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UTA / Political Science / POLS 2312 / Can governor choose his cabinet members?

Can governor choose his cabinet members?

Can governor choose his cabinet members?


School: University of Texas at Arlington
Department: Political Science
Course: State and Local Government
Professor: Daniel sledge
Term: Fall 2016
Tags: pols, pols2312, politicalscience, texas, txgovernment, final, review, finalreview, txgov, texasgovernment, texasgov, and political
Cost: 50
Name: Final Review - POLS 2312
Description: Review of important concepts for the POLS 2312 final exam
Uploaded: 12/07/2016
4 Pages 123 Views 7 Unlocks

Note taker: Sera POLS 2312

Can governor choose his cabinet members?

Final Review 

The US and Centralized Authority 

∙ Revolt against the British

∙ Articles of Confederation (1777-1789)

o Guaranteed there would not be an integrated economy that was the same over  every state

o Severely limited the national government

∙ 1787 Constitution

o A lot more power to the national government: Presidency, taxation, power to coin  money, regulation of interstate commerce, authority over foreign policy

o Constitution was designed to address the problems that emerged under the  Articles of Confederation

Separation of Powers and Federalism 

How many members does the house of representative have?

∙ Both of indicative of a strong aversion to central authority

∙ Separation of powers: President, Congress, and Judicial branch

∙ Federalism: Strengthened federal governments but state governments remained intact ∙ Federalism - a division of power and authority between the central government and  several sub-national governments

o Offers a means to check centralizing power

∙ “The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it  to the States are reserved to the states respectively, or to the people.” - US Constitution, 10th  amendment We also discuss several other topics like What are the application of graph?

o These powers are known as reserved powers

o Preeminent among them is the Police Power: the power to regulate the health,  safety, and morals of citizens

Which procedures ensure the balance between democracy and fundamental rights?

▪ Incredibly expansive power

▪ Allows for the creation of speed limits, regulation of businesses (like  

barbershops), issue of professional license (like nursing licenses), etc. We also discuss several other topics like What are the 3 requirements for being president?

Benefits of Federalism 

∙ States are the “laboratories of democracy”  

∙ States and localities may be more responsive to local needs

∙ Allows for greater flexibility so that different states can operate differently ∙ Potential for greater citizen involvement


∙ Potential for localized oppression

∙ Divergent outcomes

∙ Coordination problems

Transformation of Federalism

∙ Civil War amendments

∙ New Deal

∙ Civil Rights

∙ The Great Society (and the New Deal)

>> Federal power expanded through the passage of legislation

Note taker: Sera POLS 2312

The Civil War and Reconstruction 

∙ Military and Republican Rule (1867-1874)

∙ In 1869 state constitution: strong central government, taxes raised to pay for new services ∙ Democratic Dominance

o During Reconstruction, the right to vote was taken away from a number of  Republicans

1876 Texas Constitution 

∙ Reaction to Reconstruction

∙ Limited and dispersed government power Don't forget about the age old question of Is retained earnings an asset?

∙ Salaries reduced, executive authority limited

∙ Constitution goes into explicit detail Don't forget about the age old question of When did the community start producing more antibiotics?

∙ Has to be amended all the time

∙ Ensured power would be fragmented and limited Don't forget about the age old question of How cancers are named and staged?

The Governor 

∙ Most visualize the governor as an extremely powerful figure - but it’s not o Probably the weakest governorship in the US

∙ President gets to choose cabinet members; the Governor does not

o Plural executive

o Attorney General

o Comptroller of Public Accounts

o Commissioner of the General Land Office

o Agriculture Commissioner

o Railroad Commissioners  

o Board of Education  

o Lt. Governor

∙ Limited budgetary power

o Governor’s budget is typically vague

o Budget proposals from the governor are generally vague

o The Legislative Budget Board writes the state’s budget

∙ Veto Power

o Veto threats and veto bargaining

o Gov may veto bills after legislature has adjourned

▪ Not really a move of power because it means he could not persuade the  legislature to add his requests or changes to a bill Don't forget about the age old question of Does the disadvantage change when the context changes?

o Gov may issue line-item vetoes on spending items in the budget

The State Legislature 

∙ A House of Representatives (150 members) and a smaller Senate (31 members) ∙ House members: represent smaller districts, 2-year terms

∙ Senators: represent broader districts, are elected to 4-year terms which are staggered (half  of the Senate is up for election every 2 years)

∙ Speaker of the House is elected and chooses who will sit on what House committees

Note taker: Sera POLS 2312

∙ Lt. Governor heads the Senate

o Lt. Governor is not like the Vice Presidency, Lt. Governor has a lot of formal  power, VP does not

∙ Legislature meets every two years for a set period of 140 days

∙ Governor can call special sessions which last for 30 days

The Courts: Independence vs Accountability 

∙ The US Constitution favors judicial independence

o But there is no way to hold these judges accountable

∙ Judges are meant to act as impartial arbiters in disputes

∙ In Texas, all judges (except for municipal court judges) are elected in partisan elections o Trial judges are elected to 4-year terms

o Appellate judges are elected to 6-year terms

Balancing Democracy and Fundamental Rights 

∙ Elections – democracies derive legitimacy from regular and fairly run popular elections ∙ Politicians derive authority from claims to represent “the people” (“electoral mandates”) ∙ Duverger’s Law: within the context of single member plurality voting, forming broadly  based political parties is the most effective means of winning elections

∙ The procedures we use in our elections are not neutral

o The rules of our game have a big impact on the outcome of the game

o Ex. The electoral college: A candidate may win the popular vote but lose the  electoral vote and not become president

Government as a Solution to Collective Problems 

∙ the “social contract”: a decision to form a community and create a sovereign authority ∙ Political communities create a government as a means of addressing problems that  individuals cannot effectively address on their own

Sources of Revenue 

∙ Federal income tax (33%)

∙ Sales tax (26%)

∙ Texas collects a lot of revenue from “fees” in order to appear as a “low tax” state ∙ Texas Constitution prohibits income tax, state-wide property tax, and caps the sales tax at  6.25% (plus up to an additional 2% for localities)

∙ State spends most of its budget on Health and Education

Medicaid Expansion (Affordable Care Act) 

∙ Federal government would cover cost of newly eligible beneficiaries for three years ∙ After 2020, the federal government would cover 90% of the cost of expansion ∙ If states elected not to participate, they would lose all of their federal Medicaid funding ∙ Supreme Court on Medicaid

o States must be able to decide freely whether to participate or not

Note taker: Sera POLS 2312

o Cooperative programs are contractual- federal ability to alter them is limited o Rather than being an alteration of the existing Medicaid program, the ACA  changes were a new program, with new goals


∙ Gerrymandering: drawing an electoral district in order to give electoral advantage to one  political party

∙ Packing – pack members of the opposing party into one congressional district ∙ Cracking – splitting members of the opposing party into multiple congressional districts  to drown their votes

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