AP Gov Review

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social contract

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192 Terms


social contract

some freedoms sacrificed (respecting government) in exchange for government protection

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Participatory democracy

broad participation in politics/society by people at various statuses

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Pluralist democracy

group-based activism by citizens with common interests who seek the same goals

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Elite democracy

power to the educated/wealthy, discourages participation by the majority of people

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supports individualism and natural rights, popular sovereignty (people give the government power), encourages civic participation

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the way in which federal and state/regional governments Interact and share power

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Weaknesses of AOC

unicameral legislature, no power to tax, couldn’t regulate interstate commerce, no army, 9/13 required to pass laws, no amendments without unanimous support

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electoral college

each state is entitled to a number of electors equal to its total number of seats in Congress, electors vote for pres and VP

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3/5th compromise

60% of state’s slave population was calculated into its allocation of house seats

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amendment proposal

2/3 vote in both houses of Congress

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amendment ratification

approval by 3/4ths state legislatures

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congress checks over president

passes laws which president is charged wit henforcing, authorizes funding for agencies and programs, veto override with 2/3 veto of both houses, senate approval of presidential appointments, senate approval of treaties, removal of president by impeachment, oversight of executive agencies

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congress checks over court

may change number of jurisdiction of federal courts, sets lower federal court jurisdiction, may change number of justices on scotus, approval of judicial appointments, removal of judges through impeachment, initiating constitutional amendments

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president checks over congress

legislative veto, discretion with regard to enforcing legislation, executive orders, executive agreements, appealing to the people

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president checks over court

appointment of federal judges, discretion with regard to enforcing court decisions, pardon power

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supreme court checks over congress

may declare laws unconstitutional

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supreme court checks over president

power to declare exec brach actions unconstitutional

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virginia plan

bicameral legislature based on population size

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new jersey plan

unicameral legislature based on equal rep

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great compromise

a bicameral legislature with a House of Representatives (population) and Senate (equal representation)

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brutus 1

National government had too much power, an army could prevent liberty, and representatives may not truly be representative of the people

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fed 10

large republic and representative gov created by the constitution is the best defense against the problems created by factions

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fed 51

agued that separation of powers would make the government efficient, dividing responsibilities and tasks

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dual federalism

powers clearly delineated between those powers exercised by the fed gov and the states

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cooperative federalism

extensive overlap and interplay between state and fed powers

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categorical grants

grants of money to state and local governments that must be used in compliance with highly specific instructutions

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block grants

transfers of money to state and local gov given for broad purposes with few strings attached

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federal rule that imposes an obligation on state or local gov

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unfunded mandate

federal rule that imposes an obligation on state or local gov without providing funds to help pay for associated costs

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article 1 section 8

17 enumerated powers of congress

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necessary and proper clause

congress holds powers that which are not specified in the constitution that may be reasonably related to the use of those powers that are listed

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commerce clause

grants congress the power to regulate commerce but not within states

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full faith and credit clause

states must accept the public acts, records, and judicial outcomes of the other states

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privileges and immunities clause

prohibits states from discriminating unreasonably against citizens of other states

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article 6 supremacy clause

constitution and all laws and fed treaties made by the fed gov take precedence over state laws

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powers of congress

power to tax and spend, borrow money on the credit of the US, regulate commerce, establish uniform rules for naturalization, coin money, post offices and post roads, create lower fed courts, crimes of piracy, declare war, supporting military, govern territory of seat

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redistribution of the 435 hor seats among the 50 states

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the drawing of new district boundaries within states

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redistricting in a way to create an advantage of a party

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senate powers

ratifies treaties with 2/3rds vote, conducts trials of impeached officials, chooses the vp if electoral college fails to pick a winner, ratifies presidential appointments

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hor powers

initiates all revenue bills, authority to charge officials with impeachment by maj vote, chooses president if ec fails to pick winner

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standing committee

permanent groups that focus on all bills related to a particular policy area, develop expertise around specific issues

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smaller specialized divisions of larger committees that are created to divide the work and more efficiently work out details on bills

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joint committee

limited number of committees with members from both chambers that have limited authority and frequently handle administrative housekeeping tasks

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conference committee

temporary groups composed of members of both the hor and senate to reconcile different versions of the same bill

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select committee

temporary groups formed for specific purposes

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hor rules comm

responsible for putting bills on the calendar, setting limits for the amount of time for debate, and specifying whether amendments can be added

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hor ways and means comm

responsible for reviewing all bills that would raise or lower revenue

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hor judiciary comm

responsible for beginning the process for impeachment of federal officials

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senate judiciary comm

responsible for the initial steps in the confirmation of all federal judges

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speaker of the house

controls the calendar, sets the agenda, assigns bills to committees

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hor majority floor leader

manages legislative process and coordinates party strategy

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hor majority whip

building coalitions, counting potential votes, influences members to vote with party leadership

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hor committee chairs

powerful leaders of the standing committees who have the power to kill a bill by not reporting it to the full house

