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70 Cards in this Set

  • Front
  • Back
Describe the major changes in U.S. political culture since 1950:
Less trust of government and institutions
What is the most common criterion that people use when voting for a presidential candidate?
Party identification
What are the primary laws that helped protect the legal rights of women?
Civil rights, etc…ERA didn’t pass!
What type of committee assignment would a first-term member of the House from North Dakota want?
Agriculture
What has been the most important variable in determining the electoral success for a House member?
Incumbency
Why is the Rules Committee in the House so powerful?
Determines open/close rules which regulates debate
Describe the relationship between socioeconomic status and participation in politics:
Directly related—income up, participation up
What was the significance of the SC case U.S. v. Nixon?
Executive privilege is limited
How does “pork barrel” legislation help the reelection chances of a member of Congress?
Builds constituent service
Describe the pluralist theory of American politics:
Many groups compete
What types of groups would be the LEAST likely to maintain a national lobbying organization in D.C.?
Dealing w/ poor
Identify the factors that have affected the presidential election process since 1960:
More independence=primaries more important
In the original Constitution what office was the only one elected directly by citizens?
House
Describe the relationship between the SC and public opinion:
Sensitive to and energized by public opinion
What SC cases involved the principle of “one person, one vote”?
Baker v. Carr
What does debate of a bill in the House under a “closed rule” mean?
No amendments can be added
Describe the effects of reforms of the presidential nomination process over the past 20 years:
More democratic (more females, minorities, etc.)
Describe the reasons incumbents in the House enjoy an electoral advantage over challengers:
More money, better known, bigger staffs, constituents
Describe the function of the Office of Management and Budget:
Preparing budget
Who draws the boundary lines of congressional districts?
State legislators
What is the most common form of political activity undertaken by U.S. citizens?
Voting (Presidential elections)
Describe the feelings that most citizens have regarding the rights of free speech and assembly?
Contradicting—good in abstract, bad in concrete
The 14th Amendment to the constitution has been interpreted by the SC to:
Incorporate bill of rights
The legislative process at the national level reflects the intent of the framers to create a legislature that:
Is cautious, deliberate, slow—gridlock etc.
Describe the major consequences of the federal system in the U.S.:
Federalism—division of power
Describe the effects of divided party control of the presidency and Congress:
Divided government now the norm—gridlock, etc.
Describe the primary purpose of the Freedom of Information Act:
Gives citizens access to gov’t info
Describe the major effects of the electoral college system:
Forces candidates to campaign only in competitive states
The congressional system of standing (permanent) committees has resulted in what major trend among members?
Expertise
Describe the major differences between elections for the House of Representatives and the Senate:
The size of constituent blocks
In contrast to revenue sharing, categorical grants-in-aid provide state and local governments with:
Clearly specified programs on which to spend their money
What branch is empowered to create new federal courts and specify the number of sitting judges?
Congress
For what purpose was the War Powers Resolution (1973) created?
To make congress stronger than the pres
What is the primary reason for the current existence of only 2 major political parties?
Winner-take-all electoral system
Describe a scenario in which an interest group would likely have the greatest influence on policy matters:
Very technical/narrow issue
Describe the factors that have most influence on the outcome of a congressional election:
Incumbency
Describe recent trends about the voter turnout rate in the U.S.:
Less voting
Describe how some political scientists refute the argument that a realignment took place in the 1980’s:
Congress still democratic
Describe the major differences between voters in a general election vs. primaries:
General-moderate voters, primaries-extreme
Describe the SC rationale in upholding federal statutes that outlawed segregation in public facilities:
Interstate commerce clause
For what purpose was the clear-and-present-danger test devised by the SC?
To limit free speech
As originally ratified, the U.S. Constitution included provisions primarily designed to:
Increase powers of central government (taxation, etc.)
Describe the main difference between elite theories and pluralist theories of politics in the U.S:
Elite-few single groups dominate, Pluralist-many groups compete
A committee chair in the House of Representatives is always:
Member of the majority party
Describe how independent regulatory agencies are different from cabinet departments:
Independent-free from presidential control
Describe the major differences between the legislative process in the House and Senate:
Debate in House limited, unlimited in Senate
How does most communication between congressional representatives and constituents occur?
Huge staffs-able to do constituent service
The SC’s decision about abortion in Roe v. Wade was based on what legal rationale?
Right to privacy
Describe the major trends evident in presidential elections in the 1980’s?
White south became Republican
Describe how incumbent senators running for reelection are different from House incumbents:
Senate incumbents not as high as in house
The framers of the Constitution all believed that this was one of the primary functions of government:
Protecting rights
In the Federalist Papers, James Madison expressed this view about political factions:
Undesirable but inevitable
At least four justices on the Supreme Court must agree to:
Hear a case (rule of 4)
Describe the nomination process for federal judgeships:
President appoints, Senate confirms
Describe the influence of the news media on public opinion in the U.S.:
Gatekeeper
Presidents primarily seek staff members who display this attribute:
Loyalty
Describe factors the president considers when deciding to use the presidential veto:
Very powerful, not used often, rarely overridden
Describe major trends related to political action committees (PACs):
Limited by law
does a “cloture motion” passed in the Senate do?
Ends a filibuster—needs 3/5 or 60% vote
Describe the impact of using primaries instead of party conventions in selecting presidential candidates:
Weakens parties—process is more democratic
Describe the factors that led to the recent rise of interest groups and decline of political parties:
Interest groups—specific, parties—vague
Which demographic groups voted most heavily Democratic in pres. Elections 1964-1992?
African-Americans
Which law did Congress pass to enforce the Fourteenth Amendment more clearly?
Civil rights act of 1964
Describe how “elastic clause” has shaped American politics:
Allows powers of Constitution to move beyond politics
How do most criminal cases end?
Plea bargain
What is a term used to describe SC justices who defer to the elective institutions of government?
Judicial restraint
In what governmental area is Congress most likely to defer to the President?
Foreign policy
Describe how the President can be more successful than Congressional leaders in influencing legislation:
Through the media
What was the underlying intent of giving presidents line-item veto power?
Control spending/budget
Describe Congress’ role in executive agreements made between a President and another head of state:
No role whatsoever *executive agreements=executive action that doesn’t require congressional approval