Final Poli Sci

In recent years, polls show that ______ of respondents have favorable opinions about Congress as a whole
a) fewer than 10 percent
b) fewer than 35 percent
c) about 50 percent
d) about 75 percent
e) more than 90 percent
b) fewer than 35 percent

The people represented by a legislator or other elected or appointed official are called
a) delegates
b) trustees
c) constituents
d) representatives
e) members
c) constituents

The founders of the American republic believed that most of the power that would be exercised by a national government should be in the hands of
a) the chief executive
b) the legislature
c) the Electoral College
d) the bureaucracy
e) the judiciary
b) the legislature

The division of a legislature into two separate assemblies is called
a) representative democracy
b) checks and balances
c) a two-party system
d) bicameralism
e) dual executives
d) bicameralism

The practice of logrolling is
a) an arrangement in which members of Congress agree in advance to support each others’ bills
b) when members of Congress undermine the personal credibility of their opponents
c) when members of Congress use unlimited debate as a delaying tactic to block a bill
d) when members of Congress attach amendments to bills
e) the process of putting together a budget
a) an arrangement in which members of Congress agree in advance to support each others’ bills

The major function of Congress is
a) enforcing laws
b) lawmaking
c) using the impeachment power
d) investigating other branches of government through oversight
e) judging whether laws are constitutional
b) lawmaking

A majority of the bills that Congress acts on originate
a) in congressional committees
b) with constituents from the district or state
c) in the executive branch
d) with individual members of Congress
e) with focus groups
c) in the executive branch

A special provision in legislation to set aside funds for projects that have not passed an impartial evaluation by agencies in the executive branch is called a(n)
a) unfunded mandate
b) backdoor clause
c) amendment
d) rider
e) earmark
e) earmark

Because the interests of constituents in a specific district may be at odds with the demands of national policy, the ______ function is often a source of conflict for individual lawmakers
a) representation
b) lawmaking
c) logrolling
d) bicameral
e) executive
a) representation

A representative who is performing the role of a trustee is
a) mirroring the views of the majority of the constituents who elected him or her
b) supporting the president on all of his or her legislative programs
c) acting according to the broad interests of the entire society
d) supporting his or her political party
e) representing other members of Congress
c) acting according to the broad interests of the entire society

A representative who is performing the role of an instructed delegate is
a) mirroring the views of the majority of the constituents who elected him or her
b) supporting the president on all of his legislative programs
c) acting according to the broad interests of the entire society
d) supporting his or her political party
e) representing other members of Congress
a) mirroring the views of the majority of the constituents who elected him or her

One major problem with the role of the instructed delegate is that
a) the president’s program may not have the support of the public
b) the constituents likely do not actually have well-formed views on the issues that are decided in Congress
c) a majority of the constituents may be of a different political party than the representative
d) few members of Congress are knowledgeable about most legislation
e) members of Congress find it difficult to cooperate
b) the constituents likely do not actually have well-formed views on the issues that are decided in Congress

A legislator from Florida who votes, against his or her personal beliefs, to support subsidies for orange growers would be acting
a) as a trustee
b) as a logroller
c) as an instructed delegate
d) on what he or she believes is best for the entire society
e) as an executive
c) as an instructed delegate

For a member of Congress, casework is
a) logrolling
b) personal work for constituents
c) lawmaking
d) oversight
e) an enumerated power
b) personal work for constituents

Oversight is the process by which Congress
a) follows up on the laws it has enacted
b) reviews the actions of subcommittees
c) chooses its leadership
d) supervises the activity of the judicial branch
e) passes legislation
a) follows up on the laws it has enacted

Which of the following is NOT a function of Congress?
a) determining if laws are constitutional
b) educating the public through hearings and debates
c) carrying out and executing the laws it has passed
d) representing constituents
e) resolving conflicts between different groups
d) representing constituents

Determining which public policy questions will be debated or considered is the process of
a) oversight
b) filibustering
c) casework
d) agenda setting
e) logrolling
d) agenda setting

Enumerated powers are
a) broad grants of power given to the executive branch
b) powers that allow the president to take quick action
c) powers that are specifically granted to the national government by the Constitution
d) decisions of the Supreme Court concerning the powers of Congress
e) part of the elastic clause in the Constitution
c) powers that are specifically granted to the national government by the Constitution

The rights to collect taxes, to spend, and to regulate commerce are
a) powers which have only recently been granted to Congress
b) powers reserved exclusively for the states
c) powers reserved for the president
d) the most important domestic powers of Congress
e) the most important foreign policy powers of Congress
d) the most important domestic powers of Congress

The necessary and proper clause
a) has provided the basis for an expanded role of the national government
b) has greatly expanded the presidential powers
c) was in the original Constitution, but was eliminated as a consequence of the Twenty-Seventh Amendment
d) has served to limit the expansion of national authority
e) is located in the Constitution in the text of the Tenth Amendment
a) has provided the basis for an expanded role of the national government

One major difference between the House and Senate is the total number of members—a difference that has meant that
a) House members are more likely to filibuster
b) the Senate is able to act on legislation more quickly than the House
c) a greater number of formal rules are needed to govern activity in the House
d) House members frequently invoke cloture
e) a constitutional amendment has been proposed to increase the size of the House and to reduce the numbers in the Senate
c) a greater number of formal rules are needed to govern activity in the House

A filibuster is
a) the use of unlimited debate as a delaying tactic to block a bill
b) an attempt to persuade others to vote for a particular bill in return for a favor at a later date
c) used in the House to force a standing committee to release a bill
d) a method used by the Speaker of the House to promote the majority party’s legislation
e) a technique that is unique to the House
a) the use of unlimited debate as a delaying tactic to block a bill

The concept of cloture refers to
a) a method used to defeat legislation in Congress
b) a process that shuts off discussion on a bill in the Senate
c) closed meetings held by both parties to elect their leadership or resolve other important issues
d) action taken by the House Rules Committee that must be approved by the Speaker
e) the resolution that adjourns Congress
b) a process that shuts off discussion on a bill in the Senate

All of the following are true of the filibuster EXCEPT
a) traditionally, filibusters were rare
b) in the twenty-first century, filibusters could be invoked without senators making long speeches to stop action in the Senate
c) senators today are threatening to filibuster almost every significant piece of legislation that comes before the Senate
d) the constant threats to filibuster were sufficient to create a new, ad hoc rule that important legislation needs the support of sixty senators, not fifty
e) most senators are satisfied with the increased use of the filibuster and do not want to abolish it
e) most senators are satisfied with the increased use of the filibuster and do not want to abolish it

