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Chapter 5 State Legislatures Multiple-Choice Questions 1. Which of the following statements is true about state legislatures? A. They did not exist prior to the ratification of the U.S. Constitution. B. They generally had very little power in the 1770s. C. They no longer play a meaningful role in state politics. D. They existed well before the creation of the Continental Congress. E. They are appointed by the U.S. Congress. Answer: D Rationale: State legislatures predate the formation of the Continental Congress and the ratification of the U.S. Constitution. They emerged in colonial America as assemblies representing the interests of local communities and were instrumental in shaping early American governance. 2. State legislators can ________. A. make laws on issues pertaining to the U.S. military B. modify and approve budgets C. make policies on foreign affairs D. make laws on the subject of bankruptcies E. issue money Answer: B Rationale: State legislators have the authority to modify and approve budgets at the state level. While they have significant legislative powers, issues related to the U.S. military, foreign affairs, and currency issuance fall under the purview of the federal government. 3. Which of the following functions cannot be performed by state legislatures? A. modifying and approving budgets B. representing local views at the state level C. performing constituency service D. making laws E. altering the U.S. Constitution Answer: E Rationale: State legislatures cannot alter the U.S. Constitution. This power is reserved for the process outlined in Article V of the Constitution, which involves amendments proposed by either Congress or a national convention and ratified by the states. 4. The New Hampshire legislature has a House of Representatives and a Senate. This is an example of a(n) ________ legislature. A. aristocratic B. frontbench C. unicameral D. unitary E. bicameral Answer: E Rationale: New Hampshire's legislature having both a House of Representatives and a Senate makes it a bicameral legislature, where legislative power is divided between two separate chambers. 5. Which of the following states has a one-house unicameral legislature? A. California B. Idaho C. Nebraska D. Florida E. Virginia Answer: C Rationale: Nebraska is the only state in the United States with a one-house unicameral legislature, meaning it has only one chamber, known as the Nebraska Legislature. 6. Every state legislature has committees on ________. A. rules B. appropriations C. taxes D. education E. crime Answer: D Rationale: Education is a common area of legislative concern in every state, so every state legislature typically has committees focused on education policy and related issues. 7. In comparison with the U.S. Congress, the ________. A. speakers in many state legislatures have more power B. seniority systems in state legislatures are more closely followed C. committees in state legislatures have greater power over bills D. state legislatures have more professional staff E. state legislatures have almost no role for partisanship Answer: A Rationale: Speakers in many state legislatures often wield significant power, sometimes more than their counterparts in the U.S. Congress. They have the authority to appoint committee chairs, control the legislative agenda, and influence the legislative process to a greater extent than congressional speakers. 8. Which of the following states have the most citizen-based legislatures? A. California B. Wyoming C. New York D. Pennsylvania E. Michigan Answer: B Rationale: Wyoming is often cited as having one of the most citizen-based legislatures in the United States due to its small population and the relatively low number of constituents per legislator, allowing for more direct representation and engagement with constituents. 9. Which of the following statements is true of the state legislators? A. A typical state legislator should not have an origin of birth in another state. B. The 2012 elections resulted in Democratic control of 27 states and Republic control in 19 states. C. Lawyers form the largest occupational group in state legislators. D. The number of women legislators has increased over the last few years. E. All state legislative elections are contested, especially in smaller, one-party states and in the South. Answer: D Rationale: The number of women legislators has indeed increased over the last few years, reflecting ongoing efforts to promote gender diversity and representation in state legislatures. 10. Which of the following is NOT a typical role or function of state legislators? A. fix state tax rates B. approving state appropriations C. impeaching and trying state officials D. proposing amendments to state constitutions E. administer public policy programs directly Answer: E Rationale: State legislators typically do not administer public policy programs directly. Instead, they focus on legislative functions such as making laws, approving budgets, proposing constitutional amendments, and overseeing state government operations. Administration of public policy programs is typically carried out by executive branch agencies and departments. 11. Which of the following is a function of state legislators? A. approval of international treaties B. administer public policy programs directly C. confirmation of presidential nominations D. ratify proposed amendments to the U.S. Constitution E. originate impeachments against senators Answer: D Rationale: State legislators have the authority to ratify proposed amendments to the U.S. Constitution. This role underscores their importance in the constitutional amendment process at the state level. 12. Which of the following statements is true of state legislative committees? A. They vary in power and influence from state to state. B. Their influence has decreased in all states in recent years. C. It is controlled by the minority party in the chamber. D. They administer public policy directly. E. They rarely screen legislation before it is considered by the floor of legislative chambers. Answer: A Rationale: State legislative committees do vary in power and influence from state to state. Factors such as committee composition, leadership, and procedural rules contribute to this variation. 