United States Government | Scholastic
Submitted by intranet on Tue, 01/24/ - Scholastic Classroom Magazines now reach nearly 25 million students through 34 exciting, winner, with 52% of the student vote while Republican candidate Donald Trump received 35%. Oct 31, Election Day is usually reserved for people 18 and older, but Holiday Park History classroom at West Mifflin Area Middle School on Friday, October 19, . their lunch period to get the rest of the school excited about their candidate. Team Romney also meets during lunch in the classroom next door. Oct 18, Make the election a meaningful, kid-friendly experience by having citizens play in it, all while meeting several Common Core State Standards. for one of the current candidates, vehemently shouting down those on the other side. . Students also have the options of creating more posters, flyers.
For this election, however, we will be lowering the legal age to 8 years old and over, and you only need to be a citizen of our classroom. Originally my registration form had a check box for citizenship, which I quickly dropped when I discovered two of my students are Canadian citizens and a third is a citizen of Japan.
The last thing I want to do is disenfranchise the 8-year-old voter! When they have completed the forms, collect them. These regions come into play later on when electoral votes become important. I chose the five regions on the cards simply because they match the five regions we study in social studies. I like to laminate and make them into lanyards the students can wear around. Tell students the tags identify which region their vote represents and how many electoral votes their one vote will count as.
At this point I inform students that there will be a voting restriction that does not exist in real elections. In a real presidential election, every person who has registered is allowed to cast one vote for any candidate they like.
In our election, however, no one may vote for their own character. Discuss with your class why there might be problems with voting for yourself in a relatively small group. There is a good chance you would have a very large one-vote tie! The Campaign Funding the Campaign Students need to understand that successful campaigns can be quite costly. This part of the project involves students acquiring, then deciding how they want to spend their money.
Together we brainstorm different ways a candidate might raise money. Students randomly select one from a hat. Just as in real life, each candidate will have a different amount to spend. Each student can only spend the amount on the fundraising card they selected. When a candidate is out of money, they are out of money.
Advertising I give each student a large piece of paper, and they set about creating their campaign posters. The benefit to working in groups on this was watching how well my students worked together to create a product they were proud of. Students also have the options of creating more posters, flyers, or even a video commercial as long as they have the funds to pay for it.
Each year the executive branch presents a budget to the Congress. It outlines the funds the president and the executive departments would like to spend. Congress considers the president's plan but usually changes it in many ways. The Congress has many other important powers. It may officially declare war on another country.
It may raise and pay for armed forces. It establishes federal courts of law. It regulates trade with other countries. It may also impeach, or bring charges against, any member of the executive branch suspected of committing a crime. Its members are called representatives or congressmen and congresswomen. The members serve 2-year terms. Elections are held in November of even-numbered years, and the representatives take office the following January.
Representatives represent the people who live in a congressional district. Each of the districts has about the same number of people. The states with the smallest populations have one representative called "representatives-at-large". The state with the biggest population California has The number of representatives each state elects is refigured every ten years. It is based on a national census counting of the population. The members of the House of Representatives choose their own leader, called the Speaker of the House.
The Speaker belongs to the majority party. This is the political party to which more than half--the majority--of representatives belong.
The Speaker plays an active role in setting the legislative agenda. The agenda determines which bills will be voted on and in what order.
The Speaker is assisted by the House majority leader. The House majority leader, in turn, is assisted by the House majority whip. All three are elected to their posts by a simple majority at least one more than half of all the members of the majority party. Members of the minority party also elect a House minority leader and a House minority whip. The Senate The Senate is the smaller of the two houses of Congress.2018 SOOKE ALL CANDIDATES DEBATE
Each state has two senators, regardless of the size of its population. The first Senate had 26 members representing the 13 states. Today there are senators representing 50 states. Each senator is elected to a 6-year term. Every two years, one third of the total members 33 or 34 comes up for election. The vice president of the United States serves as the president of the Senate.
