Apr 28, 2009
AP Gov Review M/C Questions from old tests (1989-2002)
Unit I How do we formally amend the Constitution? This process best illustrates what principle?
propose by 2/3 Congress and ratified by ¾ of states, illustrates the federal structure of US government
2. Know the checks and balances between the three branches. Executive – can veto bills and appoints judges Legislative – can override veto and confirms or rejects judicial appointments
Judicial – can declare actions unconstitutional and can declare laws unconstitutional
3. What was Madison’s opinion of factions in Federalist 10? How could they be controlled?
natural, but controllable by institutions; undesirable, but inevitable in a free nation
4. What was the most important effect of replacing the Articles of Confederation with the Constitution?
creation of strong national government
5. Define the doctrine of original intent.
meaning of Constitution based on the intent of the framers
6. List the core values of the US political culture
legal equality, political equality, freedom of religion, freedom of speech
7. What was the importance of Shay’s Rebellion to the development of the Constitution?
strong national government needed to protect property
8. Define federalism and how is power distributed?
a division of power between central government and regional governments
9. Which principle was established in McCulloch v Maryland?
states cannot interfere with or tax the legitimate activities of the federal government, doctrine of implied powers and Supremacy clause
The 10 th Amendment reserved powers to the states can best be described as those powers not granted to the national government or _________ to the states are reserved to the states.
11. The framers believed that the primary function of government is
protecting individual property rights.
The interpretations of the necessary and proper clause have been central in defining the principle of __________ and it has allowed the national government to extend its __________ powers.
The framers of the Constitution devised a legislative process that can best be described as _________ and __________.
14. List 4 consequences of our federal system
inequality of government services across subnational entities, opportunities for experimentation by states in government programs, multiple points of access for interest groups, decentralization of political conflict.
The original Constitution included provisions to ________ the economic powers of the national government.
Judicial review was established by the case of ________________
Did the original Constitution determine the qualifications for the electorate?
Unit II Explain voting turnout in primaries and general elections. Which type of voter is most likely to vote in the primaries?
More voters turn out in general elections, the most in presidential elections and the more affluent vote in primary elections. The majority of the electorate does not vote in most elections.
Identify voting patterns ( likely to vote and for what party)for the following groups: women, minorities, labor union workers, Catholics, Protestant, poor, wealthy, age, region of country, education
Define and give examples of categorical, revenue sharing, project grants, and block grants. Which type of grant gives the states the most discretion in establishing policy?
4. What are unfunded mandates?
Requiring state and local governments to provide certain services to citizens without providing resources to pay for those services.
What are the conditions of aid that are attached to grants?
6. Define fiscal and cooperative federalism
federal, state and local governments work together to complete a project with the federal government providing much of the federal funding
7. Define Electoral College. What impact does the Electoral College have on campaigning?
Candidates focus on the states with largest populations and states that may be battleground states
8. What is the organizational structure of political parties? What impact does having local, state, and national party organizations have on party cohesiveness?
Separate and largely independent organizations that do not fully support the platform of the national party
9. What is the correlation between education and political participation?
voters with college education will voter more than those with a high school education
Who redraws Congressional boundaries?
11. What are the normal results of gerrymandering congressional districts?
favors one political party over another
12. Can a Presidential candidate win a plurality of the votes and still take the office if he has less than 50% of the popular vote?
Yes, must win majority of only the Electoral College.
13. What is the way that lobbyists try to influence legislators during the legislative process?
providing legislators with information on technical issues
Single member districts tend to support a legislature dominated by _____ (number) political parties.
15. Explain “horse-race journalism”
media focuses on strategies of campaigns, personalities of candidates, polls
16. What is required by federal election laws for areas that have high numbers of linguistic minorities?
ballots to be printed and available in the preferred language of that population
The most important role of political socialization of children is played by the
Which type of PACs has grown the most since 1970s?