13. One of the major advantages of the committee system is that it ________. A. brokers power between the governor and the legislature B. balances the interests of political parties C. allows members to concentrate their energies on particular areas of governmental activities D. allows legislators to ignore the preferences of their constituents E. forces everybody to showcase their expertise in all aspects of state government Answer: C Rationale: The committee system allows legislators to concentrate their energies on particular areas of governmental activities by assigning them to committees that align with their interests, expertise, and constituents' needs. 14. Gatekeeping power is ________. A. a statutory or constitutional restriction on the number of terms in office a state legislator may serve B. the power exercised by committees to prevent proposals from being considered or passed by the entire chamber C. an attempt to influence the decisions of public officials, especially legislators, and the policies they enact D. the action of a state legislature or other body in redrawing legislative electoral district lines E. the authorized power of a president to reject legislation passed by the Congress Answer: B Rationale: Gatekeeping power refers to the authority of legislative committees to prevent proposals from being considered or passed by the entire chamber, thereby controlling the flow of legislation. 15. In every state EXCEPT ________, candidates for the state legislature are nominated by political parties in primaries or caucuses. A. Montana B. Massachusetts C. Nebraska D. Utah E. Idaho Answer: C Rationale: In Nebraska, candidates for the state legislature are elected in nonpartisan elections, meaning they are not nominated by political parties in primaries or caucuses. 16. Which of the following states has the least polarized legislators? A. Louisiana B. Washington C. Texas D. Minnesota E. Colorado Answer: A Rationale: Louisiana has been identified as having relatively less polarization among its legislators compared to other states, reflecting a more cooperative political environment and bipartisan cooperation on certain issues. 17. A meeting of the members of a party in a legislative chamber to select party leaders and develop party policy is known as ________. A. laissez-faire B. mandatory referendum C. malapportionment D. gerrymandering E. party caucuses Answer: E Rationale: A party caucus refers to a meeting of the members of a party in a legislative chamber to select party leaders and develop party policy. It serves as a forum for internal party discussions and decision-making. 18. Which of the following is true about interest groups in American states? A. They are a significant and growing source of influence on state legislators. B. They use bribery as their primary tool to influence legislators. C. Their influence is small and diminishing. D. They are illegal in most states. E. They do not get involved in elections. Answer: A Rationale: Interest groups play a significant and growing role in influencing state legislators by advocating for specific policy goals, providing campaign support, and mobilizing grassroots activism on behalf of their interests. 19. ________ refers to engaging in activities aimed at influencing public officials, especially legislators, and the policies they enact. A. Gerrymandering B. Gatekeeping C. Lobbying D. Redistricting E. Malapportionment Answer: C Rationale: Lobbying refers to the practice of engaging in activities aimed at influencing public officials, especially legislators, and the policies they enact. This includes activities such as advocacy, persuasion, and providing information to policymakers. 20. The right to lobby is secured by the ________. A. First and Fifth Amendments B. First and Fourteenth Amendments C. Fourteenth and Fifteenth Amendments D. Fifth and Fourteenth Amendments E. Fourteenth and Sixteenth Amendments Answer: B Rationale: The right to lobby is secured by the First Amendment, which guarantees freedom of speech, assembly, and petition, and the Fourteenth Amendment, which ensures equal protection under the law. These amendments protect individuals' rights to engage in lobbying activities as a form of political expression and participation. 21. A person who is employed by and acts for an organized interest group or corporation to influence policy decisions and positions in the executive and legislative branches is known as a ________. A. senator B. legislator C. lobbyist D. convener E. caseworker Answer: C Rationale: A lobbyist is an individual who represents an organized interest group or corporation and seeks to influence policy decisions and positions in the executive and legislative branches of government through advocacy, persuasion, and information dissemination. 22. Which of the following represents a rule that lobbyists live by? A. better to support the loser than the wrong winner B. misleading information is the best kind C. always create permanent allies D. it‘s easier to kill a bill than to pass it E. today‘s opponent is tomorrow‘s opponent Answer: D Rationale: The rule "it's easier to kill a bill than to pass it" reflects the pragmatic approach often taken by lobbyists. It suggests that lobbyists may find it more feasible to prevent the passage of legislation they oppose rather than to secure the passage of legislation they support. 23. The two sources of influence for lobbyists are ________. A. information and campaign resources B. financing meals and trips C. veto and logrolling D. bribery and diplomacy E. free riding and gerrymandering Answer: A Rationale: Lobbyists primarily leverage two sources of influence: access to valuable information relevant to policymaking and access to campaign resources that can support elected officials' reelection efforts. 24. Which of the following is the primary source of campaign funds for incumbent state legislators? A. their families B. national party organizations C. interest groups D. public funding E. governors Answer: C Rationale: Interest groups are often the primary source of campaign funds for incumbent state legislators. These groups support legislators whose policy positions align with their interests, providing financial contributions to aid in their reelection campaigns. 25. Usually, the greatest influence on legislators comes from ________. A. interest groups B. their constituents C. political parties D. governors E. foreign countries Answer: B Rationale: The greatest influence on legislators typically comes from their constituents, as legislators are elected to represent the interests and preferences of the individuals and communities within their districts or constituencies. 