This is the required textbook: Ginsberg, Lowi, Weir,
Tolbert, Campell and Spitzer. We the People: An Introduction to American
Politics, 12th Essentials Edition (W.W. Norton & Company, 2019).
And these are the five questions:
1. How does the Declaration of Independence embody the three
fundamental principles in American political culture, as discussed in We the
People? Your response should include direct references to places in the text of
the Declaration where we see these principles at work.
2. In your own words, define the principle of “federalism.”
Why did the Framers want to create a federal system of government? In what
specific ways does this principle shape the Constitution? Where, specifically,
in the text of the Constitution can we see the principle of federalism at work?
(Your response must include direct references to the Constitution of the United
3. First: how do the authors of We the People explain the
relationship between political knowledge, political efficacy, and trust in
government? Second: What are some of the explanations offered for declining
public trust in government in the Pew Research Center report, “Public Trust in
4. Discuss, in detail, two expressed powers that the U.S.
Constitution grants to the legislative branch. Where, specifically, in the text
of the Constitution can we find these powers listed? What do they entail? And
how can the other two branches check the exercise of these powers? Second:
Discuss at least one implied power of Congress. How are implied powers
different from expressed powers?
5. Who do members of the House represent? Who do members of
the Senate represent? How does democratic representation in each chamber
differ, a) in terms of some of the specific rules that govern both chambers
(e.g. term limits), and b) in terms of the issues and concerns of House members
and senators? Why are these differences between the two chambers important?
What can these differences tell us about the different kind of representation
offered in each?
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