population, following the decennial census

3

bill

a proposed law

4

impeachment

power given to the House of Representatives; first step in removing a government official from office

5

incumbency

already holding office

6

redistricting

the process of redrawing congressional districts to reflect increases or decreases in seats allotted to the state, as well as population shifts within a state

7

gerrymandering

the drawing of congressional districts to produce a particular electoral outcome without regard to the shape of the district

8

majority party

the political party in each house of congress with the most members

9

minority party

the political party in each house of congress with the second most members

10

party caucus

a formal gathering of all party members

11

Speaker of the House

the leader of the House of Representatives; traditionally a member of the majority party

12

majority leader

the head of the party controlling the House of Representatives or the Senate; second in authority to the Speaker in the House, most powerful member in the Senate

13

minority leader

the head of the party with the second highest number of elected representatives in the House or the Senate

14

whip

party leader who keeps close contact with all members of his/her party, takes vote counts on key legislation, prepares summaries of bills, and acts as a communications link within a party

15

president pro tempore

the official chair of the Senate, usually the most senior member of the majority party

16

standing committee

committee to which proposed bills are referred; continues from one Congress to the next

17

joint committee

standing committee that includes members from both houses of Congress set up to conduct investigations or special studies

18

conference committee

special joint committee created to reconcile differences in bills passed by the House and Senate

19

select committee

temporary committee appointed for a specific purpose

20

discharge petition

petition that gives a majority of the House of Representatives the authority to bring an issue to the floor in the face of committee inaction

21

seniority

time of continuous service on a committee

22

markup

a session in which committee members offer changes to a bill before it goes to the floor

23

hold

a procedure by which a senator asks to be informed before a particular bill or nomination is brought to the floor. this request signals leadership that a member may have objections to the bill and should be consulted before further action is taken

24

filibuster

a formal way of halting Senate action on a bill by means of long speeches or unlimited debate

25

cloture

mechanism requiring the vote of 60 senators to cut off debate

26

veto

the way the president can reject bills passed by both houses of congress

27

pocket veto

if congress adjourns during the ten days the president has to consider a bill passed by both houses of Congress, the bill is considered vetoed without the presidents signature

28

Congressional Budget Act of 1974

Act that established the congressional budgetary process by laying out a plan for congressional action on the annual budget resolution, appropriations, reconciliation, and any other revenue bills

29

reconciliation

a procedure that allows consideration of controversial issues affecting the budget by limiting debate to twenty hours, thereby ending threat of a filibuster

30

pork

legislation that allows representatives to bring money and jobs to their districts in form of public works programs, military bases, or other programs

31

programmatic response

federal funds designated for special projects within a state or congressional district

32

War Powers Resolution

passed in 1973; the president is limited in the deployment of troops overseas to a 60-day period in peacetime (which can be extended 30 days to permit withdrawal) unless Congress explicitly gives its approval for a longer period

33

congressional review

a process whereby congress can nullify agency regulations by a joint resolution of legislative disapproval

34

senatorial courtesy

a process by which presidents generally allow senators from the state in which a judicial vacancy occurs to block a nomination by simply registering their objection

35

trustee

role played by an elected representative who listens to constituents' opinions and then uses his or her best judgement to make a final decision

36

delegate

role played by an elective representative who votes the way his or her constituents would want, regardless of personal opinions

37

politico

an elected representative who acts as a trustee or a delegate, depending in the issue

38

divided government

the political condition in which different political parties control the presidency and Congress

39

unified government

the political condition in which the same political party controls the presidency and Congress

40

logrolling

vote trading; voting to support a colleagues bill in return for a promise of future support