Tracking Legislation: Go to the Congress.gov website.
Select an issue you would like to research. Type your issue name or related terms into the search text box and select the search button. The site will search all bills to see which ones include your search term. Select one that concerns your issue in the current year. Look at the status of the bill. Note if there are any issue groups interested in this bill.
Answer the following questions thoroughly using the workfile provided in Part 1. The answers you provide, as always, should be your original work.
1. What is the title of the bill?
2. What is the bill about, in general?
3. What is the status of the bill? (Is in still in committee? Did it become law?)
4. What Congress member sponsored the bill?
5. How do you feel about the bill?
Directions: Determine whether or not the Constitution gives Congress the authority to create each of the following laws. Your answers should explain why Congress does or does not have the authority, and should also cite the Article, Section and Clause from the Constitution that gives or denies the authority. DO NOT USE EXAMPLE AS ANSWER.
1. Refer to the Constitution of the United States of America in the Appendices of your text or from the National Archives to help answer these questions.
2. “Whoever transports in interstate or foreign commerce a motor vehicle or aircraft, knowing the same to have been stolen, shall be fined under this title or imprisoned not more than 10 years, or both…”
3. “Every person who has made any contract or engaged in any combination or conspiracy hereby declared to be illegal shall be deemed guilty of a felony…”
4. “Copyright protection subsists, in accordance with this title, in original works of authorship fixed in any tangible medium of expression, now known or later developed, from which they can be perceived, reproduced, or otherwise communicated, either directly or with the aid of a machine or device…”
5. “A person who is a national of the United States whether by birth or naturalization, shall lose his nationality by voluntarily performing any of the following acts with the intention of relinquishing United States nationality – (1) obtaining naturalization in a foreign state upon his own application or upon an application filed by a duly authorized agent, after having attained the age of eighteen years; or (2) taking an oath or making an affirmation or other formal declaration of allegiance to a foreign state or a political subdivision thereof, after having attained the age of eighteen years; or (3) entering, or serving in, the armed forces of a foreign state if (A) such armed forces are engaged in hostilities against the United States, or (B) such persons serve as a commissioned or non-commissioned officer…”
Law: Decisions of the United States Court of Appeals for the Armed Forces may be reviewed by the Supreme Court by writ of certiorari in the following cases: (1) Cases reviewed by the Court of Appeals for the Armed Forces under section 867(a)(1) of title 10. (2) Cases certified to the Court of Appeals for the Armed Forces by the Judge Advocate General under section 867(a)(2) of title 10.
Answer: The Constitution does give Congress the right to pass this law. Article 1, Section 8, Clause 16 of the Constitution says that Congress can make laws “to provide for the organizing, arming, and disciplining of (the) militia…” This law refers to court procedures for appeals with members of the Armed Forces, so it relates to the ‘disciplining’ of the militia.
Directions: For this assignment, you will need to provide two examples of each of the following roles of the president:
· Party Leader
· Personnel Recruiter
· Domestic Crisis Manager
· Treaty Negotiator
In other words, you will need to provide 10 total examples, two per category. For your examples, you may choose actions taken by the following presidents: Nixon, Ford, Carter, Reagan, Bush Sr., Clinton, Bush, or Obama. To get you started, an example is given for Personnel Recruiter within the assignment workfile. DO NOT USE EXAMPLE AS ANSWER.
Example (Personnel Recruiter):
Ronald Reagan appointed the first woman to the Supreme Court, when he nominated Sandra Day O’Connor in 1981. She was confirmed by the Senate and served until her retirement during the 2005-06 court term.
1. Define congressional oversight.
2. Describe three methods of congressional oversight
3. Which method do you feel is the most powerful?
4. Do you feel congressional oversight is effective?
5. Research INS vs. Chahda at OYEZ.org, including discussion-based arguments, summary and facts of case. Describe the method of oversight used here and the implications of the Chadha decision on the bureaucratic process.
Research one issue: Find the three parts of that issue’s Iron Triangle. You may want to use the PAC you used in an earlier assignment. If you are having trouble looking for an issue you may want to research from the point of view of the Governmental Department. Looking at the organization of a Department may help you think of an issue. You should research actual names of PACs, committees, and agencies within the bureaucratic departments. Give as many details as you can. DO NOT USE EXAMPLE AS ANSWER.
*Include one paragraph explaining why this group is an Iron Triangle.
Find information about PACs at Federal Election Commission.
Here are the three parts of the triangle.
2. Member(s) of Congress
3. Bureaucratic agency that oversees the policy implementation of that issue
Example issue: Defense
· Defense contractor PACs
· The Senate Armed Forces Committee—Name members if you can
· The Department of Defense
Let’s examine the nomination process for three different judges: Robert Bork, Clarence Thomas, and a third judge of your choice.
Take each judge one at a time and discuss the following:
1. Describe the nomination process for this judge. This should go into some detail about his previous rulings and ease of the nomination process and any other significant events that occurred during the hearing of the nominee.
2. Why do you think the president nominated this particular judge? Are there any patterns in presidential nominations? If so, does this nominee follow the pattern?
3. What was the outcome of the nomination/confirmation process?
4. What effect has this nomination had on the Court?
1. How is the Watergate scandal relative to today?
2. Was Nixon’s involvement solely an ethical issue or was there a constitutional basis for the possible impeachment process?
3. Does the president have an obligation to live a more moral and ethical lifestyle as president or should they be allowed the same privacy of all citizens?
4. Do you think that impeachment is strong enough to prevent American presidents from misusing their power? Why or why not?