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135 Cards in this Set

  • Front
  • Back
What do we mean mean when we refer to George Washington as the American Cinncinatus?
He was willing to give up power.
What was Plato's solution to self government?
Virtue: the best and brightest should
What was Aristotle's solution to self government?
Structure is the key: design of
Define structure.
The nature and arrangement of institutions or other mechanisms in a constitution that organize the government
What were the Common Assumptions in Post-Revolutionary America?
• High level of public virtue among the people.
• Legislatures should reflect that commitment
to the public good
• The executive branch should be weak
• Nothing like a king!
• Sovereignty should reside with the states
• Small republics are better than large
What is a Confederation?
A collection of equal sovereignties
What were two main weaknesses of the Articles of Confederation?
Limited power to trade between the states (econ)
Limited power to unify (diff. policies)
What were three main problems of the Articles of Confederation?
1. Within the states
2. Between the states
3. Between the states and the national
What"s an example of problems within the states under the Articles of Confederation?
Spitit of Revolution gone too far (Shay's Rebellion)
“I am mortified beyond expression when I view the clouds that have spread
over the brightest morn that ever dawned in any country… What a triumph
for the advocates of despotism, to find that we are incapable of governing
ourselves and that systems founded on the basis of equal liberty are merely
ideal and fallacious.”
George Washington
“Rebellion against a king may be pardoned, or lightly punished, but the
man who dares to rebel against the laws of a republic ought to suffer death.”
Samuel Adams
“A little rebellion now and then is a good thing. It is a medicine necessary
for the sound health of government.”
Thomas Jefferson
What are examples of problems between the states under the articles of Confederation?
• Conflicting foreign policy
• Commerce
• Disputes
• Example: Pennamite Wars
• (Connecticut vs. Pennsylvania)
Why do representative legislatures make State Laws Often Problematic?
• Representative legislatures make it so that ambition and personal interest outweigh the public good
Why are State Laws Often Problematic?
• Representative legislatures
The people themselves
How do "the people themselves" make state laws problematic?
• Majorities vs. minorities
• Private interests vs. public good
• Respect for character is not enough to
prevent injustice
• Religion not enough to restrain us
Who said fear and honor are not the best bases of gov.?
John Adams
Who came up with the idea of separation of power?
In what ways did Weak National Government cause problems between the states and the national gov. under the Articles of Confederation?
• “Encroachments by the States on the federal
• “Failure of the States to comply with the
Constitutional requisitions”
• “Violations of the law of nations and treaties”
• “Want of guaranty to the States of their
Constitutions & laws against internal
According to Madison, why will states sometimes need to be coerced by the
national government?
• Acts of the national government “bear unequally
hard” on the states; states will have unequal
interests in carrying out national policies
• “Courtiers of popularity”: politicians will advance
their own interests by criticizing national policies
• Collective action problem: even when they share a
common interest, some states may try to free ride
on the efforts of others
What's noticeable about the delegates of The Philadelphia
• Lawyers
• Some Revolutionary War veterans
• Some slave owners
• Landholders
• Experienced in government
• Well-read
• Many very young
• None from Rhode Island
What was the Legislature like in the Virginia plan?
• 1st House: Elected by the people, representation
proportional to population
• 2nd House: Elected by the 1st House
Who introduced the virginia plan?
Edmund Randolph
What was the executive branch like in the Virginia plan?
executive chosen by the legislature for one 5 year
What was the Judiciary like in the Virginia plan?
Chosen by the legislature
What checks and balances were there in the Virginia Plan?
“Council of revision”:
• Executive and judiciary could review and veto national
and state laws
What was the big controversy over the Virginia plan?
It abolished instead of ammended the Articles of Confederation and it violated state sovereignty.
Who Presented the New Jersey Plan?
William Paterson
What was the Legislature like in the New Jersey plan?
• Unicameral
• Equal state representation
What was the executive like in the New Jersey plan?
• Could be a council
• Single term, subject to recall by state governors
What was the Judiciary like in the New Jersey plan?
• Lifetime terms of service
What were the "other plans" presented at the Philidelphia convention?
Pinckney and Hamilton's "british" plan
What were the main points of the British plan?
bicameral, electors, absolute veto power
What were the four Key Issues of the Philadelphia Convention?
Representation, Executive, Slavery, and Federalism
At the Convention, what was the argument for representation by states?