The largest occupational group among members of Congress is
a) lawyers
b) educators
c) businesspersons
d) lobbyists
e) clergy
a) lawyers

The process of electing members of Congress is
a) conducted at the national level by the federal government
b) conducted at the local level by municipal governments
c) decentralized and conducted by individual state governments
d) not subject to any national statutes
e) not mentioned anywhere in the Constitution
c) decentralized and conducted by individual state governments

This is TRUE about midterm congressional elections
a) Voter turnout increases sharply
b) The party controlling the White House will usually gain seats in Congress
c) Voter turnout falls sharply
d) The party controlling the White House will be unaffected unless the president campaigns for congressional candidates
e) Incumbents are more likely to lose
d) The party controlling the White House will be unaffected unless the president campaigns for congressional candidates

Reapportionment is
a) the allocation of seats in the House to each state after each census
b) the redrawing of district boundaries within each state
c) a court order to hold new elections because of voting irregularities
d) altering a legislative formula that apportions spending among the states
e) a budget procedure used in the House
a) the allocation of seats in the House to each state after each census

Redistricting is
a) the allocation of seats in the House to each state after each census
b) the redrawing of district boundaries within each state
c) a court order to hold new elections because of voting irregularities
d) altering a legislative formula that apportions spending among the states
e) an illegal method used by parties to gain political advantage
b) the redrawing of district boundaries within each state

In a landmark vote in 1962, the U.S. Supreme Court made the redistricting of state legislative seats
a) an illegal act
b) a justiciable question
c) something that could not be reviewed in court
d) legal only in the southern states
e) something that must be personally undertaken by the president
b) a justiciable question

Gerrymandering is
a) legislation passed in southern states to limit African American participation in elections
b) the drawing of legislative district boundary lines to give the dominant party an advantage
c) known to give the minority party an electoral advantage at the expense of the dominant party
d) a process that attempts to limit debate on a bill in the Senate
e) a method used by the president when he wants to prevent the passage of legislation
b) the drawing of legislative district boundary lines to give the dominant party an advantage

Members of Congress are granted generous franking privileges that
a) permit them to mail letters to their constituents for free
b) allow them to charge items to a special expense account
c) allow members unlimited phone calls to their district without charge
d) permit them to receive four, round-trip airfares to their district
e) allow them to hold events such as barbeques in their districts at taxpayer expense
a) permit them to mail letters to their constituents for free

All of the following are true of the people who work for Congress EXCEPT
a) they include office clerks and assistants, as well as professionals who deal with media relations and draft legislation
b) there are a larger number of staffers for House members than for senators
c) the number of staff members has increased dramatically since 1960
d) about half of the people employed in the Capitol Hill bureaucracy are personal and committee staff members
e) some of these people maintain local offices in the member’s home state or district
b) there are a larger number of staffers for House members than for senators

The “speech or debate” clause in Article I, Section 6, of the Constitution means that a member of Congress
a) may make any allegations in connection with official duties and normally not be sued for defamation
b) cannot be arrested for misdemeanors while Congress is in session
c) must agree to public debates with announced opponents during the campaign
d) cannot engage in foreign diplomacy without the approval of the administration
e) cannot be served with parking tickets issued within the District of Columbia
a) may make any allegations in connection with official duties and normally not be sued for defamation

Most of the actual work of legislating is
a) performed by interest groups and then acted on by Congress
b) done in the Rules Committee of the Senate)
c) performed on the floor of the House of Representatives
d) performed by the committees and sub-committees within Congress
e) done when the president signs it
d) performed by the committees and sub-committees within Congress

The most important committees in Congress are _______ committees, permanent bodies that are established by the rules of each chamber and that continue from session to session
a) standing
b) select
c) joint
d) conference
e) leadership
a) standing

A _______ is formed by the concurrent action of both chambers of Congress and consists of members from each chamber
a) legislative union
b) select committee
c) standing committee
d) joint committee
e) conference committee
d) joint committee

The seniority system used in Congress
a) is required by law
b) specifies that the member of the majority party with the longest term of continuous service is given preference when a committee chairperson is selected
c) is not a traditional process and was only begun recently
d) specifies that members of the House can be appointed to the Senate to fill vacancies
e) specifies that the Speaker of the House is the member with the longest continuous service
b) specifies that the member of the majority party with the longest term of continuous service is given preference when a committee chairperson is selected

The foremost power holder in the House of Representatives is the
a) President of the House
b) majority leader
c) president pro tempore
d) Speaker of the House
e) chief whip
d) Speaker of the House

An important function of the House majority leader is to
a) report all progress of legislation to the president
b) walk the bill through the Senate, providing the bill has passed in the House
c) provide opposition to the Speaker
d) act as spokesperson for the majority party in the House
e) preside over meetings of the House
d) act as spokesperson for the majority party in the House

The whips assist the party leaders by
a) voting to support the party platform at the national convention
b) attempting to convince the general public that congresspersons should vote the party line
c) passing information down from the leadership to party members and ensuring that members cast their votes on important issues
d) gathering research information
e) pressuring them to take positions popular among the party rank-and-file
c) passing information down from the leadership to party members and ensuring that members cast their votes on important issues

The president of the Senate is
a) the leader of the majority party in the Senate
b) the senator with the most seniority, regardless of party
c) the fourth person in line to succeed the president
d) the vice president of the United States
e) always a member of the majority party in the Senate
d) the vice president of the United States

The real leadership power in the Senate rests in the hands of the
a) president of the Senate
b) president pro tempore of the Senate
c) senator designate selected by the president
d) Senate majority and minority leaders and their respective whips
e) speaker of the Senate
d) Senate majority and minority leaders and their respective whips

The ______ of the Senate is mostly a ceremonial position
a) president pro tempore
b) majority leader
c) minority leader
d) majority whip
e) minority whip
a) president pro tempore

“Money bills” must originate
a) in the Senate
b) in the House
c) in conference committee
d) with the president
e) from any of the above sources
b) in the House

After a bill has been introduced and referred to full committee,
a) a vote is held immediately on whether the bill should become law
b) the committee is not allowed to make changes in the wording of the bill
c) it usually goes to a specialized subcommittee for hearings, revisions, and approval
d) it is immediately referred to the other chamber of Congress
e) the committee is required by the Constitution to consult with the president of the United States or the president’s officially designated legislative liaison
c) it usually goes to a specialized subcommittee for hearings, revisions, and approval

The job of a conference committee is
a) to originate appropriations bills
b) to write a compromise bill, if the House and Senate bills contain different provisions
c) to set the rules of debate for a bill
d) to determine the committee path of a bill
e) to override a presidential veto
b) to write a compromise bill, if the House and Senate bills contain different provisions

