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Unit 3: Structure and Functions of the Federal Government Three branches compose the basic structure of the federal government. Public policy is created.

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Presentation on theme: "Unit 3: Structure and Functions of the Federal Government Three branches compose the basic structure of the federal government. Public policy is created."— Presentation transcript:

1 Unit 3: Structure and Functions of the Federal Government Three branches compose the basic structure of the federal government. Public policy is created through the making of laws, the execution of the laws and the adjudication of disputes under the laws.

2 Content Statements Law and public policy are created and implemented by three branches of government; each functions with its own set of powers and responsibilities. The political process creates a dynamic interaction among the three branches of government in addressing current issues.

3 The Legislative Branch Section 6: How a Bill Becomes a Law

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5 6 Steps Referral to Committee – Most cases, a bill introduced in Congress is referred to a committee – Committee consideration is crucial – Without committee approval, bills usually don’t go to full House or Senate Hearings – Committee and subcommittee hearings—open to public – Supporters and opponents testify – Interest groups testify Markup – Usually take place at the full committee level – Markup is the exact phrasing—line by line – Time consuming and precise – Lot of detail – Now, bill must get full committee support

6 6 Steps Floor Consideration – Full House and Senate debates – Changes can be made to bill – Filibuster—one or more senators can hold up the final vote on a bill through delaying tactics – Voting—after floor debate, congress members vote on the bill – Roll-call vote—each member called individually to declare vote Conference Committee – A bill that passes one house of Congress is then sent to the other house – Members from both houses – Iron out last details Presidential Action – Sign bill, making it a law – Veto the bill – Keep the bill 10 days without signing it—bill then becomes a law – Pocket veto—president gets bill within 10 days of Congress adjournment—does not sign and bill does not become a law

7 Website How a Bill Becomes a Law and terms Schoolhouse Rock--How a Bill Becomes a Law

8 The Legislative Branch Section 7: Congress and Special Interest Groups

9 Influence of Special Interests – Argument: Congress serves special interests at the expense of the public good – Give too much weight to the narrow concerns of interest groups of their home districts and states – Pork-barrel spending—awards projects and grants, or “pork” from the gov “barrel” to a member’s home district or state $500,000 to renovate the boyhood farm of Lawrence Welk $320,000 to buy the home of President William McKinley’s in-laws in Canton, OH for donation to the state as a museum $10 million to build a ramp to Milwaukee’s County Stadium parking lot

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13 13 Most Absurd Pork Barrel Spending Projects of cation/global-economic-crisis/13-most- absurd-pork-barrel-spending-projects

14 More Pork Barrel Spending Examples html

15 Great example of wasted spending—PIZZA MACHINE 6280#.UMeKKCaqaGk.

16 Voice of the People Despite problems, Congress provides citizens with a voice in gov


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