POSC 100 FINAL STUDY GUIDE NOTES
POSC 100 FINAL STUDY GUIDE NOTES POSC 100 - 02
Cal State Fullerton
Popular in American Government
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This 21 page Study Guide was uploaded by Theint Myint on Tuesday January 19, 2016. The Study Guide belongs to POSC 100 - 02 at California State University - Fullerton taught by William Julius in Fall 2015. Since its upload, it has received 196 views. For similar materials see American Government in Political Science at California State University - Fullerton.
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Date Created: 01/19/16
Introduction to American Government Final Exam Study Guide, Spring Semester, 2015 Sample Essay Questions 1. In our discussion of representation in the United States, we discussed the various amendments to the U.S. Constitution that increased citizen representation. Name three amendments to the U.S. Constitution that increased citizen representation in our government, and explain specifically, how each either expanded our electorate or made the government more representative of its citizens. PICK 3 • 14 - grant former slaves citizenship (expand electorate) th • 15 -thrant former slaves right to vote (expand electorate) • 19 - women’s suffrage – now women can vote (expand electorate) • 24- abolish poll tax – people who couldn’t vote before because of this can now (expand electorate) • 26- 18 year olds can vote 2. Drawing upon your understanding of the essential functions of legislatures, as well as the basic characteristics of California’s State legislature, as presented in Matthew Jarvis’s chapter on the California State legislature in California Government in National Perspective, explain the most important similarities and differences between the U.S. Congress and the California State legislature. • Both o Bicameral o Senate= upper house o Speaker for house of reps at national level and speaker at assembly level o Has national and state constitution o Committees (important for writing laws in both state and national level) • State o We elect cabinet members (plural executive) o Term limits § Assembly 3 2yr terms (6) § Senate 2 4-year terms (8) o No filibuster 1 • Congress o President elects cabinet members – same party as president o No term limits (members can stay in office as long as people reelect them) o Has filibuster 3. Define agenda setting in general terms & demonstrate how congressional leaders set Congress's agenda as well as how the mass communications media set the public agenda. • Determining subject of conflict • President- through state of union address and other speeches o Once he mentions something, that what people start thinking about o Ex: free community college, - once he mentioned it, media and other politicians start covering the topic and are almost expected to do so • Media- o Anything they print creates conflicts and determines what people think about and what’s covered and what’s not covered • Congress- o At any point a bill can die= how congress setting agenda because prioritizing certain bills over others o Committee consideration § Determines which bills considered or rejected o Schedule bill for debate- prioritizing certain bills over others o Conference committee – § Both house and senate vote on a bill with their versions of it and if cant work out a resolution, bill will die 4. Do interest groups allow greater representation for citizens or do they inevitably allow small well-organized groups to prosper at the expense of everyone who pays taxes? Allow small well-organized groups to prosper at expense of those who pay taxes • Consequences of Interest groups • No rational gov’t growth and efficiency 2 o If interest group powerful enough = can get a program to happen o Doesn’t mean the program is the best program, efficient, or rational = § Just shows that the particular interest group has lots of influence and power § =Why no rational growth- bureaucracy grows for no legitimate reason • As opposed to growing for a legitimate reason that benefits most people • Policy gridlock o Interest groups that contradict each other and both get funding from congress– not rational o Nothing getting done because so many interest groups pushing for something that nothing is getting done and is inefficient • Political inequality o Wealthier, more informed people = more involved in interest groups and know how they and system works and have lobbyist o Less informed people don’t have time to get involved in interest groups gets left out o Creates more representation for certain types of people at the cost of others • Like shortcut to democratic process (straight to congress) • Some interest groups have professional lobbyists 5. Name two sources of interest group power and explain how an interest group lobbyist could use those powers to gain influence over government policymakers? • 1. Membership voters o When people belong to interest group, lots of times votes how