The Budget and Impoundment Control Act of 1974 requires
a) each member of Congress to inform constituents of their votes on appropriations measures
b) the president to spend the funds that Congress has appropriated
c) a balanced budget by the 2030 fiscal year
d) the president to present an executive budget
e) budgets to receive the approval of the American people before they go into effect
b) the president to spend the funds that Congress has appropriated

One of the most powerful agencies in Washington, the _______ assembles the budget documents and monitors federal agencies throughout each year
a) Council of Economic Advisers
b) Senate Budget Committee
c) Department of Budget and Commerce
d) House Ways and Means Committee
e) Office of Management and Budget
e) Office of Management and Budget

The actual passage of a spending bill specifying the amount of authorized funds that will be allocated for an agency’s use is called
a) authorization
b) appropriation
c) allocation
d) reconciliation
e) consolidation
b) appropriation

A temporary funding law that Congress passes when an appropriations bill has NOT been passed by the beginning of the fiscal year is
a) the Emergency Revenue Generation Act
b) a continuing resolution
c) an Emergency Fall Review
d) a Second Temporary Budget Resolution
e) a spring review
b) a continuing resolution

One of the original purposes of government is
a) Promoting economic development
b) ensuring liberty or freedom
c) promoting equality among citizens
d) Maintain security or order
e) promoting development of cultural capital
d) Maintain security or order

Politics is
a) A type of antisocial behavior by individuals
b) becoming an increasingly low-stakes game
c) The struggle over power or influence within organizations or informal groups
d) fundamentally irrelevant
e) the equitable distribution of power among organizations or informal groups
c) The struggle over power or influence within organizations or informal groups

Harold Lasswell defined politics as
a) a necessary evil
b) the way conflict in society is perpetuated
c) Promoting equality among citizens
d) Who gets what, when, and how
e) a system for guiding individuals’ decision-making
d) Who gets what, when, and how

Governments have authority
a) when they are first organized
b) when they have the right and power to enforce their decisions
c) when they are internationally recognized
d) when they are popular
e) when people choose to obey the laws they create
b) when they have the right and power to enforce their decisions

The initiative and the referendum are both
a) ways to remove a public official from office before to the end of his or her elected term
b) procedures used in Congress to prevent the passage of a bill by talking it to death
c) Modern adaptations of direct democracy
d) constitutional mechanisms that are unique to California
e) Provided for in the Bill of Rights
c) Modern adaptations of direct democracy

In the pluralist view, politics is
a) only useful for the wealthy in society
b) Marked by the division of society into two great classes
c) insignificant at the lower levels of government
d) The struggle among groups to gain benefits for their members
e) the major problem in modern society
d) The struggle among groups to gain benefits for their members

The two most important sources of political socialization are
a) the family and the educational system
b) the rapid growth of the federal deficit and uncontrolled immigration
c) the American Socialist Party and the Democratic Party
d) direct payments to individuals from Social Security and 401Ks
e) the Declaration of Independence and the U.S. Constitution
a) the family and the educational system

A comprehensive set of beliefs about the nature of people and the role of government is called
a) An ideology
b) a dogma
c) A political culture
d) the political spectrum
e) political science
a) An ideology

Capitalism is
a) an economic system marked by the private ownership of wealthy-creating assets, free markets, and freedom of contract
b) Incompatible with property rights, including personal possessions and wealth-creating assets
c) Named for the centralization of economic power in the capitol
d) A political theory developed by Karl Marx
e) Unpopular in the United States
a) an economic system marked by the private ownership of wealthy-creating assets, free markets, and freedom of contract

Liberals typically endorse all of the following EXCEPT
a) Greater tolerance for social change
b) improving the welfare of individuals
c) Civil liberties
d) government regulation of the economy
e) A limited role for the government in helping individuals
e) A limited role for the government in helping individuals

The following statement was probably made by a ______: “The government should have no role in providing health care for the country. It would be best to provide a tax rate cut to stimulate businesses to provide more people with health care insurance. ”
a) conservative
b) communist
c) liberal
d) populist
e) socialist
a) conservative

The Jamestown colonists set a precedent in government by
a) Instituting a representative assembly
b) instituting a direct democracy
c) creating a judicial system
d) writing a constitutional document
e) allowing the governor to use a line-item veto.
a) Instituting a representative assembly

The British government imposed taxes on the colonists to pay for
a) the coronation of King George III
b) the establishment of more colonies
c) the costs of defending the colonists during the French and Indian War
d) the purchase of Canada (Quebec) from the French
e) the Revolutionary War
c) the costs of defending the colonists during the French and Indian War

In June 1776, ______ was already writing drafts of the Declaration of Independence
a) John Locke
b) Thomas Jefferson
c) John Adams
d) George Washington
e) Benjamin Franklin
b) Thomas Jefferson

The term confederation refers to
a) a system in which most power is with the central government
b) a national legislature
c) a system in which state and local governments have equal power with the central government
d) a voluntary association of independent states
e) the southern states where slavery was legal
d) a voluntary association of independent states

Probably the most fundamental weakness of the Articles of Confederation, and the most basic cause of their eventual replacement by the Constitution, was the
a) absence of an executive committee
b) lack of power to raise funds for the militia
c) one-vote-per-state system
d) lack of ability to conduct foreign policy
e) lack of provision for a president of the United States
b) lack of power to raise funds for the militia

The plan known as the Great Compromise
a) was advanced by the delegates from Georgia
b) Was proposed by Texas
c) was presented too late to be considered
d) Proposed a bicameral legislature
e) proposed a unicameral legislature in which each state would have one vote
d) Proposed a bicameral legislature

The separation of government powers into three branches (executive, legislative, and judicial) is sometimes called the
a) Madisonian model
b) American model
c) Washingtonian model
d) compromised model
e) Jeffersonian model
a) Madisonian model

The group that officially elects the president of the United States is called
a) the Presidential Election Commission
b) the Congressional Election Forum
c) the Electoral College
d) the Electoral at large
e) the Association of State Legislatures
c) the Electoral College

The Anti-Federalists advocated
a) altering the Constitution to include guaranteed personal liberties
b) a strong central government
c) ratifying the new Constitution
d) an end to slavery
e) rule by the aristocracy
a) altering the Constitution to include guaranteed personal liberties

The Bill of Rights provided for
a) protection of individual liberties at the state level
b) Separations of powers
c) equal protection under the law
d) protection against state infringements on the freedoms of conscience, the press, and jury trial
e) Protection of individual liberties at the national level
e) Protection of individual liberties at the national level

