PSC 101: Final

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PSC 101: Final
2010-12-08 23:17:48
UNLV political science

This covers the stuff for the final
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  1. Habeas Corpus:
    A court order demanding that an individual in custody be brought into court and shown the cause for detention.
  2. Bill of Rights:
    The first ten amendments to the U.S. Constitution, ratified in 1791; they ensure certain rights and liberties to the people.
  3. Civile Liberties:
    Areas of personal freedom with which governments are constrained from interfering.
  4. Bill of Attainder:
    A law that declared a person guilty of a crime without a trial.
  5. Ex Post Facto Law:
    A law that declared an action to be illegal after it has been committed.
  6. Selective Incorporation:
    The process by which different protections in the Bill of Right were incorporated into the Fourteenth Amendment, thus guaranteeing citizens protection from state as well as national governments.
  7. Establishment Clause:
    The First Amendment clause that says that "Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion."This law means that a "wall of separation" exists between church and state.
  8. Lemon Test:
    A rule articulated in Lemon v. Kurtzman that government action toward religion is permissible if it is secular in purpose, neither promotes nor inhibits the practice of religion, and does not lead to "excessive entanglement" with religion.
  9. Free Exercise Clause:
    The First Amendment clause that protects a citizen's right to believe and practice whatever religion he or she chooses.
  10. "Clear and Present Danger" Test:
    Test to determine whether speech is protected or unprotected, based on its capacity to present a "clear and present danger" to society.
  11. "Speech Plus":
    Speech accompanied by conduct such as sit-ins, picketing,and demonstrations; protection of this form of speech under the First Amendment is conditional, and restrictions imposed by state or local authorities are acceptable if properly balanced by considerations of public order.
  12. Prior Restraint:
    An effort by a governmental agency to block the publication of material it deems libelous or harmful in some other way; censorship. In the United States, the courts forbid prior restraint except under the most extraordinary circumstances.
  13. Libel:
    A written statement made in "reckless disregard of the truth" that is considered damaging to a victim because it is "malicious, scandalous, and defamatory."
  14. Slander:
    An oral statement, made in "reckless disregard of the truth," which is considered damaging to the victim because it is "malicious, scandalous, and defamatory."
  15. Fighting Words:
    Speech that directly incites damaging conduct.
  16. Due Process of Law:
    The right of every citizen against arbitrary action by national or state governments.
  17. Exclusionary Rule:
    The ability of courts to exclude evidence obtained in violation of the Fourth Amendment.
  18. Grand Jury:
    Jury that determines whether sufficient evidence is available to justify a trial; grand juries do not rule on the accused's guilt or innocence.
  19. Double Jeopardy:
    The Fifth Amendment right providing that a person cannot be tried twice for the same crime.
  20. Miranda Rule:
    The requirement, articulated by the Supreme Court in Miranda v. Arizona, that persons under arrest must be informed prior to police interrogation of their rights to remain silent and to have the benefit of legal counsel.
  21. Eminent Domain:
    The right of government to take private property for public use.
  22. Right to Privacy:
    The right to be left alone, which has been interpreted by the Supreme Court tt entail free access to birth control and abortions
  23. Discrimination:
    Use of any unreasonable and unjust criterion of exclusion.
  24. Civil Rights:
    Obligation imposed on government to take positive action to protect citizens from any illegal action of government agencies as well as of other private citizens.
  25. Equal Protection Clause:
    Provision of the Fourteenth Amendment guaranteeing citizens "the equal protection of the laws." This clause has been the basis for the civil rights of African Americans, women, and other groups.
  26. Thirteenth Amendment:
    One of the three Civil War amendments; abolished slavery.
  27. Fourteenth Amendment:
    One of three Civil War amendments; guaranteed equal protection and due process.
  28. Fifteenth Amendment:
    One of three Civil War amendments; guaranteed voting rights for African American men.
  29. "Jim Crow" Laws:
    Laws enacted by southern states following Reconstruction that discriminated against African Americans.
  30. "Separate But Equal" Rule:
    Doctrine that public accommodations could be segregated by race but still be equal.
  31. Brown v. Board of Education:
    The 1954 Supreme Court decision that struck down the "separate but equal" doctrine as fundamentally unequal. This case eliminated state power to use race as a criterion of discrimination in law and provided that national government with the power to intervene by exercising strict regulatory policies against discriminatory actions.
  32. Strict Scrutiny:
    Test used by the Supreme Court in racial discrimination cases and other cases involving civil liberties and civil rights, which places the burden of prof on the government rather than on the challengers to show that the law in question is constitutional.
