Chapter 2 Government

  1. Representative Assembly
    A legislature composed of indivisuals who represent the population.
  2. Natural Rights
    Rights held to be inherent in natural law, not dependant on governments. John Locke stated that natural law, being superior to human law, specifies certain rights of "life, liberty, and property." These rights altered to become "life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness," are asserted in the Declaration of Independence.
  3. Social Contract
    A voluntary agreement among indivisuals to secure their rights and welfare by creating a government and abiding by its rules.
  4. Unicameral Legislature
    A legislature with only one legislative chamber, as opposed to a bicameral (two chamber) legislature, such as the U.S. congress. Today, Nebraska is the only state in the union with a unicameral legislature.
  5. Confederation
    A political system in which states or regional governments retain ultimate authority except for those powers they expressly delegate to a central government. A voluntary association of independent states, in which the member states agree to limited restraints on their freedom of action.
  6. State
    A group of people occupying a specific area and organized under one government; may be either a nation or a subunit of a nation.
  7. Bicameral Legislation
    A legislature made up of two parts, called chambers. The U.S. Congress, composed of the House of Representatives and the Senate, is a bicameral legislature.
  8. Supremacy Doctrine
    A doctrine that asserts the priority of national law over states law. This principle is rooted in Article VI of the Constitution, which provides that the Constitution, the laws passed by the national government under its constitutional powers, amd all treaties constitute the supreme law of the land.
  9. Great Compromise
    The compromise between the New Jersey and Virginia plans that created one chamber of congress based on population and one chamber representing each state equally, also called the Connecticut Compromise.
  10. Seperation of Powers
    The principle of dividing governmental powers among different branches of government.
  11. Madisonian Model
    A structure of government proposed by James Madison in which the powers of the government are seperated into three branches: executive, legislative, and judicial.
  12. Checks and Balances
    A major principle of the American system of government whereby each branch of government can check the actions of the others.
  13. Federal System
    A system of government in which power is divided between a central government and regional, or subdivisional, governments. Each level must have some domain in which its policies are dominant and some genuine political or constitutional guarantee of its authority.
  14. Ratification
    Formal approval
  15. Federalist
    The name givin to one who was in favor of the adoption of the U.S. Constitution and the creation of a federal union with a strong central government.
  16. Anti-Federalist
    An indivisual who opposed the ratification of the new Constitution in 1787. The Anti-Federalists were oppoesd to a strong central government.
Card Set
Chapter 2 Government
Chapter 2 Government Vocab