Provides answers on all questions related to the variety of ways by which the American people govern themselves – from their constitutions and governments to the political norms and ideals that guide their actions as citizens and leaders; to local communities, civic associations, and political associations people form for collective deliberation and action; and to the relationships they form with their elected representatives.
American Constitutional Law provides a comprehensive account of the nations defining document. Based on the premise that the study of the Constitution and constitutional law is of fundamental importance to understanding the principles, prospects, and problems of America, this text puts current events in terms of what those who initially drafted and ratified the Constitution sought to accomplish.
This Dictionary offers a fresh, up-to-date look at US government and politics, explaining and where necessary demystifying the key terms used in discussion of the political system. Major figures, events, ideas, movements and Supreme Court cases relevant to a study of the American political system are included with the aim of allowing readers to develop a deeper knowledge and understanding of the area. The Dictionary also raises key issues and areas of contention and academic debate. Coverage is comprehensive, with c.400 entries, each providing analysis of the subject. Terms are presented in an A-Z format with cross-referencing where appropriate.
Articles herein address not only basic subjects covered in the study of American government -- from the Bill of Rights through voting processes--but also a wide range of contemporary issues such as abortion, capital punishment, and Social Security.
Filling the breach and answering basic questions about how our very complex government operates and what it promises, The Handy American Government Answer Book: How Washington, Politics, and Elections Work takes a comprehensive look at the historic development of the government, the functions of each branch of government, and the systems, people, and policies that comprise American democracy.
This collection includes unabridged versions of five famous and influential documents that helped to found a nation: the Declaration of Independence (1776), the Articles of Confederation (1777), the United States Constitution (1787), the Federalist Papers (1787–1788), and the Bill of Rights (1791).
The Congressional Research Service (CRS) developed the Congressional Oversight Manual over 30 years ago, following a three-day December 1978 Workshop on Congressional Oversight and Investigations. The workshop was organized by a group of House and Senate committee aides from both parties and CRS at the request of the bipartisan House leadership. The Manual was produced by CRS with the assistance of a number of House committee staffers. In subsequent years, CRS has sponsored and conducted various oversight seminars for House and Senate staff and updated the Manual as circumstances warranted. The Congressional Review Act (CRA) is an oversight tool that Congress may use to overturn a rule issued by a federal agency. The CRA was included as part of the Small Business Regulatory Enforcement Fairness Act (SBREFA), which was signed into law on March 29, 1996. The CRA requires agencies to report on their rulemaking activities to Congress and provides Congress with a special set of procedures under which to consider legislation to overturn those rules. This book discusses both the Congressional Oversight Manual and the Congressional Review Act in detail.
Turning away from the partisan narratives of everyday politics, Constitutional Dysfunction on Trial diagnoses the deeper and bipartisan nature of imbalance of power that undermines public deliberation and accountability, especially on war powers. By focusing on the lawsuits brought by Congressional members that challenge presidential unilateralism, Farrier provides a new diagnostic lens on the permanent institutional problems that have undermined the separation of powers system in the last five decades, across a diverse array of partisan and policy landscapes.As each chapter demonstrates, member lawsuits are an outlet for frustrated members of both parties who cannot get their House and Senate colleagues to confront overweening presidential action through normal legislative processes. But these lawsuits often backfire – leaving Congress as an institution even more disadvantaged. Jasmine Farrier argues these suits are more symptoms of constitutional dysfunction than the cure. Constitutional Dysfunction on Trial shows federal judges will not and cannot restore the separation of powers system alone. Fifty years of congressional atrophy cannot be reversed in court.
What kind of job has America's routinely disparaged legislative body actually done? In The Imprint of Congress, the distinguished congressional scholar David R. Mayhew gives us an insightful historical analysis of the U.S. Congress's performance from the late eighteenth century to today, exploring what its lasting imprint has been on American politics and society. Mayhew suggests that Congress has balanced the presidency in a surprising variety of ways, and in doing so, it has contributed to the legitimacy of a governing system faced by an often fractious public.
This book introduces the main steps through which a bill (or other item of business) may travel in the legislative process--from introduction to committee and floor consideration to possible presidential consideration. However, the process by which a bill can become law is rarely predictable and can vary significantly from bill to bill. In fact, for many bills, the process will not follow the sequence of congressional stages that are often understood to make up the legislative process. This book presents a look at each of the common stages through which a bill may move, though complications and variations abound in practice.
In this book, expert scholars come together to offer interdisciplinary approaches to debate this tension and its possible reconciliation. Central in their perspective is that reconciliation is possible when the Rule of Law also incorporates rules for reason-giving. Reason-giving should be part of a substantive conception of the Rule of Law. Requiring that legal decision-makers give reasons furthers reasonable outcomes. The analysis of the ideal of rational argumentation and the ideal of the Rule of Law show how insights of two traditions are connected. This collection of essays includes contributions from law, argumentation theory, logic and philosophical perspectives. This multifaceted approach demonstrates the variety of questions that emerge at the intersection of both commonplaces.
This book studies the US Supreme Court and its current common law approach to judicial decision making from a national and transnational perspective. The Supreme Court's approach appears detached from and inconsistent with the underlying fundamental principles that ought to guide it, which often leads to unfair and inefficient results. This book suggests the adoption of a judicial decision-making model that proceeds from principles and rules, using them as premises for developing consistent unitary theories to meet current social conditions. This model requires that judicial opinions be informed by a wide range of considerations, including established legal standards, the insights derived from deductive and inductive reasoning, the lessons learned from history and custom, and an examination of the social and economic consequences of the decision.
Traces the US Supreme Court's effect on federal government growth from the founding era forward.This book explores the US Supreme Court's impact on the constitutional development of the federal government from the founding era forward. The author's research is based on an original database of several hundred landmark decisions compiled from constitutional law casebooks and treatises published between 1822 and 2010. By rigorously and systematically interpreting these decisions, he determines the extent to which the court advanced and consolidated national governing authority. The result is a portrait of how the high court, regardless of constitutional issue and ideology, persistently expanded the reach and scope of the federal government.