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9.7: Key Terms

  • Page ID
    198737
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    appropriations process
    the process by which governments decide how they will spend money
    bicameral
    describes a legislature with two chambers, usually an upper chamber and a lower chamber
    cloture motion
    a vote to end a filibuster and force a vote; typically requires a supermajority to enact
    coalition
    two or more different parties that decide to cooperate in order to form a majority in a legislative chamber
    constituents
    the people whom a legislator represents
    delegate
    a model of representation in which a legislator acts based on the preferences of their constituents
    descriptive representation
    a type of representation in which the representative shares demographic characteristics with the people they represent
    Duverger’s law
    a principle that states that electoral systems with plurality systems of voting and single-member districts will have two main political parties
    executive dominance
    a phenomenon in which leaders expand their powers beyond their prior limits and are able to justify those expanded powers so that they are seen by many as legitimate and acceptable
    filibuster
    a set of parliamentary rules designed to extend debate to delay or stop legislation from receiving a vote
    hearings
    sessions in which members of a legislature talk to and question a panel of people, likely made up of experts and bureaucrats, about a particular issue or piece of legislation
    legislative committees
    groups of lawmakers who work together on a particular policy area
    legislative deference
    a phenomenon in which legislatures cede power to another branch of government, either by refusing to take action or by approving anything the other branch wants
    legislative delegation
    a system of cooperation between members of the same political party for when a legislator must vote on an issue outside their areas of expertise; rather than doing additional research, the legislator can rely on the opinions of members on the relevant policy committee
    legislature
    a deliberative body that is granted the authority to create laws that govern a society
    majority party
    the party that holds more than 50 percent of seats in a chamber
    majority rule
    the idea that the support of more than 50 percent of a voting body is required to come to any decision
    minority party
    any party that does not hold more than 50 percent of seats in a chamber
    mixed systems
    electoral systems that combine features of proportional representation and plurality election systems
    multimember districts
    legislative districts that are represented by multiple legislators
    nonprofessional legislatures
    legislatures that meet for limited periods of time and provide members only limited pay, reflecting the part-time nature of the job
    oversight
    the process of regularly monitoring and reviewing the actions of agencies or other political actors
    parliamentary procedures
    the rules that are followed in a political system to structure and guide debate
    parliamentary system
    a political system in which the executive, often a prime minister, is also a part of the legislature
    partisan representation
    a model of representation in which legislators are expected to vote with their political party
    plurality
    an electoral system in which the candidate who receives the most votes wins the election
    polarization
    the division of people or groups between two extremes on an issue or position
    politico
    a model of representation in which a legislator seeks a balance between delegate and trustee approaches
    presidential system
    a political system in which the executive, often a president, is separate from the legislature
    professional legislatures
    legislatures that meet year-round, have professional staff, and pay legislators a professional wage so that legislating is their primary job
    proportional representation
    an electoral system in which the relative support that political parties receive from the population is reflected in the makeup of the legislature
    public laws
    laws governing the relationship between a government and individuals that apply to all people
    semi-presidential systems
    political systems that have some characteristics of presidential systems and some characteristics of parliamentary systems
    single-member district
    a legislative district that is represented by only one legislator
    specialization
    the idea that individual legislators will focus on one or two policy areas to develop expertise on those issues, rather than learning about all issues
    sponsor
    a legislator who introduces a piece of legislation and who is often instrumental in its passage
    substantive representation
    a type of representation in which a representative shares policy and ideological beliefs with the people they represent
    supermajority
    a given proportion of a voting body greater than 50 percent that is required to agree in order to come to a decision; typically reserved for especially important or consequential decisions
    trustee
    a model of representation in which a legislator relies on their own judgment when it differs from that of their constituents
    unicameral
    describes a legislature with a single chamber

    9.7: Key Terms is shared under a not declared license and was authored, remixed, and/or curated by LibreTexts.

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