26. What is a pay-to-play law? A. one that prohibits company representatives from contributing to officials who could influence state contracts that would be important to the company B. one that limits the value of gifts to legislators to less than $200 per year C. one that requires lobbyists to pay an annual registration fee to gain access to legislators D. one that requires lobbyists to disclose who has contributed to their operation (in effect, who “paid” to “play”) E. one that prohibits campaign contributions from the children and spouses of candidates Answer: A Rationale: A pay-to-play law is a regulation that prohibits company representatives from contributing to officials who could influence state contracts that would be important to the company. These laws aim to prevent conflicts of interest and ensure fair and transparent procurement processes. 27. State senator Janet Dempsey votes in favor of allowing casinos in her state. Although a majority of her constituents are against this decision, she argues that it is way to increase state revenues. In this situation, the senator considers herself as a ________. A. delegate B. trustee C. pluralist D. lobbyist E. authoritarian Answer: B Rationale: Senator Janet Dempsey considers herself a trustee in this situation, as she believes that her role as a legislator involves using her judgment and expertise to make decisions in the best interests of her constituents, even if it may go against the preferences of the majority. 28. Jerry Smith is a state legislator who believes that he should mirror the views of his district‘s constituents even if he holds divergent views. This is an example of a ________. A. delegate B. trustee C. pluralist D. lobbyist E. authoritarian Answer: A Rationale: Jerry Smith's belief that he should mirror the views of his district's constituents, even if he holds divergent views, aligns with the role of a delegate. Delegates prioritize representing the preferences and interests of their constituents, acting as a direct extension of the voters' will. 29. State representative Jane Doe personally believes that cigarette taxes should be increased. However, she votes against such an increase because the constituents of her tobacco-growing district oppose it. This is an example of a ________. A. corporation B. delegate C. lobbyist D. gerrymandered E. trustee Answer: B Rationale: State representative Jane Doe's decision to vote against increasing cigarette taxes despite her personal beliefs aligns with the role of a delegate. She prioritizes representing the preferences of her constituents, even if it contradicts her personal views. 30. Legislators who view themselves as ________ would vote independently based on their judgment of the circumstances. A. authoritarian B. delegates C. lobbyists D. proletariat E. trustees Answer: E Rationale: Legislators who view themselves as trustees would vote independently based on their judgment of the circumstances, prioritizing what they believe to be in the best interests of their constituents and society as a whole. 31. What is the purpose of the National Conference of State Legislatures? A. to lobby for state legislatures at the national level B. to act as a sort of clearinghouse for new ideas to be shared between state legislators C. to determine which political spin will work best for election strategies D. to assist in organizing grassroots campaigns E. to coordinate lobbying efforts between state and federal legislators Answer: B Rationale: The National Conference of State Legislatures (NCSL) serves as a platform for state legislators to share ideas, collaborate on policy solutions, and address common challenges. It functions as a clearinghouse where state legislators can exchange information, discuss best practices, and develop innovative approaches to governance. 32. To address shortcomings, state legislatures in recent decades have ________. A. become appointed rather than elected bodies B. adopted internal reforms C. significantly decreased staff support D. increased their reliance on campaign funding from lobbyists E. increased the duration of terms in office Answer: B Rationale: In recent decades, state legislatures have undertaken internal reforms to address shortcomings and improve efficiency and effectiveness in the legislative process. These reforms include changes to legislative procedures, rules, and structures aimed at enhancing transparency, accountability, and responsiveness to constituents. 33. ________ refers to whether the job of a state legislator is interesting and involved enough that members of the legislature treat it as a full-time occupation. A. Malapportionment B. Gatekeeping C. Legislative professionalism D. Legal positivism E. Gerrymandering Answer: C Rationale: Legislative professionalism refers to the degree to which the job of a state legislator is considered a full-time occupation, involving significant time and dedication to legislative duties. It encompasses factors such as salary, staff support, session length, and legislative resources. 34. Which of the following does NOT reflect a change in state legislatures in recent decades? A. Higher salaries B. More effective committee systems C. Move toward longer annual sessions D. Growth of staff support E. Longer terms in office Answer: E Rationale: Longer terms in office for state legislators are not typically considered a change in recent decades. Instead, changes such as higher salaries, more effective committee systems, longer annual sessions, and growth of staff support reflect shifts in the functioning and structure of state legislatures. 35. In what state did the supreme court strike down term limits only to have the state‘s voters reinstate them four years later? A. Massachusetts B. Nebraska C. Oregon D. Washington E. Wyoming Answer: B Rationale: The state where the Supreme Court struck down term limits, only to have the state's voters reinstate them four years later, is Nebraska. This demonstrates the dynamic nature of term limit policies and the ongoing debate surrounding their implementation and constitutionality. 36. Which of the following states was among the earliest to enact term limits for state legislators? A. Oklahoma B. Louisiana C. Nebraska D. Nevada E. Maine Answer: A Rationale: Oklahoma was among the earliest states to enact term limits for state legislators. This legislative trend emerged in the 1990s as a response to concerns about entrenched incumbency and the need for turnover and fresh perspectives in state legislatures. 