MCLawCh1notes[1][1][1]

MCLawCh1notes[1][1][1] - Chapter 1: Introduction to the...

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Laws Principles that structure the relationships between government and the governed, and among the people within a society Chapter 1: Introduction to the Legal System
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3 Types of Governments Unitary Central power Sovereign (person or body) is all pow erful Confederal Central unit but with limited power Loose association of sovereign states, joined together for specific purposes Federal Combination of two Two-way flow of power from and to the centralized government Written constitution allows central government certain powers
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Government Power The ability to cause others to do something Authority The ability to compel obedience because of legitimate position given by power holders Sovereignty Source of power in government 3 in the U.S. system Federal States People In U.S., ultimate power rests with the people, but government has legitimate authority
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The U.S. Constitution Preamble: See p. 3 in your text Six specific purposes given to the federal government by the people Articles I-III: Created 3 branches of government I created the Legislative branch (Congress) II created the Executive branch (President) III created the Judicial branch (Court system) Supremacy Clause Sets out the hierarchy of laws Federal then state; if conflict, then federal rules
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Legal Systems 2 types important to know what system operates where you do business see reference to Louisiana and Napoleonic Code reliance in text Code Law (history, see p. 4 in text) Statements of religious dogma or compilations of written laws (legislative) Common Law Evolution over time of legal rules, customs, maxims created by the judiciary Evolves and changes over time Concepts of precedent and stare decisis apply
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Legal Systems Common Law: Precedent Cases with similar facts should have similar results Stare Decisis Those past results will guide future decisions
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Sources of Law In the U.S. Essentially 4 sources of law in the U.S. U.S. (federal) treaties Case law Constitutional law is very hard to change Amendments must be supported by 2/3 majority of both houses of Congress Case law quite easy to change Most complex system of laws and most at issue with mass comm professions
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Statutory Interpretation While legislators are charged with enacting laws, the statutes are usually quite broad, thus requiring interpretation as to any real set of facts This interpretation is usually a court’s responsibility Judicial Review (1803) When a court evaluates whether a statute is consistent with the Constitution Statutes are laws enacted by legislatures and endorsed by the appropriate chief executive (President, Governor) Cannot conflict with the U.S. Constitution nor with the appropriate state constitution
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This note was uploaded on 08/07/2011 for the course MCOM 3320 taught by Professor Parksinson during the Fall '08 term at Texas Tech.

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MCLawCh1notes[1][1][1] - Chapter 1: Introduction to the...

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