interest group wants them to • information o provide information not just to own members but in advertisements o selective • resources o interest groups fund advertisement campaigns 3 o try to influence politics in a way that will benefit them o If liberal, try to get democratic because know who is sympathetic to their cause • connections/ networking o know how system works 6. Explain how & why presidents “go public”, giving at least one example of a president going public in pursuit of enacting their policy agenda. • Going public= informal way president try to convince public of something to pressure congress to do what he wants o If people want something. Congress will have no choice but to make it happen • Even if congress didn’t agree with president, just go with them because don’t want to oppose president and make people unhappy • Ex: State of union address: o Obama talk about free junior college, so people get excited about it and want it, so now = hard for congress to oppose it 7. Explain what an interest group is and why many people believe that they are detrimental to the general public good of society. • Group of likeminded individuals who ban together to protect or advance a common interest • Consequences of interest groups: • No rational gov’t growth and efficiency o If interest group powerful enough = can get a program to happen o Doesn’t mean the program is the best program, efficient, or rational = § Just shows that the particular interest group has lots of influence and power § =Why no rational growth- bureaucracy grows for no legitimate reason • As opposed to growing for a legitimate reason that benefits most people • Policy gridlock o Nothing getting done because so many interest groups pushing for something that nothing is getting done and is inefficient • No rational policy outcomes 4 o Interest groups that contradict each other and both get funding from congress– not rational • Political inequality o Wealthier, more informed people = more involved in interest groups and know how they and system works and have lobbyist o Less informed people don’t have time to get involved in interest groups gets left out o Creates more representation for certain types of people at the cost of others • Like shortcut to democratic process (straight to congress) • Some interest groups have professional lobbyists Sample Short-Answer Questions/Suggestions 1. Be able to define a congressional committee and explain what they do and why they're important in allowing Congress to complete its work. • Group within congress (house or senate) • What do o Write legislation o Oversight power- make sure other departments spend $$ how congress meant them to be o Gatekeeping/ agenda setting § Deciding which issues important and debated on o Quasi-judicial lower- overseeing executive branch (do what suppose to be doing?) • Important in allowing congress to complete its work o Division of labor § Each member specializes and be experts in certain things so not everyone in congress has to do it = more efficient 2. Memorize the summaries of the important U.S. Supreme Court decisions listed on your handout. 5 3. Understand the three forms of political parties and how they relate to parties accomplishing their ultimate goal: translating their members' policy preferences into public policy. • Party in electorate – o Citizens who can vote in elections o Exist outside of electorate and have common beliefs and participates in parties o Anyone who identifies with a certain party o If you’re democratic, then you’re’ the party in the electorate • Party organization o Committees o Organizations that do anything to get their candidate elected § Raise money, advertisements, mobilizes voters • Party in gov’t o Party that’s in gov’t at time (If president = democrat, party in gov’t = democratic) o Translate political references to laws/ public parties o Can work w/ preexisting parties or form their own 4. Understand what a filibuster is and why senators filibuster • Minority party’s right to extended debate to delay a bill • Makes minority party in senate more powerful 5. Be sure that you understand what civil liberties are (specifically and generally), how they differ from civil rights, and be able to discuss policy issues, arising from civil liberties protections (e.g. eminent domain requirements, Miranda Rights and the Exclusionary Rule). • Civil liberties: individual rights that protect us from gov’t o Bill of rights § 1. Freedom speech/ press, religion, petition § 4. No unlawful search and seizure § 8. Freedom from cruel and unusual punishments • Civil rights: group right to be treated fundamentally equal by gov’t o Civil rights act, voting rights act, Policy issues arising from civil liberties protections: • Eminent domain 6 o State gov't right to seize your private property for public use o Need legitimate reason and gives you compensation for property o Contradicts 4 and 5 amend § 4. No unlawful search and seizure and § 5. Right to due process • Miranda rights o Miranda vs. Arizona th th o 5 and 6 amend – due process rights – right to jury, o Police has to read you rights when arrested o Now court says only need to read rights if ask for them • Exclusionary rule o From matt vs. Ohio o Any evidence found violating 5 amend- not permissible th in court because violated 4 amend right of unlawful search and seizures and obtained illegally o Only applies if there’s no probable cause – cant just come to house and start search and seizure 6. Understand and be able to explain the three theories of constitutional interpretation presented in class. • Plain meaning o No interpretation necessary- What text says is what it means • Original intent theory o Need interpretation to try and figure out original founder’s intent • Living constitution theory o Idea that as time changes and we move forward, the constitution should be able to adapt to changing times 7. Explain what the U.S. Supreme Court ruled in Griswold vs. Connecticut (2014); and explain how the U.S. Supreme Court used this decision as the foundation for their landmark decision in Roe vs. Wade, which made a woman’s right to an abortion Constitutionally protected. • Griswold vs. Connecticut o Courts say there are rights we have that’s not stated in constitution- like right to privacy 7 o Couples have right to use contraceptives because right to privacy o Privacy of married couple • Roe vs. Wade o Women’s body = their privacy= their decision for abortion o Extended right to privacy to individuals o Women talking to doctors about abortion = their privacy 7. Be able to define agenda setting in general terms. • Determining subject of a conflict 8. Understand what civil service protection is (sometimes referred to as Civil Service status). Understand the two basic principles for government employment enacted in civil service reform, and be conversant about its purposes, advantages and disadvantages. • Civil service protection – from progressive era o State gov’t workers hired based on merit not political affiliation • 2 basic principles o hiring based on merit o firing for justifiable cause • + o More competent civil service – people hired based of merit – need to take test o More efficient because stopped constantly training new people every time someone elected o President hire bureaucracy based on merit, not political loyalty • - o Not elected officials, just hired, yet doing lots of gov’t tasks o Not as representative because not reelected o Less efficient than private companies (get promoted the longer you’re there) – harder to hire people o Less efficient § Not represented- no direct accountability to people § President cant run bureaucracy in business manner 8 9. Memorize the definition of bureaucracy that you received in our classroom discussion. • A hierarchically arranged organization which carries out tasks in a rational compartmentalized fashion 10. Know the formal (Constitutional) and informal (non-Constitutional) powers of the Presidency. • Formal o Commander-in-chief o Veto power – VETO OR SIGN BILL o Treaty making – negotiating o Appointment power – appoint federal Supreme Court, etc. o Chief executive – leader of bureaucracy- responsible for entire executive o Power to pardon o Declarations – power to address nation o State of the union • Informal o Mass communicator – set public agenda o World leader o National economic manager o Crisis manager o Party leader- Obama leader of democratic party o Public agenda setter o Chief legislator o Primary national symbol 12. Understand the "Power to Persuade" and “Going Public” theses, regarding how presidents exercise their informal powers discussed in class. • Power to persuade o President try to persuade congress o • Going public o Try to use power of public opinion to get congress to pass a bill using mass communications o Higher public opinion= congress more likely to pass the bill the president is in favor of 9 13. Be able to explain how the U.S. federal bureaucracy is organized (be able to explain the various units of the bureaucracy (how it is organized) presented in our lecture discussion. • 15 major departments subdivided into agencies and bureaus (treasury, state department, health department) • Leaders of departments = members of president's cabinet • Department agencies and bureaus – o Within one of major departments • Independent agencies- o Agencies of gov’t deals with stuff outside of its department (CIA, US post office) • Independent commissions – o Regulatory task, about 5 people, o Ex: federal election commissions- regulate campaign finding • Gov’t corporations- independent- set up by gov’t to carry out small financial tasks 14. Know the constituencies and terms in office for the President, members of the House of Representatives and U.S. senators. • Constituencies- group of people an office holder represents • President-the incarnation • Senator- all people living in state • House- all