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AP Government Review

AP Government Review

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AP Government Review

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  1. AP GovernmentReview Unit 1 Constitutional Underpinnings

  2. Goals of the US Constitution • Create a strong union of states • Establish justice • Preserve Domestic Order • Provide for the common defense • Promote general welfare • Promote individual freedoms

  3. Constitution Remedies the Articles of Confederation • Creates Federalism • A balance between the national and state governments • National government could tax • Congress could regulate commerce between the states and foreign nations • Article II created an executive department to enforce laws • Article III created a national judiciary with a Supreme Court and lower courts established by Congress

  4. Constitution Remedies the Articles of Confederation • Only the national government could coin money • States are represented based on population in the House of Reps and equally in the Senate • Bills need a simple majority in the House and Senate • 2/3 of Congress and 3/4of the states are necessary to amend the Constitution

  5. Basic Principles of the Constitution • Limited government • Popular sovereignty • Separation of powers • Checks and balances • Federalism

  6. Amendments • The Constitution has been formally amended 27 times. • Please know all the amendments • The first 10 amendments are known as the Bill of Rights

  7. Informal Amendments to the Constitution • Legislative action: Judiciary Act of 1789 • Executive actions: Executive orders • Judicial review: Marbury v. Madison • Custom and usage: No 3rd term for Presidents

  8. Federalism • Delegated powers • Expressed powers given to the national government • Implied powers • Powers that may be reasonably inferred from the Constitution (Necessary and Proper Clause) • Inherent powers • Powers that exist from the national government because the government is sovereign • Concurrent powers • Belong to both the states and national governments • Reserved powers • Powers that belong to the states (Amendment 10)

  9. Federalism In Practice • Interstate Relations • Full faith and credit clause: states are required to recognize the laws and legal documents of other states • Privileges and immunities clause: states are prohibited from unreasonably discriminating against residents of another state • Extradition: states may return fugitives to states which they fled • Interstate compacts: states may work together to solve regional problems

  10. National Supremacy • Article IV Supremacy Clause • McCulloch v. Maryland (1819) Federal law is supreme over state law • Gibbons v. Ogden (1824) National supremacy over interstate commerce

  11. Federalism Today • Dual Federalism (1789-1932) • Layer cake federalism: National and state have power within their own sphere of influence • Cooperative Federalism (1932-1968) • Marble cake federalism: National and state work together • New Federalism (Nixon, Reagan, Bush 41) • Devolution of national power to the states

  12. Fiscal Federalism • Grant in aid • Money and resources provided by the national government to state and local projects and programs • Categorical grants • Grants that have specific purpose defined by law • Block grants • General grants which can be used for a variety of purposes • Unfunded mandates • Requirements which are imposed by the national government on the state and local governments

  13. AP Government ReviewUnit 2 Political Beliefs and Behaviors

  14. Political Culture • A set of beliefs and basic values shared by most citizens. • Majority rule • Free elections • Equality in law • Private property • Individual freedoms

  15. Political Socialization • The process in which citizens acquire a sense of political identity • Family and home life • Education • Group affiliations (interest groups, labor unions) • Demographic factors (age, sex, race, religion) • Mass media • Historical events

  16. Public Opinion • A collection of shared attitudes of many different people in matters relating to politics, public issues, or making of public policy.

  17. Measuring Public Opinion • 1930’s George Gallup developed polling: • Sampling • Preparing valid questions • Controlling how the poll is taken • Analyzing and reporting results

  18. Political Ideology • A set of beliefs about politics and public policy that creates the structure for looking at government and public policy.

  19. Political Spectrum • Radical: favor rapid, fundamental change in existing social, economic, political order • Liberal: supports active government in promoting individual welfare and social rights • Moderate: political ideology falls between liberal and conservative • Conservative: promotes a limited government role in helping individuals, supports traditional lifestyle • Reactionary: advocates a return to a previous state of affairs

  20. AP Government ReviewUnit 3 Political Parties Interest Groups Mass Media

  21. Political Parties • An association of people who seek to control the government through common principle. • Two Party System: There are several parties but only two major parties compete and dominate elections • Minor Parties: generally have little to no impact on elections

  22. What do Parties do? • Recruit candidates • Nominate and support candidates for office • Educate the electorate • Organize the government (majority vs. minority)

  23. Ideology Income Race Religion Region of country Education Occupation Gender Family tradition Marital status Party Identification

  24. Why a Two Party System • British heritage • Federalist/Anti-Federalist • Electoral system • Election laws

  25. Electoral Dealignment and Realignment • Dealignment: when significant number of voters no longer support a particular party • Realignment: voting patterns shift and new coalitions form. • Republicans (1860) • Democrats (1932)

  26. Voting and Elections

  27. Political Participation • Voting in elections • Discussing politics and attending political meetings • Forming interest groups and PACs • Contacting public officials • Contributing money to a candidate or political party • Running for office • Protesting government decisions

  28. Issue or Policy Voting • Direct Primary • Allows citizens to nominate candidates • Recall • Is a special election initiated by petition to allow citizens to remove an official from office • Referendum • Allows citizens to vote directly on issues called propositions • Initiative • Allows voters to petition to propose issues to be decided by qualified voters

  29. Low Voter Turnout • Voter turnout is higher for Presidential elections • Lower turnout for midterm elections • Lower when compared to other nations