His principal power is deciding an issue in case of a tie vote. On occasion he rules on questions of procedure. But for the most part his role is ceremonial. Senators also select a president pro tempore, or temporary president, to serve in the vice president's absence.
Traditionally they select the majority party member who has served the longest time in the Senate. Actual leadership in the Senate is exercised by the Senate majority leader and the Senate minority leader. For more information, including the names of the current U. Much of it explains a presidential election procedure that was later changed by the Twelfth Amendment. Today presidential candidates are elected to 4-year terms through a complicated system known as the electoral college.
To win an election, a candidate must receive a majority of electoral votes cast by the states. If no candidate wins such a majority, the House of Representatives decides who will become president. The Senate decides who will become vice president. His job is to manage all of the people who work in the executive branch and to make sure the laws of the nation are enforced. He also holds the title chief of state. This means he is the foremost representative of the nation.
As such, he performs ceremonial duties and meets with the leaders of foreign nations. In addition to his executive responsibilities, the president has certain legislative and judicial powers.
More than any other person, he is responsible for legislation. He may suggest legislation to Congress that he feels will improve the "state of the union. The president may also veto reject legislation that he feels should not become law.
The president also holds certain judicial powers. He recommends candidates for the position of attorney general, who heads up the executive Department of Justice. He nominates Supreme Court justices judgesfederal court justices, and U. And, except in cases involving impeachment of a government official, he has the power to pardon criminals.
In addition to these duties, the president is also the commander in chief of the United States Armed Forces. The fact that the U.
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It guarantees democratic control over this enormously powerful organization within the government. As head of the diplomatic corps, the president can make treaties with foreign countries. He can also appoint U. Although his job is an enormous one, the president is assisted by a large number of close associates. He appoints key advisers to head up the various executive departments, bureaus, offices, and agencies.
All together, approximately 3 million civilians and 2 million military personnel work in the executive branch. They are called the president's administration. Every year the offices in which they work issue rules and guidelines. Together they fill up more than 50, pages in a series of books called The Federal Register. But Article III says little more than that the nation's judicial power should be in the hands of a Supreme Court and any such lower courts the Congress may decide to create.
It is made up of one chief justice and eight associate justices judges. They are appointed by presidents with the approval of the Senate. Supreme Court justices may serve for life or until they wish to retire. The Supreme Court has many important powers. One is the ability to declare laws unconstitutional, or invalid. This is known as the power of judicial review. It allows the Supreme Court to check the power of the other two branches of the federal government as well as that of the state's governments.
The Lower Federal Courts If the government or a citizen has a case that involves a federal law, the case goes to a federal district court. This is called a court of original jurisdiction because it is the first to try such cases.
There are 89 district courts in the 50 states, plus one each for the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico. In addition to the district courts, Congress has established four special courts of original jurisdiction. They are the U. Tax Court, the U. Court of International Trade, the U. Court of Military Appeals, and the U. All of these courts sit in Washington, D. Those who lose a case in a district court or in one of the specialized courts may take their case to a higher court to appeal the court's decision.
The same is true for those who feel they have not been treated fairly. Such cases are brought before a United States Court of Appeals, also known as a circuit court.
These courts have appellate jurisdiction. This means they have the authority to hear cases that have already been decided by a lower court. There are 13 U. The Supreme Court has original jurisdiction in very few cases, and these are specified in the Constitution. For the most part the Supreme Court hears cases that come on appeal from one of the circuit courts or from the high courts of the fifty states.
Citizens do not have the right to have their appeals heard by the Supreme Court. In fact, in recent years the Supreme Court has decided to review only about of the approximate 5, cases it is asked to consider every year. The Supreme Court examines cases when the justices feel that important principles of law are in question.
Frequently these cases arise when different circuit court justices have interpreted the Constitution in different ways. They also arise when a state court has acted in a way that might be considered in violation of the federal Constitution.