people living in their districts House and senate (national level) – • No term limits – can stay in office as long as people keep reelecting House and senate (state level) • Term limits o Senate – 6 yr. terms (every 2 years, 1/3 of senate up for reelection) o House- every 2 years up for reelection 15. With respect to congressional elections, understand what reapportionment and Redistricting are. • Reapportionment o Determine how many seats in house of rep each state has • Redistricting o Actually drawing the district line of where districts going to be 10 16. With respect to the mass communications media agenda setting, understand framing and priming. • Framing o Putting certain issues into context o Framing can be manipulated a certain way media wants • Priming o Media making people more sensitive to certain issues than others 17. Be able to name the two chambers of the U.S. Congress and the two chambers of the California State legislature, and be able to explain the similarities and differences between the state and national legislatures. Same as #2 • Both o Bicameral o Senate= upper house o Speaker for house of reps at national level and speaker at assembly level o Has national and state constitution o Committees (important for writing laws in both state and national level) • State o We elect cabinet members (plural executive) o Term limits § Assembly 3 2yr terms (6) § State senate 2 4-year terms (8) o No filibuster • Congress o President elects cabinet members – same party as president o No term limits (members can stay in office as long as people reelect them) o Has filibuster • 18. Understand how the predicate of the Declaration of Independence (“all men are created equal and endowed by their creator with life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness”) is the foundation of our civil liberties (especially with 11 respect to the Fourth, Fifth, Sixth, Eighth and Fourteenth Amendments to the United States Constitution). th • 4 –tho unlawful search and seizure • 5 – right to due process, trial by jury of peers, no double jeopardy • 6 – right to speedy trial, trial by peers th • 8 – no cruel/ unusual punishment • 14 – grant former slaves citizenship 19. What is the "Bush Doctrine" in U.S. foreign policy ? • No such thing as position of neutrality in war on terror • Any nation that doesn’t cooperate with us is subject to attack by US 20. Be able to write out the basic argument of the Declaration of - Independence, as a formal logical argument (major premise, minor premise, and conclusion) as presented in class. • 1. All are entitled to life, liberty, property • 2. England infringe colonist right to life, liberty, property • Therefore colonist have right to independence 21. Understand the three fundamental goals of the Progressive movement of the early 20 century • political equality (women right to vote) • direct democracy • Clean, merit based gov’t (civil service reform) 22. Be able to compare and contrast the executive powers of the President of- the United States with those of the Governor of California (these can be found in Scott Spitzer’s chapter in California Government in National- Perspective). Powers of president and governor • President o Foreign policy powers o Commander in chief o No line item veto o Only elected executive at national level • Governor o No foreign policy powers 12 o Line item veto o Not commander in chief o 1 of elected executives o Coordinate localities • both: o power to pardon o Appointment and supervise gov’t officials o sign bills into law and veto o Call into special session 23. Know the difference between foreign & domestic government policies . • Foreign – international policies • Domestic – policies anything within US borders (education, health care, levels of taxation) 24. Understand what interest groups are. Also know their sources of power and the consequences of an open interest group system such as in the United States. Same as # 4 and #7 • Interest groups o Group of people w/ common interest who pressure gov’t to get what they want • Sources of power o Campaign contributions o Votes o Influence over opinions o Organization o Connections o Information • Consequences o Policy gridlock § So many interest groups pressuring gov’t that nothing happens o No rational gov’t growth & inefficiency § Gov. creating programs just because a strong interest group wants it = irrational 13 o Tragedy of the commons § Stop funding contradicting programs?? o Political inequality § People involved in interest groups = not people who need it the most, but people who are already well off 25. Know and understand the First, Fourth, Fifth, Sixth, Eighth, Fourteenth and Fifteenth Amendments to the United States Constitution. Same as #5 1. freedom speech, assembly, petition, separation of church and state(religion) 4. no unreasonable search and seizures 5. Right to due process, trial by jury, no double jeopardy, right to not testify & gov’t cant use against you 