ARTICLES OF CONFEDERATION The precursor to the Constitution, were informally followed from1774 to 1781. WEAKNESSES: 1. Could not raise an army 2. Depended on state legislature for revenue 3. Could not control interstate trade 4. No national currency 5. No control over import of export taxes 6. No executive branch or judicial branch to enforce and interpret law
CONSTITUTIONAL CONVENTION Split between the Virginia Plan (proportion to population) andNew Jersey Plan (equal representation over all states) lead to TheGreat Compromise with a Senate and House of Representatives. There were Anti-Federalists (opponents) and Federalists(supporters). The Anti-Federalist were swayed to agree after a Bill of Rights wasadded that protected individuals from government usurpation.
SEPARATION OF POWERS From the concept of Charles de Montesquieu. The framersdelegated different but equally important tasks to the three branches. The legislative branch makes laws, the executive branch enforceslaws and the judicial interprets laws. It also prevents a person from serving in more than one branch ofthe government at the same time.
CHECKS AND BALANCES A constitutional safeguard designed to prevent any one branch ofgovernment from gaining too much power. Examples: • Nomination of judges, cabinet officials and ambassadors by the president is approved by the Senate. • Negotiation of treaties requires two-thirds of the Senate. • The presidential power to veto Congress. • Courts establishment of judicial review.
THEORIES OF DEMOCRACY Direct Democracy is a system of government in which all ormost citizens participate directly, such as in a small town meetingwhere everyone votes directly on all issues. Representative Democracy is a system of government in whichleaders that are elected for the people by the people makes decisionsby winning a competitive struggle for the popular vote.
FEDERALISM Describes a system ofgovernment under whichthe national government and state governments share powers.
CITIZENS BELIEFS Political Culture: The attitudes, beliefs, and values which people havetowards the way a particular political system operates. Issues overeconomic life are included because politics affects economics. Examples: • Americans believe that people should be equal politically, but not equal economically. • Most Americans believe that every citizen should have an equal chance to influence government policy or hold public office. People dont feel as bad about someone whos poor as much here because theyve had an equal chance as everyone else. In the U.S. if they didnt accomplish anything its because of their own deficiencies.
POLITICAL SOCIALIZATION How the average person gains a sense of political identity; the process begins inchildhood and continues through the rest of a persons life and allows individuals tobecome aware of politics and form values and opinions relating to politics ingeneral. Sources of Political Socialization: Family/ Home influences (strongest whenboth parents identify with the same party). The families views and attitudes directedtowards politics are the first experience children have. School (teach patriotism,encourage participation in politics, educate on political structure). Social groups,party affiliation, race and gender groups.
PUBLIC OPINION Formed from: • Family- Majority of young people identify with the political party of their parents; maturity=more independence from parents, included political outlook • Gender- There is a gender gap, a difference in political views between the sexes, in politics that varies from time to time and varies in magnitude. • Religion- More evident in influencing social issues than others • Schooling- College students are more liberal than the general population. • Mass Media- Is able to communicate and send messages to large samples of people.
POLITICAL EFFICACY A citizens capacity to understand andinfluence political events There has been a decline in Americancitizens feeling as though the political systemwill respond to their needs and beliefs. Political efficacy is often measuredthrough the use of surveys. There is a strong connection betweenefficacy and participation and interest inpolitical events.
POLITICAL PARTIES Framers disliked the idea of political parties but became a mainstay by the year1800. Parties endorse candidates to remain loyal to goals defined by the partyleadership. Two- Party System: Democrats and Republicans. Political parties are often divided into three broad classifications:[the electoratesidentification with the party, government officials identification with the party, andthe organization of the party itself (those political professionals who are not electednor are voting specialists).
PARTY CHARACTERISTICS Parties serve as intermediates between the people and thegovernment. Parties are made up of grassroots members, activist members andleadership. Parties are organized to raise money, present positions on policy,and get their candidates elected to office. Parties were created outside the Constitution.
PARTY ORGANIZATION National Convention: A meeting of party delegates held every four years to nominate apresidential candidate. • Superdelegates: Party members that become delegates without even running for a primary or a caucus National Committee: In between national conventions, a national committee stands tomanage party affairs. Congressional campaign committee: A party committee who in Congress that providesfunds to members and would-be members. National Chairman: Day-to-day party manager elected by the national committee. • The National chairman is paid full-time to manage the party. Caucus: meeting of party members to decide upon delegates to support a party candidate.
