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Midterm Review

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  1. Midterm Review AP Government

  2. Principles of Government

  3. How Governments Are Different? • Who Governs? • Autocracy – one • Oligarchy – small group of landowners, military officers, or wealthy merchants • Democracy – Majority of population have influence over decision-making • How much government control is permitted? • Constitutional – (Liberal) Restricted by substantive limits • Authoritarian – No formal limits but government is restrained by the power of other social institutions. • Totalitarian – No formal limits to power and government seeks to absorb or eliminate other social institutions that challenge it.

  4. Limits on Government Actions • Substantive Limits • When governments are severely limited in terms of what they are permitted to control • Procedural Limits • Limited in how they go about exercising the control of society

  5. Politics • Retail Politics – Dealing directly with constituents and their problems individually • Wholesale Politics – Dealing with a collection of constituents. Large groups.

  6. Gatekeeping • Agenda Power – What is considered in the first place • Gatekeeping – those who engage in agenda power • Block proposals • Veto Power – Ability to defeat something even if it does become part of agenda.

  7. History

  8. Articles of Confederation • November, 1777 • Congress adopts first written constitution in the United States • Articles of Confederation and Perpetual Union. • Not ratified until 1781. • Designed primarily to limit the powers of the central government. • Relationship between states and central government like today’s between the U.N. and member states.

  9. Shays Rebellion • Constitutional Convention of 1787 in Philadelphia would never have taken place at all. • Former Army captain attempted to stop foreclosures on debt-ridden land in Massachusetts.

  10. Constitution • Historian, Charles Beard, felt the framers of the Constitution were motivated primarily by personal enrichment or economics. • Actually, combination of founders principles and economic interests. • The person who had the greatest influence on the framing of the American Constitution and is considered the “father” is James Madison.

  11. Great Compromise • The proposal to give each state an equal number of senators • linking representation in the House of Representatives to population is known as the Great Compromise or Connecticut Compromise. • Combination of the Virginia Plan and the New Jersey Plan.

  12. Under the Articles of Confederation Central government • Lacked an executive branch • Unicameral Legislature • Lacked coercive power over the states (even in the areas of taxation and conscription). • Coercion – principle power used by government to get people to follow laws. • Need strong National Government

  13. The Constitution • Institutional procedures help shape political outcomes. • No set of institutional procedures is more important than the Constitution. • Representation is one of the foundations of American democracy.

  14. The Constitution as a Solution The Institution Principle:Institutions routinely solve collective action problems. The Constitution, like institutions generally, was designed to overcome the problems with the Articles of Confederation and in the “critical period” generally.

  15. By establishing a system of representative government, the Constitution aimed to peel back “excessive” democracy. Rather than seek to solve the problem of a lack of a virtuous citizenry, the Constitution sought to pit self-interest against self-interest.

  16. The Supreme Court established “dual citizenship” by ruling that the Fifth Amendment and the Bill of Rights only protected citizens from the national government.

  17. Constitution

  18. Constitution • Two most important elements of Constitution • Federalism • Separation of Powers • Federalism • Limit government by dividing it into two levels, national and state. • Separation of Powers • Seek to limit power of national government by dividing government against itself – legislative, executive, judicial branches have separate functions forcing them to share power.

  19. Constitutional Qualifications • President • Minimum 35 years old • Resident of U.S. for 14 years • Natural born citizen • Senator • Minimum 30 years old • U.S. citizen for 9 years, resident of state they represent • Representative • Minimum 25 years old • U.S. citizen for 7 years, resident of district they represent

  20. The Seven Articles of the Constitution Article I sets forth the powers and structure of the legislative branch: • bicameralism (House and Senate) • Divided power • expressed powers of government • potential expansion of congressional and national government power, provided for in the “necessary and proper” clause.

  21. Constitution • The framers provided for legislative supremacy by making Congress the preeminent branch. • Shown by the powers given to the Legislative branch in Article I of Constitution • Sole power of appropriations • Power to initiate all revenue bills • Divided against itself, House vs. Senate

  22. Powers of National Government • In the Constitution, Article I, Section 8 – 18 Expressed powers to the national government. • All other powers reserved for states • “Necessary and Proper Clause” • Also referred to as implied powers • Expansive interpretation of delegated powers • Supremacy Clause • All national laws and treaties the “Supreme Law of the Land”.

  23. The Costs of Divided Government Power Divided government • One party controls the White House and the other party controls at least one chamber of Congress • Exacerbates the tensions between the branches • Under these circumstances, when collective action is necessary and desirable, the government must overcome these barriers.

  24. In Article II, the framers sought to provide an independent and “energetic” executive branch: • The president was to be independent of the legislative branch. • The president was to be the country’s “commander in chief” and its chief diplomat. • The president was to have other powers, including appointment of executive and judicial officials and the veto of congressional acts.

  25. Article III deals with the selection and powers of the federal judiciary: • Justices and judges were to be appointed by the president and confirmed by the Senate. • They would serve lifetime terms. • The federal judicial would be supreme over state courts.

  26. Key elements of Article IV promote national unity and power: • reciprocity among states, which must give “full faith and credit” to acts of other states • Guarantees that citizens of any state receive the “privileges and immunities” of every other state

  27. Article V sets forth the procedures for amending the Constitution. Proposing Amendments Constitutional amendments can be proposed either (a) by passage in the House and Senate by a two-thirds vote; or (b) by passage in a national convention called by Congress in response to petitions by two-thirds of the states.