37. How is Nevada unique in its term limits for state legislators? A. It has a unicameral legislature. B. Special elections required a change of dates on which term limits were applied to some offices. C. Its term-limit laws cannot be applied to legislators who were elected in the same year that term limits were passed. D. It limits only state house members, not state senators. E. It limits only state senators, not state house members. Answer: C Rationale: Nevada is unique in its term limits for state legislators because its term-limit laws cannot be applied to legislators who were elected in the same year that term limits were passed. This provision was included to avoid immediate disruption to the composition of the legislature. 38. ________ is the action of a state legislature or other body in redrawing legislative electoral district lines. A. Gerrymandering B. Malapportionment C. Lobbying D. Redistricting E. Remapping Answer: D Rationale: Redistricting refers to the action of a state legislature or other body in redrawing legislative electoral district lines. This process typically occurs following the decennial census to accommodate population shifts and ensure equal representation. 39. Which of the following represents redistricting? A. when a party that has been in power in a particular district for a significant period of time is turned out of office B. when legislative district lines are redrawn to keep up with population shifts in order to keep them as equal as possible C. when the federal government orders a state to increase (or decrease) its number of districts to reflect population increases or decreases D. when a voter moves from one state congressional district to another and must change his or her voter registration E. when constituents in a particular district are so unhappy with their representatives that they demand a special election (similar to a recall or a referendum) Answer: B Rationale: Redistricting occurs when legislative district lines are redrawn to keep up with population shifts, ensuring that districts remain as equal as possible in population size. This process aims to maintain fair and representative electoral districts. 40. The redrawing of congressional and other legislative district lines following the census, to accommodate population shifts and keep districts as equal as possible in population, is called ________. A. reapportionment B. gerrymandering C. shifting D. redistricting E. lobbying Answer: D Rationale: The redrawing of congressional and other legislative district lines following the census, to accommodate population shifts and keep districts as equal as possible in population, is called redistricting. This process is essential for maintaining fair and representative electoral districts. 41. What is the etymology of the word “gerrymandering”? A. It comes from an odd-shaped district (that resembled a salamander) in Massachusetts, redrawn when the governor‘s name was Gerry. B. It comes from a Creole word (from Louisiana) that means pandering to a particular group of people. C. It comes from an eighteenth-century slang term for an unpopular mandate, pioneered by an unscrupulous politician in South Carolina, named Gerry Sartain. D. It comes from an old British sailors‘ term that meant being unfairly treated by a ship‘s captain. E. It comes from the Greek word meaning mystery and was used in military oaths of pagans. Answer: A Rationale: The term "gerrymandering" originates from an odd-shaped district in Massachusetts, which resembled a salamander, redrawn when the governor's name was Elbridge Gerry. The combination of "Gerry" and "salamander" led to the creation of the term, reflecting the manipulation of electoral districts for political advantage. 42. What is malapportionment? A. when legislative districts are unhappy with their representatives B. when legislative districts have unequal populations C. when legislative districts have been redistricted to give greater power to urban voters D. when legislative districts have no term limits E. when legislative districts have no representative for a short time (such as when a representative dies in office or is removed for criminal behavior) Answer: B Rationale: Malapportionment refers to the situation where legislative districts have unequal populations. This can lead to unequal representation, where some districts have more voting power per resident than others, violating the principle of "one person, one vote." 43. When legislative districts have unequal populations it is known as ________. A. logrolling B. gatekeeping C. malapportionment D. redistricting E. gerrymandering Answer: C Rationale: Malapportionment specifically refers to the situation where legislative districts have unequal populations. This can occur due to population shifts over time or deliberate manipulation of district boundaries to favor certain groups or parties. 44. In 1962, a U.S. Supreme Court case determined that voters did have grounds to challenge legislative apportionment and that federal courts should consider such questions. Which of the following cases is applicable here? A. Swann v. Charlotte-Mecklenberg B. Baker v. Carr C. Wesberry v. Sanders D. Reynolds v. Sims E. Brown v. Board of Education of Topeka Answer: B Rationale: The case applicable here is Baker v. Carr (1962). This landmark Supreme Court case established that voters have standing to challenge legislative apportionment, and federal courts should consider questions related to the constitutionality of legislative districting. 45. In Baker v. Carr (1962), the Supreme Court ruled that ________. A. state legislatures could be malapportioned as long as the most populous district had no more than twice as many residents as the least populous district B. voters have standing to challenge legislative apportionment C. majority-minority districts were unconstitutional D. apportionment cannot be on the basis of regions or geography in state legislatures E. it is legal to take race and ethnicity into consideration when redistricting Answer: B Rationale: In Baker v. Carr (1962), the Supreme Court ruled that voters have standing to challenge legislative apportionment, establishing the principle that federal courts can review cases related to the constitutionality of legislative districting. 46. In ________, the Supreme Court announced that “as nearly as practicable one man‘s vote in a congressional election is to be worth as much as another‘s.” A. Wesberry v. Sanders B. Brown v. Board of Education C. Jones v. Georgia D. Davis v. California Secretary of State’s Office E. Smith v. Allwright Answer: A Rationale: In Wesberry v. Sanders (1964), the Supreme Court announced the principle of "one person, one vote," stating that congressional districts should have roughly equal populations to ensure equal representation in congressional elections. 