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16 Cards in this Set

  • Front
  • Back
natural law
law that defines right from wrong; higher than human law
separation of powers
constitutional division of powers among 3 brances of government
checks and balances
constitutional grant of powers that enables the 3 branches to "check" one another
system in which one person has control over population; one person rules with unlimited power
unified government
when the same party controls both the white house and both houses of congress
divided government
when one party controls Congress and the other controls the presidency
strong allegiance to one's own political party; leads to unwillingness to compromise with members of opposing parties
judicial review
the power of a court to review law or governmental regulations to determine whether they are consistent with the US Constituion, or in a state court, with a state constitution
writ of mandamus
a court order directing an official to perform an official duty
congressional elaboration
congressional legislation that gives further meaning to the constitution based on sometimes vague constitutional authority
a formal accusation by the lower house of a legislature against a public official; first step in removal from office
executive order
a directive issued by a president or governor that has the force of law; subject to judicial review
executive privilege
the power to keep executive communications confidential, especially if they relate to national security
presidential refusal to allow an agency to spend funds that Cogress authorized and appropriated
originalist approach
an approach to constitutional interpretation that envisions the document as having a fixed meaning that might be determined by a strict reading of the text or the framers' intent
adaptive approach
a method used to interpret the Constitution that understands the doxument to be flexible and responsive to the changing needs of the times