Semester Exam 4-7 Flashcards Preview

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Flashcards in Semester Exam 4-7 Deck (48):

What are the purposes of government? Hint: look at the preamble.

Form a more perfect union, establish justice, ensure domestic tranquility, provide for the common defense, promote the general welfare, and secure the blessing of liberty.


The first three articles of the Constitution describe the three branches of government and their powers. What are the three branches of government? What does each do? Who is in each?

The legislative branch has Congress who makes laws. The executive branch has the president who enforces laws. The judicial branch has the Supreme Court who interprets the law.


Was is the supremacy clause? What does it say?

It says that the Constitution is the supreme law of the land and that states can do nothing that goes against the Constitution or federal law.


What are the five principles of government is based upon? Explain what each means.

Popular sovereignty, limited government and the rule of law, separation of powers, checks and balances, and federalism. Popular sovereignty – the idea that the Government lies with the people. Limited government – government can only do with the people allow it to do. Rule of law – that the law applies to everyone, even those who govern. Separation of powers – division of authority. Checks and balances – each branch of government is able to check the power of the other two branches in a number of ways. Federalism – powers are shared by the national government and the states.


The three branches of government. Which principal says that the government power should be separated? Who gave the framers this idea?

Separation of powers – Montesquieu


Can the Constitution be changed? Why? If so, is the process easy?

Yes the Constitution can be changed. It was designed to change as society changes. We change the Constitution through amendments. This process is not easy, because we want most of that country to agree before we make changes to our Constitution.


What are the two steps to the amendment process?

1st it has to be proposed by a 2/3 vote of both houses of Congress, then 3/4 - 38 states of vote of state legislators.


How much support does an amendment need to be ratified?

1st it has to be proposed by a 2/3 vote of both houses of Congress, then 3/4 - 38 states of vote of state legislators.


Who has the final authority for interpreting the Constitution?

Supreme Court (judicial branch)


The first 10 amendments are known as what?

The Bill of Rights


The First Amendment has five parts, name them. Give an example of each in action.

Freedom to religion, assembly, press, petition, and speech. You have the right to practice any religion, you have the right to meet together with anyone, anywhere, you have the right to print anything in the press, you have the right to petition anything to the government, and you have the right to say anything with few restrictions.


What are the rights of the accused? Describe each part – what protection does an accused person have?

4th amendment: must have probable cause and a search warrant. 5th Amendment: must be indicted by a grand jury (formally charged), no double jeopardy, no self-incrimination (pleading the 5th), due process (following set legal procedures), eminent domain – a property can't be seized (taken) by the government unless you are paid a fair price and the government needs the land for public use or need. 6th amendment: Rights of the accused: informed of charges, speedy, public trial by fair jury, hear, call, and question witnesses, right to a lawyer. 8th amendment: no excessive bail and no cruel and unusual punishment.


Amendment 9 says people have more rights. Can you explain this?

We have more rights than there are listed in the Constitution. An example is right to privacy.


Amendment 10 says any powers not given to the federal government and the Constitution go to _______? Give some examples.

The states; Examples are administer elections, establish local governments, protect public welfare and safety, marriage laws


Who was the president at the time of the Civil War and the 13th amendment? What is the 13th amendment?

Abraham Lincoln. Abolished slavery (1865) and grants Congress power to enforce abolition (abolishment of slavery)


What did the 14th amendment guarantee? What did it define?

Defines US citizenship; guarantees all citizens "equal protection of the laws" and nationalized the Bill of Rights.


Which amendments are about voting rights? Explain who benefited from each one.

15th amendment – african-Americans, 19th amendment – woman, 23rd amendment – Washington DC (District of Columbia), 26th amendment - lowered to 18 years old


Which amendments effective woman the most?

19th amendment - woman suffrage


Which amendments were only for the men?

15th amendment – African-American men suffrage


Which party is the more conservative party? Explain.

Republicans – leans toward economical issues. Wants less government.


Which party is the more liberal party? Explain.

Democrats – leans towards social issues. Wants more government.


Name some other political parties. What are these referred to as?

Green party, TEA party, libertarians, Communist Party, etc. – Known as 3rd parties.


Describe the process for electing the president. Name each step.

1) Declare you are running
2) Primary election or caucus
3) Raise money
4) campaign
5) Citizens vote (popular vote) in the general election
6) Electoral college adds up votes
7) 270 electoral votes wins
8) inauguration


What are primary and caucus and what are their roles in the election process?

Primary – parties vote on candidate.
Caucus – Delegates are chosen in a special meeting.


Describe what the popular vote is in a presidential election.

Votes cast by voters in a presidential election as opposed to electoral votes.


Describe what the electoral college is and how they help elect the President.

A group of people selected in each state to vote for the president and VP. The popular vote is translated into electoral college votes 538 electoral votes total 270 electoral votes wins.


What is the media and how does it influence and effect the government?

Our information sources, a mass communications = TV, radio, magazines, newspaper, etc. Politicians depend on the media to share their ideas, and the media depends on the politician for stories.


What is an interest group?

A group of people who share a point of view about an issue and unite to promote their beliefs.


What is an interest groups role in our government?

They try to influence public opinion to think the way that they do. Work to convince government to support their positions.


Name some examples of interest groups and what they support.

Sierra Club – protect nature, NAACP – protect interest of African-Americans, ASPCA – prevent animal abuse


Explain the role of lobbyists in an interest group.

They represent interest groups and contact government officials to directly influence the policy making.


Describe the propaganda and how it affects peoples opinions about candidates.

A way of persuading people to view a person or an issue in a certain way. It appeals to emotions.


Describe some examples of propaganda techniques.

Stacking deck, plain folk testimonial/endorsements, glittering generalities, negative attack ads, guilt by association, coat tailing.


Which statement supports the anti-Federalist in the struggle of the ratification of the US Constitution?

The Constitution should protect fundamental rights


Which characteristics serves as a long-term protection against tyranny and is a foundation of liberty in the United States?

The rule of law


How did they U.S. Constitution solve a problem created by the Articles of Confederation?

It enabled the federal government to collect taxes


In the Preamble to the US Constitution, what is the meaning of the phrase "We the People"?

Government receives its power from the people and exists to serve them.


To establish by law.



Which action completes the diagram?
British policies limit colonial rights - ______________ - British ignore colonial grievances - Declaration of Independence is approved.

Colonial demand for political change increases.


What is the last step in amending the US Constitution?

3/4 of the state legislators ratify the amendment.


What has been one long-term result of the constitutional protection of free speech?

A more informed society.


What lessons did future US leaders learn from the 1974 US Supreme Court case United States v. Nixon?

The president is accountable for obeying the law.


What do absolute monarchy and autocracy have in common?

A single ruler


In the modern political system, which issue represents a basic disagreement between Republicans and Democrats?

The responsibilities of government.


To bring the body before court.

Habeas corpus


Where you can't go back and arrest someone for what they did yesterday if the law was made today.

Expost facto


Economics and trade

The commerce clause


Something not listed in the Constitution where they put it in with something similar.

The elastic clause