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36 Cards in this Set

  • Front
  • Back
What is a faction
: “A group of persons forming a cohesive, usually contentious minority within a larger group.” – Usually they want to take over the government
James Madison thought that factions could not contain power within Republics. “Among the numerous advantages promised by a well-constructed union, none deserves to be more accurately developed than its tendency to break and control the violence of faction.”
“Extend the sphere and you take in a greater variety of parties and interests; you make it less probably that a majority of the whole will have a common motive to invade the rights of the other citizens.” – he believed that in a republic, especially one big like the U.S. factions would not be a problem.
Who was James Madison?
- Founder of the Constitution
- Believed in a republic, not a democracy
- Wrote the Federalist Papers
What is the Supremacy Clause?
- Any law in the U.S. must be followed by all judges and courts
What are the Separation of Powers?
- There are three branches – Judicial (Supreme Court), Legislative (Congress) and Executive (President)
- Checks and Balances – if the House of Rep represented one majority, and the senate another, then the two would cancel each other out. Therefore, within a republic, the system of checks and balances prevents one group from taking over another
Who was Alexander Hamilton?
- Another writer of the Federalist documents
- Secretary of the treasury
- Campained in NY for the ratification of the Constitution
- He worked on getting the country out of debt
Who was John Jay?
- President of the Continental Congress in 1778
- Minister to Spain in 1779 - to negotiate with Spain about them recognized the colonies as independent , for financial aid, and commercial treaties.
- In 1782 – with John Adams and Benjamin Franklin, he signed a treaty of peace with England.
- Then he was the Secretary of Foreign Affairs
- Writer of the Federalist as well
- After the ratification of the Constitution, G.W. appointed him as the Chief Justice to the Supreme Court
- Later elected governor of NY
- Fought for the abolition of slavery
What is the Judicial Branch?
- One Supreme Court, of which the members are chosen for life by the president
- All trials in cases with other public counsels of ministers or ambassadors, go directly to the Supreme Court
- The Jury does not have the right to try impeachment
- All other crimes will take place in a court in the state where the crime has been committed
What is the Executive Branch?
- The president of the United States (see the powers of a president does below)
What is the Legislative Branch?
- House of Representatives and Senate
What is a Veto?
- The president has the right to veto any bill proposed within 10 days of the given proposal
What is a Majority?
- When a large group is in favor or against something
- James Madison was afraid of majorities because they often lead to tyranny
What is a Minority?
- A small group, which usually – in the case of democracy – does not get heard. (Shay’s rebellion = undemocratic)
What is a Republic?
- A political government form usually with a president.
- The people vote for representatives who are then responsible for the creation of the laws and regulations of the people.
What does Amendment 1 say?
Freedom of speech, religion and press
What does Amendment 2 say?
Right to bear arms
What does Amendment 5 say?
No person is required to testify against themselves in a court of law
What does Amendment 10 say?
Any power that has not been given to the federal government may be regualted by the state or the people.
What are the powers of the president?
- Elected by the Electoral College (today there are 538 members of the Electoral College)
- May be removed from office on terms of: death, resignation, inability to stay as president, impeachment, or high crimes and treason
- May appoint ambassadors, public ministers, councils, supreme court judges, and cabinet members
- May veto a bill, but only within 10 days after given the proposal (not including Sunday)
- May create treaties (but at least 2/3 of the Senate must approve any and all treaties signed by the president)
- Commander and Chief of the Army and Navy
What are the powers of the Congress?
- May impose taxes
- “Provide for the common defence and general welfare of the U.S.”
- May borrow money for the better of the U.S.
- Regulate trade
- Regulate currency – production and worth
- Sole power to declare war – make armies and navies
- In charge of U.S. property and rules and regulations
- ¾ of the congress must agree on any ratification
- Power to build post roads and post offices
What powers of the Congress are prohibited by the Constitution?
- No religious test will ever be required for qualification to any Office
- No person may be jailed without any charges against them – there must be evidence, and the person has the right to know why they are being tried / imprisoned
- No money may be taken from the Treasury unless by law or for the good of the public
- No “title of nobility” shall accept any present without the consent of the Congress
How does a bill become a law?
The House makes a proposed bill
- The Senate may pass it or deny it – Majority of the Senate must agree in
- The President has the final say (only if the senate approves it by the majority)
How can an amendment be passed to the Constitution?
- Congress - whenever 2/3 of both houses agree on an amendment to the Constitution
- ¾ of the states must agree – then it is amended throughout the states
What are the prerequisites fo the president? (and vice president)
- Natural born citizen
- 14 yrs of residency (at least)
- 35 yrs or older
- Must take an oath to protect the Constitution
What are prerequisites are a member of the House?
- 25 yrs or older
- 7 yr citizenship
- Must live in the state you represent
What are prerequisites for a member of the Senate?
- 30 yrs or older
- 9 yr citizen
- Must live in the state you represent
What is the term of the president?
four years
House: elected every 2 yrs
Senate: 6 yr term
What are prerequisites for Supreme Court Justices?
What are their terms?
Term for life
What year was the Constitution ratified?
- Completed on Sept 17, 1787. Then it was brought throughout the state legislatures, and then took effect in 1789.
What is the 3/5 clause?
Every slave counted as 3/5 a person for the taxation and number of representatives for the state
What did the Constitution say about the Slave Trade?
- The slave trade will cease in the year 1808
How is a president elected?
- Each state has a # of electors. The # is total of the # of senators and representatives.
- These electors – part of the electoral college – vote
Who elects the senate?
-Originally, the Senate was chosen by the Legislatures of the States
-Now the Senate is elected by the people
Who elects the house?
The people
What are the powers of the senate?
Vice president of the U.S. = the president of the Senate. The president does not have a vote, unless there is a tie – in which case the president may vote
- Congress must assemble at least once a yr
- Tries all impeachments (no person convicted unless 2/3 of the Senate votes for their impeachment)
- No president may be a member of either house during their term
- Each senator has one vote
- Each state has 2 senators
- Looks at the proposals for bills from the House, may pass them or not – then the President has the final stay – he may only veto it if 2/3 of the House do not vote for it)
- 2/3 majority must approve any treaties signed by the president
What does the House do?
- Makes bills
- 1 representatives for every 30,000 people (originally)
- Taxes and # of representatives according to population
- Every state must have at least one representative (originally)
- The House may choose their speaker and other officers
- Has the sole power of impeachment
What are the Necessary and Proper Clauses?
- Laws must be sensible and the United States must make sure that the Constitution is carried out