AP U.S. GOVERNMENT & POLITICS UNIT IV- CONGRESS, PART III Congressional Power The expressed powers of Congress are listed in the Constitution. Congress also has implied powers, which are based on the Constitution's right to make any laws that are "necessary and proper" to carry out those expressed powers. Congress has exercised its implied powers thousands of times over the years. Here are but a few major illustrations of that fact. Study the cases and acts below and make sure you understand them and the expressed power from which these examples of implied powers were derived. 1780 1789 The Constitution gives expressed powers to Congress in Article 1, Section 8. 1800 1810 1819 In McCulloch v. Maryland, the Supreme Court holds that the powers to tax, borrow, and regulate commerce give Congress the implied power to establish a national bank. 1820 1824 Gibbons v. Ogden is the first commerce clause case to reach the Supreme Court. The broad definition of commerce the Court lays out in its ruling extends federal authority over interstate commerce issues. 1830 1840 1850 1860 1862 The U.S. government issues its first legal tender notes, which are popularly called greenbacks. 1870 1870 In Hepburn v. Griswold the Supreme Court rules that the Constitution does not authorize the printing of paper money. 1870 The Court reverses its position on the printing of paper money and holds that issuing paper money is a proper use of the currency power in the Legal Tender cases. The decision in Juliard v. Greenman (1884) reaffirms this holding. 1880 1890 1890 The Sherman Antitrust Act, based on the commerce power, regulates monopolies and other practices that limit competition. 1900 1910 1920 1930 1935 The Wagner Act, based on the commerce power, recognizes labor's right to bargain collectively. 1935 The Social Security Act is passed. 1937 The Supreme Court upholds the Social Security Act of 1935 as a proper exercise of the powers to tax and provide for the general welfare in Steward Machine Co. v. Davis and Helvering v. Davis. 1940 1950 1956 The Interstate and National Highway Act, based on the commerce and war powers, provides for a national interstate highway system. 1960 1964 The Supreme Court holds the public accommodations provisions of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 (no discrimination based on race, religion, gender, etc.) as a valid exercise of the commerce power in Heart of Atlanta v. United States. 1965 Congress amends the Social Security Act of 1935 to create Medicare, which covers hospital and other health-care costs of the elderly. 1970 1973 With the War Powers Resolution of 1973, Congress claims the right to restrict the use of American forces in combat when a state of war does not exist. 1980 1990 1990 The Americans with Disabilities Act, based on the commerce power, prohibits discrimination against the physically impaired. 1995 In United States v. Lopez, the Court strikes down the Gun-Free School Zone Act of 1990 on the grounds that the federal government invades reserved powers of the states with this legislation. Congressional Powers Study the list below of types of congressional powers and be able to identify these powers as either legislative or non-legislative. Legislative 1. Power to make laws that are necessary and proper, or convenient and useful, to carrying out expressed powers. 2. Power to secure patents and copyright for investors and authors. 3. Power to decide punishment for federal crimes. 4. Power to set up federal courts. 5. Power to raise and maintain military services. 6. Power to declare war. 7. Power to set up rules about the admission of new states to the country 8. Power to govern the nation’s territories 9. Power to enact naturalization laws and to regulate immigration 10. Power to establish and maintain highways 11. Power to establish post offices 12. Power to set up uniform standards of weights and measures 13. Power to regulate trade with foreign nations and among the states 14. Power to coin money and regulate its value 15. Power to decide how money will be spent 16. Power to borrow money 17. Power to levy and collect taxes Nonlegislative 1. Power to administer federal lands 2. Power to admit new states and territories 3. Power to give advice and consent 4. Power to try impeachment cases (Senate) 5. Power to bring impeachment charges (House) 6. Power to elect a President (House) and Vice President (Senate) if no candidate wins in a majority of votes in the Electoral College 7. Power to propose amendments and to call conventions to propose amendments at the request of the states 8. Power to conduct investigations 9. Power to regulate elections and to judge the qualifications of elected members AP