Shared Flashcard Set


us congress
1st exam
Political Studies
Undergraduate 3

Additional Political Studies Flashcards





Structural Units (Member security):


1. Offices


2. Parties


3. Committees




1. offices (knowledge, soul of the congressman's representation, backbone, small empire)


2. parties (people, represent ideology and assist with the political duty of other public office holders and financial support)


3. committees (represents  the interest of the district)




4 types of representatives

1. delegate : representing the constituents seriously, "the mouth"


2. trustee : constituents put you here cuz they trust you


3. politico : merging of the 2 above


4. burkeian trustee : interest for the entire country

congressman duties

1. representing


2. legislating bills/amendments



 (party leadership, constituency services, political re-election)

reasons for contacting congressmen

1. offer opinions of legislation


2. jobs


3. case work, you help one and they tell others, and those others tell others etc.


4. tours of the capitol


Three Goals of MOCs


1. Get re-elected (campaigning and spending time with constituents)


2. passing good policy


3. gaining prestige/ voting in party lines



4. be a member of the majority political party


MOCs 3 activites

1. advertising-effort to disseminate one’s name among constituents in such a fashion as to create a favorable image but in messages having little or no issue content.

2. credit claiming-Individual acoomplishment to please constituents, to seek reelection.

3. position taking-Public enunciation, judgemental statement on anything likely to be of interest to political actors (roll call, votes, etc.)




4 out of 8 hours a day they should be making calls to fundraise money

Definition (174,000 for congressmen)

Speaker of the House makes $223,000/yr

Minority/majority leaders make $193,000/yr


  • 1.2-1.6 million for expenses (house) 2.9-4.7 million (senate


2. health care

3. pension system (atleast 5 years)

4. 18 staffers

5. mail account (every non business adress)

6. travel and office expenses

Legislative Process

1. introduction : "the hopper" the bill requires the members signature (Bills (HR/S) joint resolutions (HJR/SJR) (resolutions (Hres/Sres) Sponsor : introduces bill,  co-sponsor : support the bill legislation

 2. Bill is "referred" to the committee (Parlamentarian is responsible for the referred action)

3. Committee hearing, then reports bills : mark-up (read line by line) then its reported by majority

4. Sub committee : exact same process as #2 can happen here

5. Committee rules for floor procedure : debate, write the rules on the floor by a Hres, and then it travels through the house as H.R. Then the bill is debated in the House floor and can die or pass to the senate.








Introducing Legislation

  • requires MOC’s signature
  • Can be any length/written on anything
  • Placed into Hopper
  • Must be introduced by MOC

·      Committees

  • Parliamentarian: responsible for “referring” legislation
  • then given to committees with people who are selected into it based on the person’s background/ “specialities”
  • Committee
    • Have hearings; gather information
    • Mark-up (add amendments/extra stuff); read line-by-line
  • At the end: vote whether to “report” or not
  • IF yes, then it goes to the full committee who does the same thing
  • Then it moves to Rules Committee

·      Floor debate
·      Reconciling Differences in H and S bills

  • House: Previous Question; legislation must be brought up before it can be discussed/debated (if its not mentioned, the legislation will have to wait)
    • Reason for Rules Committee: Previous Question
  • Senate: UCA (unanimous Consent Agreement); if objected, Filibuster
    • Stop filibuster: Invoking cloture: requires 60 people
    • Filibuster: reason Senate doesn’t have rules committee


ways a bill can die

1. does not go into HR/S

2. filibuster

3. pocket veto

4. presidential veto without 2/3 support

5. comittee doesnt report it

6. dies inside committee

7. resolve between bills

8. killer amendment

unorthadox changes in H/S


1. Discharge petitions: (218) loses power in the committee. It is placed in an specific committee. “Threat’



2. Multiple referrals: sequential(series of steps), joint (both committees work on it), split (one part of bill to 1 committee,other part to other committe)



3. Self-executing rules



4. Task Forces : comes up with a bill and goes to the rules committee, thet report legislation



5. Post Committee Adjustment : when rules committe change the words on the legislation



6. Omnibus bills : senate thing aswell



7. Special special rules





1. holds


2. filibusters (only senate) delaying a bill to death


3. invokes cloture : 60 votes to stop talking about a bill

history (0->67->60)


4. debate


5. final passage vote needs SI


filling the amendment tree, GANGS-personal relationships

presidents role

1. sign it


2. veto : whenever the president stops the official action of becoming a bill


3. pocket veto : whenever the president stalls the bill by not doing anything about it, taking no action

 congressional staff structure

1. MOC

2. chief of starr/administrative assistant

3. legislative director

4. legislative assistants

5. legislative correspondents




chief of staff

2(a). chief of staff -> office manager -> receptionists


2(b). chief of starr -> state/district director -> field representatives/case workers


3(c). chief of staff -> press secretary

errors of omission and comission

1.The Error of Omission
    Bill of Rights

·      2.The Errors of Commission
·          Too much branding of power, not enough restricting of power.
·          Opposed the Necessary and Proper Clause.
·          Federal government should only collect tariffs. Only states should directly tax citizens.
·          Opposed to the Supremacy Clause – federal law superseding state law.
·         Opposed to the design of the federal court system.
·         Opposed to the mixing of legislative and executive burdens.


congress features


1. Committees and powerful


2. Order + Rules are important (seniority didn’t think outside the box, now thinking every possible way )


3. Work Horse are rewarded


4. Show horse are punished


continental congress

the 1st congress formed out of the original 13 colonies



all states had equal representation


bills required 9 out of 13 votes to pass as a bill


refers to a movement that opposed the creation of a stronger U.S. federal government and which later opposed the ratification of the Constitution of 1787.