ELECTIONS Party Realignments: Critical or Realigning Periods: Periods whena major, lasting shift occurs in the popular coalition supporting one orboth parties. Split Ticket: voting for candidates of different parties for variousoffices in the same election declines party ideology. Straight Ticket: voting for candidates who are all in the sameparty.
ELECTORAL SYSTEMS The Two-Party SystemTwo-party system: An electoral system with two dominant parties that compete innational elections. The two-party system in the U.S. uses the plurality system of counting voteswhich when the winner of an election is the person who gets the most votes evenwhen they do not have a majority. Because the United States government has traditionally been a two party systemit has made it nearly impossible for a third party to ever come close to winning apresidential election but they can and have taken votes from the major parties whichmakes it harder for the major parties to win a majority of the vote.
PARTIES CONTINUED Ideological parties: A party that values principled stands on issues, above all else.This is the opposite extreme of political machines. Independent "third parties" are themost ideological parties. Solidary groups: parties which members join for a sense of fellowship or socialreward. Some of these groups started out as political machines; once the machine lostpower, many of the members still continued to served in the organization as a way to stayinvolved and socialize. The members of solidary groups like to join for fun and they liketo be "in the know." Sponsored party: local/state party sponsored by another organization in thecommunity
INTEREST GROUPS Any organization with a shared interest that seeks to influence publicpolicy. Comprised of a group of people sharing an interest, with the goal ofgetting Congress to pass or amend laws that affect them directly as acertain group of people. Interest groups are often the most motivated of individuals gettingtogether to support an issue and for this reason interests groups mightrepresent minorities of people
TYPES Institutional interests: These are individuals or organizationsrepresenting other organizations or ideologies. • Examples: American Federation of Labor, The Chamber of Commerce, General Motors Membership Interests: These are where the members in the interestgroup act solely on their behalf, for their interest. • Example: AFSCA, AARP. The AARP being ones of the biggest interest groups in the united states Labor Unions, Public Interest Groups, Economic Groups
INCENTIVES Solidary incentives: the social pleasure or companionship that are aresult of the small groups. (National interest groups that give solidaryincentives often have smaller localized groups that can better offer theincentive.) Material incentives: money and services that a member may receive Purposive incentive- a benefit that comes from serving a cause orprinciple Ideological Interest Groups: political organizations that attractmembers by appealing to their political convictions or principles
POLITICAL ACTION COMMITTEES PACs (political action committees) donate money to politicians, candidates, andpolitical parties that agree with their goals. Corporations, trade groups, and unions aresome examples of those that are not allowed to make political donations, so they formPACs in order to do this. PACs have been limited in donations because of the Bipartisan Campaign ReformAct of 2002 Over half of all PACs are sponsored by corporations, about a tenth by labor unions,and the rest by various groups. While both parties have become extremely dependent on PACs, PACs are not as richand powerful as they seem. A PACs contribution is rather small, usually a few hundreddollars accounting for less than 1% of a candidates receipts.
LOBBYING LIMITS Limits on Lobbying- Federal Regulation of Lobbying Act of 1946 • Allow government to monitor lobbyist activities by requiring lobbyists to register and disclose salaries, expenses, and nature of their activities. Laws against Influence Peddling, using personal friendships and inside information toget political advantage prohibition of campaign contributions from corporations, unions,and trade Under the law’s definition a lobbyist is one who fits the following definitions:Spends a minimum of 20 % of their time lobbying Paid a minimum of $5,000 to lobby within any six-month period A corporation or group that spends more than $20,000 on their lobbying staffs withina six-month period
MASS MEDIA Newspapers: while newspapers are slowly dying out, they have many benefits such as lowcost to get word out, less competition, less government regulation, and more in-depth stories andarticles The Internet: the internet is becoming the most widespread source of information in theworld and it allows for information about politics and social issues to be known within hours,minutes, or even seconds, but it faulty in that it isnt censored for the most part and so any falseinformation could be there without anybodys knowledge. Television: Television is watch by people worldwide and although it is easily accessible tolearn about politics, it has many downfalls including expense to advertisers, enormous amount ofcompetition, difficulty giving all the information that is necessary to viewers, and the fact thatpeople can easily miss important segments if they arent watching TV.
RULES GOVERNING MEDIA F.C.C regulates radio and television. The government at the state and federal level can not place prior restraints(censorship) on the press except under narrowly defined circumstances. Upon publication, a newspaper may be sued for libel, obscenity, and the incitementof an illegal act. There are laws protecting the privacy of citizens as well, but theseprotections do not affect newspapers very much. Generally newspapers can print your name and picture for a story, and when a paperattacks an individual the newspaper is not obligated to give one space for a reply. Supreme Court has allowed the government to get information from reporters incourt if the information has relevance to the crime.
