Level 48
Level 49

Constitutional Democracy


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democracy
a form of government in which ultimate responsibility for the exercise of power rests with the majority of the people
Direct Democracy
A form of government in which citizens rule directly and not through representatives.
Representative democracy
a government in which people elect delegates tomake laws and conduct government.
constitutional democracy
a government that enforces recognized limits on those who govern and allows the voice of the people to be heard through free, fair, and relatively frequent elections.
constitutionalism
the set of arrangements, including checks and balances, federalism, separation of powers, rule of law, due process, and a bill of rights, that requires leaders to listen, think, bargain, and explain before they ac…
statism
the idea that the rights of the nation are supreme over the rights of the individulas residing in that nation.
popular consent
the idea that a just government must derive its powers from the consent of the people it governs.
Majority Rule
Governance according to the expressed preferences of the majority.
majority
the candidate or party that wins more than half the votes cast in an election.
plurality
candidate or party with the most votes cast in an election, not necessarily more than half.
ideology
a consistent pattern of beliefs about political values and the role of government.
Theocracy
A government run by religious leaders.
articles of confederation
the first governing document of the confederated states, drafted in 1777, ratified in 1781, and replaced by the present Constitution in 1789.
annapolis convention
a convention held in September 1786 to consider problems of trade and navigation, attended by five states and important because it issued the call to Congress and the states for what became the Constitutional Convention.
constitutional convention
the convention in Philadelphia, May 25 to September 17, 1787, that framed the Constitution of the United States.
shays' rebellion
rebellion by farmers in western Massachusetts in 1786-1787, protesting mortgage foreclosures; led by Daniel Shays and important because it highlighted the need for a strong national government just as the call for the Constitutional Convention went out.
bicameralism
the principle of a two-house legislature.
virginia plan
initial proposal at the Constitutional Convention made by the Virginia delegation for a strong central government with a bicameral legislature, the lower house to be elected by the voters and the upper chosen by the lower.
new jersey plan
proposal at the Constitutional Convention made by William Paterson of New Jersey for a central government with a single-house legislature in which each state would be represented equally.
connecticut compromise
compromise agreement by states at the Constitutional Convention for a bicameral legislature with a lower house in which representation would be based on population and an upper house in which each state would have two senators.
three-fifths compromise
compromise agreement between northern and southern states at the Constitutional Convention that three-fifths of the slave population would be counted for determining direct taxation and representation in the House of Representatives.
federalists
supporters of ratification of the Constitution whose position promoting a strong central government was later voiced in the Federalist party.
antifederalists
opponents of ratification of the Constitution and of a strong central government generally.
the federalist
series of essays promoting ratification of the Constitution, published anonymously by Alexander Hamilton, John Jay, and James Madison in 1787 and 1788.
Level 50