1. geographically represented in the interior states

2. named by Federalist

3. advocates of state power but also approve balance between states & national



  Federalist 10: Factions
    are detrimental cuz they are interested in restricting rights of others

Madison’s idea ===> 1) remove causes  2) control effects


A majority or minority of people organized around an interest that is going to adversely affect part of the community.


        1A. destroy liberty

        1B. make everyone the same

        2A. institute a republic, elect ppl to make decisions for us

        2B. make it broad


seperation of powers

1. executive


2. judicial


3. legislative

purposes of the senate

1. National Character

    2. Provide stability

    3.(tea saucer analogy) - Like a tea saucer- MOC’s “cool” the passions of the people





fed 60 & 61

narticles of confederation

year 1777


1. a firm league of friendship

2. declare war

3. commisioners of officers

4. coin money

5. negotiate treaties

6.establish post office

7. national gov/ continental congress

8.states could impose tariffs on one another



  • Powers: commission army, declare war, coin money, negotiate treaties, establish post office


  • Restrictions: raise army with state militia, only fight war with militia, states could also coin money, AC could coin money but not tax people (raised money through tariffs...which states could do too), states can also negotiate treaties


  • Problems: states almost go into war with one another over territories (ex. Pittsburg); states coin money but after revolutionary war money was low and states continued making money: INFLATION
    • Soldiers not getting paid
    • Shay’s Rebellion




CONGRESS - male 81%, female 19%
HOUSE - male 82%, female 18%
SENATE - male 80% female 20%


CONGRESS - 430 white, 42 black, 29 hispanic,
HOUSE - 337 white, 41 black, 27 hispanic, 7 asian
SENATE - 93 white, 2 hispanic, 1 black, 1 asian, 2 not stated





  • US Diversity: white 64%, black 13%, Hispanic 16%, Asian 4.9%
  • House: white 70% (white women 11.5%), black 10%, Hispanic 6%
  • Senate: White 76% (women 19%), black 1%



Duverger's law


is a principle which asserts that plurality rule elections structured within single-member districts tends to favor a two-party system.




"the only law in political science" haha

special special rule

queen of the hill




king of the hill

3 ways H/S Reconcile differences

1.conference committee

2.H/S accept changes

3. ping pong :
House passes bills, senate instead of passing the amendment, they throw it back





Self executing rule



get part rule : when you pass budget, automatically an increase pass the debt ceiling



  Tension between the classic process and MOC=SMSR

- The three main implications of the classic process (powerful committees, order/rules, work horse/show horse) are in direct contrast with MOC=SMSR.


  • introduced by David Mayhew
  • Member of Congress=Single Minded Seeker of Re-election


the scientific method


  1. Define Study
  2. Develop Hypothesis
  3. Gather Data
  4. Match Data to Hypothesis
  5. Revise Hypothesis
  6. Conclusion


efficiency and collaboration

1. Efficiency- Hamilton was interested in establishing a gov’t that worked


2. Collaboration- Madison was interested in the success but also in the involvement of the ppl every step of the way


Article 1: The Legislative Branch



Sec 1: Establishes bicameral legislature. U.S. Congress- House & Senate

    (From Connecticut Compromise: VA plan for representation on population, NJ
        plan for set representation alike to the Continental Congress)

Sec 2: House of Reps requirements


    • 2 yr terms
    • 25 yrs old
    • 7 yr citizen
    • inhabitant of the state at time of election

Sec 3: Senate requirements


    • 6 yr terms
    • 30 yrs old
    • 9 yr citizen
    • inhabitant of the state at time of election
    • can be appointed by governor
    • tries impeachments

Sec 4: Elections determined by state, state legislatures determine laws

Sec 5: Each chamber is the judge of its own dispute election. Each chamber determines own rules and keeps records of proceedings

Sec 6: Salaries of MOCs

Sec 7: 2/3rds vote to override veto

Sec 8: Powers of Congress

Sec 9 : Limits of Congress

Sec 10: States may not exercise powers reserved for the fed gov’t


important dates

1776- Declaration of Independence
1777-Articles of Confederation (ratified 1781)
1781-End of Revolutionary War
1785-Call for 1st Constitutional Convention
1787-Constitution is signed
1788-Ratification of Constitution (9 of 13 states)
1789-George Washington elected President
- The Articles of Confederation

“Firm League of Friendship” in each state. Given sovereignty, freedom, and independence. National Government made up of continental congress.


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