47. The underlying principle espoused by the Supreme Court in the Wesberry v. Sanders (1964) and Reynolds v. Sims (1964) rulings was ________. A. that term limits undermine voter authority B. that political parties are private organizations C. that rural areas are inherently disadvantaged D. one person, one vote E. pay-as-you-go Answer: D Rationale: The underlying principle espoused by the Supreme Court in the Wesberry v. Sanders (1964) and Reynolds v. Sims (1964) rulings was the principle of "one person, one vote," emphasizing the importance of equal representation and voting power in legislative elections. 48. In Reynolds v. Sims (1964) the Supreme Court ruled that ________. A. districts for the U.S. House of Representatives were permitted to be malapportioned B. malapportionment was allowed if states did so to increase the likelihood of minorities getting elected to the legislature C. redistricting had to be conducted by independent commissions D. poll taxes could not be imposed for state legislative elections E. even state senates were subject to equal population requirements for their districts Answer: E Rationale: In Reynolds v. Sims (1964), the Supreme Court ruled that even state senates were subject to equal population requirements for their districts, affirming the principle of "one person, one vote" and requiring legislative districts to have roughly equal populations. 49. With the exception to Wyoming, when states draw their districts, they may allow ________ percent deviation between legislative districts. A. no more than 4 B. no more than 5 C. no more than 10 D. no more than 12 E. no more than 15 Answer: C Rationale: With the exception of Wyoming, states are generally allowed to have a maximum deviation of up to 10% between legislative districts to account for variations in population distribution and other factors while still maintaining roughly equal representation. 50. State legislators have drawn a district in the city of Everytown such that 54% of the district residents are African-Americans, this is an example of a(n) ________. A. majority-minority district B. bicameral legislature C. referendum D. initiative E. unicameral legislature Answer: A Rationale: A district in which a majority of the residents belong to a specific racial or ethnic minority group is known as a majority-minority district. In this case, where 54% of the residents are African-Americans, it qualifies as a majority-minority district, aimed at ensuring representation for minority communities. 51. On what basis has the U.S. Supreme Court put restraints on the implementation of majority-minority districts? A. The resulting districts would become so geographically odd that representatives would not be able to easily travel through them. B. The resulting districts would favor Republican more than Democratic candidates. C. The resulting districts would favor Democratic more than Republican candidates. D. State legislatures would effectively remove independent or other third-party candidates from competition. E. Though state legislatures may take race into account, if it becomes the overriding motive in drawing districts then white voters‘ constitutional rights would be violated. Answer: E Rationale: The U.S. Supreme Court has restrained the implementation of majority-minority districts based on the rationale that while state legislatures may consider race in redistricting, if race becomes the predominant factor, it could violate the constitutional rights of white voters under the Equal Protection Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment. 52. The Supreme Court has held that redistricting ________. A. must avoid diluting the voting strength of minorities B. must create majority-minority districts whenever possible C. cannot be based on any partisan considerations D. need only consider the one person, one vote principle E. can utilize minority status as an overriding motive Answer: A Rationale: The Supreme Court has held that redistricting must avoid diluting the voting strength of minorities as mandated by the Voting Rights Act of 1965 and the Equal Protection Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment. 53. The Supreme Court has held that redistricting ________. A. can consider the underrepresentation of race B. can consider the underrepresentation of ethnicity and race C. cannot be based primarily on race D. cannot be based primarily on gender E. can never permit the creation of majority-minority districts Answer: C Rationale: The Supreme Court has held that redistricting cannot be based primarily on race, as this would violate the Equal Protection Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment. 54. The “direct democracy” movement began ________. A. in the South during the Civil War B. with populist reformers in Utah in 1900 C. in California when proposed by Governor Ronald Reagan D. in Maine and Michigan in 1908, E. in Massachusetts in the 1990s Answer: B Rationale: The "direct democracy" movement began with populist reformers in Utah in 1900, who introduced the initiative and referendum processes as mechanisms for citizen participation in governance. 55. ________ is a procedure whereby a certain number of voters may, by petition, propose a law or constitutional amendment and have it submitted to the voters. A. Referendum B. Grassroots campaign C. Gatekeeping D. Lobbying E. Initiative Answer: E Rationale: Initiative is a procedure in which voters can propose laws or constitutional amendments by petition and have them placed on the ballot for a popular vote. 56. Which of the following is true about direct initiative? A. It gives state legislatures an opportunity to pass laws without gubernatorial approval. B. It can only be used for constitutional amendments. C. It does not require any signatures on a petition to have a measure put on a ballot. D. It allows any individual or interest group to draft a proposed law and file it with a designated state official. E. It cannot be used for constitutional amendments. Answer: D Rationale: Direct initiative allows any individual or interest group to draft a proposed law and file it with a designated state official, bypassing the state legislature. 