AP Gov Terms

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Government

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277 Terms

1

Government

The institutions and processes through which public policies are made for a society

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2

Single Issue Group

Groups that have a narrow interest, dislike compromise, and draw membership from people new to politics.

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3

Linkage Institutions

Political channels through which people's concerns become political issues on the policy agenda. Include: elections, political parties, interest groups, and the media.

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4

Policy Making Institutions

Branches of government charged with taking action on political issues. Constitution- Legislative (congress) Executive (President) and the Federal courts. Political Scientists agree that the bureaucracy is now a 4th institution.

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5

Public Policy

A choice the government makes in response to a political issue.

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6

Direct Democracy

A system where citizens directly vote on all maters of public policy.

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7

Republic

a form of government that derives its power directly from the people. The people elect representatives to make public policy.

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8

Majority Rule/ Minority Rights

Fundamental principle of democratic theory that requires the majority desire be respected but guarantees rights to the minority opinion the majority cannot remove

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9

Pluralist Theory

Theory of government and politics emphasizing that politics is mainly competition among interest groups. Each one presses for its own preferred policies.

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10

Elite/ Class Theory

A theory of government and politics that contents societies are divided along class lines and that an upper-class elite will rule, regardless of the formal niceties of governmental organization.

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11

Hyperpluralism

A theory of government and politics contending that groups are so strong that government is weakened. Extreme form of pluralism.

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12

Gridlock

A condition that exists when no coalition is strong enough to form a majority and make policy.

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13

Political Culture

Set of values shared by society.

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14

Laissez-Faire

Promotes free-markets and limited government interaction in the economy.

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15

Gross Domestic Product

Sum total of all the value of goods produced by the nation in a year.

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16

Constitution

A nations basic law. Creates the institutions of government, assigns and divides power, provides guarantees to citizens.

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17

Declaration of Independence

Polemic written by Thomas Jefferson. Justifies independence. Based on John Locke's Second Treatise on Government. Asserts the independence of the United States.

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18

Natural Rights

Life, Liberty, and Property

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19

Consent of the Governed

the idea that government derives its authority by the sanction of the people

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20

Limited Government

A principle of constitutional government; a government whose powers are defined and limited by a constitution.

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21

Articles of Confederation

a written agreement ratified in 1781 by the thirteen original states. Weakly organized the 13 states under a central congress.

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22

Shay's Rebellion

Rebellion led by Daniel Shays of farmers in western Massachusetts in 1786-1787, protesting mortgage foreclosures. It highlighted the need for a strong national government just as the call for the Constitutional Convention went out.

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23

Factions

A group that seeks to promote its own special interests at the expense of the common good

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24

New Jersey Plan

  • opposite of the Virginia Plan, it proposed a single-chamber congress in which each state had one vote. This created a conflict with representation between bigger states, who wanted control befitting their population.

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25

Virginia Plan

(1787) the plan for government proposed at the Constitutional Convention in which the national government would have supreme power and a legislative branch would have two houses with representation determined by state population

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26

Connecticut (Great) Compromise

Compromise agreement by states at the Constitutional Convention for a bicameral legislature with a lower house in which representation would be based on population and an upper house in which each state would have two senators

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27

Writ of Habeas Corpus

A court order requiring jailers to explain to a judge why they are holding a prisoner in custody. Barred by the constitution except in times of war.

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28

Bill of Attainder

A law that declares a person, without a trial, to be guilty of a crime. Barred by the constitution.

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29

Ex Post Facto

A law that would allow a person to be punished for an action that was not against the law when it was committed

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30

Separation of powers

Constitutional division of powers among the legislative, executive, and judicial branches, with the legislative branch making law, the executive applying and enforcing the law, and the judiciary interpreting the law

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31

Checks and Balances

A governmental structure that gives each of the three branches of government some degree of oversight and control over the actions of the others.

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32

Federalists

Supporters of the constitution during the time states were contemplating ratification--Know arguments of Federalists

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Anti-Federalists

Opponents of the Constitution at the time states were contemplating ratification (adoption)--Know arguments of anti-federalists

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34

Federalist Papers

85 Articles written in support of ratification of the Constitution. John Jay, Alexander Hamilton, and James Madison.

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35

Federalist 10

An essay composed by James Madison which argues that liberty is safest in a large republic because many interests (factions) exist. Such diversity makes tyranny by the majority more difficult since ruling coalitions will always be unstable

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36

Bill of rights

First 10 Amendments to the Constitution. Drafted in response to anti-federalist concerns that the document did not protect individual liberty.

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37

Formal Amendment Process

Process through which amendments are added to the constitution. Phase one is proposal by either 2/3 of Congres or Convention requested by 2/3 of the state Phase 2 is ratification by 3/4 of state legislatures or 3/4 of state conventions.

