Government Unit 2 Study Guide

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bicameral legislature
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two-house legislature
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sessions
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meetings of Congress that last 1 year
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Qualifications for elections in the house of reps
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must be 25 years old, citizen of the US for at least 7 years, and must be legal resident of the state that elects them
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how many members are there in the house of reps
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435
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how long are the terms in the house of reps
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2 years
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census bureau
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Takes a national census every ten years
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census
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population count every 10 years
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reapportionment
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The process of reassigning representation for the States based on population after every census
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redistricting
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to set up new district lines after reapportionment is complete
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what happened in the Baker vs Carr case
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the court held that federal courts could decide conflicts over drawing districts boundaries
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what happened in the Reynolds vs Sims case
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the court held that the equal protection clause of the 14th amendment required that seats in both houses of the Alabama state legislature be apportioned on a population basis
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gerrymandering
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redrawing a congressional district to intentionally benefit one political party
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Elbridge Gerry
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an early Democrat-Republican governor of Mass. He had signed a redistricting plan that gave his party a big political advantage
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packing
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a district means drawing the lines so they include as many of the opposing party’s voters as possible
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cracking
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dividing an opponents voters into other districts, to weaken the opponents voter base
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Qualifications for elections in the senate
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must be 30 years old, citizen of the US for 9 years before election, and legal residents of the state they represent
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at-large
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statewide
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how long are the terms for the senate
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6 years providing that only 1/3 of the senators would run for reelection every 2 years
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salaries for the senate
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the senate sets their own salary
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salaries for the house of reps
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the house of reps sets their own salaries
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27th amendment
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limits the power of congress to increase its own salaries
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franking privilege
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benefit allowing members of Congress to mail letters and other materials postage-free
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privileges for the members of congress
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they are free from arrest \”in all cases except treason, felony, and breach of peace\” when they are their way to or from Congress, members of congress cannot be sued for anything they say on the senate floor
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what happened in the Huchinson vs Proxmire case
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the Supreme Court ruled that members of Congress may be sued for libel for statements they make in news releases or newsletters
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exclusion
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each house may refuse to seat an elected member by majority vote
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censure
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a vote for formal disapproval of a members actions
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incumbents
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members already in office
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commonly used demographics
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race ethnicity age level of education gender religion political affirmation occupation
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when do sessions begin in congress
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January 3rd of odd numbered years
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who is the speaker or the house
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John Boehner R-Ohio
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who is the house majority leader
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Eric Cantor R-Virginia
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who is the house majority whip
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Kevin McCarthy R-California
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who is the house minority leader
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Nancy Pelosi D-California
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who is the house minority whip
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Steny Hoyer D-Maryland
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who is the president of the senate
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Joe Biden D-Deleware
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who is the president pro tempore
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Daniel Inouye D-Hawaii
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who is the senate majority leader
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Harry Reid D-Nevada
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who is the senate majority whip
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Richard Durbin D-Illinois
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who is the senate minority leader
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Mitch McConnell R-Kentucky
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who is the senate minority whip
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Jon Kyl R-Arizona
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standing committee
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PERMANENT panel controlled by majority party full legislative functions/responsibilities
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subcommittee
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PERMANENT panel controlled by majority party tackle very specific tasks within FULL committees
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select committee
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TEMPORARY panel study ONE issue and report findings usually don’t report [approve] bills
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joint committee
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PERMANENT & TEMPORARY panel includes members of BOTH chambers conduct studies or preform house keeping tasks
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conference committee
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TEMPORARY panel includes members of BOTH chambers work out differences between SIMILAR bills
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public bill
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involving issues with a general group of people, a more general issue
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private bill
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involving issues with just some individuals
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appropriation bill
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proposed laws to authorize spending money
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law
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a bill or act that has been passed by a legislative body
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bill
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a proposed new law (idea) introduced within a legislature that has NOT yet been passed, enacted, or adopted
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resolution
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a measure expressing opinions on policies or issues
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simple resolution
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dealing with \”housekeeping\” or procedural matters, covers matters affecting only one house of Congress and is passed by that house alone
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joint resolution
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when approved by BOTH houses & the president carries out the force of laws
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concurrent resolution
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legislative motion that must be approved by BOTH houses, but does NOT have the force of laws
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what does a legislature do
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makes laws
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what does a committee member do
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prevent bad bills from going through
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what does a politician do
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gets reelected to make deals; to entertain
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what does a partisan do
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be loyal to their political party
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what does a representative do
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works hard to work for the constituents
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pigeonholing
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under the chairpersons leadership, the committee can ignore the bill and simply let it die
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hearings
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sessions at which a committee listens to testimony from people interested in the bill
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voice vote
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members CALL OUT either \”aye\” or \”no\”
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standing vote
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or division vote, those in favor of the bill stand and are counted then those opposing stand and are counted
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recorded vote
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members votes are recorded electronically
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roll-call vote
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senatore respond \”aye\” or \”no\” as their names are called in alphabetical order
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expressed powers
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powers expressed in the Constitution
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revenue bills
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laws for raising money
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writ of the habeas corpus
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a court order to release a person accused of a crime to court to determine whether he or she has been legally detained
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bills of attainder
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laws that establish guilt and punish people without allowing them a trial
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ex post facto laws
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laws that make crimes of acts that were legal when they wre committed

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