U.S. GOVENRMENT & POLITICS The Powers of Congress Name____________________ Indicate whether the statements below are true (T) or false (F). If the statement is false, replace the underlined phrase with one that makes the statement true. 1. Those powers of Congress that are not spelled out word for word are called expressed powers. ___________ 2. Clause 18 of Article 1, Section 8 of the Constitution is often called the Commerce Clause. _________________ 3. The Constitution gives Congress authority to make laws that are necessary and proper for executing expressed powers. ___________ 4. The first major dispute over implied powers of Congress involved establishment of the interstate highway system. _________________ 5. Thomas Jefferson and his followers argued that the new government had no powers beyond those expressly granted by the Constitution. _______ _____ 6. Hamilton and strict constructionists believed Congress had the power to do anything that might be reasonably implied from expressly delegated powers. _____ _____ _____ Indicate which type of power of Congress the following items refer to. Write the proper letter: E for expressed legislative power, I for implied legislative power, N for nonlegislative power, or P for power prohibited under the Constitution-in the space next to the item. 7. impeach the President 8. propose constitutional amendments 9. regulate interstate commerce 10. prohibit race discrimination in hotels and restaurants 11. grant titles of nobility 12. create new federal courts 13. raise and support an army 14. establish a national system of air traffic controllers 15. elect a President if no candidate receives a majority of electoral votes 16. offer advice and consent on treaties made by the President 17. do away with trial by jury 18. establish a state religion 19. lay and collect taxes 20. print paper money 21. conduct investigations 22. take private land for public use without paying for it 23. borrow money Powers of Congress - Review Write the letter of the correct answer on the line provided 1. Both Houses of Congress must vote to a) elect a President if no candidate receives a majority of electoral votes b) propose constitutional amendments c) impeach a President d) confirm presidential appointments. 2. Congress is permitted to a) tax exports b) create a national pubic school system c) enact nationwide divorce law d) take private property for public use. 3. The strict constructionists a) were led by Alexander Hamilton b) wished to widen the powers of Congress c) wanted the states to retain as much power as possible d) favored a liberal interpretation of the Constitution 4. McCulloch v. Maryland a) established the Second Bank of the United States b) upheld the doctrine of implied powers c) limited the power of the Federal Government d) reflected a strict interpretation of the Constitution 5. Which of the following is an example of an expressed power of Congress a) fix minimum wages b) define punishment for treason c) grant patents d) improve harbors 6. Which of the following persons was impeached? a) Richard Nixon b) William Clinton c) Spiro Agnew d) Andrew Johnson 7. Which of the following is not an example of an indirect tax? a) customs duties b) excise tax on liquor c) property tax d) excise tax on cigarettes 8. The legal proceeding in which a debtor’s assets are distributed among his/her creditors because that person cannot pay debts is known as a) bankruptcy b) eminent domain c) pauper’s oath d) capitation 9. Which of the following types of powers are not held by Congress? a) reserved b) inherent c) expressed d) implied 10. Nearly all of Congress’ implied powers are built upon the expressed powers of taxation and the power to a) declare war b) coin money c) regulate commerce d) borrow money Answer “Yes” or “No” to the following questions 11. Does Congress have the power to raise the minimum wage to ten dollars an hour? 12. Does Congress have the power to exclude teenagers from benefiting from minimum wage laws? 13. Does Congress have powers that are not legislative in nature? 14. Could Congress grant the honorary title of “Your Highness” to a former First Lady? 15. Could Congress pass a law requiring all states except Texas and Oklahoma to pay a tax on oil? 16. Could Congress vote to greatly limit the number of immigrants permitted to enter the U. S.? 17. Could members of Congress vote themselves a large pay raise? 18. Can Congress vote to reduce the amount of income taxes paid by individuals? 19. Has a President ever been removed from office as a result of impeachment? 20. Does Congress have the power to establish a minimum age at which people may marry?
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