PRESIDENCY Washington set the precedent of only serving 2 (4 year) terms. That didnt change until FDR who served from 1933-1945 In 1951 the 22nd Amendment was ratified and it ensured each president couldonly serve 2 terms Qualifications:· Natural born citizen· Thirty-five years of age· Resident of the United States for at least fourteen consecutive years before theelection
POWERS OF PRESIDENT commander in chief of the armed forces commission officers and appoint officials to lesser offices grant reprieves and pardons for federal offenses except for impeachment receive ambassadors convene Congress in special sessions take care that the law be faithfully executed Wield the "executive power" Appoint officials to lesser offices initiate foreign policy
CONGRESS Legislative Branch is known as the Congress. The Legislative Branch, outlinedby the Framers in Article I of the Constitution (preceding the Executive Branch andthe Judicial Branch), was probably seen by the Framers as the most importantbranch of government, even though more emphasis is placed on the ExecutiveBranch today due to the media. Framers did not want to have all powers concentrated in a single governmentalinstitution, even one that was popularly elected because they feared that such aconcentration could lead the rule by an oppressive or impassioned majority Bicameral Legislature: A lawmaking body made up of two chambers or parts
SENATE 100 members (can increase if more states are added to the Union) Representation constant among States; each State gets two Senators Members are voted based on a popular vote (before 17th amendment, senatorswere elected by state legislatures) Serve staggered 6 year terms (no limit to amount of terms someone can serve) Less centralized, more individualist Because of this, even individual senators can influence introduction and passageof legislation - there is more allowance for voices to be heard. The Senate has beenmore "personal" this way.
HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES 435 members (fixed) Representation based on population of each state. This is based on thecensus done every ten years so it is important to keep up your populationor lose your representation. (there is a minimum of 1 representative perstate while there is no maximum) Members elected by each representatives district constituents serve two-year terms (uncapped number of terms) more centralized, less individualist
ORGANIZATION OF CONGRESS The stereotypical member is a middle-aged white protestant male Congress has become gradually less male and less white Incumbent: A person already holding an elective office Before the 1950s, many members of Congress served only oneterm. However, in recent decades, legislators have begun to make acareer out of their membership in Congress, which has resulted inlow turnover rates.
BUREAUCRACY A bureaucracy is a large, complex organization composed of appointed officials. Authority is divided as each bureaucrat has a specific responsibility; one personcannot make all the decisions.examples of bureaucracy include large corporations, big universities, and agovernment agency. Congress, with its sizable staff, is a bureaucracy to some degree. Political authority or the ability to exercise authority over bureaucracy is sharedby the president and Congress.
EXECUTIVE LEVEL Executive Level DepartmentsThe cabinet: There are 15 cabinet departments headed by a secretary with the exceptionof the Justice Department. They manage specific policy areas and each has its ownbudget and staff. Regulatory agencies: independent regulatory agencies. Examples are: ICC,FTC, andFDA. Government corporations: Such as the Tennessee Valley Authority and the ResolutionTrust Corporation, created to deal with monetary failures. Independent executive agencies: Such as the General Services Administration, whichhandles government purchasing.
EXPANSION OF BUREAUCRACY Supreme Court upheld laws that granted discretion to administrative agencies. Heavy use of income taxes supported war efforts and a larger bureaucracy.Discretionary authority- the extent to which bureaucrats can chose courses of action andmake policies that are not spelled out in advance by laws. Congress gave administrative agencies authority in three areas: The Civil War began the rapid expansion of the bureaucracy because it exposed theadministrative deficiencies of the government. Competitive service: The government offices to which people are appointed on thebasis of merit, as ascertained by a written exam administered by the Office of PersonnelManagement (OPM) or by applying certain selection criteria.
CONGRESSIONAL OVERSIGHT If an interest group is important to Congress, it is generally takenseriously by the bureaucracy. Congress also has constitutional powers over the agencies andbureaucracies: • No agency may exist without congressional approval. • No money may be spent without first being approved by Congress. • No authorized money may be spent without first being appropriated by the House Appropriations Committee.
THE FEDERAL COURTS The Supreme Court Cases Marbury v. Madison (1803) and McCulloch v.Maryland (1819) were extremely crucial in establishing the power of theSupreme Court to declare an act of Congress unconstitutional, somethingreferred to as "judicial review".This concept is the right of the federal courts to declare laws of Congressand acts of the executive branch/president void and unconstitutionalMcCulloch v. Maryland also made it clear that federal law is superior to statelaw.