Define critical elections. This type of election is most closely associated when the economy is
20. Under the original constitution, voters directly elected which federal position? Today?
House of Representatives and Senators
21. Over the past 3 decades, what significant trend as taken place regarding the presidential nominating process?
Increasing importance of presidential primaries over state conventions
What is the best predictor for who a voter will select in Presidential elections?
23. How do interest groups and parties promote democracy in the US?
linking citizens to the political process
Public money can only be spent to help finance what type of campaigns?
Diversity of public policy is a result of our ________ style of government
26. What has been the impact of 18-21 year old voting?
turnout at a lower rate than the rest of the electorate
27. In coverage of the campaigns by the media, the focus is typically focusing on
day to day campaign activities?
28. If a presidential candidate wins 48% of the popular vote, the other candidate wins 40%, and a 3 rd party candidate wins 12%, how is the Electoral College vote allocated?
because of the winner take all system, the candidate with the most votes will win all of the electors for that state
29. What has been the result of party identification statistics since the 1970s?
percentage of voters identifying themselves as Democratic or Republican has been declining
30. Define plurality elections
Person who wins a plurality of votes wins the election (plurality = most votes, not necessarily a majority of votes)
31. What is the limitation amount placed on contributions by individuals, PACs?
$2,000 and 10,000 and adjusted for inflation (updated?)
32. What has been the effect of direct primaries on selecting presidential candidates?
weaken party control over process and more people involved in the choice of candidates
33. Which factor has contributed to the rise of interest groups and the decline of parties in recent years?
Interest groups are better able to articulate specific policy positions than are political parties
34. The role of the media on public opinion is best characterize by
they affect which issues the public thinks are important
Which group of voters has consistently voted for Democratic candidates in presidential elections?
Reforms in the presidential nomination process over the past 30 years have increased the number of ______ and __________ at the Democratic convention.
37. The most common form of political participation undertaken by US citizens is
voting in presidential elections
Frequent election patterns over the past 40 years has resulted in
39. The primary reason we have a two party system is our
winner take all electoral system makes it difficult for new parties to emerge
Interest groups have the greatest influence on policy matters involving _______ issues, ____ interest groups, and ________ information.
The US voter turnout is _____ than Western democracies
42. A realignment did not take place in the 1980s because Republican dominance in _________ elections did not extend to _______________ _____elections
congressional, state, and local
43. What is the main difference between the elite theory and pluralist theory?
Elite believes that one minority group dominates politics and pluralist will argue that many groups compete for power in different areas
In the 1980s the Democratic Party saw a decline of party strength among
Since the 1950s an important change in the political culture has been that citizens are less ______ of government institutions and leaders
Since the 1960s which of the following has not increased? % of independents, influence of political consultants, number of primaries, turnout of voters, role of television
Unit III Under what conditions will Congress uphold a presidential veto?
president’s party enjoys a veto proof majority in the Congress
What clause has been the most responsible for expanding the powers of the national government?
3. What is the role of the House Rules committee?
sets the conditions of debate and type of amendments that can be offered on legislations
4. What is the franking privilege?
free use of the mail by members of Congress for the purpose of keeping constituents informed
Legislative vetoes are unconstitutional because they violate the principle of _______.
6. What are the major constitutional differences between the House and Senate regarding impeachment, raising revenue, presidential appointments and treaties?
the house impeaches, the senate will conduct the trial and remove, bills of revenue begins in the House, Senate confirms appointments and ratifies treaties
7. What is the purpose of a filibuster and how can it be stopped?
to delay a vote in the Senate; stopped by 60 (2/3) senators invoking the cloture rule
8. What executive appointments require senate approval?
cabinet heads, agency heads, judges, ambassadors
What does the Ways and Means Committee do?
10. What is the role of the conference committee?
to work out the differences between the House and Senate versions of a bill
11. Why are committees more important in the House than Senate?
because of the size of the House, more work can be done in committees
Standing committees are often called ______ _______ committees.
How can Congress attempt to overturn a Supreme Court decision?