57. Some states give their state legislatures an opportunity to act on measures proposed by voters. If the legislature approves, the law goes into effect, and, if not, the measure gets placed on the ballot for a public vote. This is an example of ________. A. indirect initiative B. gatekeeping C. redistricting D. gerrymandering E. lobbying Answer: A Rationale: This scenario describes indirect initiative, where measures proposed by voters can first be considered by the state legislature before being placed on the ballot for a public vote. 58. ________ is a procedure for submitting to popular vote measures passed by the legislature or proposed amendments to a state constitution. A. Coercion B. Gerrymandering C. Referendum D. Malapportionment E. Redistricting Answer: C Rationale: Referendum is a procedure for submitting measures passed by the legislature or proposed amendments to a state constitution to a popular vote. 59. ________ calls for a waiting period before legislation goes into effect and allows voters to sign a petition requesting that the act be referred to the voters prior to going into effect. A. Optional referendum B. Malapportionment C. Direct initiative D. Indirect initiative E. Mandatory referendum Answer: E Rationale: Mandatory referendum calls for a waiting period before legislation goes into effect, allowing voters to sign a petition to have the act referred to them for approval before it becomes law. 60. Which of the following is NOT among the criticisms of direct democracy? A. The Progressives were overly idealistic that these mechanisms would be free from manipulations. B. It leaves voters with insufficient information to make informed choices. C. The wording of direct legislation can often be confusing and written in such a way as to affect a specific result. D. The initiative process can be used to target minorities. E. It is used when citizens feel their legislature is unresponsive. Answer: E Rationale: This statement is not a criticism of direct democracy but rather a potential motivation for its use when citizens feel their legislature is unresponsive. 61. In 1992, ________ passed an initiative that repealed local ordinances that prohibited discrimination against gays and lesbians. A. Colorado B. Georgia C. Mississippi D. California E. Nebraska Answer: A Rationale: In 1992, Colorado passed an initiative (Amendment 2) that repealed local ordinances prohibiting discrimination against gays and lesbians. This initiative sparked controversy and legal challenges, eventually leading to the U.S. Supreme Court case Romer v. Evans. True-False Questions 1. A legislature with two chambers is called a unicameral legislature. Answer: False Rationale: A unicameral legislature has only one chamber, while a bicameral legislature consists of two chambers. 2. The larger chamber of state legislatures is called the senate. Answer: False Rationale: The larger chamber of state legislatures is typically called the House of Representatives or Assembly, while the smaller chamber is called the Senate. 3. Nebraska is the only state with a unicameral legislature. Answer: True Rationale: Nebraska is the only state in the United States with a unicameral legislature, meaning it has only one chamber. 4. State legislative committees generally have more power than their national counterparts. Answer: False Rationale: State legislative committees typically have less power and influence compared to their national counterparts due to the smaller scale of state governance. 5. A bill does not need the signature of the governor to become a law. Answer: True Rationale: In some states, a bill automatically becomes law if the governor does not sign or veto it within a specified period of time. 6. Committees serve as the major access point for state legislatures for citizens, interest groups, and lobbyists. Answer: True Rationale: Committees in state legislatures often serve as the primary venue for stakeholders such as citizens, interest groups, and lobbyists to engage with the legislative process. 7. The committee system in state legislatures generally allows members to concentrate their energies on specific areas of governmental operations. Answer: True Rationale: The committee system in state legislatures allows members to focus their efforts and expertise on specific policy areas by assigning them to committees related to their interests or expertise. 8. Though they perform generally the same functions, state legislative committees vary in power and influence from state to state. Answer: True Rationale: While state legislative committees generally perform similar functions, their power and influence can vary significantly from state to state based on factors such as legislative rules, political dynamics, and institutional norms. 9. A meeting of the members of a party in a legislative chamber to select party leaders and develop party policy is called a party caucus. Answer: True Rationale: A party caucus is indeed a meeting of members of a political party in a legislative chamber to select party leaders and develop party policy. 10. In all states, lobbyists must register with the state and sometimes, pay an annual fee. Answer: True Rationale: Most states require lobbyists to register with the state and may require them to pay an annual fee to engage in lobbying activities. 11. The U.S. Constitution does not protect lobbying. Answer: False Rationale: The First Amendment of the U.S. Constitution protects the right to petition the government, which includes lobbying activities. 12. A person who is employed by and acts for an organized interest group or corporation to influence policy decisions and positions in the executive and legislative branches is known as a lobbyist. Answer: True Rationale: This definition accurately describes a lobbyist. 13. Lobbyists live by the rule that have neither permanent enemies, not permanent friends. Answer: True Rationale: Lobbyists often operate under the principle that they have neither permanent enemies nor permanent friends in order to maintain flexibility and effectiveness in their advocacy efforts. 14. Constituents tend to have the greatest influence on the voting decisions of state legislators. Answer: True Rationale: State legislators often prioritize the interests and concerns of their constituents, as they rely on their support for re-election. 15. If legislators consider themselves to be trustees of their constituents, they will tend to adhere closely to their constituents Instructions. Answer: False Rationale: If legislators consider themselves trustees of their constituents, they will exercise their own judgment and discretion in making decisions, rather than strictly adhering to their constituents' instructions. 