Unit 4 general
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Unit 4 general






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    Unit 4 general Unit 4 general Presentation Transcript

    • Unit 4 – Legislative Branch – Congress What are the different parts and terms of Congress?
    • Congress (legislative)
            • Coin Money, Declare War, Provide for army/navy, tax, borrow.
            • Commerce Power
            • Censures own members.
            • Uses oversight function to check executive branch.
            • Makes the law.
            • In charge of naturalizing new citizens.
    • House of Representatives
              • Appropriation bills must be introduced here.
              • Population, number of members reapportioned every 10 yrs.
              • Elected every two years.
              • Districts are large = only upper class could run for office.
              • Gets to impeach
    • Senate
              • Elected by state legislatures
              • Six year terms
              • Only 1/3 of Senate up for election at a time
              • Advice and consent to the President.
    • Senator Bob Casey Jr. (D-PA) Senator Pat Toomey (R-PA) Rep. Glenn “GT” Thompson (R-PA) Your Congressmen
    • Structure
      • House of Representatives
        • 435 members
        • Speaker of House keeps order.
        • John Boehner (R-OH) is elected by majority.
      • Senate
        • 100 members
        • Vice President is Pres. of Senate and casts tie breaking votes – Joe Biden
        • President Pro Tempore takes over occasionally – sr. member of majority party. Senator Inouye
        • Majority Leader holds real power – Harry Reid (D-NV)
    • Floor Leaders
      • Parties elect leaders to plan topics they will push.
      • “ Whips” = deputies that enforce partisanship
      • People divide into party caucuses
      • Party with the most people = majority & least = minority.
      • Majority leader decides issues they will vote on and how to set up committees.
    • Business
      • Each house has a rule book.
      • Bills are developed on behalf of constituents , lobbyists, party, or president.
      • Bills are placed on a calendar for passage.
      • Bills become laws and have to be passed by both houses.
      • Resolutions
        • laws for the constitution.
        • Or declarations.
    • Committees
      • Led by a chairperson – senior member of majority party.
      • They decide what bills to review, when to meet, and what hearings to hold.
      • Each committee focuses on a specific topic like the military or science.
      • Most bills “die” in committee.
    • How a Bill becomes a Law
      • Congressman creates bill.
      • Reviewed, then killed or moved.
      • Goes to committee.
      • Floor Debate occurs – decided by Majority Leaders.
        • House is limited to 1 hour per party.
        • Senate may speak indefinitely (filibuster).
      • Conference committee makes identical bill
      • President can…
        • Signs into law.
        • Law without signature – ignores bill while in session.
        • Veto – Dies or goes back Congress
        • Pocket Veto – ignore it out of session - dies.
    • History of the Congress 1789-1850
      • Meets first time in NYC in 1789.
      • Hires clerks, sets up procedure.
      • 1802 – Judiciary Act shapes courts.
      • 1812 – Declaration of War passed against Britain.
      • 1820 – Missouri Compromise – by Henry Clay
        • Missouri -slave state.
        • Maine -free state.
        • The 36 – 30 line divides the nation between slave and free.
        • Slaveholder John Calhoun, abolitionist Daniel Webster supports.
      • 1824 – Speaker Henry Clay helps Congress choose John Q. Adams to be president over Jackson.
      • Jackson becomes president next & fights Congress to be strongest branch.
      • 1834 – Jackson is censured by Congress.
      • 1836 – Gag rule is placed so no one can talk about slavery.
      • Compromise of 1850 passed.
        • Sick Henry Clay designs it, Daniel Webster speaks on his behalf.
        • California becomes free state
        • Popular sovereignty allowed in Utah and New Mexico.
        • Texas paid for lost land.
        • Slave trade abolished in DC.
        • Fugitive Slave Act forces Northerners to help capture slaves.
    • Civil War and Reconstruction
      • 1856 – Kansas-Nebraska Act (popular sovereignty) presented by Sen. Douglas (hopes to be prez).
      • 1856 – Rep. Preston Brooks beats Sen. Charles Sumner with cane for insulting South.
      • 1861-65 Lincoln gets his way
      • Post war –Johnson is impeached by House, not removed by Senate.
      • Radical Republicans run nation, reconstruct the South.
    • Twentieth Century Congress
      • Isolationists led charge against League of Nations.
      • New Deal Democrats took charge of Congress, support FDR.
      • Un-American Activities Committees investigate Communists.
        • Nixon gains fame in House, but McCarthy is eventually censured .
      • Pork barrel spending skyrockets, especially w/ transportation bill in the 1950’s.
      • House investigates Watergate scandal, leads to investigation of Nixon.
    • Modern Day
      • Republicans take back Congress in 1994.
      • Newt Gingrich (R-GA) and Bob Dole (R-KS) declare a “Contract with America.”
        • Balance the budget
        • Lower taxes
        • Term limits
        • Equal to executive branch
      • House impeaches over Monica Lewinsky affair perjury.
      • Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) first woman Speaker.
      • Current Speaker is John Boehner (R-OH).
    • Problems
      • Can stall important legislation.
      • Lobbyists use cash contributions to campaigns and trips, to “convince” Congressmen to vote their way.
      • Congressmen use pork barrel projects or earmarks (spending money for votes).
      • Projects are sometimes wasteful
      • Unrestricted spending = large debt.
      • Gerrymandering may occur.
      • Incumbents (people in office) have resources, likely to win re-election.
      • Two houses (one in DC, @ home)
      • Lots of travel, little time for family or relaxation
      • Can claim eminent domain .
    • Interpretation
      • Some powers are actually expressed.
      • Others are implied or inherent , which are debatable.
      • Loose / strict constructionists have always argued about Constitution.
    • Benefits
      • Keep in touch with constituents .
      • Franking privilege .
      • Broad powers are given by the Necessary and Proper Clause.
      • $174,000 salary