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38

Informal Amemndemnts

Informal ways we interpret constitution: Judicial Review, Political Practice (Primaries), Technology, Policy Demands, etc

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39

Marbury V Madison

This case establishes the Supreme Court's power of Judicial Review

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40

Judicial Review

Authority given the courts to review constitutionality of acts by the executive/state/legislature; est. in Marbury v. Madison

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41

Federalism

the way of organizing a nation so two or more levels of government have formal authority over the same land and people. A system of shared power.

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42

Unitary Government

a way of organizing a nation so all power resides in a single central government

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43

Supremacy Clause

Article VI of the Constitution: The constitution, laws passed by congress, and treaties, are supreme over state laws when national government is acting within constitutional limits

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44

10th Amendment

reserves powers not given to national government to the states,

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45

Reserved powers

Power retained by the states, including the power to establish schools, set marriage and divorce laws, and regulate trade within the state. (established by 10th amendment)

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46

Implied Powers

Powers that go beyond those that are enumerated (spelled out) in the constitution. Comes from elastic clause. --Congress has the power to "make all laws necessary and proper for carrying into execution" the powers enumerated in Article I

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47

Enumerated Powers

Powers specifically given to Congress in the Constitution; including the power to collect taxes, coin money, regulate foreign and interstate commerce, and declare war.

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48

Elastic Clause

Article I, Section 8, of the Constitution, which allows Congress to make all laws that are "necessary and proper" to carry out the powers of the Constitution.

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49

McCulloch V Maryland

An 1819 Supreme Court decision that established the supremacy of the national government over state governments. In deciding this case, Chief Justice John Marshall and his colleagues held that Congress had certain implied powers in addition to the enumerated powers found in the Constitution. (National Bank)

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50

Gibbons V Ogden

This case involved New York trying to grant a monopoly on waterborne trade between New York and New Jersey. Judge Marshal, of the Supreme Court, sternly reminded the state of New York that the Constitution gives Congress alone the control of interstate commerce.

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51

Full Faith and Credit

Constitution's requirement that each state accept the public acts, records, and judicial proceedings of every other state

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52

Extradition

A legal process whereby an alleged criminal offender is surrendered by the officials of one state to officials of the state in which the crime is alleged to have been committed.

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53

Privileges and Immunities

States are prohibited from unreasonably discriminating against residents of other states (article 4)

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54

Dual Federalism

A system of government in which both the states and the national government remain supreme within their own spheres, each responsible for some policies. Also called "layer cake federalism."

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55

Cooperative Federalism

A system of government in which powers and policy assignments are shared between states and the national government. They may also share costs, administration, and even blame for programs that work poorly. Also called "marble cake federalism."

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56

Fiscal Federalism

The pattern of spending, taxing, and providing grants in the federal system; it is the cornerstone of the national government's relations with state and local governments.

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57

Categorical Grants

Federal grants that can be used only for specific purposes or "categories," of state and local spending. They come with strings attached, such as nondiscrimination provisions. Compare to block grants. (Most common grant-in-aid)

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58

Block Grants

Federal grants given more or less automatically to states or communities to support broad programs in areas such as community development and social services

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59

Federal Mandate

A requirement in federal legislation that forces states and municipalities to comply with certain rules.

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60

Unfunded Mandate

actions imposed by the federal or state government on lower levels of government which are not accompanied by the money needed to fund the action required.

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61

Civil Liberties

legal constitutional protections against government. Spelled out in bill of rights but meaning determined by courts and legislatures.

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62

First Amendment

5 individual liberties: Freedom of the Press, Speech, Religion, Assembly, and Petition

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63

Gitlow v New York

established selective incorporation of the Bill of rights; states cannot deny freedom of speech; protected through the 14th amendment

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64

Due Process Clause

part of the 14th amendment guaranteeing that persons cannot be deprived of life, liberty, or property by the US or state government without due process of law. (see Gitlow)

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65

Incorporation Doctrine

the legal concept under which the Supreme Court has nationalized the Bill of Rights by making most of its provisions applicable to the states through the fourteenth amendment (due process)

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66

Due Process

(law) the administration of justice according to established rules and principles

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67

Establishment Clause

Clause in the First Amendment that says the government may not establish an official religion.

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68

Free Exercise Clause

A First Amendment provision that prohibits government from interfering with the practice of religion.

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69

Engel V Vitale

A nondenominational prayer was authorized to be said at the start of each day at local public schools. Result: The prayer violated the establishment clause. = 1st A.