One of the two formal methods of proposing an amendment to the Constitution is by
a) A two-thirds vote in each chamber of Congress
b) a popular vote
c) approval of the legislatures in a majority of the states
d) a majority vote in both chambers of Congress, provided the amendment is not vetoed by the president
e) a judicial submission
a) A two-thirds vote in each chamber of Congress

Judicial review is
a) a method by which the president can check the judiciary
b) the process of confirmation of federal judges by Congress
c) the power of the courts to declare federal or state laws and other acts of government unconstitutional
d) not applicable to actions by state governments
e) restricted to the Supreme Court in overturning decisions by lower courts
c) the power of the courts to declare federal or state laws and other acts of government unconstitutional

Provisions of the Fifteenth Amendment
a) Say that the right to vote shall not be abridged on account of race
b) Provide equal protection under the law
c) Make it illegal to deny housing to citizens of any race
d) Outlawed slavery
e) Say that the right to vote shall not be abridged on account of gender
a) Say that the right to vote shall not be abridged on account of race

The Reconstruction statutes, or civil rights acts, ultimately
a) Created lasting equality for African Americans
b) Did little to secure equality for African Americans
c) Made it more difficult for African Americans to achieve equality
d) Resulted in more political involvement for African Americans
e) Nullified the Thirteenth and Fourteenth Amendments
b) Did little to secure equality for African Americans

In the 1896 case Plessy v. Ferguson, the Court stated that
a) Segregation alone did not violate the Constitution
b) The development of legal racial segregation known as Jim Crow laws was unconstitutional
c) Schools may not practice any type of racial segregation
d) African Americans are not persons for the purpose of the Constitution
e) The practice of slavery must cease before the end of the century
a) Segregation alone did not violate the Constitution

In the case of Brown v. Board of Education of Topeka (1954), the U.S. Supreme Court held that
a) Ethnic minorities have no rights to equal treatment by the government
b) African Americans could not be denied the right to a college education
c) The national government does not have the power to force any type of action on local school boards
d) Separation of races for a reason such as education is not a violation of the Constitution
e) Segregation of races in the public schools violates the equal protection clause of the Fourteenth Amendment
e) Segregation of races in the public schools violates the equal protection clause of the Fourteenth Amendment

De jure segregation means
a) Racial segregation that occurs because of patterns of racial residence and similar social conditions
b) Segregation based on different native languages
c) Segregation based on physical characteristics other than race
d) Racial segregation that occurs because of laws or administrative decisions by public agencies
e) Segregation to a minor degree
d) Racial segregation that occurs because of laws or administrative decisions by public agencies

______ forbade discrimination on the basis of race, color, religion, gender, or national origin
a) The Civil Rights Act of 1964
b) The Civil Rights Act of 1965
c) The Fourteenth Amendment
d) The Civil Rights Act of 1968
e) The Equal Opportunity Act
a) The Civil Rights Act of 1964

The legislation resulting from the Civil Rights Movement
a) Did not benefit African Americans
b) Has corrected economic disparities between whites and minority groups
c) Ultimately benefited almost all minority groups
d) Has eliminated poverty in most minority groups
e) Has had less of an impact on minority rights than anticipated
c) Ultimately benefited almost all minority groups

A practice, policy, or procedure that denies equality of treatment to an individual or to a group because of gender
a) is gender discrimination
b) is sexist
c) is feminist
d) violates the Civil Rights Act of 1968
e) is considered illegal if engaged in by a private corporation but acceptable if engaged in by the government
a) is gender discrimination

The policy in admissions or hiring that gives special consideration to traditionally disadvantaged groups to overcome the present effects of past discrimination is known as
a) Civil Rights
b) Affirmative action
c) Civil liberties
d) Legislative mandate
e) The Lyndon B. Johnson dilemma
b) Affirmative action

Discrimination against individuals who are NOT members of a minority group is called
a) Racial profiling
b) Anti-bias civil rights
c) Quota-busting
d) Reverse discrimination
e) Adverse minority preference
d) Reverse discrimination

The modern movement for gay and lesbian rights began
a) In 1969, following the Stonewall Inn incident
b) With the growth of the Civil Rights Movement in the early 1960s
c) In 1965, after President Kennedy was assassinated
d) In 1986, with a campaign against sodomy laws
e) In 1996, with the campaign for same-sex marriage
a) In 1969, following the Stonewall Inn incident

Civil liberties
a) Are not particularly important in the United States
b) Are threats to libertarians?
c) Allow the government the freedom or liberty to do what is necessary to run the country
d) Restrain the actions of government against individuals
e) Are guaranteed only at the state level
d) Restrain the actions of government against individuals

It was not until the Fourteenth Amendment was ratified that
a) The supremacy doctrine was established
b) The right to privacy was codified
c) Slavery was abolished
d) Individuals’ freedom of religion was protected
e) The Bill of Rights began to be applied to the states
e) The Bill of Rights began to be applied to the states

The part of the First Amendment prohibiting the establishment of a church officially supported by the national government is called the
a) Establishment clause
b) Diversity clause
c) Free exercise clause
d) Religious freedom clause
e) Church-state separation clause
a) Establishment clause

The free exercise clause guarantees
a) The free exercise of religion
b) The free exercise of armed self-defense
c) Free speech, particularly as related to religious beliefs
d) Freedom to choose private education paid for by the state
e) The free endorsement of candidates by religious groups
a) The free exercise of religion

Symbolic speech is
a) A law that is worded in a vague manner
b) An area of expression that is not protected by the First Amendment
c) Usually an expression of obscenity
d) Expression made through nonverbal communication
e) The term applied to hate speech
d) Expression made through nonverbal communication

Obscenity was legally defined by Chief Justice Burger in
a) United States v. Williams
b) Miller v. California
c) Reno v. American Civil Liberties Union
d) Osborne v. Ohio
e) Flynt v. Falwell
b) Miller v. California

Slander is
a) An attempt to do bodily harm
b) Printed material that cannot be proven true
c) The public uttering of a false statement that harms the good reputation of another
d) A law that prohibits the public from making negative statements about elected officials
e) A criminal offense
c) The public uttering of a false statement that harms the good reputation of another

Libel is
a) The amount of insurance one must have on a motor vehicle
b) Untrue rumors spread by word-of-mouth
c) Printed material that cannot be proved true
d) Defamation in writing
e) Another word for slander
d) Defamation in writing

Gag orders have been used to
a) Prohibit one criminal from testifying against another
b) Prevent publication of obscene material depicting bondage
c) Restrict what a juror may say to the press after the trial
d) Restrict what evidence must be shown to defense lawyers
e) Restrict the publication of news about a pretrial hearing
e) Restrict the publication of news about a pretrial hearing

