Seminar Terms Review Part 1

Rule of Law

principle that the law applies to everyone, even those who govern Example Nixon V. US

Private Property Rights

the concept that people have the right and privilege to control their possessions as they wish

Due Process

Established rules and regulations that restrain government officials. There is a process that must be followed


A system of government in which a written constitution divides power between a central, or national, government and several regional governments

Representative Government

Power is held by the people and exercised through the efforts of representatives elected by the people.

inalienable rights

rights that all people possess because of their very nature as humans they are referenced in the Declaration of Independence

Equal Justice under the law

principle that every citizen is treated equally and fairly in the judicial system.

Classical Theories of Government

John Locke and Thomas Hobbes made a lot and they were social contract ( you give gov't something and they protect you). Also our natural rights.


A philosophy of limited government with elected representatives serving at the will of the people. The government is based on consent of the governed.

Consent of the Governed

The idea that government derives its authority by sanction (permission) of the people.


PRELIMINARY STATEMENT that sets the purpose of the US Constitution

Mayflower Compact

This document was drafted in 1620 prior to settlement by the Pilgrims at Plymouth Bay in Massachusetts. It declared that the 41 males who signed it agreed to accept majority rule and participate in a government in the best interest of all members of the c

Social Contract

An agreement between the people and their government-people give up some of their individual freedoms to gain protection from the government

Act of Congress

A law passed by Congress

Separation of Powers

Constitutional division of powers among the legislative, executive, and judicial branches, with the legislative branch making law, the executive applying and enforcing the law, and the judiciary interpreting the law


A constitution and or permission to set up government


Standards or guides based on prior decisions that serve as a rule for settling similar disputes

Stare decisis

A common law doctrine under which judges are obligated to follow the precedents established in prior decisions


Supporters of the Constitution that were led by Alexander Hamilton and John Adams. They firmly believed the national government should be strong. They didn't want the Bill of Rights because they felt citizens' rights were already well protected by the Con


Opposed the adoption of the U.S. Constitution b/c it gave too much power to the national govt at the expense of the state govts and it lacked a bill of rights

Habeas Corpus

An order to produce an arrested person before a judge. To give a list of reasons evidence to hold an accused over for trial.

Delegated Powers

Powers specifically given to the federal government by the US Constitution, for example, the authority to print money.

Concurrent Powers

Powers held jointly by the national and state governments. Create Courts and Tax citizens

Civic Responsibility

Something that you should do as a citizen. This can include participating in the democratic process (voting), recycling, volunteering, or helping other citizens.

Civic Duty

What citizens must do because the law required you to do so, sign up for selective services (draft) Pay taxes, serve on jury duty, Obey the law