  28. Article VI’s “supremacy clause” states that laws of the national government and treaties are the supreme law of the land.

  29. Bill of Rights • The purpose of the Bill of Rights structured to give each of the 3 branches clearer and more restricted boundaries. • The First amendment clarifies the jurisdiction of the Congress. • The Second, Third, and Fourth Amendments similarly spell out limits on the executive branch.

  30. Bill of Rights • The Fifth, Sixth, Seventh, and Eight Amendments similarly spell out limits on the judicial branch. • The Ninth and Tenth Amendments list limits on National Government.

  31. Powers of State Government • Antifederalists • Feared strong central government • Wanted amendment to limit national power. • Tenth Amendment became known as reserved powers amendment. • States - Power of coercion • Develop and enforce criminal codes • Administer health and safety rules. • Regulate the family via marriage and divorce laws. • License individuals • Power to define private property. • Regulations of fundamental matters known as police powers • Concurrent Powers • Chartering banks, licensing businesses, labor conditions, products.

  32. Article IV, Section 1 • Full Faith and Credit • Each state expected to honor the “public Acts, Records, and Proceedings” that take place in other states. • Drivers license, marriage license • Controversy • Same sex “civil unions” and marriages • Defense of Marriage Act in 1996 • Federal government will not recognize gay marriage

  33. Comity Clause • Article IV, Section 2 – Promote national unity • Privileges and immunities of one state should be entitled to similar treatment in other states. • States cannot discriminate against someone from another state • No special privileges to its own residents • Criminal Justice • States are required to return fugitives to the states they have fled.

  34. Compacts • Two or more states reach legally binding agreements about how to solve a problem that crosses state lines. • Example – Port Authority of New York and New Jersey

  35. McCulloch v. Maryland • First case favoring national power • Question - Congress had the power to charter a bank • Bank of the United States • “Necessary and proper” used to expand power • 2nd Question - Maryland had the right to tax the bank • “the power to tax is the power to destroy”

  36. Gibbons v Ogden • State of New York could grant a monopoly to Robert Fulton’s steamboat company to operate an exclusive service between New York and New Jersey. • Ogden got his license from Fulton but Gibbons got his from the U.S. government. • Marshall used the commerce clause to establish interstate commerce as a source of power for the federal government.

  37. Commerce Clause • When the national government tried to regulate commerce using this clause, it was declared unconstitutional. • Areas of fraud, production of poor goods, child labor, working conditions and long hours were under the control of local or state powers. • After 1937, that all changed. Beginning of “regulatory and welfare” states.

  38. Grants-In-Aid • Congress gives money to states and localities with the condition the money will spent on particular purpose. • Categorical Grants-In-Aid • Specific categories such as education or crime prevention. Set national standards – ex. Speed limit 55 • Block Grants • Funds with relatively few restrictions for states. • Project Grants • Submit proposals to federal agencies. • Formula Grants • Use a formula (Need, Capacity to Pay) to determine the amount of federal funds states receive. • Unfunded Mandates

  39. 11th Amendment • State Sovereign Immunity • Holds that states are immune from lawsuits by private individuals or groups claiming that the state violated a statute enacted by Congress. • Supreme court often acts as referee in these issues.

  40. Supreme Court • Chief Justice Marshall – Nationalizing Court • Chief Justice Roger Taney – Extreme Denationalizing period -Slavery • FDR – Court started as anti-national but after 1936 election, began longest pro-nationalizing period. • Burger and Rehnquist courts turning tendency back toward the states.

  41. Separation of Powers • Self enforcing by giving each branch of government the means to participate in and partially or temporarily obstruct the workings of each other. • This ability to influence the activities of other branches is the basis of Checks and Balances.

  42. Role of Supreme Court • Depends on judicial review for power. • No Supreme Court reviews between Marbury v Madison (1803) and Dred Scott v Sandford (1857) • Between Civil War and 1970 – 84 acts of Congress were declared unconstitutional. • Elevation of William Rehnquist in 1986 saw the beginning of activism against acts of Congress

  43. 3 Principles • Three principles that make up the primary framework of Constitution are • federalism – Between central and regional govts. • separation of power • individual rights - liberty

  44. Elections

  45. Structural features of the American electoral system that undermine the impact of individual votes. • America’s single-member plurality (SMP) electoral system – • Dilute the impact of individual votes in specific geographic areas, particularly when compared to proportional representation (PR) electoral systems. • The electoral college system of selecting the president also decreases the potential impact of individual votes on electoral outcomes • Winner Take All system

  46. Electoral System - Criteria for Winning • Majority System – A candidate must receive more than 50 % of all votes cast. • Plurality System – Individual gets more votes than any other candidate • Proportional Representation System – Multiple-member district system that allows each political party to participate in governance according to its percentage of the vote. • Presidential primary elections • Advantage for smaller political parties

  47. Australian Ballot • An electoral format prepared and administered by the state rather than political parties, • Presents the names of all candidates for any given office on the same ballot in order to ensure the secrecy of voting, is called the Australian ballot. • Allows Ticket Splitting • Vote for different candidates from different parties. Leads to Divided Government.

  48. Electoral Composition • Oldest way to manipulate elections • Polls Taxes • Literacy Tests • Placing polls and scheduling hours to depress voter participation • Registration – significant decline in voter turnout with adoption of laws requiring eligible citizens to do this.