In Griswold v. Connecticut, a 1965 case involving the legality of contraceptives, the Supreme Court
a) Ruled that states have the right to prohibit contraceptive use
b) Found that laws against contraceptives should be allowed at the local level
c) Guaranteed all women access to abortion
d) Ruled that the Court cannot establish a right unless it is specifically mentioned in the Constitution
e) Held that the law prohibiting contraceptives violated the right to privacy
e) Held that the law prohibiting contraceptives violated the right to privacy

According to the Supreme Court ruling in Roe v. Wade, which of the following restrictions may the state place on abortions?
a) During the first trimester, the state can prevent some abortions for reasons relating to the mother’s health
b) During the second trimester, the state can prevent all abortions
c) During the third trimester, the state cannot regulate abortion except to require that it be performed by a doctor
d) During the third trimester, the state may regulate or outlaw abortions except when necessary to preserve the life or health of the mother
e) The states may place no restrictions on abortions
d) During the third trimester, the state may regulate or outlaw abortions except when necessary to preserve the life or health of the mother

In Gideon v. Wainwright, the Supreme Court held that
a) A lawyer does not have to be supplied in a state case
b) Search warrants are always needed to gather evidence
c) Only criminal defendants in capital cases have the right to free legal counsel
d) There can be no cruel and unusual punishment
e) if a person accused of a felony cannot afford an attorney, one must be made available to the accused at the government’s expense
e) if a person accused of a felony cannot afford an attorney, one must be made available to the accused at the government’s expense

A model of federalism in which the states and the national government cooperate in solving problems
a) Enumerated powers
b) Cooperative federalism
c) Constitutional powers
d) Unitarian powers
e) None of the above
b) Cooperative federalism

Authority of states to make laws for the protection of the health, morals, safety and welfare of the people
a) State supremacy clause
b) Authoritarianism law
c) Police powers
d) Legislative powers
e) Enumerated powers
c) Police powers

Federal grants to states or local governments for a specific programs or projects
a) Categorical grant
b) Block grant
c) Federal grant
d) State mandate grants
e) Supremacy grants
a) Categorical grant

A model of federalism that looks on national and state governments as co-equal sovereign powers
a) Confederation federalism
b) Dual federalism
c) Concurrent federalism
d) Shared federalism
e) None of the above
b) Dual federalism

Regarding the chief executive, the writers of the Constitution
a) were all in agreement about the necessity of a powerful executive for the new republic and enough powers granted in Constitution to balance those of Congress
b) modeled the presidency of the United States after the Prime Minister of France
c) had no models to follow when they created the presidency of the United States
d) originally wanted a king
e) created a leader with unchecked powers
c) had no models to follow when they created the presidency of the United States

As compensation, the president receives
a) no salary, but many free services and an expense allowance
b) a salary of $75,000
c) a salary of $100,000
d) a salary of $250,000
e) a salary of $400,000 plus $169,000 for expenses and other free services
e) a salary of $400,000 plus $169,000 for expenses and other free services

The Constitution states that the required minimum age for the presidency is
a) twenty-five years
b) thirty years
c) thirty-five years
d) forty years
e) forty-five years
c) thirty-five years

Who was the youngest person to be elected president of the United States?
a) John F. Kennedy
b) George W. Bush
c) Theodore Roosevelt
d) Ronald Reagan
e) Abraham Lincoln
a) John F. Kennedy

Which of the following best describes the people who have been elected president?
a) older and from western states
b) primarily Catholics and Jews
c) military commanders from the South
d) white, male, Protestants
e) California natives
d) white, male, Protestants

To be elected president, one must receive
a) a majority of the popular vote
b) a majority of the electoral vote
c) a plurality of the popular and electoral vote
d) a plurality of the electoral vote
e) every electoral vote
b) a majority of the electoral vote

When the electoral college fails to elect a president, what happens?
a) The current president serves two more years and another general election is held
b) The candidate who receives a plurality of the popular vote is elected
c) The electors cast a second ballot to determine who will be elected
d) The election is decided in the House of Representatives
e) The election is decided in the Senate
d) The election is decided in the House of Representatives

Which of the following is TRUE regarding presidential election campaigns?
a) One can become president without winning the popular vote
b) So far, all of the presidents have had a majority of the popular vote when elected
c) A third candidate for the presidency has never had any impact on the outcome of the election
d) The House of Representatives is incapable of making a decision on who will be president
e) There have not yet been any occasions on which the electoral college has failed to give any candidate a majority
a) One can become president without winning the popular vote

In 1804, the ______ required that the president and the vice president be chosen separately
a) Jefferson v. Burr Supreme Court case
b) Executive Voting Act
c) Third Amendment
d) Sixth Amendment
e) Twelfth Amendment
e) Twelfth Amendment

The president, in the role of head of state, is responsible for
a) determining with which countries the United States will have diplomatic relations
b) acting as the ceremonial head of the government
c) conducting the foreign policy of the country
d) leading the legislative process by submitting legislation
e) administering the laws
b) acting as the ceremonial head of the government

In most democratic nations, the role of head of state is given to
a) the chief executive of the nation
b) a powerful president
c) the prime minister
d) someone other than the chief executive
e) the chief justice or other top judicial official
d) someone other than the chief executive

Being ______ gives the president tremendous public exposure, which can be an important asset in a campaign for reelection
a) chief oversight officer
b) a legislator
c) a member of an independent party
d) head of state
e) a resident of the White House
d) head of state

As chief executive, the president is constitutionally bound to
a) enforce the acts of Congress, treaties signed by the U.S. , and judgments of federal courts
b) submit a balanced budget to Congress
c) engage in preemptive military action
d) oversee actions of state governments
e) honor pronouncements of the United Nations
a) enforce the acts of Congress, treaties signed by the U.S. , and judgments of federal courts

The collective term for the body of employees working for the government, generally understood to apply to all those who gain employment through a merit system, is
a) civil service employees
b) political appointees
c) the political rank-and-file
d) the nonpartisan employee pool
e) the bureaucratic troops
a) civil service employees

The president’s ______ is limited to cabinet and subcabinet jobs, federal judgeships, agency heads, and several thousand lesser jobs
a) executive authority
b) appointment power
c) legislative authority
d) power of termination
e) diplomatic power
b) appointment power

Which of the following is NOT true of the president as chief executive?
a) The president uses the appointment power to fill cabinet and subcabinet positions
b) The president may, to a limited extent, remove from office those who are not doing a good job
c) The president is owed political allegiance by all 2.7 million federal employees
d) The president must “faithfully execute the laws”
e) The president has the federal bureaucracy to assist in carrying out various tasks
c) The president is owed political allegiance by all 2.7 million federal employees