  33. De Jure:
    Literally, "by law"; legally enforced practices, such as school segregation int he South before the 1960's.
  34. De Facto:
    literally, "by fact"; practices that occur even when there is no legal enforcement, such as school segregation in much of the United States today.
  35. Gerrymandering:
    Apportionment of boters in districts in such a way as to give unfair advantage to one racial or ethnic group or political party
  36. Redlining:
    A practice in which banks refuse to make loans to people living in certain geographic locations.
  37. Intermediate Scrutiny:
    Test used by the Supreme Court in gender discrimination cases, which places the burden of proof partially on the government and partially on the challengers to show that the law in question is unconstitutional.
  38. Affirmative Action:
    Government policies or programs that seek to redress past injustices against specified groups by making special efforts to provide members of these groups with access to educational and employment opportunities.
  39. Political Parties:
    Organized groups that attempt to influence the government by electing their members to important government offices.
  40. Two-party System:
    A political system in which only two parties have a realistic opportunity to compete effectively for control.
  41. Electoral Realignment:
    The point in history when a new party supplants the ruling party, becoming in turn the dominant political force, In the United States, this has tended to occur roughly every thirty years.
  42. Divided Government:
    The condition in American government wherein the presidency is controlled by one party while the opposing party controls one or both houses of Congress.
  43. Third Parties:
    Parties that organize to compete against the two major American political parties.
  44. Single-member District:
    An electorate that is allowed to select only one representative from each district; the normal method of representation the United States.
  45. Multiple-member District:
    An electorate that selects all candidates at large from the whole district; each voter is given the number of votes equivalent to the number of seats to be filled.
  46. Plurality System:
    A type of electoral system in which, to win a seat in the parliament or other representative body, a candidate need only receive the most votes in the election, not necessarily a majority of votes cast.
  47. Proportional Representation:
    A multiple-member district system that allows each political party representation in proportion to its percentage of the total vote.
  48. Party Organization:
    The formal structure of a political party, including its leadership, election committees, active members, and paid staff.
  49. Caucus (political):
    A normally closed meeting of political or legislative group to select candidates, plan strategy, or make decision regarding legislative matters.
  50. National Convention:
    A national party political institution that nominates the party's presidential and vice presidential candidates, establishes party rules, and writes and ratifies the party's platform
  51. Platform:
    A party document, written at a national convention, that contains party philosophy, principles, and position on issues.
  52. 527 Committees:
    Nonprofit independent groups that receive and disburse funds to influence the nomination, election, or defeat of candidates. Named after Section 527 of the Internal Revenue Code, which defines and grants tax-exempt status to nonprofit advocacy groups.
  53. Machines:
    Strong party organization in late-nineteenth- and early-twentieth-century American cities. These machines were led by "bosses" who controlled party nominations and patronage.
  54. Patronage:
    The resources available to higher officials, usually opportunities to make partisan appointments to offices and to confer grants, licenses, or special favors to supporters.
  55. Soft Money:
    Money contributed directly to political parties for political activities that is not regulated by federal campaign spending laws.
  56. Party Identification:
    An individual voter's psychological ties to one party or another.
  57. Party Activists:
    Parisans who contribute time, energy, and effort to support their party and its candidates.
  58. Gender Gap:
    A distinctive pattern of voting behavior reflecting the differences in views between women and men.
  59. Nomination:
    The process through which political parties select their candidates for election to public office.
  60. Policy Entrepreneur:
    An individual who identifies a problem as a political issue and brings a policy proposal into the political agenda.
  61. Majority Party:
    The party that holds the majority of legislative seats in either the House or the Senate.
  62. Minority Party:
    The party that holds a minority of legislative seats in either the House or the Senate.
  63. Responsible Party government:
    A set of principles that idealizes a strong role for parties in defining their stance on issues, mobilizing voters, and fulfilling their campaign promises once in office.
  64. Midterm Elections:
    Congressional elections that do not coincide with a presidential election; also called off-year election.
  65. Primary Elections:
    Elections held to select a party's candidate for the general election.
  66. Closed Primary:
    A primary election in which voters can participate in nomination of candidates, but only of the party in which they are enrolled for a period of time prior to primary day.
  67. Open Primary:
    A primary election in which the voter can wait until the day of the primary to choose which party to enroll in to select candidates for the general election.
  68. Referendum:
    The practice of referring a measure proposed or passed by a legislature to the vote of the electorate for approval or rejection.
