Final Exam Preparation

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Department
Political Science
Course
POL 232
Professor
Alexander Moens
Semester
Fall

Description
POL 232: US Politics FINAL EXAM PREPARATION: Structure and Dynamics STRUCTURAL AND DYNAMIC POWERS OF DIFFERENT BRANCHES The President Constitution (Article II): Powers alone: - Executive power vested power, appointment power, implementation power - Commander in chief commission officer of the armed forces - Conduct foreign relations receive ambassadors Powers shared with Senate - Appoints federal and Supreme Court Judges and commission all officers of government, ambassadors - Make treaties - Grant pardons - Legislative recommendation in Senate of the union o Gives the President the power to go to the Congress only way to go to Senate - Approve legislation power to veto legislation Dynamics: - Persuasive powers (persuasion and bargaining) important to have because of lots of checks and balances in place o Popularity o Partisan control How well is the President working with his own party o Reputation How public perceive him/expect him to react How hard he will try to get what he wants Too much compromise not enough persuasive power ** Tenacity is important! o Political game control - 3 areas Agenda Image/prestige how well can you maintain your image when others are attacking you? How well can you compromise and create coalitions for which you get credit for Ex. Osama Bin Laden and NATO action in Libya significant improvements by Obama but he hasnt received any credits for these yet. o Media o Executive privilege constitution says nothing about this but president acts as if he has the right of confidentiality Congress THE LEGISLATIVE PROCESS - Can exercise independently of the executive branch - Decentralized - More individualistic - -- - Founders legislative efficiency over representation and checks & balances - Today too much blockage in Congress o Polarization party loyalty is important for the Congress but not so much for the voter Ideological differences are so pronounced. o Fragmentation Party members own mandates o Power of committees o Interest groups o Presidential veto - Gridlock: major threat to USA political system Ways to kill the legislative bill: 1. Leadership discretion 2. (sub) committee hearing, drafting 3. Committee reporting whether to report the bill back to hold or not report at all 4. Procedural kill: a. House Rules Committee b. Senate unanimous consent 5. Senate hold or filibuster right to unlimited debate a. Motion of cloture: 60+ votes of the Senate 6. Senate allows earmark or rider in bill 7. Conference Committee Report a. The last chance to kill a bill as a party. 8. Presidential veto within 10 days If the Congress in session o Override Judiciary Founders were worried about giving too much power to judiciary. Reasons; - 13 states wanted to have their own govestment - Fathers wanted Congress to be the 1 branch a strong judiciary could overshadow this ** The power of judiciary was not defined clearly. Fathers expected the Supreme Court to have the power of judicial review but they did not expect federal courts to play so large a role in making public policy. Constitution: - Article III o (1) The judicial power of the United States, shall be vested (above politics strong word in constitution) in one Supreme Court Congress cant null the Supreme Court o (2) The judicial power shall extend to all Cases power includes all acts of Congress and of President. - Judiciary review - Judiciary independence - Judiciary interpretation Dynamics: - The Constitution and the Fathers didnt want judiciary to be powerful, but it is very powerful today in American politics.- The traditional understanding was based on the belief that judges find and apply existing law, and what law requires. The rise of judicial activism gave them the power to make the law. - Fathers predict that the courts would play a relatively neutral, even passive, role in public affairs. The evolution of activism and influence has been shaped by the political, economic, and ideological forces of three historical eras; o Late 18 century early 19 century nation building, slavery, legitimacy of the federal government o Late 19 century early 20 century government and economy th o Early 20 century present personal liberty, social equality, and potential conflict between the two. - Supreme Court power of interpretation (the meaning) o Of the Constitution says o Of the laws of Congress and of the actions of the President - Hamilton stated in his writings that he did not expect the court to be as powerful as Congress and the Presidency. In fact, the Marbury vs. Madison case proved judiciary to be as powerful as Congress and the President, and even more powerful in some cases. - Supreme Court has the final say! HOW THE SUPREME COURT WAS ABLE TO ASSERT IT POWER WITHOUT DIRECT CONFRONTATION WITH CONGRESS AND THE PRESIDENT IN MARBURY VS. MADISON CASE? The Historic court case established the concept of Judicial Review or the ability of the Judiciary Branch to declare a law unconstitutional. The court clarified the role and the jurisdictions of the judiciary. Marshall ruled tha
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