States have unique interests as states; these state interests must be represented equally
At the Convention, what was the argument for representation by states?
The great diversity of interests
must be represented;
individual interests should be
represented equally
What was The Great Compromise?
A comp. concerning representation between the two Plans. One house gives votes proportional to population (House of Reps.) and another give equal votes to each state (Senate)
“If respect is to be paid to the opinion of the greatest
and wisest men who have ever thought or wrote on
the science of government, we shall be constrained
to conclude, that a free republic cannot succeed over
a country of such immense extent, containing such
a number of inhabitants…”
“It is natural to a republic to have only a small
territory, otherwise it cannot long
Anti-Federalist Brutus
• A series of sixteen essays published in the New York
Journal from October 1787 through April 1788.
• Actual author probably a New York judge named
Robert Yates.
Anti-Federalist Cato
• Published in the New York Journal from September
1787 to January 1788.
• Probably written by former New York Governor
George Clinton
What are the four points of The Small Republic
• History
• Diversity and the Common Good
• Participation
• The People and their Representatives
The Small Republic
Argument: History
Large republics had always failed or become tyrannical
The Small Republic
Argument:Diversity and the Common Good
Small republics can be united by a commitment to a common good
In a large republic, we have less in common
Diversity makes self-government more difficult
The Small Republic
Small republics allow for more and better forms of citizen participation
The Small Republic
Argument:The People and their Representatives
In a large republic, the people will not watch over their representatives carefully enough
In a large republic, representatives will forget the people (the “Potomac Fever” problem)
“In a large republic, the public good is
sacrificed to a thousand views; it is
subordinate to exceptions, and depends on
accidents. In a small one, the interest of the
public is easier perceived, better understood,
and more within the reach of every
“History furnishes no example of a free
republic, any thing like the extent of the
United States.”
“Enlarge the circle still further, and, as
citizens of different states, though we
acknowledge the same national denomination,
we lose the ties of acquaintance, habits, and
fortunes, and thus, by degrees, we lessen in
our attachments, till, at length, we no more
than acknowledge a sameness of
Factions create two
sorts of problems, what are they?
• Factional tendency toward extremism
and ultimately anarchy
• Capture of government by a single faction creates tyranny
What's the big problem of Factions?
Majority Factions
What's the most common source of factions?
Rich versus Poor
Who made arguments for large republics and in what work?
Madison in Federalist #10
What are the two methods of curing the mischiefs of factions?
by removing its causes
controlling its effects
What are the two methods of removing the causes of faction?
by destroying the liberty which is essential to its existence;
by giving to every citizen the
same opinions, the same assions, and the same interests.
What are two Differences between a democracy and a
republic according to Fed. #10?
• Republics delegate government “to a small number of citizens elected by
the rest.”
• Republics can be extended to “a greater number of citizens and greater
sphere of country.”
What is the Small Republic Problem?
Fewer factions means the same faction will win most often
What is Madison's solution to the Small republic Problem?
Extend the sphere
What are two purposes of Gov. structure?
• Keep self-interest in check
• Mobilize civic virtue
What is Fed 51 about?
Controlling Gov.
How do you keep branches separate?
Giving each branch the constitutional means and the personal motives to check the other branches
What will absolute division of powers lead to?
Deadlock and tyrrany
What is the paradoxical key to the separation of powers?
Sharing some powers between the branches
Define Federalism
The people delegate
sovereignty to both the state and national governments; “shared
What are some of the problems of Federalism?
Balance between States and Nation
Conflict of Sovereignty
Different methods of voting
Why was slaavery such a hard topic?
It combined moral conflict with economic interests
Why is a Bill of Rights Dangerous?
Undermines the Constitution's statement that gov. is limited
Deemphasizes unnenumerated rights
Opens Pandora's box of "rights"
Why is a Bill of Rights unnecessary?
• States already had them
• Consent is the key
• Why do the people need to be protected against themselves?
How is the Constitution a Bill of Rights?
• Provisions that protect rights by protecting against arbitrary government
• Much more than a “parchment barrier”
• The structures of the Constitution are
intended to create a limited
government, a government that could control itself
Why have narrowly
constructed rights?
• Clearer interpretation
• Easier to enforce
Why have broadly
constructed rights?
