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American Government Laws and Institutions

by: Kelly Rodriguez

American Government Laws and Institutions PSCI 1040

Marketplace > University of North Texas > Political Science > PSCI 1040 > American Government Laws and Institutions
Kelly Rodriguez
GPA 3.79

Kimi King

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Kimi King
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This 13 page Class Notes was uploaded by Kelly Rodriguez on Sunday October 25, 2015. The Class Notes belongs to PSCI 1040 at University of North Texas taught by Kimi King in Fall. Since its upload, it has received 67 views. For similar materials see /class/229170/psci-1040-university-of-north-texas in Political Science at University of North Texas.


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Date Created: 10/25/15
Chapter 25 G haptnr R ev iew Court Structure Texas is unique in that it has two supreme courts one for civil cases which is called the Supreme Court of Texas and one for criminal cases which is called the Texas Court of Criminal Appeals The nine justices who sit on each court like all judges in Texas are elected This isjust another example of popular control over those individuals chosen to govern in Texas I How can one describe the large and complex structure of the Texas court system What is the jurisdiction and authority of each level of court At the highest level is the Texas Supreme Court for civil matters and the Texas Court of Criminal Appeals for criminal matters Both courts have nine justices that are elected to sixyear terms Both courts have appellate jurisdiction The requirements for office include being a US citizen being a resi dent of Texas being at least thirtyfive years of age and being either a practicing lawyer or having been judge for ten years You should note that all attorneys are licensed by the Texas Supreme Court and are members of the State Bar of Texas The fourteen Courts of Appeal are the next level of courts they also have appellate jurisdiction The major trial courts are the district courts which are responsible for conducting trials in civil and criminal cases with some district courts allowed to specialize in a particular type of case There are also countyjudges county courts and statutory county courts at law statutory probate courts justice of the peace courts and municipal courts The Legal Process What are the differences between civil and criminal law in Texas Civil law involves a dispute usually between private individuals over relationships obligations and responsibility eg contracts property personal injury Criminal law involves the violation of a criminal statute and is brought by the state against the accused violator or defendant ll How is the legal process different in civil and criminal cases In civil cases the plaintiff has the burden of proof and must prove his or her case by a preponderance of the evidence to recover monetary damages ln criminal cases the state must prove that the defendant committed the offense beyond a reasonable doubt Most cases are resolved before they reach trial through settlement in civil cases or a plea bargain in criminal cases Often before a case goes to trial a grand jury will determine whether there is enough evidence against a defendant to justify a trial Grand juries do not rule on a defendant39s guilt or innocence How Judges Are Selected What is the most important feature of howjudges are selected in Texas What does this feature reveal about Texas politics more broadly How does the selection process in uence who becomes a judge in 7 r What alternatives or reforms to the current selection process are available Judges at every level are v1 However if there is a before an election the gin r will Md someone to serve until the next election Judges must campaign for office in an exceptionally partisan election which generally requires drawing support from one side of the bar or the other eg civil judges draw support from either the plaintiffs bar or the civil defense bar and criminal judges draw support from the prosecution or criminal defense bar Accordingly elections become political contests between influential segments of the leal community Furthermore the val quoty in a n has r will ul i v m W cm n c ml at i to become judges in Texas However there is a higher proportion of women on the Texasjudiciary than minorities One reform that has been suggested is to provide for retention elections after an initial appointment by the governor to reduce the political nature ofjudicial selection Another alternative selection method would be based on merit thus the name meritselection The most significantjudicial reform in Texas is the Judicial Campaign Fairness Act which limited campaign contribution amounts and placed more strict regulations on the source of campaign contributions The Importance of the Texas Courts What are some of the ways that courts in Texas have an important impact on the lives of all Texans articularly the The l r Halal 2 issue addressed by Texas courts and Hz n f r ilquot l39w l i lr l j l39F39fv l39139lfl C 11321 l igwm Other issues addressed by the courts include tougher criminal sentencing tort reform school financing and the tobacco litigation But scandals such as the Tulia drug arrests the Dallas fakedrugs scandal the Houston DNA lab39s failures and the Dallas DNA exonerations cast doubt on whether the criminal justice system in Texas is workin as well as it should However the a of T be the process by which i plaza still will continue to Political Science 1040011 Supplemental Instruction Leader Ciera Norris cieranorrisSyahoocom Final Review Reminder This review is only to help you understand some of the main concepts and ideas from unit three This Review should in NO WAY be your only form of studying Be sure to read over your notes look at the slides and refer to your textbook Good luck guys Be sure to print this review and bring it with you to the test review session 1 damagesintended to reform or deter the defendant and others from engaging in conduct similar to that which formed the basis of the lawsuit a Punitive damages b Compensatory