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GOV CH 3-2 CONST PRINCIPALS



Multiple Choice
Identify the choice that best completes the statement or answers the question.
 
 
The Major Principles of Government Embodied in the Constitution

Major Ideas of American Government are in the Constitution The governmental framework supplied by the Constitution has a number of elements. In general, they fall under six broad principles. Much of the Constitution seems to focus on how the government should be controlled. As James Madison (1751-1836) once said, after you have given the government the ability to control its citizens, you have to "oblige it to control itself." In keeping with the concept of controlling the government, the first basic governing principle of the Constitution is limited government. Governments that are not limited are dictatorships.  Here are the six broad principles:

1. limited government
2. popular sovereignty,
3. separation of powers,
4. checks and balances,
5. judicial review, and
6. federalism.


What do they mean?????
 

 1. 

According to the passage above, a good part of the Constitution is devoted to
a.
making the government stronger
c.
making the government weaker
b.
controlling the government to limit its power
d.
making the government more powerful so it can protect its citizens
 

 2. 

From the passage above we can infer that James Madison
a.
hated the government
c.
trusted the government
b.
distrusted the government
d.
did not like citizens
 
 
Limited Government

The framers were fearful of the powerful English monarchy, against which they had so recently rebelled. They therefore included in the Constitution the principle of limited government, which means that the national government created by the Constitution can do only what the people allow it to do. This principle can be found in many parts of the Constitution. For example, while Articles I, 11, and III indicate what the national government can do, the first nine amendments to the Constitution list ways that the national government cannot limit certain individual freedoms. Under a limited government, all citizens must live according to the rule of law. Like other citizens, those who run the government must always obey the laws found in the Constitution. Otherwise stated, no person- even the president-is above the law.   
 

 3. 

In a limited form of government
a.
only the president is above the law
c.
everyone except the president is above the law
b.
even the president is above the law
d.
no one is above the law
 

 4. 

What is the main idea of the passage above?
a.
The Constitution is designed to limit the power of government
c.
Only the president is above the law
b.
The constitution is designed to enhance the power of government
d.
No one makes the laws for the U.S. except the Congress.
 
 
Popular Sovereignty

Popular sovereignty means that the people are the ultimate source of any power given to the government. Remember that the phrases that frame the Preamble to the Constitution are "We the People of the United States ... do ordain and establish this Constitution for the United States of America." In other words, it is the people who form the government. The principle of popular sovereignty is closely linked to the principle of limited government. According to both principles, the people are the ultimate source of governmental authority.
 

 5. 

Popular sovereignty means
a.
being sovereign is popular
c.
it is important to be popular
b.
the people are more powerful than the government
d.
you muse be free to be popular
 

 6. 

Who established the Constitution the United States?
a.
George Washington
c.
the people
b.
James Madison
d.
the government
 
 
Separation of Powers

The framers of the Constitution wanted to create a government that would prevent the rise of tyranny, absolute and unlimited power and authority. To do so, they separated the powers of the government. They distributed governmental powers among three branches: executive, legislative, and judicial. When powers are separated in this way, no one branch has enough power to dominate the others. The plan for separation of powers used in the Constitution is called the Madisonian Model, for James Madison, who developed it. The plan is laid out in Articles 1, 11, and 111. Congress, or the legislative branch, passes laws; the president, or the executive branch, carries them out; and the courts, or the judicial branch, interpret them.
 

 7. 

Why did James Madison believe it was important to separate the government into branches?
a.
He thought it would make the government more stable and secure
c.
He wanted to keep each branch from becoming too powrful
b.
He did not like the Senate and wanted to limit it’s power.
d.
He did not trust people
 

 8. 

In the Madisonian model of government, each branch of the government was equal and has the same responsibilities.
a.
true
b.
false
 

 9. 

How many branches of government does the Constitution create?
a.
two
c.
four
b.
three
d.
six
 
 
Checks and Balances
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The separation of powers is part of a system of checks and balances. The framers feared that one branch of government could dominate the other two. In order to prevent this, the framers made sure that each branch of government could exercise certain powers over the actions of the other branches. The president checks Congress by holding veto power, which is the ability to refuse to sign congressional bills into law. Congress, in turn, controls taxes and spending, and the Senate must approve presidential appointments. For example, the president can appoint justices to the Supreme Court, but only with the approval of the Senate. Under the system of checks and balances, each branch's independence is protected. At the same time, however, the system calls for cooperation, because in order to take an action, at least two branches must work together. For example, Congress can pass a law, but the executive branch must approve, administer, and enforce it. Thus, the branches depend on each other, but they also maintain their independence.
 