  69. Recall:
    Procedure to allow voters an opportunity to remove state officials from office before their terms expire.
  70. Majority System:
    A type of electoral system in which, to win a seat in the parliament or other representative body, a candidate must receive a majority of all the votes cast in the relevant district.
  71. Plurality System:
    A type of electoral system in which, to win a seat in the parliament or other representative body, a candidate need only receive the most votes in the election, not necessarily a majority of votes cast.
  72. Proportional Representation:
    A multiple-member district system that allows each political party representation in proportion to its percentage of the total vote.
  73. Redistricting:
    The process of redrawing election districts and redistributing legislative representatives. This happens every ten years to reflect shifts in population or in response to legal challenges in existing districts.
  74. Benign Gerrymandering:
    Attempts to draw district boundaries so as to create districts made up primarily of disadvantaged or underrepresented minorities.
  75. Majority-minority District:
    A gerrymandered voting district that improves the chances of minority candidates by making selected minority groups the majority within the district.
  76. Coattail Effect:
    The result of boters casting their ballot for president or governor and "automatically" voting for the remainder of the party's ticket.
  77. Electoral College:
    The presidential electors from each state who meet after the popular election o cast ballots for president and vice president.
  78. Campaign:
    An effort by political candidates and their staffs to win the backing of donors, political activists, and voters in the quest for political office.
  79. Incumbent:
    A candidate running for re-election to a position that he or she already holds.
  80. Open Caucus:
    A presidential nominating caucus open to anyone who wishes to attend.
  81. Closed Caucus:
    A presidential nominating caucus open only to registered party members.
  82. Winner-take-all System:
    A system in which all of a state's presidential nominating delegates are awarded to the candidate who wins the most votes, while runners-up receive no delegates.
  83. Delegates:
    Political activists selected to vote at a party's national convention.
  84. Superdelegates:
    A convention delegate position, in Democratic conventions, reserved for party officials.
  85. Spot Advertisement:
    A fifteen-, thirty-, or sixty- second television campaign commercial that permits a candidates' message to be delivered to a target audience.
  86. Town Meeting:
    A media format in which candidates meet with ordinary citizens. Allows candidates to deliver messages without the presence of journalists or commentators.
  87. Prospective Voting:
    Voting based on the imagined future performance of a candidate.
  88. Retrospective Voting:
    Voting based ont he past performance of a candidate.
  89. Political Action Committee (PAC):
    A private group that raises and distributes funds for use in election campaigns.
  90. 501c(4) Committees:
    Nonprofit groups that also engage in issue advocacy. Under Section 501c(4) such a group may spend up to half its revenue for political purposes.
  91. Pluralism:
    The theory that all interests are and should be free to compete for influence int he government. The outcome of this competition is compromise and moderation.
  92. Interest Group:
    Individuals who organize to influence the government's programs and policies.
  93. Staff Organization:
    A type of membership group in which a professional staff conducts most of the group's activities.
  94. Collective Goods:
    Benefits, sought by groups, that are broadly available and cannot be denied to nonmembers.
  95. Free Riders:
    Those who enjoy the benefits of collective goods but did not participate in acquiring them.
  96. Informational Benefits:
    Special newsletters, periodicals, training programs, conferences, and other information provided to members of groups to entice others to join.
  97. Material Benefits:
    Special goods, services, or money provided to members of groups to entice others to join.
  98. Solidary Benefits:
    Selective benefits of group membership that emphasize friendship, networking, and consciousness raising.
  99. Purposive Benefits:
    Selective benefits of group membership that emphasize the purpose and accomplishments of the group.
  100. New Politics Movements:
    A political movement that began in the 1960s and 1970s, made up of professionals and intellectuals for whom the civil rights and antiwar movements were formative experiences. The New Politics movement strengthened public interests groups.
  101. Public Interests Groups:
    Groups that claim they serve the general good rather than only their own particular interests.
  102. Lobbying:
    A strategy by which organized interests seek to influence the passage of legislation by exerting direct pressure on members of the legislature.
  103. Iron Triangle:
    The stable, cooperative relationship that often develops among a congressional committee, an administrative agency, and one or more supportive interest groups.
  104. Issue Network:
    A loose network of elected leaders, public officials, activists, and interest groups drawn together by a specific policy issue.
  105. Institutional Advertising:
    Advertising designed to create a positive image of an organization.
  106. Grassroots Mobilization:
    A lobbying campaign in which a group mobilizes its membership to contact government officials support of the group's position.