The granting of release from the punishment for a crime is called
a) a reprieve
b) a congressional sanction
c) a pardon
d) executive privilege
e) impeachment
c) a pardon

A reprieve is
a) the granting of release from the punishment for a crime
b) a formal postponement of the execution of a sentence imposed by a court of law
c) a presidential vacation
d) a symbolic punishment delivered to Congress members who criticize the president
e) not mentioned in the Constitution
b) a formal postponement of the execution of a sentence imposed by a court of law

As commander in chief, the president is
a) only a symbolic leader of the military
b) the ultimate decision maker in military matters
c) allowed to make military decisions, but only with the approval of the Joint Chiefs of Staff
d) not responsible for military decisions
e) one of five people with the power to order the use of nuclear force postponement of the execution of a sentence imposed by a court of law
c) a presidential vacation
d) a symbolic punishmen
b) the ultimate decision maker in military matters

As ______, the president has probably exercised more authority than in any other role
a) chief legislator
b) head of state
c) chief diplomat
d) commander in chief
e) chief executive
d) commander in chief

The requirement that the president report to Congress within forty-eight hours of sending troops into action, and then obtain the approval of Congress within sixty days was established by
a) the Supreme Court’s decision in United States v. Curtiss-Wright Export Corp
b) the War Powers Resolution
c) the National Security Act
d) the Nixon Protocol
e) Article II of the Constitution
b) the War Powers Resolution

As chief diplomat, the president
a) is responsible for selecting judges to federal courts
b) is responsible for all actions within the executive branch
c) selects leaders of his or her party in Congress
d) recognizes foreign governments, makes treaties, and effects executive agreements
e) ratifies treaties
d) recognizes foreign governments, makes treaties, and effects executive agreements

The presidential power known as diplomatic recognition
a) is a relatively meaningless tradition
b) has seldom been used by any president
c) is the power of the president to recognize, or not recognize, foreign governments
d) is a simple and uncontroversial part of the president’s duties
e) has been used more by Congress than by the president
c) is the power of the president to recognize, or not recognize, foreign governments

Before a treaty can become legally binding, it must be
a) signed by the justices of the World Court
b) approved by three-fourths of the state governments
c) ratified by the Supreme Court
d) approved by a two-thirds vote in the Senate
e) approved by a majority vote in both chambers of Congress
d) approved by a two-thirds vote in the Senate

An international agreement with the head of a foreign state made by the president without Senate approval is
a) a treaty
b) an executive agreement
c) a signing statement
d) constitutionally required to be funded by Congress
e) subject to expiration after one year
b) an executive agreement

The State of the Union message is
a) delivered by the president to the General Assembly of the United Nations at least once every four years
b) a policy statement of Congress over which the president seldom has influence
c) required by the Constitution and gives a broad view of what the president wishes the legislature to accomplish during its session
d) an effective tool used by the president to limit other countries’ foreign policy endeavors in this hemisphere
e) constitutionally limited to reviewing the events of the last year
c) required by the Constitution and gives a broad view of what the president wishes the legislature to accomplish during its session

If the president uses a veto, he or she
a) must submit legislation that would accomplish the same goal through a different means
b) cannot use another veto for ten working days
c) must have the approval of the Senate majority leader and the Speaker of the House
d) must return the bill to Congress with a veto message
e) cannot be overridden by Congress
d) must return the bill to Congress with a veto message

If the president refuses to sign a bill and Congress adjourns within ten working days after the bill has been submitted to the president, it is called a
a) line-item veto
b) pocket veto
c) political statement
d) signing statement
e) legislative postponement
b) pocket veto

Which of the following happens when the president signs a bill?
a) He or she cannot include any instructions as to how to administer the law
b) He or she is exercising the right to a pocket veto
c) It goes back to the Senate for ratification
d) It goes back to Congress, which has ten days to modify it
e) It becomes law
e) It becomes law

The line-item veto was
a) used only in the ratification of treaties
b) found to be unconstitutional by the U.S. Supreme Court in 1998
c) given to the president of the United States, but prohibited to governors of states
d) denied to the president in legislation enacted by Congress
e) frequently used on specific spending provisions by President George W. Bush
b) found to be unconstitutional by the U.S. Supreme Court in 1998

A veto is
a) usually employed to punish members of the president’s party who disagree with him
b) more likely when the president’s party controls Congress
c) a clear-cut indication of the president’s dissatisfaction with legislation
d) likely to be overridden about half the time
e) required to be used at least once during each president’s term
c) a clear-cut indication of the president’s dissatisfaction with legislation

This is TRUE about signing statements
a) They are written declarations that a president may make when signing a bill into law regarding the law’s enforcement
b) They can only be used to make rhetorical statements
c) They cannot be used to praise or denounce political parties
d) They were used frequently in the nineteenth century, but are rarely used today
e) They were used by President Reagan to make more sweeping claims on behalf of presidential power than any other president
a) They are written declarations that a president may make when signing a bill into law regarding the law’s enforcement

A power created for the president through laws enacted by Congress is called
a) executive power
b) congressional power
c) statutory power
d) temporary power
e) inherent power
c) statutory power

Rewarding faithful party workers with government employment is called
a) “going public”
b) pork
c) patronage
d) executive privilege
e) civil service
c) patronage

Which of the following is TRUE regarding presidential fundraising?
a) The president of the United States is prohibited from engaging in fund-raising activities by Article II of the Constitution
b) By the 1990s and early twenty-first century, presidents were no longer willing to lower themselves to “begging for money” and limited their fund raising
c) Most presidents rely on others to raise money for them because it is not part of the role of the president to raise money
d) Barack Obama had spectacular success in raising funds as a candidate
e) Congress has enacted legislation prohibiting a sitting president from engaging in fund-raising activities
d) Barack Obama had spectacular success in raising funds as a candidate

Presidential popularity is
a) irrelevant to Congress or bureaucrats
b) rarely measured by pollsters
c) of little concern to second-term presidents
d) required before a president may claim executive privilege
e) an extra resource to use to persuade Congress to pass legislation
e) an extra resource to use to persuade Congress to pass legislation

Which of the following statements is FALSE concerning presidential popularity?
a) President Bush enjoyed high popularity ratings throughout his presidency
b) President Obama’s approval ratings were back above 50 percent and remained at those levels into 2013
c) President Obama’s approval ratings peaked in May 2011
d) President Bush had only a 25 percent public approval rating by the time he left office
e) President Bush’s approval ratings in 2004 were the highest ever recorded
e) President Bush’s approval ratings in 2004 were the highest ever recorded

