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Flashcards in The Constitutional Underpinnings Deck (106):
1

Thomas Hobbes

Author of Leviathan (1660)
Argued that if humans were left to their own devices, chaos and violence would ensue.
Also argued that the best way to protect life was to give total power to an absolute monarch

2

John Locke

Author of Second Treatise on Civil Government (1690)
Argued that liberty and property needed to be respected (Natural Rights) by the government.

3

Charles de Montesquieu

French philosopher, wrote The Spirit of the Laws (1748)
Advocated separation of powers into three branches of government

4

Jean Jacques Rousseau

Argued that the only good government was one that was freely formed by the consent of the people (formed by a social contract among the people)

5

Articles of Confederation

Predecessor to the Constitution (had many flaws):
-could not draft soldiers
-was completely dependent on states for revenue
-national government could not tax citizens
-could not pay off Revolutionary war debt
-could not control interstate commerce
-no Supreme Court to interpret the law
-no executive to enforce the law
-no national currency
-no control of taxes between states
-needed unanimity to amend
-needed approval from 9/13 of states to pass legislation

6

Northwest Ordinance

A method by which states could enter the Union

7

Federalism

States and National Government share governing responsibilities

8

Shay's Rebellion

Six-month rebellion in which 1,000 armed farmers attacked a federal arsenal in protest to farm foreclosure (Exposed the weakness of the Articles of Confederation)

9

Constitution

Set of guidelines and laws for the national government to follow

10

Constitutional Convention

Convention in which the United States' Constitution was drafted

11

Virginia Plan

Recipe for a strong government with representation in the legislature to be represented through apportionment of representatives for each state by population

12

New Jersey Plan

Recipe for a weak government with equal representation in the legislature (set amount of representatives for each state)

13

Great (Or Connecticut) Compromise

Merged the plans together and created a bicameral legislature with one based on apportionment by population (House of Representatives) and the other based on equal representation (Senate)

14

Bicameral Legislature

Two-House Legislature

15

Three-Fifths Compromise

Counted each slave as 3/5 of a person when seats in the House were being reapportioned to the states (Repealed by the 14th Amendment)

16

Federalists

Those who supported the Constitution (Because they wrote it)

17

Anti-Federalists

Opposed the Constitution (Mostly because it took powers from the states and gave it to the central government)

18

Federalist Papers

Essays and Articles collected that were written by Federalists (Alexander Hamilton, John Jay, James Madison) to support and spread the word of the Constitution (Again, they supported it because they wrote it)

19

Bill of Rights

Compromise that was made with the Anti-Federalists and are collectively the first 10 amendments to the Constitution (If the Federalists did not put this into the Constitution, the Anti-Federalist states would not have ratified it)

20

Necessary and Proper/Elastic Clause

Gives Congress the power to make any laws that are deemed necessary and proper to implement their delegated powers (Article I, Section 8)

21

Presidential Practice

Executive branch's implementation of the rights given to the President by the Constitution (Consists of implied powers)

22

Executive Order

Bypass Congress in policy making and have the same effect as law (Implied Power)

23

Executive Agreements

Act as treaties and bypass Congressional ratification (Implied Power)

24

Marbury v. Madison (1803)

Established Judicial Review

25

Judicial Review

Allows the Supreme Court to deem laws made by Congress unconstitutional and forces Congress to rewrite the law until it is deemed constitutional by the Supreme Court or get rid of the law entirely

26

Federalism

Describes a system of government under which the national government and local governments (State and Local) share powers

27

Confederalism

A system in which many decisions are made by an external member-state legislation (Think about the Confederate States of America (CSA): states had overwhelming power over the national government. which is why the CSA failed)

28

Delegated/Enumerated/Expressed Powers

Powers given to the branches of government by the Constitution (i.e.printing money, making treaties, declaring war, etc...)

29

Implied Powers

Powers that the branches of government believe they have and must relate that power to somewhere in the U.S. Constitution for it to be constitutional

30

Reserved Powers

Powers only given to the states and cannot be found within the Constitution and are derived from the Tenth Amendment (i.e. power to issue licenses, responsibility to pay for federal elections, regulation of intrastate commerce, etc...)