6. right to speedy trial, jury by peers 8. no cruel and unusual punishment 14. Gov’t must go through due process before take away life, liberty , and property 15. Grant former male slaves right to vote 26. Know the types of speech that are not absolutely protected by the First Amendment and the one type of speech that is virtually always absolutely protected. • Not absolutely protected/ regulated o Liable & slander o Obscenity o Fighting words o Commercial speech • Almost absolutely protected o Political speech 27. Know the difference between primary and general elections . • Primary election o Determines candidates for general election • General election o Republicans and democrats compete for office 28. Understand what a Writ of Habeas Corpus is and why it is important to our civil liberties. 14 • Habeas Corpus: gov’t must list laws you’re accused of breaking o Important to civil liberties because makes sure gov’t has reason to arrest you 29. Understand the three tools of direct democracy used in California: ballot initiatives, referenda and recalls. • Initiatives o Law comes from people o Allows citizens to write own laws (if collect enough signatures, that law can go on ballet) • Referendum o Comes from state legislature o Type of initiative (can get law on ballet to keep or reject it) • Recall o Recall elected officials (state legislatures) o Allow citizens to remove elected officials before their term is up 30. Understand the legal doctrine of Stare Decisis: Be able to define it & explain why it is the foundation of the Common Law legal system in the United States. • Stare decisis o Latin for the decision stands o Judges/ justices use past court cases to make decisions to allow for consistency 31. Know the difference between a Strong Mayor and Council-Manager forms of city government • Strong mayor o Elected mayor and city council separately • Council- manager o Elected city council hires a city manager o Perform executive functions overseeing city council o Rotating mayor 32. Understand the distinction between internationalism and isolationism in foreign policy. • Internationalism 15 o This US should be involved in international affairs (united nations, NATO, ) • Isolationism o Think US should stay out of international affairs/ stick to domestic policy 33 remember what officeholder’s constituency is, and think about ways a member of Congress might go about trying to please them for the purposes of reelection. • Officeholder’s constituency o Group of people represented by officeholder • House- anyone living in their district • Senate- everyone living in the state • President- everyone in country • Try to please to get reelected o Pork-barrel spending – members congress try to get federal funds spent on their constituent (create jobs) 35. Be able to explain at least two of the critical choices, discussed by Milkis & Landy that altered the path of U.S. Constitutional interpretation. • Marbury vs. madison o Supreme court gave itself power of judicial review § Court has power to strike down laws of congress if deemed unconstitutional • Mcculloch vs. Maryland o Supreme court say States cant tax nation bank § First time asserted that national gov’t supreme over state gov’t in certain instances 36. What is the primary difference between parliamentary de mocracies and presidential democracies (such as the United States)? • Parliamentary: we elect parliament who’ll elect president • Presidential: we elect president (can have divided gov’t) o More accountability and representation because we elect president 16 37. Know the difference between unilateralism and multilateralism in foreign policy, and think about the ramifications of each in U.S. foreign policy. • Unilateralism o US involvement in foreign policy independently • Multilateralism o US and other countries involved in foreign policy only through international organizations (united nations, NATO) 38. Be able to articulate & summarize Milkis & Landy’s explanation of President George Washington as a precedent Maker. • P. 230 of book • Resigned after 2 terms, (8 years) because then it starts to resemble a monarchy (not in constitution at time to have term limits) • Presidents after followed Washington’s example until term limits were actually set • 1 to managing executive branch (not written into constitution at time) • Didn’t know what to call president at time and he just said “ Mr. president” to get away from monarchy so don’t call you’re majesty 39. Be able to trace the presidential process from candidate agenda setting through inauguration day, as discussed in class. 