FEDERAL DISTRICT COURTS These lower courts hear cases for the first time There are ninety-four Federal District Courts They decide both criminal and civil cases in original jurisdiction • Ex: Bankruptcy More examples of District Court include: • United States Court of Federal Claims • United States Tax Court May use juries to decide the case It is established by Congress not the Constitution and judges serve for 10 years.
APPELLATE COURTS These courts hear reviews or appeals from the lower courts These include appellate courts. Initially, the "supreme court" of district courtsare their appellate courts (assuming that these cases are resolved in appellate courts). There are 13 Circuit Courts of Appeals including the DC and Federal circuits. In cases that make it to the Circuit Courts of Appeals, there must be a claimregarding the violation of a constitutional right have no juries It is the court of last resort of the Supreme Court There are 179 judges in the Courts of Appeals, which are nominated by thepresident and confirmed by the Senate
THE SUPREME COURT This was the only court officially created by the Constitution This court hears appeals from the Court of Appeals; the cases the SChears generally deal with the Constitution • Of more than 10,000 cases filed by the federal courts of appeal only around 100 are heard by the Supreme Court Original jurisdiction in cases involving foreign ministers The SC has original and appellate jurisdiction This court settles disputes between states.
PUBLIC POLICY Agenda Setting determines the social and economic problems, redefines theminto political issues and ranks them in order of importance. Policy formulation and adoption can be accomplished in a number of ways. Themost difficult method is through Congress, easiest is from executive orders. Policy implementation puts the policy into effect by enforcement throughappropriate government agency. Policy Evaluation is the final step. Evaluation provides feedback to thepolicymakers, so that modifications can be made to better solve problems.
ECONOMIC POLICY Sound economy policy that achieves prosperity is probably the mostelusive of all policies. Many elements to the problem: inflation, deflation,interest rates and international agreements. Fiscal Policy- government action of either lowering or raising taxesand changing government spending. Monetary Policy- refers to the process by which the governmentcontrols the supply of money in circulation and the supply of creditthrough the actions of the Federal Reserve.
TRADE POLICY The ratio of imported products to exported products is called thebalance of trade. When imports exceed exports it creates a tradedeficit and nations tend to place import restrictions to fix this. The North American Free Trade Agreement, effectively removedimport tariffs between the U.S., Canada, and Mexico. It’s passage has also led to cheaper labor in Mexico for many U.S.companies.
DOMESTIC POLICY Social insurance programs are in reality national insurance programsinto which employers and employees pay taxes. Public assistance programs are not perceived as earned. Theseprograms are a result of condition and a government responsibility tohelp the needy. Social Security is an entitlement program mandated by law. Thegovernment must pay benefits to all people who meet the requirementsof the program.
PERCEPTION, BELIEFS, AND VALUES The perception of costs and benefits is what affects politics, they are notcompletely defined in monetary terms. Values also affect policy making decisions, and what Americans want for thecountry varies; it often times depends on whether the near future or distant future isconsidered, this is known as the short-term/long-term disconnect. A political conflict is mostly a struggle to make some beliefs about costs andbenefits dominate others. Beliefs are also in conflict. A political conflict is a struggle to changeperceptions and beliefs.
FIRST AMENDMENT Guarantees us our basic freedoms: freedom of speech, freedom ofpress, freedom of assembly, and freedom of religion. There are limits to the freedoms. The freedom of speech must passthe clear and present danger test. The freedom of speech does notprotect libel or slander. The freedom of religion abides by the Lemon Test in school policiesso that all purposes are secular if it related to the government.
CIVIL LIBERTIES Civil Liberties are the protections that the constitution provides to protect thecitizens against the abuse of government power. Dont confuse these with CivilRights, which usually pertain to protecting certain groups, such as races, genders, orpeople of certain sexual orientations, from discrimination or maltreatment. Trying to decide, in various cases, if in fact anyones civil liberties have beenviolated is a major problem. The Constitution and the Bill of Rights contain rights and duties that conflictwith each other. Some of the main factors for this conflict are the cultural, ethnic,and religious differences in the United States itself.
LANDMARK CASES Gitlow V. New York (1925)- Supreme Court agrees that 1st Amendmentapplies to all states because of the due process clause. Since then most ofthe Bill of Rights has been incorporated in to the states. Palko V. Connecticut (1937)-Supreme Court agrees that states mustrespect all "fundamental" liberties These cases led the Supreme Courts to begin to use selectiveincorporation.