16. Part-time legislation allowed people to go back to their original occupations after serving the term. Answer: True Rationale: Part-time legislatures, common in many states, allow legislators to maintain their original occupations while serving their terms, as legislative sessions are often held for only part of the year. 17. The redrawing of congressional and other legislative district lines following the census, to accommodate population shifts and keep districts as equal as possible in population is called reapportionment. Answer: False Rationale: The correct term for this process is redistricting. Reapportionment refers to the allocation of seats in a legislative body based on population changes determined by the census. 18. Drawing legislative district boundaries has always been controversial, in large part because redistricting decisions are made by partisan majorities in legislatures. Answer: True Rationale: Redistricting decisions are often highly controversial because they are made by partisan majorities in legislatures, leading to accusations of gerrymandering and concerns about fair representation. 19. Gerrymandering is the drawing of legislative district boundaries to benefit a party, group, or incumbent. Answer: True Rationale: Gerrymandering involves manipulating the boundaries of legislative districts to favor a particular political party, interest group, or incumbent politician. 20. Malapportionment refers to the situation in which legislative districts have unequal populations. Answer: True Rationale: Malapportionment occurs when legislative districts have unequal populations, resulting in some districts having more representation per person than others. 21. A legislative district created to include a majority of minority voters is called an affirmative action district. Answer: False Rationale: A legislative district created to include a majority of minority voters is called a majorityminority district, not an affirmative action district. Affirmative action typically refers to policies designed to address past discrimination and promote diversity. 22. In some states, the directive initiative applies only to constitutional amendments. Answer: True Rationale: In some states, the initiative process, including the direct initiative, may apply only to proposing constitutional amendments rather than creating or amending statutory law. 23. An initiative is a procedure for submitting to popular vote measures passed by the legislature or proposed amendments to a state constitution. Answer: False Rationale: An initiative is a procedure by which citizens can propose laws or amendments to the state constitution directly through a petition process, bypassing the legislature. 24. Generally, the court system has reversed part or all of discriminatory direct-democracy initiatives that were voted in by the electorate, but this puts the courts in the odd position of actually opposing a majority vote. Answer: True Rationale: The court system has often overturned discriminatory direct-democracy initiatives passed by the electorate, which can lead to the courts opposing decisions made by the majority of voters, raising questions about the balance between popular will and constitutional rights. Short Answer Questions 1. Define unicameral and bicameral legislatures. Identify the frequency of use by states of each type. Answer: An ideal response would be: The 50 state legislatures share many characteristics—all states except Nebraska have a twohouse legislature, which is known as a bicameral legislature. Nebraska has a one-house legislature, which is known as a unicameral legislature. 2. Define term limits. Identify the current status of the constitutionality of those limits. Answer: An ideal response would be: Term limit is a statutory or constitutional restriction on the number of terms in office a state legislator may serve. State supreme courts in five states—Massachusetts, Nebraska, Oregon, Washington, and Wyoming—have struck down term limits as unconstitutional. 3. State legislators act as ombudsmen. Discuss. Answer: An ideal response would be: State legislators help translate public wants and aspirations into laws and regulations. In addition to their lawmaking functions, they also try to be ombudsmen—to listen, learn, and find solutions to problems. Invariably, state legislators wind up doing a lot of favors: getting a merchant a license to sell lottery tickets, persuading a state agency to look into safety standards at the local hospital, pushing for funds to repair county roads, arranging for a campaign supporter to be appointed to the state labor commission, and so on. State legislators are accessible. 4. What is meant by party unity, and in what states is it typically found? Answer: An ideal response would be: Party unity is the degree to which members of the same party vote together on bills and differently from members of the other party. It varies substantially across states. In fact, party unity scores in many state legislative chambers exceed those observed in the U.S. House of Representatives. Legislators in California, Washington, Colorado, Minnesota, Wisconsin, and Texas are among the most polarized, whereas those from Oregon, Louisiana, Rhode Island, and West Virginia are among the least polarized 5. Identify the two major rules of lobbyists. Answer: An ideal response would be: Lobbyists live by two important rules: First, remember that it is a lot easier to kill a bill than to pass it. And second, have no permanent allies and no permanent enemies. Today‘s opponent may be your supporter on the next issue for which you are lobbying. 6. Identify the two key sources of influence for lobbyists. Answer: An ideal response would be: Lobbyists have two sources of influence: information and campaign resources. Information is usually the key ingredient in gaining or losing a vote. Effective lobbyists typically explain how the sometimes complicated laws or proposals are likely to affect the businesses, institutions, and individuals in a legislator‘s own district. 7. What is a “trustee” view of a legislator? Answer: An ideal response would be: Trustees are legislators who like to consider themselves trustees of their constituents, claiming to rely on their own conscience or on their considered judgments in making decisions 8. Define redistricting. Who is responsible for redistricting in the states? Answer: An ideal response would be: Redistricting is the action of a state legislature or other body in redrawing legislative electoral district lines. About a dozen states delegate these responsibilities to independent redistricting or reapportionment commissions. 