1. Candidate agenda setting a. Media focus on certain issues so candidate expected to talk about those things 2. Primary election a. Determine candidates in general election 3. Nominating /party national convention a. Setting stage for election 4. General election 5. Issue agenda setting a. Candidates talk more in depth about certain issues 6. Election day (general election) a. Vote for Candidates 7. Electoral college a. President chosen by who wins in state, not popular vote 8. Certification a. State certifies vote and president oversees this. Confirm who won votes in state 17 9. Inauguration a. President sworn in 40. With respect to civil liberties, understand the Constitutional prohibition of Ex Post Facto laws. • Gov't cant charge you for laws made after the fact • Laws of that time are the ones that apply to you, not ones made after the fact 41. Understand what California’s plural executive is and how it differs from the national executive branch. • Plural executive o Each position of cabinet voted for separately (can have different parties) § Not appointed by president o Governor has to share powers • National executive o President appoints cabinet (only 1 party) § Whatever party he is, so is his cabinet 42. Understand how state and local governments arrange their institutions sometimes similar to the national government, and sometimes different from the national government. • State/ national and local • Similar o Strong mayor- mayors elected like president • Different o Council manager- executive is hired by city council o County level- board of supervisors o Executives- small bureaucracies 44. What is the function of political parties? • representation 45. Name three consequences of an open, pluralistic interest group system such as the U.S. system. • Political gridlock 18 o – Interest groups pushing for conflicting policies (pro and anti gun regulations) so nothing happen • Tragedy of the commons • Irrational political growth o Programs are made just because an influential interest group wants them to be = not efficient and irrational • Political inequality o Those represented by interest groups tends to be elite people who’s already well off o Those who cant are left out of process 11. Pay attention to the conflict between the U.S. and Russia over the Crimean region of the Ukraine. 34. Be sure to be conversant about the recent controversy over the United States use of drones in its war against radical Islamic terrorists in Pakistan. • People worried that drones are going to hit us citizens and they’re getting life taken away with due process • Other surrounding nations think its excessive force and US shouldn’t do it 43. Be conversant with the current events that have developed in Syria and Iran. • Syria- civil war, refugees there trying to get into Europe- going by boat and drowning trying to get to Italy or denied when get there • Iran- regarding Iran use of nuclear energy, group of US congress send direct letter to Iran saying even if make agreement w/ president, congress wont support it Important Textbook Terms 1. Federalism • Division of power between the national and state gov’t 2. Lobbying • Interest groups trying to get members of legislators to vote a certain way on a bill 3. National Security Council 19 • Oversee other federal agencies and report info to president 4. The Great Society • Try to end poverty • Extend rights of blacks • Civil rights • Medicare • Bureaucracy expands when congress decides to do something new or expand on what they’re already doing o Civil right clause o Women’s rights movement o Environmental agencies o Justice department 5. Court of Appeals • Determine issues of law • Interpret law 6. Cabinet- group of people that advise president -generally head of department 7. Baker vs. Carr • Court voided Tennessee’s reapportionment plan because it didn’t take into consideration population growth and demographic shifts • When state legislatures redraw congressional districts, they must have about an = amount of people 8. Contract- legal obligation between 1+ parties 9. Prior Restraint Doctrine: Gov't cant tell media to not print something 10. Office of Management & Budget • Agency of federal gov’t that assist president in preparing federal budget 11.Civil Service Protection (same as reform or status) • Gov’t workers hired based on merit, not political affiliation • Fired based on justifiable cause 12.Establishment Clause ( of the First Amendment) 20 • Forbids gov’t from o Establishing an official religion o Favoring one religion over another o Favoring religion over non religion, vice versa 13.Due Process Clause (of the 5 & 14 Amendments) • Cant have life, liberty, property taken away w/o trial 14.Equal Protection Clause (of the 14 Amendment) • Gov’t treat citizens equal under law 15.Commerce Clause • Congress regulate trade 16.Judicial Review • Allow president to strike down actions/laws of congress deemed unconstitutional 17.Bureaucracy 18.Executive Orders • Allows president to manage bureaucracy w/o permission from congress each time 19.Executive Privilege • President privilege to withhold info from the public 20. Coalitions – groups that come together for common purpose 21.Party Caucuses • Same as primary, just smaller # people who decide who the local nominee will be 21
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