“Going public” means that presidents
a) take their case directly to the people over the heads of the members of Congress
b) go to the Washington community power brokers over the heads of Congress
c) refrain from invoking executive privilege
d) put pressure on Congress by threatening to release details about their private lives
e) publicize information that was formerly classified
a) take their case directly to the people over the heads of the members of Congress

The emergency powers of the president
a) were first enunciated in the Twenty-second Amendment
b) have never been exercised
c) are detailed in the Bill of Rights
d) were first enunciated in the Supreme Court’s decision in United States v. Curtiss-Wright Export Corp
e) are outlined in the Constitution
d) were first enunciated in the Supreme Court’s decision in United States v. Curtiss-Wright Export Corp

A rule or regulation issued by the president that has the effect of law is a(n)
a) legislative declaration
b) presidential statute
c) Congressional override
d) emergency provision
e) executive order
e) executive order

An executive order must be
a) published in the Federal Register
b) approved by Congress
c) approved by a majority of the cabinet
d) issued only when Congress is not in session
e) avoided in matters concerning foreign policy
a) published in the Federal Register

Executive privilege is understood to mean that
a) the president can withhold some information from Congress or the courts
b) members of the executive branch cannot be prosecuted while in office
c) the president is allowed unlimited use of the pocket veto
d) the president has broad and unlimited discretion in making political appointments
e) requests from the president have the force of law
a) the president can withhold some information from Congress or the courts

In United States v. Nixon, the Supreme Court ruled that
a) a sitting president cannot be sued in civil court for offenses that occurred before the president took office
b) executive privilege could not be used to prevent evidence from being heard in criminal proceedings
c) congressional approval must be granted before presidents make use of executive privilege
d) the president is immune from criminal prosecution except for impeachable crimes
e) members of the Secret Service cannot be required to testify against the president
b) executive privilege could not be used to prevent evidence from being heard in criminal proceedings

According to the Constitution, impeachment
a) cannot be used against an incumbent president
b) can only be applied to a president who has committed treason
c) can only be used against a president who has committed a violation of criminal law
d) charges are voted on by the House of Representatives and, if approved, go to the Senate for a trial
e) has been used against only one president
d) charges are voted on by the House of Representatives and, if approved, go to the Senate for a trial

In the history of the United States, no president has ever
a) been impeached and acquitted
b) died while in office
c) been impeached and convicted
d) resigned from office
e) been impeached
c) been impeached and convicted

These two presidents are the only ones in American history to have been impeached and acquitted
a) Andrew Johnson and Bill Clinton
b) Richard Nixon and Franklin Roosevelt
c) Andrew Jackson and William McKinley
d) Thomas Jefferson and Martin Van Buren
e) Andrew Jackson and Jimmy Carter
a) Andrew Johnson and Bill Clinton

Today, the members of the cabinet
a) are an informal group of presidential advisers
b) are limited to the heads of the fifteen executive departments
c) include fourteen department secretaries and the attorney general, plus other top officials chosen by the president
d) include only the heads of the Departments of State, Justice, Defense, and Treasury, plus the heads of the EPA, CIA, and FBI
e) are a subset of any six executive department heads, chosen by the president
c) include fourteen department secretaries and the attorney general, plus other top officials chosen by the president

Informal advisors to the president are referred to as
a) FOP, or Friends of the President
b) the kitchen cabinet
c) the Executive Counsel
d) the cabinet
e) the brain trust
b) the kitchen cabinet

All of the following are true of the president’s cabinet EXCEPT
a) originally, it consisted of only four officials
b) they usually have some experience in the area of the cabinet position
c) they are heads of executive departments
d) it is thoroughly detailed in the Constitution as to what the cabinet should do
e) the cabinet is an advisory group selected by the president to aid in making decisions
e) the cabinet is an advisory group selected by the president to aid in making decisions

The organization established by President Franklin D. Roosevelt to assist the president in carrying out major duties is called
a) the kitchen cabinet
b) the cabinet
c) the Executive Office of the President
d) the Council of Presidential Advisors
e) the system of checks on executive power
c) the Executive Office of the President

The personal office of the president is
a) the Office of Economic Advisers
b) the cabinet
c) the Executive Office of the President
d) the White House Office
e) he Domestic Policy Council
d) the White House Office

The Office of Management and Budget is charged with
a) helping Congress write the budget
b) helping the president prepare the annual budget
c) revising the budget passed by Congress
d) reducing the scope of the federal budget
e) replacing the House Appropriations Committee
b) helping the president prepare the annual budget

The National Security Council is a link between
a) Congress and the president
b) leaders of foreign governments and the president
c) the Securities and Exchange Commission and the president
d) the president’s key foreign and military advisors and the president
e) state governments and the president
d) the president’s key foreign and military advisors and the president

The first modern president to rely on his vice president as a major adviser was President
a) John F. Kennedy
b) Richard Nixon
c) Barack Obama
d) Bill Clinton
e) Jimmy Carter
e) Jimmy Carter

According to the Twenty-fifth Amendment, if a president’s ability to discharge his normal functions is in question and he is unable to communicate,
a) the Supreme Court is empowered to select a physician to certify whether or not the president is able to perform the functions of his office
b) the Speaker of the House becomes acting president until the matter is resolved
c) a majority of the cabinet, including the vice president, can declare the president incapable
d) the president must be permanently removed from office
e) the vice president has the exclusive power to determine the president’s capability
c) a majority of the cabinet, including the vice president, can declare the president incapable

If the office of vice president becomes vacant,
a) it remains unfilled until the next election, and the Speaker of the House becomes president if the president dies
b) the president nominates a replacement who must be approved by a majority vote in both chambers of Congress
c) the president names a replacement that is not subject to congressional approval
d) the president nominates a replacement who must be approved by the Senate
e) the Secretary of State becomes vice president
b) the president nominates a replacement who must be approved by a majority vote in both chambers of Congress

After the Speaker of the House, the next person in the line of succession to the presidency is the
a) Senate president pro tempore
b) Secretary of State
c) Chief of Staff
d) Attorney General
e) Secretary of Homeland Security
a) Senate president pro tempore

Agenda Setting
Determining which public-policy questions will be debated or considered.

Bias
An inclination or a preference that interferes with impartial judgment.

Consensus
General agreement among the citizenry on an issue.

Divided Opinion
Public Opinion that is polarized between two quite different positions.

Gender Gap
The difference between the percentage of women who vote for a particular candidate and the percentage of men who vote for the candidate.

Generation Effect
A long-lasting effect of the events of a particular time on the political opinions of those who came of political age at that time.

House Effect
In public opinion polling, an effect in which on polling organization’s results consistently differ from those reported by other poll takers.

