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Study guide for Exam 2

by: Jon Connor Davis

Study guide for Exam 2 POLI 1090

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Jon Connor Davis

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This study guide goes over everything in detail for this upcoming exam, with key words, important ideas, and questions you should be able to answer
American Government in Multicultural World
Dr. Soren Jordan
Study Guide
Federal Government Role, American Government, Government
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This 10 page Study Guide was uploaded by Jon Connor Davis on Monday October 17, 2016. The Study Guide belongs to POLI 1090 at Auburn University taught by Dr. Soren Jordan in Fall 2016. Since its upload, it has received 164 views.


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Date Created: 10/17/16
Political Science Exam 2 Study Guide Chapters covered in book:  10, 11, 12, 13, 14, and an overview of 7 If you have any questions about the study guide, email me at (Lists with same color highlighted are important to distinguish from each other) The Presidency: Ch. 11  Article II is devoted to the president o Section I: list of rules for president: natural born citizen, 35 years old, rules for election procedures o Section II: Commander in chief, gives reprieves and pardons, forms treaties, just a general list of responsibilities o Section III: talks about the State of the Union, which has grown dramatically from the early addresses given. o Section IV: reasons for impeachment  Article I section VII gives the president the power to Veto  The Constitutional theory of Presidential power: Executive only includes enumerated or delegated powers. (President Taft was a good example of this: he basically just signed whatever fell on his desk)  Stewardship theory of Presidential Power: President can do anything not forbidden by the constitution or federal law. (Ex: Teddy Roosevelt)  Prerogative Theory of Presidential Power: President can do anything not forbidden by the constitution or statute (As long as it is in the national interest, it is the right and duty of the president)  If you were a rational president, what would you do with the powers given you in the Constitution? Use them to accomplish your goals  Executive Privilege: Communications between president and executive officials can be kept confidential. (Nixon tried to use this to cover up Watergate)  Executive Orders: legally binding directives from the president to executive officials about how to run the branch (totally bypasses Congress)  Presidential directives: Official instructions from the president regarding federal policy.  What was the War Powers Act? o The 1973 Act which provides that the president cannot send troops into military conflict for more than a total of 90 days without seeking a formal declaration of war, or authorization for continued military action from Congress. o (Passed in reaction to the Vietnam War)  What do executive orders do? o Give guidance to executive agencies o Can be overturned by the next president or by law.  What is “going public?” o When a president takes his ideas and desires to the people directly, and not trying to persuade Congress. o Reagan did this and became very popular for it.  Why do we have the electoral college? o It is a checkpoint against direct election of the president by the public (because voters are fickle and direct election can be bad for the nation!) o Number of electors is based on the number of House/Senate members Bureaucracy: Ch. 12  What does Bureaucracy do? “faithfully executes” policy. o This is how modern presidents carry out Section 3 of Article I “take care that the laws be faithfully executed”  Definition of bureaucracy: An organization with a hierarchical structure that functions according to specific rules and procedures with lots of administrative staff.  There are over 4,000,000 government workers!!!  Bureaucracies carry out laws passed by congress w/ President’s direction o They act within rules, but still have their own preferences! o All are unelected o “Power without responsibility” (because they can’t be voted out of office!)  There are now 15 executive departments that make up the bureaucracy  Important from the reading:  Oversight: Powers of Congress to monitor how the executive branch implements the laws. o The President can’t keep track of all the different departments, so that job falls to Congress! o Congress is uninterested in close monitoring of bureaucracies, because bureaucracy gives them the opportunity to achieve their goals! (Single-minded seekers of re-election)  Two important types of oversight: o Police patrol: regular/ random selection of agencies to investigate o Fire Alarm: Wait for people to tell them (Congress) when bureaucracies aren’t doing their job  Often done by Whistleblowers from within these agencies.  How can bureaucracies be improved? o Decentralization o Privatization o Allowing government greater flexibility with bureaucracy The Courts: Ch. 13  Congress says very little about the courts: o One Supreme Court o Congress establishes the lower courts o Judges get offices for life  Article VI, Section I: talks about the Supremacy clause, which is enhanced by Judicial review  Main Question: How can a branch with so few enumerated powers in the Constitution become so powerful?  