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70

Employment Division of the State of Oregon v Smith

states could deny unemployment benefits to a person fired for violating a state prohibition on the use of peyote even though the use of the drug was part of a religious ritual

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71

Prior Restraint

A government preventing material from being published. This is a common method of limiting the press in some nations, but it is usually unconstitutional in the United States, according to the First Amendment and as confirmed in the 1931 Supreme Court case of Near v. Minnesota.

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72

Schenck v United States

A United States Supreme Court decision that upheld the Espionage Act of 1917 and concluded that a defendant did not have a First Amendment right to freedom of speech against the draft during World War I. Ultimately, the case established the "clear and present danger" test.

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73

libel

(n.) a written statement that unfairly or falsely harms the reputation of the person about whom it is made; (v.) to write or publish such a statement

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74

slander

A false statement which harms the reputation of others and gives occasion for false judgments concerning them

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75

New York Times v Sullivan

1964; established guidelines for determining whether public officials and public figures could win damage suits for libel. To do so, individuals must prove that the defamatory statements were made w/ "actual malice" and reckless disregard for the truth

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76

Texas v Johnson

A 1989 case in which the Supreme Court struck down a law banning the burning of the American flag on the grounds that such action was symbolic speech protected by the First Amendment.

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77

Symbolic Speech

nonverbal communication, such as burning a flag or wearing an armband. The Supreme Court has accorded some symbolic speech protection under the first amendment.

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78

Tinker v Des Moines

The case that ruled that students do not lose Constitutional rights when they entered the building but they can be limited if they cause a disruption

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79

Probable Cause

(law) evidence sufficient to warrant an arrest or search and seizure

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80

New Jersey v TLO

Supreme court case in which it was decided that a student may be searched if there is "reasonable ground" for doing so.

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81

Unreasonable Search and Seizures

Obtaining evidence in a haphazard or random manner, a practice prohibited by the 4th amendment; probable cause and a search warrant are required for this to be legal

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82

Search Warrant

A court order allowing law enforcement officers to search a suspect's home or business and take specific items as evidence

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83

Mapp v Ohio

Established the exclusionary rule was applicable to the states (evidence seized illegally cannot be used in court)

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84

Exclusionary Rule

A rule that provides that otherwise admissible evidence cannot be used in a criminal trial if it was the result of illegal police conduct

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85

Self Incrimination

the situation occurring when an individual accused of a crime is compelled to be a witness against himself or herself in court. The Fifth Amendment forbids self-incrimination.

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86

Miranda V Arizona

Supreme Court held that criminal suspects must be informed of their right to consult with an attorney and of their right against self-incrimination prior to questioning by police.

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87

Gideon v Wainwright

a landmark case in United States Supreme Court history. In the case, the Supreme Court unanimously ruled that state courts are required under the Sixth Amendment of the Constitution to provide counsel in criminal cases for defendants unable to afford their own attorneys.

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88

plea bargaining

(criminal law) a negotiation in which the defendant agrees to enter a plea of guilty to a lesser charge and the prosecutor agrees to drop a more serious charge

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89

Right to privacy

A contrived right from unstated liberties in the Bill of Rights.

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90

Griswold v Connecticut

Established that there is an implied right to privacy in the U.S. Constitution

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91

Roe v Wade

established national abortion guidelines; trimester guidelines; no state interference in 1st; state may regulate to protect health of mother in 2nd; state may regulate to protect health or unborn child in 3rd. inferred from right of privacy established in griswald v. connecticut

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92

Civil Rights

Policies designed to protect people from arbitrary or discriminatory treatment by government officials or individuals

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93

Equal Protection Clause

14th amendment clause that prohibits states from denying equal protection under the law, and has been used to combat discrimination

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94

Plessy v Ferguson

a 1896 Supreme Court decision which legalized state ordered segregation so long as the facilities for blacks and whites were equal

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95

Brown v Board of Education

1954 - The Supreme Court overruled Plessy v. Ferguson, declared that racially segregated facilities are inherently unequal and ordered all public schools desegregated.

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96

Jim Crow Laws

Laws designed to enforce segregation of blacks from whites

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97

Civil Rights Act of 1964

1964; banned discrimination in public acomodations, prohibited discrimination in any federally assisted program, outlawed discrimination in most employment; enlarged federal powers to protect voting rights and to speed school desegregation; this and the voting rights act helped to give African-Americans equality on paper, and more federally-protected power so that social equality was a more realistic goal

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98

Suffrage

Right to vote

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99

Poll Tax

A special tax that must be paid as a qualification for voting. The Twenty-fourth Amendment to the Constitution outlawed the poll tax in national elections, and in 1966 the Supreme Court declared it unconstitutional in all elections. Affected poor minority voters.

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100

White Primary

the practice of keeping blacks from voting in the southern states' primaries through arbitrary use of registration requirements and intimidation

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