31

Concurrent Powers

Powers shared by the federal and state governments (i.e. the power to collect taxes, build roads, operate courts of law, borrow money, etc...)

32

Full Faith and Credit Clause

States are required to recognize court judgments, licenses, contracts, and civil acts of other states (Article IV, Section 1)

33

Privileges and Immunities Clause

States must grant U.S. Citizens that are not from their state the same rights as they would a citizen of their state (Article IV, Section 2)

34

Extradition

States must return fugitives back to the state where they are being charged (Article IV, Section 3)

35

Supremacy Clause

All federal legislation trumps or overrules state legislation (Article VI, Section 2)

36

Dual Federalism

Federalism in which the state and the national governments of the United States were separate and independent of one another (Also called Layered-Cake Federalism)

37

Powers Denied to the Federal Government (Article I, Section 9)

-Suspend the writ of habeas corpus (except in times of rebellion or invasion)
-Pass ex post facto laws, issue bills of attainder
-Impose export taxes
-Use money from the National Treasury without approval of an appropriations bill
-Grant titles of Nobility

38

Writ of Habeas Corpus

A list of reasons why a person is being held in jail (Judges must have this or the person is being imprisoned illegally)

39

Ex Post Facto Laws

A law that is passed after the something has occured

40

Bills of Attainder

Declare an individual guilty of a capital offense without a trial

41

Powers Denied to the State Governments (Article I, Section 10)

-Enter into treaties with foreign countries
-Declare war
-Maintain a standing army
-Print money
-Pass ex post facto laws, issue bills of attainder
-Grant titles of Nobility
-Impose Import or Export Duties/Taxes

42

States' Righters

Ideologists that believe that the states should have more political power than the government

43

Nationalists

Ideologists that believe that the national government is supreme in all matters and is, in the long-run, in control

44

Categorical Grants

Aid by the federal government with strict provisions on how the money may be spent (supported by Nationalists)

45

Block Grants

Aid by the federal government with minimal provisions on how the money may be spent (supported by States' Righters)

46

Separation of Powers

Prevents any one faction of government holding all power (Division into branches)

47

Legislative Branch

Creates laws for the government

48

Executive Branch

Enforces laws made by the government

49

Judicial Branch

Interprets the laws made by the government

50

Checks and Balances

Prevents any one branch of government from holding too much power

51

Amendments

Additions and changes to the Constitution

52

Amendment Process

1. Proposal by 2/3 of:
-Congress
-National Convention
2. Ratification by 3/4 of:
-State Legislatures
-State Conventions

53

First Amendment

Guarantees freedom of religion, speech, press, assembly, and petitioning of the government

54

Free Exercise Clause

States that the government may not interfere with a person's right to practice a religion (FIrst Amendment)

55

Establishment Clause

Prohibits Congress from establishing a national religion (First Amendment)

56

Schenck v. United States (1917)

Court Case ruling that denied protection to speech or writing that intends to incite violence or to intentionally slander or libel (First Amendment)

57

Near v. Minnesota (1973)

Court Case ruling that denies the federal government from censoring the press (First Amendment)

58

Second Amendment

Right to bear arms

59

Third Amendment

Forbids the Quartering of Soldiers and direct public support of armed forces

60

Griswold v. Connecticut (1965)

Court Case ruling that guarantees citizens the right to privacy (Third Amendment)

61

Fourth Amendment

Protects citizens from unjustified search and seizure

62

Mapp v. Ohio (1961)

Enforces the exclusionary rule (Fourth Amendment)

63

Exclusionary Rule

States that any evidence that is unlawfully gathered cannot be used in judicial proceedings

64

Fifth Amendment

Protects an individual from the federal government

65

Grand Jury

Guaranteed to those tried in criminal cases and consists of citizens (Fifth Amendment)

66

Double Jeopardy

Eliminates the possibility of a person being prosecuted for the same crime twice (Fifth Amendment); this means that a person cannot be tried for the same case twice (within the same court type), but they can be tried for the same thing in two different cases and also they can be tried in a Civil Court trial after a Criminal Court trial