 10. 

What is the purpose of checks and balances in the U.S. government?
a.
make sure each branch has the same power
c.
cut down on excessive regulation
b.
balances help the government to run smoother
d.
prevent any one branch of government from becoming too powerful
 

 11. 

Which branch of government has the power to veto laws written by Congress?
a.
executive
c.
judicial
b.
legislative
d.
Supreme Court
 

 12. 

The president appoints Mr. Schneemann to be the Ambassador to Mexico. Which branch of government must approve the nomination?
a.
executive
c.
congress
b.
judicial
d.
courts
 

 13. 

The system of checks and balances in the U.S. government keep the branches from working together
a.
true
b.
false
 
 
Judicial Review

Judicial review refers to the power of the courts to decide whether a law or other governmental action violates the Constitution. In cases that come before the U.S. Supreme Court, if the justices find that a federal or state law violates the U.S. Constitution, that law is declared unconstitutional. Such a law no longer has any validity or legitimacy-it is as if it did not exist. For example, suppose your state passed a law that allowed the state police to monitor telephone conversations (called wiretapping) without formally obtaining permission from a judge. The U.S. Supreme Court might strike down that law as unconstitutional because it violates the Fourth Amendment to the Constitution.

The Constitution does not specifically mention judicial review. Most constitutional scholars believe, however, that the framers meant the federal courts to have that power. For example, in Federalist Paper No. 78, Alexander Hamilton made the following statement: The interpretation of the laws is the proper and peculiar province [specialty] of the courts. A constitution is, in fact, and must be regarded by the judges, as a fundamental law. It therefore belongs to them to ascertain its meaning, as well as the meaning of any particular act proceeding from the legislative body. If there should happen to be an irreconcilable variance between the two, . . . the Constitution ought to be preferred to the statute Judicial review became part of the U.S. system in the 1803 case of Marbury v. Madison. In this famous case, the Supreme Court ruled for the first time that part of an act passed by Congress was unconstitutional. Chief Justice John Marshall declared that it is "the province and duty of the judicial department to say what the law is." You can read about this case in Case Study: Government in Action-Marbury v. Madison (1803). After this important decision, the Supreme Court became part of the checks and balances system. Through the power of judicial review, the Court could declare actions of the other two branches of government unconstitutional.
 

 14. 

The case of Marbury v. Madison
a.
said the laws passed by the executive branch might be unconstitutional
c.
made the judicial branch of government more p;powerful than the others
b.
made the legislative branch of government more powerful than the others
d.
established the power of the Supreme Court to review the actions of the other branches
 

 15. 

What happens to laws that violate the constitution?
a.
the Courts declares them unconstitutional
c.
the Congress refuses to enforce them
b.
the president declares them to be unconstitutional
d.
the judicial branch must re-write them
 

 16. 

What is the purpose of judicial review?
a.
helps the government to enforce the law
c.
gives the President a chance to review and re-write the laws that are unconstitutional
b.
keeps the government from violating the Constitution
d.
gives the courts a chance to review and re-write the laws that are unconstitutional
 
 
Federalism

The Constitution set up a form of government based on the principle of federalism. In a federal system, some powers belong to the national, or federal, government, while others belong to the states. This division of powers was a compromise between two groups of delegates to the Philadelphia convention: those who had strong nationalist views and those who felt that the states should retain most of their rights. In the next chapter, you will read about the federal system in more detail.
 

 17. 

The system of federalism
a.
makes sure the states do not have power
c.
gives some power to the U.S. government and some power to the states.
b.
makes sure the U.S. government does not have power
d.
ensures that all laws are constitutional
 

Matching
 
 
a.
judicial review
e.
checks and balances
b.
popular sovereignty
f.
veto
c.
unconstitutional
g.
Marbury v. Madison
d.
federalism
h.
preamble
 

 18. 

established the power to the Supreme Court to review laws
 

 19. 

says that government power is shared between the U.S. government and the states.
 

 20. 

strategy for keeping any one branch of government from becoming too powerful
 

 21. 

the ability of the courts to rule a law unconstitutional
 

 22. 

the president refuses to sign a law that he does not agree with
 

 23. 

a law that violates the Constitution
 

 24. 

the introduction to the Constitution that sets forth the purpose of government
 

 25. 

the idea that all power resides with the people of the United States
 



 
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