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39 Cards in this Set

  • Front
  • Back
What is the definition of a constitution?
A nation's basic laws.
What does a constitution do?
Creates institutions, allocates power and provides guarantees to the people.
What did the British have control over in the American colonies?
The colonies' foreign policy and trade.
Why did the British pass so many taxes on the Americans?
They needed the money to pay back the costs of the French and Indian war.
What did the colonists feel was wrong with taxes?
They were getting taxed without being represented.
What did the American's base their government off?
Magna Carta, Mayflower Compact and John Locke.
When was the 1st Continental Congress formed?
September of 1774.
Who wrote Common Sense?
Thomas Paine.
Who was Jefferson inspired by when he wrote the Declaration of Independence?
John Locke.
Who was present at the formation of the Declaration of Independence?
Thomas Jefferson, John Adams, Benjiman Franklin, Roger Sherman and Robert Livingston.
When was the Declaration of Independence adopted?
July 4, 1776.
What did the Declaration of Independence do politically?
It announced and justified a revolution against the British.
What are natural rights?
Rights that inherent in human beings.
What did Locke believe in?
Natural law is superior to human law, consent of the governed and a limited government.
How was the American Revolution different from past revolutions?
Less bloodshed and less societal change.
What were the problems with the Articles of Confederation?
No executive or judicial branches; no power of congress to tax, only one house in the legislative branch, no regulation of commerce and no national currency.
What brought the middle class to power?
Expanded political participation.
What was at the top of the agenda at the Constitutional Conventions?
Economic issues.
When did the Constitutional Convention start?
May 1787.
What did the delegates have to decide on?
Human nature, political conflict, objects of government and nature of a republican government.
What was the New Jersey plan?
States should have equal representation in Congress.
What was the Virginia plan?
States should have proportional representation in Congress.
What was the Connecticut plan?
One body should have equal representation( New Jersey Plan) and the other should have representation based off population (Virginia Plan).
What was the effect of the Connecticut Plan?
It gave more power to the small states.
What does the original Constitution say about slavery?
Slaves who escaped to free states had to be returned to their owners.
What does the Constitution protect?
It allows the writ of habeas corpus, prohibits bills of attainder, prohibits ex post facto laws, prohibits religious qualifications for public office, outlines for conviction of treason and allows the right to trial by jury.
What does the Madisonian Model say?
1) place as much of government as possible beyond the direct control of the majority
2) separation of powers
3) checks and balances
What is a republic?
A system of government that is based on the consent of the governed.
Who were the federalists?
Supporters of the constitution.
What did the anti-federalists want to be included in the Constitution and why?
The Bill of Rights so that the people still have some rights.
What are the two stages of making a formal amendment?
Proposal and ratification.
How is an amendment proposed?
2/3 vote in each house or 2/3 of state legislatures.
How is an amendment ratified?
A 3/4 vote in each house.
Was the E.R.A. ever ratified?
No, it was only proposed.
Why was the E.R.A. never ratified?
The system of checks and balances stopped it.
What are examples of informal changes to the Constitution?
Abortion, two-party system, honor bound members, house and senate conventions aired on TV, government taxes are 1/3 of the GDP.
How do informal changes take place?
Judicial review (Marbury v. Maryland), changing political practice, technology, increasing demands on policy makers.
Is the Constitution very detailed?
No, it allows for flexibility.
Does the Constitution limit government control?
Yes, particularly the Bill of Rights.