PSC100.Chapter11 OUtine.Revised2010

PSC100.Chapter11 OUtine.Revised2010 - Congress: Chapter 11...

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Congress: Chapter 11 The Origin and Powers of Congress The Great Compromise Representation in the House is based on population Each state has two senators (equal representation for small states) Reapportionment : redistribution of representatives among the states, based on population change; done after each census; provokes controversies Failure to increase House numbers means population of districts varies (not in text) Controversy: should non-citizens be counted in deciding population of districts? (Not in text) New Congressman in this district Alan Mollahan was defeated in the primary (picture) David McKinley won the general election (picture) WV US Senators Sen.-elect Joe Manchin (picture) Sen. Jay Rockefeller (picture) The Origin and Powers of Congress Duties of the House and Senate The House of Representatives Originates revenue bills Has power of impeachment : the formal charging of a government official with “treason, bribery, or other high crimes and misdemeanors” The Senate Votes to convict impeached President or other officials Must approve major presidential appointments Sole power to affirm treaties House Impeaches (brings charges) Thaddeus Stevens led A. Johnson impeachment (picture) Newt Gengrich led Bill Clinton impeachment (picture) Senate tries impeachments Johnson Impeachment Trial (picture) Clinton Impeachment Trial (picture) Electing Congress The Incumbency Effect Incumbent: a current officeholder Incumbents have a very high reelection rate Yet the public does not hold Congress in very high esteem Voters seem only to be satisfied with their own representatives Not Exactly a Vote of Confidence Electing Congress The Incumbency Effect Redistricting Gerrymandering : redrawing a congressional district to intentionally benefit one party May be done to benefit incumbents Contributes to the increasing pattern of polarization between the two parties in the House
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Origin of the Gerrymander Gov. Elbridge Gerry (picture) Gerrymander: MA district (picture) Electing Congress The Incumbency Effect Name Recognition Recognition increased by being member of Congress Franking privilege : the right to send mail free of charge Examples of Franked Mail from Congressmen Electing Congress The Incumbency Effect Casework : solving problems for constituents, especially problems involving government agencies Structure of congressional offices is built around casework Sen. Bayh at Constituent Services Center (picture) Figure 11.1: Incumbents: Life is Good (chart) Historical Comment Note that this chart ends about 2002. There was a sharp drop in incumbents who were reelected in 2006 and 2008 and again in 2010. Being an incumbent is much less of an advantage than usual when times are bad. Electing Congress
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This note was uploaded on 02/20/2011 for the course BUS 500 taught by Professor Fogel during the Spring '10 term at Salem Intl..

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PSC100.Chapter11 OUtine.Revised2010 - Congress: Chapter 11...

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