67

Eminent Domain

Establishes that the Government can seize property for public use but it must be justly compensated (Fifth Amendment)

68

Self-Incrimination

Prevention of defendants having to testify against themselves, i.e. "I plea the fifth" (Fifth Amendment)

69

Due Process of Law

Denies the government the power to deprive an individual of their natural rights (i.e. life, liberty, or property) (Fifth Amendment)

70

Sixth Amendment

Right to an impartial jury and a speedy trial; individuals are also allowed to confront witnesses, subpoena or summon witnesses to their defense, and to have a lawyer (Sixth Amendment)

71

Seventh Amendment

Allows for trial by jury in common-law cases

72

Eighth Amendment

Prohibition of cruel and/or unusual punishment

73

Capital Punishment

Most controversial issue in modern-day politics, many people are split on whether or not the death penalty is considered a cruel and/or unusual punishment (Note that despite these debates it is currently a viable punishment)

74

Ninth Amendment

Rights not specifically mentioned within the U.S. Constitution are given to the people and the states

75

Tenth Amendment

Defines the relationship between the federal government and the state governments and powers not defined in the Constitution are given to the states (Reserved Powers)

76

Eleventh Amendment

Deals with court proceedings when states are a party

77

Chisholm v. Georgia (1793)

Court case ruling that provides that states may not be sued in federal court by citizens by other states/countries without consent of the state that is being sued (Eleventh Amendment)

78

Twelfth Amendment

Ensures that there are separate votes for the President and the Vice-President (Most President-elects and Vice-President-elects run on the same ticket anyways)

79

Thirteenth Amendment

Abolishes slavery

80

Fourteenth Amendment

Grants citizenship rights to all people (aimed at former slaves) and expands due process to all Americans

81

Selective Incorporation

Process of incorporating some of the Bill of Rights protections into state law (Fourteenth Amendment)

82

Fifteenth Amendment

Gives voting rights to all males (aimed at former male slaves)

83

Voting Rights Act of 1965

Enforced the Fourteenth and Fifteenth Amendment rights to citizenship and voting

84

Sixteenth Amendment

Gives Congress the power to lay an income tax

85

Seventeenth Amendment

Allows direct election of senators

86

Eighteenth Amendment

Prohibition of alcohol (yet people still drank because of smuggling from other places, including Canada)

87

Nineteenth Amendment

Grants voting rights to all American women

88

Twentieth Amendment

Shortens the lame-duck period

89

Lame-Duck Period

Period between the election of the new President and the inauguration of the new President (Old President cannot do anything)

90

Twenty-First Amendment

Repeal of the Eighteenth Amendment

91

Twenty-Second Amendment

Limits each President to only serving two terms

92

Twenty-Third Amendment

Residents of Washington D.C. (District of Columbia) to have electoral votes

93

Twenty-Fourth Amendment

Eliminates the poll tax that was used to prevent African-Americans from voting

94

Twenty-Fifth Amendment

Permits the Vice-President to serve as President when the President dies or becomes disabled

95

Twenty-Sixth Amendment

Sets the minimum voting age to 18

96

Twenty-Seventh Amendment

Prevents Congress from increasing their own personal pay during their term (All raises in pay will be in effect at the start of the next term)

97

John Marshall

Helped establish judicial review

98

Political Parties and Conventions

Have helped shape policy in recent years (Unwritten Constitution)

99

Party Platform

List of a party's objectives

100

Presidential Cabinet

Help advise the President on how to enforce laws (Unwritten Constitution)

101

Unwritten Constitution

Aspects of the government that are not written or specified by the Consitution

102

Governor

Has control of the state executive branch (Has similar powers to the President)

103

State Legislatures

Have control of making state laws

104

Override of Gubernatorial Veto

The state legislature's ability to override the governor's veto on laws (Reserved Power)

105

Line-Item Veto

Governor's ability to reject parts of bills (Reserved Power)

106

Trial Courts and Appeal Courts

Judiciary branch of state government