14. Why do incumbents win reelection at a high rate and why do House members win reelection more than Senators?
more campaign contributions, caseworking, pork barrel; Senators have better competition for job, held more accountable
Regarding the rules of procedures in each chamber, which is more formal?
16. What are the procedures for removing the president from office?
House impeaches and senate conducts trial and removes
17. What are examples of formal tools that Congress can use for oversight of the bureaucracy?
review of agency’s budget, authorization of spending, issue new guidelines
18. What power of Congress is the most contested in courts?
regulate interstate commerce
The line item veto challenges what Constitutional principle?
20. What are the 3 parts of the iron triangle?
bureaucratic agency, interest group, congressional committee
21. Which statement is not true concerning vetoes? Congress overrides less than 10%, revised and passed in a different form, presidents threaten veto to gain leverage, presidents will veto part of a bill, Congress will use favorable riders in bills that the presidents do not want to gain presidential approval
presidents will veto part of a bill
Standing committees are important because it fosters the development of _________
Elections for the House of Representatives provide _______________ for every voter.
A candidate’s _______ status has the most influence on the outcome of a congressional election
The Court agreed that Congress could outlaw segregation in public accommodations because it affected __________________ (Heart of Atlanta Motel v US).
26. How are committee chairs chosen and what powers do they have?
secret party vote, controls the committee’s funds, staff, and agenda
27. What are the differences in the legislative process in the House and Senate?
restricted and formal in the House, amendment process restricted in House, House Rules Committee sets guidelines for debate
Communication between congressional representatives and constituents occurs mainly through __________.
29. Define pork barrel legislation and how does it help the reelection of members of Congress.
earns members a reputation for service to district
Baker v Carr involves the principle of ________
31. Define “closed rule” as determined in debate in the House of Representatives?
amendments to the bill cannot be offered
Of all the presidents’ advisors (WH staff, cabinet, agency heads, etc) which group is most loyal and thus the President will rely on the most?
2. What are some of the causes that results in the President’s popularity dropping over the course of his term in office?
drops as the term progresses, scandals
3. List the constitutional roles of the President
commander in chief, state of the union address, negotiate treaties, grant pardons, enforce the laws, appointment to courts and bureaucracy,
4. Explain the relation between the president and Congress regarding the War Powers Act. What action can the president take that does not need Congressional approval?
President can deploy troops without congressional approval, but must notify Congress within 48 hours and Pres. must remove after 60 days unless approved by Congress by resolution or declaration of war
Recent presidents have increased the use of executive agreements because it does not need approval from the ______.
6. Define controllable and uncontrollable expenditures. Which of the uncontrollable spending takes the biggest bite out of the budget?
entitlements (social security, medicare/Medicaid)
7. Define entitlement and give an example
federal benefits that must be funded by Congress and paid to citizens that met eligibility requirements
8. What are some reasons Presidential candidates will utilize in selecting vice-presidential candidates?
adds balance and appeal to the national ticket
9. What are the methods that the president can use to influence Congress to pass his legislative programs?
use of media, use staff to lobby legislators, exploit partisan majority, use of his high popularity polls
10. How did Congress try to regain power lost to the President in the Budget and Impoundment Act?
make Congress less dependent on the President’s budget by creating the CBO to counter the OMB
11. What factors and/or issues have contributed to the expansion of presidential powers?
Cold War, increase public expectations for government services, economic and domestic problems, increase US involvement in international affairs
12. Why do cabinet members have little influence on presidential decision making?
presidential goals often conflict with institutional goals of departments and agencies
13. The main source of power for the federal bureaucracy lies in its ability _____________ after receiving a general mandate from Congress.
to set specific guidelines
Congress will defer to the president in the area of _____ policy.
Presidents could do a better job of controlling spending if he had the _______ veto.
