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22 Cards in this Set

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amendment
a change added to a bill, law, or constitution
Antifederalists
those who favored strong state governments and a weak national government and who were opponents of the constitution proposed at the American Constitutional Convention of 1787
Articles of Confederation
America’s first written constitution; served as the basis for America’s national government until 1789
bicameral
having a legislative assembly composed of two chambers or houses
Bill of Rights
the first ten amendments to the U.S. Constitution, ratified in 1791; they ensure certain rights and liberties to the people
checks and balances
mechanisms through which each branch of government is able to participate in and influence the activities of the other branches. Major examples include the presidential veto power over congressional legislation, the power of the Senate to approve presidential appointments, and judicial review of congressional enactments
confederation
a system of government in which states retain sovereign authority except for the powers expressly delegated to the national governments
elastic clause
Article I, Section 8, of the Constitution (also known as the “necessary and proper” clause), which enumerates the powers of Congress and provides Congress with the authority to make all laws “necessary and proper” to carry them out
electoral college
the presidential electors from each state who meet after the popular election to cast ballots for president and vice president
expressed powers
specific powers granted to Congress under Article I, Section 8, of the Constitution
federalism
a system of government in which power is divided, by a constitution, between a central government and regional governments
Federalist Papers
a series of essays written by James Madison, Alexander Hamilton, and John Jay supporting the ratification of the Constitution
Federalists
those who favored a strong national government and supported the constitution proposed at the American Constitutional Convention of 1787
Great Compromise
the agreement reached at the Constitutional Convention of 1787 that gave each state an equal number of senators regardless of its population, but linked representation in the House of Representatives to population
judicial review
the power of the courts to declare actions of the legislative and executive branches invalid or unconstitutional. The Supreme Court asserted this power in Marbury v. Madison
limited government
a government whose powers are defined and limited by a constitution
New Jersey Plan
a framework for the Constitution, introduced by William Paterson, which called for equal state representation in the national legislature regardless of population
separation of powers
the division of governmental power among several institutions that must cooperate in decision making
supremacy clause
Article VI of the Constitution, which states that laws passed by the national government and all treaties are the supreme law of the land and superior to all laws adopted by any state or any subdivision
Three-fifths Compromise
the agreement reached at the Constitutional Convention of 1787 that stipulated that for purposes of the apportionment of congressional seats, every slave would be counted as three-fifths of a person
tyranny
oppressive and unjust government that employs cruel and unjust use of power and authority
Virginia Plan
a framework for the Constitution, introduced by Edmund Randolph, which called for representation in the national legislature based upon the population of each state