EXCLUSIONARY RULE Improperly gathered evidence(in violation of the Constitution)may not be used in a criminal or civil trial. • Fourth Amendment - protection against unreasonable search and seizures and obtaining improper confessions • Fifth Amendment - protection against self incrimination. • In 1949 the Supreme Court first decided that even though the 4th Amendment prohibits the police from carrying out unreasonable searches and obtaining improper confessions that the exclusionary rule is not necessary to enforce these prohibitions.
BILL OF RIGHTS TO THE STATES Selective incorporation: Court cases that apply the Bill of Rights to the States. Notall rights are applied to the states. The Court debated which rights were "fundamental"that they had to govern the states. The entire Bill of Rights is applicable to the statesexcept the following: the right to bear arms(2nd Amendment); the right not to havesoldiers forcibly quartered in homes(3rd Amendment); the right to be indicted by a grandjury before being tried for a serious crime(5th Amendment); the right to a jury in civilcases(7th Amendment); and the ban on excessive bail and fines(8th Amendment). Theserights can be restricted by the states. Due process of law: Denies the government the right, without due process, todeprive people of life, liberty, and property
CIVIL RIGHTS In 1830 Congress passed a law requiring all Indians east of the Mississippi Riverto move to the Indian Territory west of the river, and the army set aboutimplementing it. In the 1850s a major political fight broke out in Boston over whether the policedepartment should be obliged to hire an Irish officer. Until 1920 women could not vote in most elections. The Equal Protection Clause of the 14th Amendment guarantees civil rights;after the Civil War, the amendment was added to the Constitution to ensure stateswould not discriminate against former slaves and that the civil liberties of thesenewly freed individuals would be protected.
SEPARATE BUT EQUAL The separate by equal doctrine created separate but very unequalfacilities. Blacks usually had the poorer schools and less well kept facilities touse National Association for the Advancement of Colored People(NAACP) was formed in 1909 to try and get rid of this doctrinecause things were obviously not equal, especially educationally
SUPREME COURT CASES Plessy v. Ferguson(1896) ruled that segregated schools and other"separate but equal" facilities were not unconstitutional. • The Courts interpretation of the equal-protection clause was that the law guaranteed political and legal equality but not social equality. Brown v. Board of Education of Topeka, Kansas (1954) ruled that separateschools are not equal and overturned the Plessy v. Ferguson case. Green v. County of School Board of New Kent County (1968):Banned the freedom of choice plan for integrating schools making blacksand whites have to attend multiracial schools.
SEGREGATION V. INTEGRATION De jure segregation: “racial segregation that is required by law.” A good exampleof this is during the time of Jim Crow laws in the southern states. De facto segregation: “racial segregation that occurs in schools, not as a result ofthe law, but as a result of patterns of residential settlement.” In New Kent County, Virginia, the school board created a “freedom-of-choice” planunder which each student would be allowed to attend a school of their choice. TheSupreme Court rejected this plan as unconstitutional because it did not produce a“nonracial system of education”. Schools cannot be held accountable for segregation due to living patterns and if thatwas the only case of the segregation, the Court would relinquish its hold on the school.
WOMEN’S RIGHTS Origins from the Seneca Falls convention in 1848 Congress responded by passing laws that required equal pay for equal work, prohibiteddiscrimination on the basis of sex in employment and among students in any school or universityreceiving federal funds, and banned discrimination against pregnant women on the job Supreme Court had to choose between two standards when dealing with sex discrimination:The Reasonableness standard stating that government treats some classes differently and thistreatment must be reasonable, and second the Strict scrutiny standard which states that somedistinctions drawn between groups are inherently suspect. The Civil Rights Act of 1964 and 1972 banned sex discrimination in the hiring, firing, andcompensation of employees, and apply to both government and private actions
FOURTEENTH AMENDMENT The Equal Protection Clause of the 14th Amendment guarantees civil rights; after theCivil War, the amendment was added to the Constitution to ensure states would notdiscriminate against former slaves and that the civil liberties of these newly freedindividuals would be protected. The amendment provided for due process and equalprotection, which allowed the Supreme Court to apply the Bill of Rights to the states-Prior to the passage of the Fourteenth Amendment all the citizens had were the Bill ofRights, which at the time did not apply to the states (only to the national government). The Declaration of Independence, although not a governing document, suggestedthat the government should have civil rights integrated. However, the Dred Scott caseestablished that slaves were property.