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39 Cards in this Set

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14th Amendment

Granted citizenship to “all persons born or naturalized in the United States,” which included former slaves recently freed.

15th Amendment

Granted African American men the right to vote

19th Amendment

Guarantees all American women the right to vote

23rd Amendment

Extended the right to vote in the presidential election to citizens residing in the District of Columbia by granting the District electors in the Electoral College, as if it were a state.

24th Amendment

Prohibits any poll tax in elections for federal officials.

26th Amendment

SECTION 1. The right of citizens of the United States, who are 18 years of age or older, to vote, shall not be denied or abridged by the United States or any state on account of age.

SECTION 2. The Congress shall have the power to enforce this article by appropriate legislation.

Voting Rights Act

1965 is a landmark piece of federal legislation in the United States that prohibits racial discrimination in voting.

Voter Registration

The requirement in some democracies for citizens and residents to check in with some central registry specifically for the purpose of being allowed to vote in elections.

Residency Requirements

The Supreme Court decision of March 21, 1972, declared lengthy requirements for voting in state and local elections unconstitutional and suggested that 30 days was an ample period. Most of the states have changed or eliminated their durational residency requirements to comply with the ruling, as shown.

Felon Voting

Excluding people otherwise eligible to vote from voting (known as disfranchisement) due to conviction of a criminal offence, usually restricted to the more serious class of crimes, felonies. Jurisdictions vary in whether they make such disfranchisement permanent, or restore suffrage after a person has served a sentence, or completed parole or probation.

Calculus of Voting

Refers to any mathematical model which predicts voting behavior by an electorate, including such features as participation rate. A calculus of voting represents an hypothesized decision-making process.

Voter Mobilization

Using tactics to convince voters to vote.

Paradox of Voting

Is that for a rational, self-interested voter, the costs of voting will normally exceed the expected benefits


The theory that a multitude of groups, not the people as a whole, govern the United States.

Iron Triangle

Comprises the policy-making relationship among the congressional committees, the bureaucracy, and interest groups
Comprises the policy-making relationship among the congressional committees, the bureaucracy, and interest groups
Citizens United v. FEC (2010)501(c)(4)s
A U.S. constitutional law case dealing with the regulation of campaign spending by organizations. The United States Supreme Court held that the First Amendment prohibited the government from restricting independent political expenditures by a nonprofit corporation.

Duverger's Law

- A principle that asserts that plurality rule elections structured within single-member districts tend to favor a two-party system.

- Explains why third parties (i.e. presidential elections) never win (independent party)

Political Polarization

Refers to cases in which an individual's stance on a given issue, policy, or person is more likely to be strictly defined by their identification with a particular political party (e.g., Democrat or Republican) or ideology (e.g., liberal or conservative).

Presidential Nominations: "King Caucus"

The demise of “King Caucus” Beginning in 1796, caucuses of the political parties' congressional delegations met informally to nominate their presidential and vice presidential candidates, leaving the general public with no direct input.

"Balancing the Ticket"

When a political candidate chooses a running mate, usually of the same party, with the goal of bringing more widespread appeal to the campaign. It is most prominently used to describe the selection of the U.S. Vice Presidential candidate.

Electoral College

- A body of people representing the states of the US, who formally cast votes for the election of the president and vice president.

- A body of electors chosen or appointed by a larger group.


- A constitutional right to reject a decision or proposal made by a law-making body. Ex."the legislature would have a veto over appointments to key posts"

- To exercise a veto against (a decision or proposal made by a law-making body).Ex. "the president vetoed the bill"

Take Care Clause

This clause in the Constitution imposes a duty on the President to take due care while executing laws

Executive Office of the President

Consists of the immediate staff of the current President of the United States and multiple levels of support staff reporting to the President. The EOP is headed by the White House Chief of Staff

Employment Act (1946)

Charged the government with the responsibility of maintaining a high employment level of labor and price stability. These two goals are in direct conflict with each other, because as full employment is achieved consistently over time, demand-pull inflation will result.

National Security Act (1947)

Mandated a major reorganization of the foreign policy and military establishments of the U.S. Government. The act created many of the institutions that Presidents found useful when formulating and implementing foreign policy, including the National Security Council (NSC)


Manipulate the boundaries of (an electoral constituency) so as to favor one party or class.

Incumbency Advantage

The incumbent often has more name recognition because of their previous work in the office they occupy. Incumbents have easier access to campaign finance and government resources that can be indirectly used to boost a campaign.

Trustee vs. Delegate Model

- The Trustee model holds that representatives should be allowed to use their own judgment when deciding upon how they will vote on particular legislation. They will ideally consider both the facts and the views of their constituents, and are given the latitude to make their own final voting decisions, regardless of whether or not the majority agrees with those voting decisions. It is understood that the voters "trust" that the representative will always vote for the best interests of his constituents, thus relieving the constituents of the hard work of learning about the issues and communicating with the representatives.

- By contrast, the Delegate model holds that representatives are not given the option of using their own best judgment and are to vote strictly according to the majority wishes of their constituents, regardless of whether or not the representatives agree with their constituents. It is understood that in this scenario the voters will stay informed on the various issues and take the time to communicate with their representatives.

Fenno's Paradox

The belief that people generally disapprove of the United States Congress as a whole, but support the Congressmen from their own Congressional district. It is named after political scientist Richard Fenno who discussed this in his 1978 book Home Style: House Members in Their Districts.

"Pork Barrel Spending"

A metaphor for the appropriation of government spending for localized projects secured solely or primarily to bring money to a representative's district.
Marbury v. Madison and judicial review
Confirmed the legal principle of judicial review–the ability of the Supreme Court to limit Congressional power by declaring legislation unconstitutional–in the new nation.The court ruled that the new president, Thomas Jefferson, via his secretary of state, James Madison, was wrong to prevent William Marbury from taking office as justice of the peace for Washington County in the District of Columbia. However, it also ruled that the court had no jurisdiction in the case and could not force Jefferson and Madison to seat Marbury.
Writ of certiorari
A writ (order) of a higher court to a lower court to send all the documents in a case to it so the higher court can review the lower court's decision. Certiorari is most commonly used by the U.S. Supreme Court, which is selective about which cases it will hear on appeal. To appeal to the Supreme Court one applies to the Supreme Court for a writ of certiorari, which it grants at its discretion and only when at least three members believe that the case involves a sufficiently significant federal question in the public interest.Read more: http://dictionary.law.com/default.aspx?selected=164#ixzz3uK1lcvDf

"Advise and Consent"

A power of the United States Senate to be consulted on and approve treaties signed and appointments made by the President of the United States to public positions, including Cabinet secretaries, federal judges, United States Attorneys, and ambassadors.

Filibuster and the Nuclear Option

- The nuclear or constitutional option is a parliamentary procedure that allows the U.S. Senate to override a rule or precedent by majority vote.

- Resulted in reform of the Senate's filibuster rules

Judicial Philosophy

The way in which a judge understands and interprets the law. Laws are universal, but they must be applied to particular cases with unique circumstances. To do this, judges interpret the law, determining its meaning and sometimes the intent of those who wrote it.

Party Identification

A citizen's self-proclaimed preference for one party or the other.

Responsible Party Model

A view favored by some political scientists about how parties should work. According to the model, parties should offer clear choices to the voters, who can then use those choices as cues to their own preferences of candidates. Once in office, parties would carry out their campaign promises.

Party Discipline

A view favored by some political scientists about how parties should work. According to the model, parties should offer clear choices to the voters, who can then use those choices as cues to their own preferences of candidates. Once in office, parties would carry out their campaign promises.