ChapChapter 1 – AP US Government
What is the purpose of government?
to T To bring order to chaos
to l T To lead people
to To protect rights
to i To interpret laws
State - the individual states of U.S.
A body of people in a defined territory organized politically and having the power to make and enforce the law
without the consent of higher authority.
(most widely accepted theories)
1) The Force Theory- a state was born of force.
eg. Primal man decided to force his will and rule upon others.
2) Evolutionary Theory- a state gradually developed
from primal families - Clans
3) Divine Right Theory- the belief that the rule of the king was God-Given and naturally
perpetuated by the nobility.
4) Social Contract Theory- An agreement among individuals to unite and form a society
in which members are governed by a set of rules.
Greek - Demos(people)
Kratia(rule or authority)
Democracy - rule by the people.
Supreme political authority rests with the people.
People have sovereign power
3. Government is only conducted with the people’s consent
Natural Law –
affairs should be governed by certain ethical principles which are both natural and reasonable.
Direct Democracy / Indirect Democracy
is the power?
unitary- all power in a central authority. eg Parliament
b) Federal- a division of power between
a central and several local govts. eg. U.S.
c) confederate - loose alliance that gives power
to a central authority.
eg. the Confederate States of America
rule of a few…determined by social status, wealth, military or achievement
Our English Heritage-
Magna Charta (1215) - establishes that the power of the King is not absolute.
Petition of Rights (1628) - Further limited the power of the King over political prisoners(dissenters)
without the right to trial.
English Bill of Rights (1689) - Gave the British Parliament more power than the Monarchy. The monarchy could not make or suspend laws without the approval of Parliament
and could not interfere with Parliamentary elections.
Thomas Hobbes - Leviathan
Argued that government was necessary to keep order and to avoid chaos.
John Locke - In
1690, published "First and Second Treatises on Government" - Everyone has the right to life, liberty, and property.
create government and empower a ruler who retains power as long as he has the consent of the governed.
Jean Rousseau - 1762 The
Social Contract People would give up some freedom in favor of the needs
of the majority. A contract between
each other to vote on all community decisions.
Baron de Montesquieu - ensure the rights of all by limiting
the power of the government. Divide the power of the government and create a
system of checks and balances to keep any one branch from gaining too much power. The
rights of the people will be protected.
The Iroquois Confederation
The Representative Governments in Colonial America
Albany Plan 1754- Ben Franklin's Plan
For the 13 Colonies
body would have to raise an army
" " would control Indian affairs
" " would regulate trade,
" collect taxes.
Popular consent – the idea that government must draw
power from the consent of the governed.
Popular Sovereignty – The right of the majority to
Majority Rule – originally the central premise of direct
the will of voters will be made into law.
Basic Concepts of American Democracy
What is necessary?
A recognition of the fundamental worth and dignity of each person.
A respect for the equality of all persons.… life and liberty
Majority rule and Minority rights.
Necessity of compromise.
A Civil Society that can openly engage in a debate about public policy
freedom from; freedom to;
toward the political system and its various parts, and attitudes toward the role of the self in the system.
The Face of America has changed..
From the 18th Century
Americans were united by one language and a yearning for personal freedoms
Into the 19th Century
mass immigration periods
Into the 20th Century
growing pains of a heterogeneously mixed society
Now the 21st Century
America…we are living longer Women 80, Men 74 years
Baby Boomers Post WWII Americans
to mid seventies
seventies to mid nineties
growing group at 26% of pop.
How Does America’s
Pluralism affect our core values?
individual’s coherent set of values and beliefs about the purpose and scope of government.
New Political Dictionary
belief that government is best when it governs the least.
belief that government involvement in daily life is necessary in protecting individual freedoms
who favors a free market economy with no government interference in personal liberties
the Constitution threw the ideology of a political philosophy…i.e, voting for a political agenda in an election
Key Points of any Election
* Abortion Rights
* Environmental Regulation
* Gun Control
* Government and the Poor
* School Vouchers
Politics – the process by which
decisions are made.
the voter has no confidence in government and does not participate in an election
could cause this?
Events leading to Independence
Stamp Act Congress(1765)- in response to the tax on documents
and paper goods. Organized protest, boycott
Boston Massacre (1770) - Sam Adams - Committees of Correspondence
Boston Tea Party (1773) - Organized protest of British Tea Company.
respond with Coercive Acts
First Continental Congress (1774)
declaration of rights
all taxes be repealed
full scale boycotts
Second Continental Congress (1775)
unicameral representative body that had no written law or basis
raised an army and navy
created money system bought supplies
power to make treaties
was condemned by Parliament as an unlawful assembly.
served as our first government for 5 years.
- The Declaration of Independence.
American Revolution forced the creation
the first State Constitutions to replace their Royal Charters
of Confederation 1781
State Governments prohibited the weak central govt. from:
regulating foreign and interstate commerce
enforcing acts of the Congress
having a national court system
the central govt from passing necessary laws
unanimity was needed to amend the articles
"A little rebellion now and then is a good thing,
and as natural in the political world as storms in the Physical".
--- Thomas Jefferson
of the most remarkable men ever assembled. Each represented their State and their
own special interest group. Their common purpose was to:
a government that could
1) regulate trade
2) coin money
3) enforce acts
gave up a little and no one received everything.
Compromises of the Convention
The Great Compromise(Connecticut)
The 3/5ths Compromise
The Slave Trade Compromise
* * *
- Hamilton, Madison, Jay
and exposed the weakness of the Articles of Confederation. The new government
power to control interstate commerce
the power to tax
a Federal Court system
easier amending process
rationalized that the new Republic would only work if all the States would ratify the new Constitution.
- Patrick Henry, Monroe, Richard Henry Lee
1) a strong Executive
2) Federal Taxing
3) diminished state Power
the absence of a Bill of Rights in the document
absence of any mention of God.
denial of printing money to the States.
power of central govt
9/13 Ratification process
Madison would author The Bill of Rights in order to insure that the new Federal Govt would protect the Individual Rights of
American Citizens, formerly the responsibility of the States.
June 21, 1788, 9 States had Ratified the new Constitution. A majority, but not New York and Virginia.
Washington and James Madison urged a reluctant Thomas Jefferson into supporting the new document. He agreed and Virginia ratified the Constitution June 25, 1788.
- Essays written by Hamilton, Madison, and Jay that were published by the New York Press urging the New York State Legislature
to adopt the new Constitution.
New York ratified it July 26, 1788.
two Factions eventually splintered into many special interest groups. Eventually,
political parties were formed
Alexander Hamilton - The Federalists
of the rich an well-born Strong Central Government,
having close tie to Great Britain, and opposing the lawlessness of the French Revolution.
assume all States debts
fund a National Debt
Loose or Broad interpretation of the Constitution
Republican Party - Thomas Jefferson
of farmers and laborers who advocated keeping the United States a Pastoral Land, God Fearing, relying on the Elements.