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48 Cards in this Set

  • Front
  • Back
Institution through which a society makes and enforces its policies.
Public policy
All of the many goals that a government pursues in the many areas of human affairs in which it is involved.
Legislative power
To power to make a new law and to frame public policies.
Executive power
The power to execute, enforce, and administer law.
Judicial power
The power to interpret laws, to determine their meaning, and to settle disputes.
The body of fundamental laws setting out the principles, structures, and processes of a government.
A form of government in which a leader has full absolute power.
A form of government in which the supreme authority rests with the people.
Body of people living in a defined territory who have a government with the power to make laws without consent of any higher authority.
Having supreme power within its own territory.
Form of government in which a single person holds unlimited power.
Form of government in which the power to rule is held by a small, usually self-appointed elite.
Unitary government
Centralized government in which all government powers belong to a single agency.
Federal government
Form of government in which powers are divided between a central government and local governments.
Division of powers
Basic principle of Federalism; constitutional provisions by which governmental powers are divided on a geographic basis.
Joining of several groups for a common purpose.
Presidential government
Form of government in which the executive and legislative branches of the government are separate, independent, and coequal.
Parliamentary government
Form of government in which the executive branch is made up of the prime minister and his cabinet.
Adjustment of opposing principles or systems by modifying some aspect of each.
Free enterprise system
An economic system characterized by private or corporate ownership of capital goods; investments that are determined by private decision rather than by state control, and determined in a free market.
Law of supply and demand
A law which states that when supplies of goods and services became plentiful, prices tend to drop.
Mixed economy
Economy in which private enterprise exists in combination with a considerable amount of government regulation and promotion.
Limited government
Basic principle of American government which states that government is restricted in what it may do, and each individual has rights.
Representative government
System of government in which public policies are made by officials selected by the voters and held accountable in elections.
Magna Carta
Great charter forced upon King John of England by his barons in 1215.
Petition of Right
Document prepared by Parliament and signed by King Charles I in 1628; challenged idea of the divine right of kings and declared that even the monarch was subject to laws of the land.
English Bill of Rights
Document written by Parliament and agreed on by William & Mary in 1689. Designed to prevent abuse of power.
A city's basic law, its constitution.
Two chambers
Organized by a proprietor.
One chamber.
Albany Plan of Union
Plan proposed by Ben Franklin in 1754 that aimed to unite the 13 colonies. It was rejected.
Refusal to buy or sell a product.
Popular sovereignty
Basic principle of the American system of government which asserts that the people are the source of any and all government power.
Articles of Confederation
Plan of government adopted by Continental Congress after the American Revolution. Established firm league of friendship between the colonies.
Formal approval, final consent to the effectiveness of a constitution, or treaty.
Presiding officer
Delegates who drafted the US Constitution at the Philadelphia convention.
Virginia Plan
Plan presented by delegates from Virginia at Constitutional Convention.
New Jersey Plan
Plan presented as an alternative to the Virginia Plan at the Constitutional Convention; called for a unicameral legislature.
Connecticut Compromise
Agreement during the Constitutional Convention that congress should be composed of a senate.
Three-Fifths Compromise
Slaves count as three-fifths of a person.
Commerce and Slave Trade Compromise
Agreement protecting slave holders. Denied congress to tax the export of goods from any state.
Supported constitution.
Oppossed constitution.
Last number of members who must be present for a legislative body to conduct business.