damages 2 refers to the substantive legal area that a court hears pursuant to its legal authority a Original jurisdiction b Subject jurisdiction c Personajurisdiction UL b U1 0 l 9 Most original jurisdiction goes to a Trial courts b Appellate Courts c US Supreme Court What is the main purpose ofthe appellate courts a To hold retrials b To send cases through to the Supreme Court c To review the lower court decision to see if mistakes were made and to correct any errors Q To review the higher court decision to see if mistakes were made and to correct any errors Can the appellate courts reverse case decisions a Yes b No True or False The 8th amendment bars states from imposing the death penalty if the crime did not result in the child s death Coker v Georgia a T b F Can juveniles or the mentally ill be given the death penalty Atkins v Georgia Roper v Simmons a No b Yes How many district courts are there a 94 b 89 c 14 d 7 How many federal circuits are there a 6 b 10 c 7 d 12 10 This act finalized the current organizational structure L0 of the federal appellate courts a Court of Appeals Act of 1891 b Judges Bill 1925 c Judiciary Act of 1789 11 Federal judges are appointed by the president and confirmed by a House of Representatives b Senate 12 To find out more information about a judicial candidate the Senator from hisher state may be questioned What is this called a Confirmation conversion b General jurisdiction c Political consent d Senatorial Consent 13 The principle ofjudicial review was established in the case of 14 Let the decisions standquot refers to the term a Stare Decisis b Habeas corpus c Writ of mandamus d Writ of certiorari 15 The Supreme Court has original jurisdiction in a Cases between the US and one of the 50 states b Cases between two or more states c Cases involving ambassadors or other ministers d All ofthe above 16 How does the issue of quotstandingquot relate to the Elk Grove Unified School District v Newdow 17 How was quotmootnessquot an issue in the case of Roe v Wade 18 How many Supreme Court justices must agree to hear a case before it can be put on the docket a 8 b c d 19 9 6 4 Who is the attorney who argues all the cases before the Supreme Court where the US is a party a b c d 20 QUEm 21 Attorney General Secretary of War Solicitor General Chief Justice The case of Gideon v Wainwright established Right to privacy Freedom of speech Freedom of speech Right to counsel Briefs submitted by a 3rel party who may have some stake in the decision of the court is called 000 22 09179 Per Curium Brief Mootness Concurrent opinion Amicus Brief How many supreme courts does Texas have NWHb 23 Under law penalties include fines probation imprisonment or death a Civil b Criminal 24 Judges in in Texas are widely selected by a BiPartisan election b Merit selection c Appointment by governor d Partisan Election 25 Do Texas judges reflect the overall demographics of the state a Yes b No 26 The negative restraints on government to protect rights and privileges to individuals to prevent arbitrary removal by government a Civil Rights b Civil Liberties 27 Initially the Supreme court interpreted the Bill of Rights to limit only the a Local governments b State Governments c Federal Government 28 Nationalization of the Bill of Rights was possible through which amendment a 12th b 13 c 14th d 15th 29 The clause that prohibits the national government from favoring a national religion is called the a Establishment clause b Freeexercise clause 30 When analyzing whether or not the establishment clause is being violated which test is the most difficult a Lemon Test b Endorsement Test c Coercion Test 31 In which case was school prayer struck down a Wallace V Jaffree b Santa Fe Independent School District v Doe c Marsh v Chambers d Engel v Vitale 32 True or False The government must show a quotcompelling government interestquot if they are going to interfere with religious beliefs a T b F 33 True or False When speech is being expressed the government may set time place and manner restrictions a T b F 34 Is symbolic speech protected under free speech a Yes b No 35 This case held that government cannot punish inflammatory speech unless it is directed to inciting and likely to incite imminent lawless action a Tinker v Des Moines School District b Frederick v Morse c Brandenburg v Ohio d Texas v Johnson 36 The Case of Chaplinksy v New Hampshire confirmed that a Hate speech is protected under the 1St amendment b Fighting words are not protected under the 1St amendment c Obscenity is not protected under the 1St amendment d Political Parody is protected under the 1St amendment 37 What is Libel 38 What is Slander 39 This case established the obscenity it not protected under by the constitution 40 What is obscenity as described in Miller v California 41 This states that evidence that is obtained unlawfully can be tossed out of court a Miranda rights b Double jeopardy c Exclusionary Rule 42 In this case Supreme Court strikes down Texas law that prohibits same sex sodomy a Furman v Georgia b Gregg v Georgia c Bowers v Hardwick d Lawrence v Texas 43 Are positive acts by the government designed to protect persons against arbitrary or discriminatory treatment by the government or individuals a Civil Liberties b Civil Rights 44 What is the 13th amendment 45 What is the 14th amendment 46 What is the 15th amendment 47 What is the 24th amendment 48 What is the 19th amendment 49 This case established that Separate is equalquot a Plessey v Fergusen b Brown v Board of Education 50 is a piece of legislation that outlawed discriminatory voting practices that had been responsible for the widespread disenfranchisement of African Americans in the US a Voting Rights Act of 1965 b Declaration of Sentiments and Resolutions c Civil Rights Act of 1875 51 True or False De jure segregation is segregation that exists without law and De Facto discrimination is discrimination mandated by law a T b F 52 quotQuid Pro Quoquot Harassment and quotHostile Environmentquot harassment would both be issues covered in what title of the Civil Rights Amendment of 1965 a V b I c IV d V


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