• Narrow rights insufficiently cover
potential problems
• Easier to get agreement
• Sometimes a ringing declaration is
What are some cons to broadly constructed rights?
conflict (multiple interpretations)
inclusion (Westboro Church)
interpretation (Gives power to Judges)
Define Judicial Review
• The power of the judiciary to declare laws or other acts of government unconstitutional
What is the importance of Marbury v.s Madison?
established judicial review
Marbury vs. Madison: Adams
incumbant Pres.
Marbury vs. Madison: Jefferson
new Pres.
Marbury vs. Madison: Marshall
old sec. of state
Marbury vs. Madison: Madison
new sec. of state
Marbury vs. Madison: Marshall
old sec of state
Marbury vs. Madison: John Marshall
Chief Justice over the case
Judiciary act of 1789
says that cases involving writs of mandamus go directly to the supreme court
declared unconstitutional due to Marbury vs. Madison
original Jurisdiction
cases that go strait to the Supreme Court
Appellate Jurisdiction
cases that go to lower courts before the Supreme Court
Who is of the opinion that the constitution gives too much power to minorities and that the electoral college is bunk?
Robert Dahl
What does the judicial lack?
The sword and the purse.
• The largest block of
all votes cast
• More than half of
all vote cast
What are some Criticisms of the Electoral College?
1. Electors do not exercise independent judgment
2. Popular vs. Electoral Winners
3. Unequal representation
What are some cons to the winner-takes-all aspect of the electoral college?
• Reduces the incentives of a presidential
candidate to compete in “safe” states
• Reduces the incentives of third-party
candidates to run for president
• May weaken the incentives of voters in “safe” states to participate
Representative Districts
• Each geographical region elects a single representative, independent of the outcome in other regions.
Proportional Representation
• Aims for a close match between the percentage of votes each group or party receives and the number of seats in the legislature.
People re-drawing district boundaries to increase their influence in single-member representative district voting
“Political parties created modern democracy
and modern democracy is unthinkable save in
terms of the parties.”
E.E. Schattschneider
Where do parties come
• Differences in political ideals and goals
• The need to organize and win in
Democratic-Republican Party
Small Gov.
Self-sufficient citizens
Narrow interpretation of Constitution
against National Bank
Federalist Party
Big Gov.
Broad interpretaion of Constitution
for National Bank
What are three elements of democritization?
• Extension of right to vote
• Elimination of filters of consent
• Electoral appeals to the masses
What is the difference between parties and factions?
parties tend towards moderation
factions can be extreme
• Each region develops a separate identity, lifestyle, political and economic morality, and sense of destiny
What were John C. Calhoun's views?
slavery is the most safe and stable basis for society
the Northern majority is tyrranical
slavery should be decided by the states
What were Fitzhugh's views?
Northern workers are treated worse than slaves
Slaves have freedom
we don't agree with "consent"
must enslave the weak to protect them
What were Hammond's views?
Slaves are treated well while there are beggars in the north
Society needs rulers and menials
Gouveneer Morris
wrote preamble to constitution
Robert Paterson
wrote NJ plan
Roger Sherman
wrote the Connecticut plan and the great compromise
supported big gov. and ratification of the Constitution
Federalist party
extreme federalists, wanted big, big, gov.
wanted federal government with state gov.
11th Amendment
Idividuals can't sue a state
12th Amendment
The Pres. and Vice President must be on the sam ticket
Electoral College
13th Amendment
slavery abolished
14th Amendment
all have citizenship
equal protection clause
15th Amendment
all men can vote
1st article
2nd article
3rd article
4th article
movement between the states
5th article
amendment process
6th article
debts and supremacy clause
7th article
radification process
1st amendment
freedom of speech and religion
2nd amendment
bear arms
3rd amendment
quartering soldiers
4th amendment
search and seisure
5th amendment
plead the 5th
6th amendment
speedy and public trial
7th amendment
trial by jury
8th amendment
cruel and unusual punishment
9th amendment
can't misconstrue rights to deny other rights
10th amendment
states get all the other rights
Roger Taney
Chief Justice over Dred Scott case
John Bell
Ran against Lincoln
"must keep the union together"
Stephen A. Douglas
Ran against Lincoln
"let the states decide on slavery"
John C. Breckinridge
Ran against Lincoln
"preserve the union, preserve slavery"
What were Lincoln's platforms in the election of 1860?
Preserve the Union,
but gradually abolish
• Nation cannot survive
half-slave and half-free