  30. Low Voter Turnout • Expansion of the electorate (26th Amendment) • Failure of the political parties to mobilize voters • No perceived differences between candidate or party • Mistrust of the government • Apathy • Satisfaction with the way things are • Lack of political efficacy • Mobility of the electorate • Registration process

  31. Types of Elections • Primary Election: voters choose candidates from their party • Closed primary: only voters who are registered in the party may vote to choose the candidate • Open primary: voters may vote to choose the candidate of either party, whether they belong to that party or not • Blanket primary: voters may vote for candidates of either party • Runoff primary: when no candidate from a party receives a majority of the votes, the top two candidates face each other

  32. Types of Elections • General Election • Voters get to choose from among all the candidates nominates by political parties or running as independents

  33. Electoral College • President and Vice-President are chosen by the 538 electoral votes • 435 districts • 100 senators • 3 Washington DC • States use a winner take all method of assigning their electoral votes based on popular vote • The candidate that receives a majority (270) is declared winner. • If no winner is declared the House of Representatives chooses the President and the Senate chooses the Vice-President

  34. Campaign Finance • Federal Election Campaign Act (1971) • Restricted • Amount spent on campaign advertising • Required disclosure of contributions and expenditures • Federal Election Commission • Enforces the FECA • Created public financing for presidential candidates • Buckley v. Valeo (1976) • The Supreme Court ruled that spending limits established by the FECA were unconstitutional

  35. Interest Groups and the Mass Media

  36. Interest Groups • Raise awareness and stimulate interest in public affairs by educating their members and the public • Represent membership, serving as a link between members and the government • Provide information to the government • Provide channels for political participation

  37. Types of Interest Groups • Economic Interest Groups • Labor Groups (AFL-CIO) • Business Groups (Chamber of Commerce) • Professional Groups (National Education Association) • Agricultural Groups (National Farmer’s Union)

  38. AP Government ReviewUnit 4 The Legislative, Executive, and Judicial Branches

  39. The Legislative Branch

  40. Congress • Article I of the US Constitution creates a bicameral legislature consisting of the House of Representatives and the Senate • The current structure was a result of the Connecticut or Great Compromise reached at the Constitutional Convention

  41. House of Representatives • Membership • 435 members apportioned by population • Term of Office • 2 years; entire House elected every 2 years • Qualifications • At least 25 years old • Citizen for 7 years • Must live in state where district is located • Constituencies • smaller, by district • Prestige • Less prestige

  42. House of RepresentativesGetting Elected • Apportionment: distribution among the states based on the population of each state • Reapportionment: the redistribution of Congressional seats after the census determines changes in population distribution among the states • Congressional districting: the drawing by state legislatures of congressional districts for those states with more than one representative • Gerrymandering: drawing congressional districts to favor one political party or group over another

  43. House of Representatives • Leadership • Speaker of the House • Presiding officer and most powerful member • Assigns bills to committee • Controls floor debates • Appoints party members to committees • Majority Leader • Assistant to the Speaker • Helps plan party’s legislative program • Directs floor debates • Minority Leader • Major spokesperson for the minority party • Organizes opposition to the majority party

  44. House of RepresentativesHow a Bill becomes a Law • A bill is introduced, numbered, and assigned to a committee • The bill may be assigned to a subcommittee for further study • The bill is returned to committee where it is approved or rejected • The rules committee sets terms of debate for the bill • The bill is debated by the House • A vote is taken. Bills that pass go to the Senate • Conference committee resolves any differences between House and Senate Bill • Resolved bill is voted on in the House • If approved, sent to the President

  45. US Senate • Membership: 100 members (2 from each state) • Term of office: 6 years; staggered terms with one-third of the Senate elected every 2 years • Qualifications: • At least 30 years of age • Citizen for 9 years • Must live in state • Constituencies: Larger, entire state • Prestige: More prestige

  46. US Senate • Getting Elected • Members were originally chosen by the state legislatures in each state • Since 1913, the 17th Amendment allows the direct election of senators by the people of the state

  47. US Senate • Leadership • US Vice President • Presiding officer of the Senate. • Cannot debate and only votes to break a tie • President pro tempore • Senior member of the majority party • A ceremonial position • Majority leader • The most influential member of the Senate • The majority party’s spokesperson • Minority leader • Performs the same role as the House minority leader

  48. US SenateHow a Bill becomes a Law • A bill is introduced, numbered, and assigned to a committee • The bill may be assigned to a subcommittee for further study • The bill is returned to committee where it is approved or rejected • No rules committee! • The bill is debated by the Senate • A vote is taken, where the bill is passed or defeated. Bills that pass the Senate are sent to the House • Conference committee resolves any differences between House and Senate Bill • Resolved bill is voted on in the Senate • If approved, sent to the President

  49. Congressional Override • If the President vetoes the bill then it is returned to the Congress, where they may override the veto by a two-thirds vote in each house.

  50. Types of Committees • Standing • A permanent committee that deals with specific policy matters (agriculture, energy…) • Select • A temporary committee appointed for a specific purpose (Senate Watergate Committee) • Joint • Made up of members of both Houses (Joint Committee on the Library of Congress) • Conference • A temporary committee of members from both Houses, created to resolve differences in the House and Senate versions of the bill