Opinion Leader
One who is able to influence the opinions of others because of position, expertise, or personality.

Opinion Poll
A method of systematically questioning a small, selected sample of respondents who are deemed representative of the total population.

Peer Group
A group consisting of members who share common social characteristics.

Political Socialization
The process by which people acquire political beliefs and values.

Political Trust
The degree to which individuals express trust in the government and political institutions, usually measured through a specific series of survey questions.

Public Agenda
Issues that are perceived by the political community as meriting public attention and governmental action.

Public Opinion
The aggregate of individual attitudes or beliefs shared by some portion of the adult population.

Sampling Error
The difference between a sample result and the true result if the entire population has been interviewed.

Spin
An interpretation of political events that is favorable to a candidate or officeholder.

Spin Doctor
A political adviser who tires to convince journalists of the truth of a particular interpretation of events.

Sound Bite
A brief, memorable comment that can easily be fit into news broadcasts.

Media
The channels of mass communications.

Tracking Poll
A poll that is taken continuously – sometimes every day – to determine how support for an issue or candidate changes over time.

Democratic Party
One of the two major American political parties evolving out of the Republican Party of Thomas Jefferson.

Direct Technique
An interest group technique that uses direct interaction with government officials to further the group’s goals.

Divided Government
A situation in which one major political party controls the presidency and the other controls Congress or in which one party controls a state governorship and the other controls the state legislature.

Electoral College
A group of persons, called electors, who are selected by the voters in each state.

Free-Rider Problem
The difficulty that interest groups face in recruiting members when the benefits they achieve can be gained without joining the group.

GOP
A nickname for the Republican Party, which stands for “grand old party”

Independent
A voter or candidate who does not identify with a political party.

Indirect Technique
An interest group technique that uses third parties to influence government officials.

Interest Group
An organized group of individuals sharing common objectives who actively attempt to influence policymakers.

Labor Movement
The economic and political expression of working class interests

Lobbyist
An organization or individual who attempts to influence the passage, defeat, or content of legislation and the government’s administrative decisions.

National Committtee
A standing committee of a national political party established to direct and coordinate party activities between national party conventions.

National Convention
The meeting held every four years by each major party to select presidential and vice-presidential candidates, write a platform, choose a national committee, and conduct party business.

Party Indentification
Linking oneself to a particular political party

Party Organization
The formal structure and leadership of a political party, including election committees; local, state, and national executives; and paid professional staff.

Party Platform
A document drawn up at each national convention, outlining the policies, positions, and principles of the party

Patronage
The practice of rewarding faithful party workers and followers with government employment and contracts.

Plurality
A number of votes cast for a candidate that is greater than the number of votes for any other candidate but not necessarily a majority

Political Party
A group of political activists who organize to win elections, operate the government, and determine public policy

Public Interest
The best interests of the overall community; the national good, rather than the narrow interests of a particular group.

Realignment
A large-scale, lasting change in the types of voters who support each of the major political parties

Republican Party
One of the two major American political parties. It emerged in the 1850s as an antislavery party and consisted of former northern Whigs and antislavery Democrats

Service Sector
The sector of the economy that provides services-such as health care, banking, and education-in contrast to the sector that produces goods.

Social Movement
A movement that represents the demands of a large segment o the public for political, economic, or social change

Splinter Party
A new party formed by a dissident faction within a major political party.

State Central Committee
The principal organized structure of each political party within each state. This committee is responsible for carrying out policy decisions of the party’s state convention.

Straight-Ticket Voting
Voting exclusively for the candidates of one party

Third Party
A political party other than the two major political parties

Ticket Splitting
Voting for candidates of two or more parties for different offices.

Two-Party System
A political system in which only two parties have a reasonable chance of winning

Unit Rule
A rule by which all of a state’s electoral votes are cast for the presidential candidate who receives a plurality of the votes in that state

Whig Party
A major party in the United States during the first half of the nineteenth century, formally established in 1836.

Affirm
To declare that a court ruling is valid and must stand.

Amicus Curiae Brief
A brief filed by a third party.

Appellate Court
A court having jurisdiction to review cases and issues that were originally tried in lower courts.

Case Law
Judicial interpretations of common law principles and doctrines, as well as interpretations of constitutional law, statutory law, and administrative law.

Class-Action Suit
A lawsuit filed by an individual seeking damages for “all persons similarly situated.”

Common Law
Jude-made law that originated in England from decisions shaped according to prevailing customs.

Concurring Opinion
A separated opinion prepared by a judge who supports the decision of the majority of the court but for different reasons.

Dissenting Opinion
A separate opinion in which a judge dissents from the conclusion reached by the majority of the court and the expounds his or her own views about the case.

Diversity of Citizenship
The condition that exists when the parties to a lawsuit are from different states or when the suit involves a U.S. citizen and a government or citizen of a foreign country.

Federal Question
A question that has to do with the U.S. Constitution, acts of Congress, or treaties.

General Jurisdiction
Exists when a court’s authority to hear cases is not significantly restricted.

Judicial Activism
A doctrine holding that the federal judiciary should take and active role by using its powers to check the activities of governmental bodies when those bodies exceed their authority.

Judicial Implementation
The way in which court decisions are translated into action.

Judicial Restraint
A doctrine holding that courts should defer to the decisions made by the elected representatives of the people in the legislative and executive branches.

Jurisdiction
The authority of a court to decide certain cases.

Justiciable Controversy
A controversy that is real and substantial, as opposed to hypothetical or academic.

Limited Jurisdiction
Exists when a court’s authority to hear cases is restricted to certain types of claims, such as tax claims or bankruptcy petitions.

Litigate
To engage in a legal proceeding or seek relief in a court of law.

Majority Opinion
A court opinion reflecting the views of the majority of the judges.

Opinion
A statement by a judge or a court of the decision reached in a case.

Oral Arguments
The arguments presented in person by attorneys to an appellate court.

Political Question
An issue that a court believes should be decided by the executive or legislature branch, or both.

Precendent
A court rule bearing on subsequent legal decisions in similar cases.

Remand
To send a case back to the court that originally heard it.

Reverse
To annul or make void a court ruling on account of some error or irregularity.

Rule of Four
A United States Supreme Court procedure by which four justices must vote to grant a petition for review if a case is to come before the full court.

Senatorial Courtesy
In federal district court judgeship nominations, a tradition allowing a senator to veto a judicial appointment in her or his state.

Stare Decisis
To stand on decided cases.

Trial Court
The court in which most cases begin.

Unanimous Opinion
A court opinion or determination on which all judges agree.

Writ of Certiorari
An order issued by a higher court to a lower court to send up the record of a case for review.

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