9. What is malapportionment? When and how did the United States Supreme Court address the issue? Answer: An ideal response would be: Malapportionment refers to having legislative districts with unequal populations. The U.S. Supreme Court stepped in. In 1962, in Baker v. Carr, the Court held that voters have standing to challenge legislative apportionment and that the federal courts should consider such questions. Arbitrary and capriciously drawn districts deprive people of their constitutional rights of representation, and federal judges may take jurisdiction over such cases. 10. What is an initiative? Identify two states that allow this process. Answer: An ideal response would be: An initiative is a procedure whereby a certain number of voters may, by petition, propose a law or constitutional amendment and have it submitted to the voters. Florida and Idaho allow it. Essay Questions 1. Evaluate the role of committees in state legislatures. Answer: An ideal response would be: Every state has a series of standing, or permanent, committees as well as some temporary or ad hoc committees. In several states, such as Maine and Massachusetts, joint committees can speed up legislative action. However, state legislative committees usually do not have the same power over bills as their national counterparts: Some lack adequate professional staffs, the seniority system is not as closely followed as in Congress, and turnover is usually higher, especially where legislators are limited by state law in the number of terms they can serve. Still, legislators themselves report that committees play an important part in legislative decision making in nearly every state legislative chamber. Every legislature has committees on education, transportation, agriculture, and energy or natural resources. Most also have important committees on rules, appropriations, and taxes (sometimes called the Ways and Means Committee). The number of standing committees varies widely across states. The lower houses in states including Maine, Maryland, and Massachusetts have 10 or fewer standing committees, whereas the lower houses in Missouri, Mississippi, and Illinois have 40 or more standing committees. Legislators generally specialize and become experts on one or two substantive matters, such as education, crime, taxation, or the budget process 2. Compare and contrast the conceptions of state legislators acting as trustees and as delegates. Answer: An ideal response would be: Most legislators like to consider themselves trustees of their constituents, claiming to rely on their own conscience or on their considered judgments in making decisions. Legislators who view themselves as delegates, by contrast, adhere more closely to instructions from their constituents. Not surprisingly, the trustee role is not only more popular among legislators, but it is also easier and more realistic to practice. 3. Define redistricting. Evaluate the process of redistricting. Answer: An ideal response would be: Redistricting is the action of a state legislature or other body in redrawing legislative electoral district lines. About a dozen states delegate these responsibilities to independent redistricting or reapportionment commissions. In Alaska, the governor‘s office draws the legislative districts. Most legislatures consider these once-a-decade responsibilities so important, however, that they are unwilling to turn over control of the task to anybody else. Drawing legislative district boundaries has always been controversial, in large part because redistricting decisions are made by partisan majorities in legislatures. The highly political nature of the undertaking is usually reflected in the results. It is the political equivalent,” says one observer, “of moving the left field fence for a right-handed pull hitter. By changing the boundaries, redistricting helps some, hurts others—and leaves just about everyone else scrambling.” 4. Define malapportionment. Identify the U.S. Supreme Court‘s rulings regarding its constitutionality. Answer: An ideal response would be: As a result of huge differences in population among the districts, state legislative districts used to face problems of malapportionment. State legislatures for decades had given rural and small-town voters more votes in the legislature than they were entitled to based on population alone. In Georgia, for instance, the 1960 reapportionment gave the largest county, with 556,326 inhabitants, no more representation than the three smallest counties, whose combined population was 6,980. City officials complained bitterly that small-town and farmland-dominated legislators were unsympathetic to their problems and had different legislative priorities. Malapportionment refers to having legislative districts with unequal populations. The U.S. Supreme Court stepped in. In 1962, in Baker v. Carr, the Court held that voters have standing to challenge legislative apportionment and that the federal courts should consider such questions. Arbitrary and capriciously drawn districts deprive people of their constitutional rights of representation, and federal judges may take jurisdiction over such cases. 5. What are the strengths and weaknesses of direct legislation? How do they compare with the strengths and weaknesses of a professional legislature? Answer: An ideal response would be: Many states provide citizens with the power to create legislation through the initiative and referendum. The Progressives placed enormous trust in the wisdom of the people, assuming that voters would inform themselves about issues and make responsible decisions on a variety of policy questions put before them. Legislative professionalism refers to whether the job of a state legislator is interesting and involved enough that members of the legislature treat it as a full-time occupation. Many different indicators of professionalism have been developed, but virtually all of them involve measures of legislative salary sufficiency, staff resource availability, and time demands in terms of the length of legislative sessions. The movement to encourage full-time professional legislatures however, has not been universally praised. In fact, in recent years, some political scientists and some citizens have contended that we were better off when we had part-time citizen-legislators. Test Bank for State and Local Government by the People David B. Magleby Paul C. Light, Christine L. Nemacheck 9780205966530, 9780205828401

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