Key requirements for a judge: o Must be an impartial, unbiased arbiter o Must be independent in thinking  Perception influences reality: meaning that the way supreme court judges see the law, affects the daily life of all Americans, very important.  Different ways judges view the Constitution: o Literalism- take it literally o Original intent- what did the founders mean to happen o Living Constitution- the constitution’s interpretation changes with time o Textualism- the text is the law, and the text must be observed. How judges make decisions:  Stare Decisis: following past precedent on court cases  The Attitudinal model of decision making: when judges base rulings based on their own political preferences o This can erode the positivity people feel toward the supreme court o The countermajoritarian difficulty: tension that exists for representative government when unelected judges have the power to strike laws passed by elected representatives. Two types of judges:  Restraint Justices o Generally unwilling to overturn the work of other branches of government o In part because they are generalists, not experts in policy like the legislative and executive branches are.  Activist judges o More inclined to overturn laws o In part because they view the Supreme Court as having more of a role in policy making o They think that “tyranny of the majority” is a real problem.  Judicial Review: o Authority to declare laws or actions of government officials to be unconstitutional. o This idea came from the case of Marbury vs. Madison, where the precedent for declaring thing unconstitutional was set.  What is a writ of certiorari? A request to the supreme court that it hear a lower court case. o At least 4 Judges must want to hear a case for it to be brought before the court  Justices hear oral arguments from both sides of a case then: o Consider arguments such as amicus curiae briefs (friends of the court, usually interest groups) o Vote on what to do o Chief Justice/ most senior Justice in the majority opinion decides who writes the opinion of the court.  What can SCOTUS do? o Affirm the lower court’s decision o Reverse the lower court’s decision o Remand the case (a do over for the lower court)  Big Idea: The Judiciary is just another political institution with rational people making rational decisions!!! Congress: Ch. 10 Article I is devoted to Congress:  Section I: All legislative powers are vested in Congress  Section II: In the House: must be 25 years old, 7 years a citizen, live in the state you’re elected from, Appointment is based on the population, States fill house vacancies, House chooses its own officers, power of impeachment, serve 2 year terms  Section III: Senate: 2 from each state (serve 6 year terms), must be 30 years old and 9 years a citizen, live where elected from, VP is the chairman of the Senate and breaks ties, Senate tries impeachments (2/3 for conviction)  Section IV: States control election laws  Section V: House judge their own elections, Compel the attendance of absent members, determine their own rules, 2/3 needed to expel a member, can have secret proceedings  Section VI: are paid for their work, can hold no other office.  Section VII: All revenue bills must originate in the House, Presidential Veto and 2/3 Override is in this section  Section VIII: Legislative Jurisdiction- specifically enumerated powers  Section IX: Can’t suspend Habeas Corpus, no ex post facto laws, originally no income tax, banned slave trade in 1808  Section X: States can’t make treaties, coin money, tax imports or go to war. Congress is obviously the most important.  What kind of people run for Congress? o Most common: lawyers o Second common: business men o Both are ambitious people without a path for ambition o People who use funding from others are more likely to win as opposed to self- funders o Campaigns are huge investments and difficult. These strategic people design an institution to their advantage. o Congressmen are SINGLE-MINDED SEEKERS OF RE-ELECTION!!!!  As single-minded seekers of re-election, Congressmen structure Congress not in a way that helps the most people possible, but in a way that will please their constituents and get them re-elected.  The ideal congress: is services and benefits without a cost.  The next best thing: distributive politics (costs are spread out amongst districts) o Leads to “log-rolling” (You vote for giving me money, and I’ll vote for giving you money!)  Individually, members of Congress are weak, because power is divided  This comes back to a problem of coordination: the answer is distributive politics and the common goal of re-election  Conditional party Government: predicts when: o Rank and file members of a party share policy views and: o Confront an opposition party with sharply different views, then: o Strong centralized government arises.  How does Congress overcome the collective action problem? o Distribute benefits to all districts so your own district doesn’t miss out. o Use the party and its leadership to maintain coalitions.  Because parties are so divided, these things are the most important in passing legislation: o Leadership, Political parties, Rules and institutions.  