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hor minority party leadership

minority party floor leader and a minority whip that coordinates the legislative strategy of the party out of power

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senate maj party leader

schedules legislation and coordinates the majority party strategy along with the maj whip

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senate minority party leader

min party floor leader and min whip that coordinate the legislative strategy of the party out of power

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introducing bills

hor put bills into hooper

senate announce introduction on floor

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pork barrel spending

generating legislation that produces income for their districts

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trading votes

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committee chairs

set each committee’s agenda, deciding which bills the committee will attempt to pass through congress during the session

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discharge petition

removing a bill from a committee and bringing it to the floor, needs maj votes

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committee action

hearing, policy experts and interested parties give testimony about subject under consideration

inform those about proposed legislation and its impact

markup, comm discusses the legislation, makes changes, and produces final draft

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house floor procedures

more formal, limit speech to 40 mins, no proposed amendments, 2/3rds approval for passage of legislation

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committee of the whole

the entire house consists of the this committee to consider amendments under a more relaxedd and efficient set of rules

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senate floor procedures

less formal, senate must agree to bring bill on the floor, filibuster (invoke cloture to stop - 60 votes)

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discretionary spending

funding for various agencies and programs which the government is not obligated to fund at a certain level

1/3 of fed spending

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interest on national debt

congress must pay and cannot change, less than 10% of the budget

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mandatory spending

required by law, entitlement programs to give benefits guaranteed by law

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begins the budget process by reviewing all of the monetary requests from each of the federal agencies and combining them into the president’s proposed budget

makes estimates on if the gov will have surplus or deficit and sends budget to congress

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created by congress, analyzes the president’s proposed budget and provides economic data to congress

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congressional review

standing budget committees in each chamber make changes and create budget reconciliations

budget resolutions are passed by each house

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entitlement costs increase

discretionary spending must decrease

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when the maj party in congress is different from the party of the pres it is difficult to pass legislation

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groups and individuals within congress join together to advance a set of policy goals that they could not successfully promote alone

form more readily in the senate than in the house due to term lengths

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article 2

defines executive branch of the fed gov

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impeachment house

bring charges, will be impeached but not convicted

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impeachment senate

conduct a trial, conviction needs 2/3s vote

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pres powers

oversees the fulfillment of legislation passed by Congress, manages relevant agencies and programs, appoints candidates, recess appointments, requests written opinions, state of the union, recommend legislation, convenes and adjourns congress, veto

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recess appointments

appoint people to fill administrative vacancies that occur when congress is not in session

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line item veto

allow the president to cancel individual spending items in a budgeting or appropriations bill

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war powers resolution of 1973

pres must inform congress within 48 hours of committing military forces to action, if congress does not authorize action in 60 days, forces must be withdrawn, another 30 days are allowed for troops to withdraw

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executive order

used to carry out pres duties, used when congress refuses to enact the pres agenda or negotiate a solution

congress can refuse to fund these directives or to invalidate them through the passage of legislation, can be found unconstitutional in court

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executive agreements

agreements similar to treaties, dont need senate approval

done to deal with bureaucratic issues and minor details

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policy agenda

set of initiatives which they want congress to enact into law

if congress is uncooperative the pres may sometimes enact executive orders to fulfill preferred policies

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serves as advisory body to the pres

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factors to increase approval rating

honeymoon period, foreign policy successes, rally around the flag effect, strong economic growth and low unemployment, positive media coverage

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factors to decrease approval rating

scandals, expectations gap, foreign policy failures, weak economic growth and high unemployment

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fed 70

a single president can respond to a crisis faster and work with more secrecy than an executive branch run by a group of individuals, energetic president, can hold accountability

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an administrative organization that has a large number of employees, a hierarchical structure, complex rules and procedures, staffed by specialists

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advantages of a bureaucracy

centralized authority that makes management effective, specialized roles that allow for development of expertise, standardized procedures make outcomes efficient and predictable, promotes equal treatment of individuals

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disadvantages of bureaucracy

overlapping areas of authority, formalized procedures can delay results

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bureaucracy structure

created and funded by congress, most work under the authority of the president

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independent agencies

created by congress and are similar to cabinet dep but are smaller and focused on more specific policy areas

heads are appointed by pres and confirmed by the senate

can remove heads at any time

social security administration

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regulatory commissions

autonomous agencies that develop and enforce regulations related to public policy

5-10 member boards appointed by the pres and confirmed by the senate

may not be from the same party

pres does not have authority to remove heads during terms


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government corporations

gov agencies that work similarly to private businesses and offer a specific service

necessary to serve markets that aren’t profitable in the private sector


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bureaucratic discretion

power granted to bureaucratic leadership to implement mandates within policy guidelines

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bureaucratic rulemaking

gov agencies formulate and implement regulations to carry congressional mandates into effect

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iron triangle

strength and long term stability of the relationships between its three participants: interest groups, bureaucratic agencies, and congressional committees

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IG to congress

can promote policy goals by supporting members of the congressional committee overseeing its interest area with campaign contributions and other forms of political support

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