____________ does not require senate approval, but it may require congressional allocation of funds to implement.
17. What is the primary responsibility of the OMB?
preparing the President’s budget to send to Congress
18. The Freedom of Information Act was designed to give __________________________.
citizens access to information from the executive branch
_________ agencies tend to be freer from presidential control than cabinet departments.
20. List 4 reasons presidents have difficulty in controlling the bureaucracy.
agencies have support from interest groups (iron triangle), they have expertise the presidential advisors lack, employees develop loyalties to the agencies, Congress is competitor for influence over the bureaucracy
The Federal Reserve Board has the most direct influence on _______.
22. What was the Court’s opinion regarding executive privilege in US v Nixon?
executive privilege cannot be used to conceal a crime and it is not an unqualified power (national security)
What is the best indicator of an agency’s budget?
24. What is the primary function of regulatory agencies?
regulating industry to protect the public
Congress greatest influence on the operation of a federal agency is by reviewing the agency’s annual _______.
Most cases appealed to the Supreme Court will be _______ certiorari.
Amicus curiae briefs are used by _________ ________ to lobby the courts.
The Fourteenth Amendment was passed to overturn the Supreme case of _________ and would later be used to ___________the Bill of Rights on a case by case basis. This is referred to as _______ incorporation.
4. How can presidential appointments to the court be used to support the President’s policy for many years after he has left office?
President will appointment judges that share his ideology
6. Define the ‘wall of separation”
separation of church and state
An increase in the percentages of African-American voting rates in the ‘70s and 80’s can be attributed to what Congressional Act?
constitutional rights that are afforded people in police custody before questioning the suspect after an arrest
9. What characteristic or factor does the president use to select Supreme Court justices and lower level judges?
share similar policy views
The decision that upheld the right of women to have an abortion was _______ and it was based on the right to ______ that is implied in the Bill of Rights
11. What some checks on the powers of the federal courts?
judges can be impeached, Congress can pass a law clarifying their legislative intent, president can refrain from enforcing court’s decision, Congress can amend the Constitution
12. What is the reason why federal judges have a life term based on good behavior?
so judges could be free from political pressure
Which of the Supreme Courts jurisdiction is the source for its caseload?
14. How can the President change the direction of decisions being made by the judiciary?
power to appoint judges with judicial philosophy similar to his own
15. What action by the Supreme Court did the most to expand the Civil Rights movement?
declaring state mandated school segregation to be unconstitutional
16. What is the current interpretation of free speech by the Supreme Court?
recognizes the right to express opinion without using words- freedom of expression
Discrimination in public accommodation was made illegal by the passage of ___________.
18. Most cases accepted by the Supreme Court are based on the “rule of four” Explain.
If 4 justices agree to hear the case, the Court will accept the case
19. In what areas did the Warren Court have the most impact?
reapportionment, segregation, expand rights of the accused, religion
20. What does the establish clause prevent the government from doing?
prohibits the setting up of a state church
Griswold v Connecticut established the right of _________.
22. Explain the exclusionary rule and why do law and order groups disagree with its implementation?
evidence obtain without a warrant cannot be used in court; detrimental to the maintenance of law and order
Most criminal cases in the US are ________.
Define judicial activism and judicial restraint
25. The majority viewpoint of US citizens regarding free speech and freedom of assembly is
that they believe it in principle but are not tolerant of views that are different from their own
New courts are created by ________.
The decision in Schenck v US allowed the government to restrict speech that presented a ________.
28. How did each of the following protect the legal rights of women? Equal Pay Act, Civil Rights Act, Education Amendments Act of 1972
All guaranteed that women would not be discriminated against because of their gender
The principle of _______ protects citizens from imprisonment without a trial?
30. What was the purpose of the Literacy test?
to prevent African Americans from voting
31. Separate but equal that was established in ___________ was overturned in the case of __________________ which resulted in the end of segregation in schools.
Brown v Board of Education, Topeka
32. The relationship between the Supreme Court and public opinion can best be described as ____________________.
the court will rarely decide against public consensus when a clear consensus exists on the issue
Amendments 13-15 were passed primarily to protect the rights of ___________ from infringements by _____ governments.