Read Section 10.3 for the organization of Congress leadership  Agenda Setting is crucial to the Majority party in Congress. o Majority party determines what is discussed, especially in the House  Four stages a Bill must pass to become law: o Must pass out of committee o Must pass a floor vote in both chambers o Must pass out of conference committee if House and Senate versions are different o Must be signed by the President  Gerrymandering: drawing districts in a way to maximize the number of seats you can win. 2 types: o Racial (Often done to concentrate Democratic votes) o Partisan (based on party politics) Policy: Ch. 14  Three important facts about Policy-making: o Policy making is difficult:  Even “easy” political issues are hard to legislate correctly (even harder for stuff like abortion that is devisive) o Policy is cyclical  It is continuously adjusted  Also tends to respond to exogeneous shocks o Policy is inertial  Once a policy is written, it is highly unlikely to be unwritten or significantly changed.  Major Policies: o New Deal under FDR  Brought Social Security and expansion of entitlement programs o Great Society under LBJ  Brought Food stamps, Medicare, and Medicaid o Affordable Care Act under Obama  Required all people to purchase health insurance o Bush Tax Cuts  Cut taxes due to government surpluses o Basic income  Guaranteed amount of money all people receive due to societal and government forces  This one is still up for debate. Key Terms from each chapter: Ch. 10: Canyou? Chapter 10: Describehow Congress has developed?  Divided government - Ex: how has itgone from the simplebicameral  Majority/ Minority leaders branch to the powerful, yet gridlocked systemof today and what causes that? Hint: parties!  Ranking member Definethe powers of Congress? - Article I lays out all ofCongress’enumerated  Cloture powers  Unanimous consent agreement How is Congress Structured?  Hold - Party whips, majority and minority leaders, speakers,Senate Pro tempore.  Federal budget deficit Explainhow a law is made in Congress?  National debt - What are the four steps to make a bill into a law? What does a member of Congress do?  Concurrent budget resolution - (not nothing)  Continuing resolution  Reconciliation  Override Chapter 11: CanYou? Chapter 11: Outline the requirements for President?  Lame duck - Article II lays out all the requirements  Imperial presidency Identify the powers of the president and explainhow they are limited?  Commander in chief - What does the Constitution saythe president  Pardon should do? Describethe growth of executive influence?  Veto - How are laws “faithfullyexecuted? Analyze why the president is sopowerful during wartime?  Omnibus bill - As commander inchief, the president has sole  Entitlement programs power with a declaration of war from Congress  State of the Union Address Summarize how the White Houseis organized? - Cabinet, departments, etc.  Impeachment  Executive privilege  Presidential directive  Executive order  Signing statements  Bully pulpit  War Powers Act Chapter 12: Ch. 12: CanYou? Explainwhat Bureaucracy does?  Bureaucracy  Regulations - Executive branch departments carrying out responsibilities ofthe federal government  Cabinet Outline the essential elements of a bureaucracy? - Rules,mission,area of expertise  Federal Register Describethe growth of bureaucracy overtime?  Independent agency - 15 departments - gone from “winner takes all” to a merit based  Federal regulatory commission system ofbureaucracy  Oversight - president appoints people to carry out his agenda  Pendleton Act Assess howthe bureaucracy is both accountable and responsive, and how itcan fail.  Civil Service Commission - Held accountable by Congress. - It is often in Congress’interest to keep bureaucracy  Merit system in linesothat itdoesn’t harm their constituents and  Political appointees make the people mad (becausecongressmen are  Whistleblowers single-minded seekers of re-election!) Chapter 13: Ch. 13: Canyou?  Affirmative action Describewhat the Judicial branch does? Explainhow stateand lower courts operate?  Appeal Review the procedures the supreme court uses? - They are above  Courts of appeals  Civil suit Identify factors that influencejudicial rulings and the impact those decisions have?  Common law Discuss howfederal judges are selected?  Precedent Outline how the Supreme court has expanded and  District courts contracted national powers? - Ex: FDR and his push for the New Deal,which the  Jurisdiction Supreme court upheld  Judicial review  Marbury vs. Madison -concurring opinion -dissenting opinion  En banc - countermajoritarian difficulty - judicial activism  Writ of certiorari - judicial restraint  Class action lawsuit -  Amicus curiae  Solicitor general  Majority opinion Chapter 14: Chapter 14: CanYou? Outline the steps in the policy making process?  Public policy  Problem identification 1 - They are numbered to the left Identify the Key federal programs that comprise domestic  Policy agenda 2 policy? - They are listedabove In the sectionon chapter 14.  Policy formulation 3 - Almost all are entitlement programs  Policy enactment 4 Explainhow the federal government intervenes in the economy?  Policy implementation 5 - Federal reserve, interest rates,trade deals,taxes,  Policy evaluation 6 etc.  Regulatory process Evaluatethe effectiveness ofUS foreign policy - We have moved from isolationistto globalization as  Regulations a whole. - Less all outwar, more economic sanctions and  Policy diffusion diplomacy indealings.  Social security  Medicare  Medicaid  Clean Air Act  Recession  Non-state actors


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