Flashcards in chapter 11: interest groups Deck (89):
Why is consensus harder to reach than ever?
Moderates are being replaced by more ideological politicians
Bill which was passed in 2003 despite intense conflict
Prescription Drug Bill of 2003
Cap on the number of House members
2 requirements to be a member of the House of Representatives
At least 25 years old, citizen for 7 years
Requirements to be a senator
At least 30 years old, citizen for 9 years
Why do senators have higher requirements and longer terms?
To check the more unpredictable house
Why didn't the constitution have term limits?
The term limits in the Articles of Confederation had forced good statesmen out
What is the best stand for a congress hopeful to take in their campaign?
Fighting against the institution of Congress
How many House members is each state guaranteed?
How many people are represented in each House district?
The assigning of congressional seats after each census
Who approves reapportionment in most states?
Which states approve reapportionment by commissions?
Arizona and Iowa
The redrawing of congressional district lines following the census to accommodate population shifts
The assigning of congressional seats after each census
The drawing of legislative district boundaries to benefit a party, group, or incumbent
For whom was gerrymandering named?
1811 Massachusetts governor, Eldbridge Gerry
Designed to concentrate a minority party's votes in the smallest number of districts possible
Who gerrymanders today?
Sophisticated computer programs
Designed to disperse a party's votes into as many districts as possible, weakening their influence
Time period when everyone seves
When do new terms begin?
January 3rd of odd numbered years
The end of a term
At large elections
Most important organizational feature of the US Congress.
An elected office that is predictably won by one party or the other, so the success of that party's candidate is almost taken for granted.
The current holders of an elected office
In the 2004 Congressional election, what was the spending difference between winners and losers?
State with the most expensive Congressional campaigns
Why were bicameral legislatures common in colonial government?
Framers believed the arrangement was essential for preventing strong willed majorities from controlling and oppressing minorities
The powers explicitly given to Congress
Congress can create all laws deemed necessary and proper for national welfare
What are the grounds of impeachment?
High Crimes and Misdemeanors
What role does the Senate play in making treaties?
Advise and consent
What portion of Senate's vote is required to ratify a treaty?
Revenue bills must originate from which branch of Congress?
3 factors which have made president more important than Congress in the eyes of the people
1) National security responsibilities
2) Media visibility
3) Preparation of the budget
How many votes are required to end a debate in the senate?
How can the House generate immediate action?
What is it called when the House has a unanimous vote?
Committee of the Whole
the smallest number of people who must be present at a meeting in order for decisions to be made.
The presiding officer in the House
How is the Speaker of the House chosen?
Formally elected in the House, but actually selected by the majority party
The legislative leader selected by the majority party who helps plan party strategy and keep members in line
The legislative leader selected by the minority party as a spokesperson for the opposition
Party leader who is the liaison between the leadership and the rank-and-file in the legislature
A meeting of the members of party in a legislative chamber to select party leaders and to develop party policy
What do Republicans call party caucuses?
A procedural rule in the House that prohibits any amendments to bills
A procedural rule in the House that permits floor amendments within the overall time allocated to the bill
How many votes per year do congress members usually cast?
What factor is most likely to influence a congressman's voting pattern?
Policy and philosophical convictions
Consistently rated most liberal senator
Rated most conservative senator
Where do most liberals in congress originate?
Where do most conservative congress members originate?
What percentage of constituents have not contacted their congressmembers?
Why do congressmembers typically follow demands of their constituents?
Concern over reelection
When congressmembers look to colleagues for advice on how to vote, who are they likely to seek?
Friends who worked on the bill
Why has congress expanded staff?
Increasingly demanding schedules of congressmen, as well as complex issues
What branch of congress has the highest number of staff? Why?
Senate; because they have less senators to split the budget between
What kind of work is done in district offices?
Generating favorable publicity, arranging appearances, scheduling, and contacting important leaders in the region
What do congressional staff members typically do?
Draft bills, do research, negotiate, build coalitions
Why are congressional staff so influential?
They have direct access to members of congress
7 Factors which influence the way a congressmember votes on issues
1) policy and philosophical convictions
4) congressional staff
6) interest groups
7) the president
What percentage of House Republicans voted to impeach Clinton?
When did partisan voting become popular in congress?
Which branch of congress has a stronger alignment to parties?
How do interest groups influence congressional votes?
They provide information for making laws as well as help finance campaigns for those who will let them make more laws
When are interest groups especially effective?
When they mobilize grassroots movements
When do presidents have the most influence over congressional votes?
In times of foreign conflict, when the public rallies around them.
How many bills were introduced in 2003?
How many bills passed in 2003?
4 steps of a bill becoming law
Introduction, committee review, floor debate, presidential approval
Box where bills are placed
Who can introduce a bill?
Only a member of the house or senate
Who evaluates a bill after it has been introduced?
The committee specializing in that area
How many committees was President Bush's homeland security bill evaluated by?
Largest government reorganization since 1937
The creation of the Department of Homeland security
What is the legislative record?
A record of everything that is discussed in a committee
What is the purpose of the legislative record?
Helps the president and federal courts interpret what Congress intended
Cleaning up the wording or amending a bill
Petition that, if signed the a majority of the members of the house, will pry a bill from committee and bring it to the floor
Does the senate have discharge petitions?
When is the busiest time of the year for bill passage?
The end of the congressional session; late September-October
How long does a bill have to pass before it is killed?
If a bill is passed in both houses, what must happen?
Reconciliation, when the two versions of the bill are put together