Texas Legislature and Executive Version A 1. Functions of the Texas

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Texas Legislature and Executive Version A
1. Functions of the Texas legislature include all
of the following, except
a. enacting legislation.
b. proposing constitutional
amendments.
c. appointing state judges.
d. removing executive and judicial
officials.
2. The number of senators in the Texas
legislature is
a. 31.
b. 40.
c. 150.
d. 400.
3. The Texas legislature is ___________,
meaning that it is composed of two chambers.
a. unicameral
b. bicameral
c. bilateral
d. unitary
4. The Texas House of Representatives consists
of __________ members.
a. 31
b. 55
c. 150
d. 400
5. Legislative redistricting for both houses in
Texas routinely occurs
a. every even-numbered years.
b. every odd-numbered years.
c. the first odd-numbered year in a
decade.
d. the first even-numbered year in a
decade.
6. Which of the following is true of members of
the Texas Senate?
a. They usually serve terms of two
years with no term limits.
b. They usually serve terms of two
years with a limit of 3 terms.
c. They usually serve terms of four
years with no term limits.
d. They usually serve terms of four
years with a limit of 3 terms.
7. Which of the following is true of members of
the Texas House of Representatives?
a. They serve terms of four years and
are limited to 3 terms.
b. They serve terms of four years with
no term limits.
c. They serve terms of two years and
are limited to 3 terms.
d. They serve terms of two year terms
with no term limits.
8. A vacancy in the Texas House or Senate
arising during a term is filled by
a. the chamber’s presiding officer.
b. the Legislative Redistricting Board.
c. a special election.
d. governor’s appointment.
9. Regular sessions of the Texas legislature meet
for
a. 140 days, in odd-numbered years.
b. 150 days, every single year.
c. 140 days in even-numbered years.
d. 150 days, every four years.
10. Which of the following is not true regarding
special sessions of the Texas legislature?
a. They may only meet for 30 days.
b. They have their agenda set by the
governor.
c. They may only be called by the
governor.
d. They are limited to three per year.
11. The redistricting practice of drawing
legislative districts to favor one group or party is
called
a. electioneering.
b. packing.
c. gerrymandering.
d. filibustering.
12. The U.S. Supreme Court found in Reynolds
v. Sims (1964) that
a. legislative districts of bicameral
state legislatures must have
substantially equal populations.
b. only the lower house of state
legislatures must have substantially
equal populations.
c. all states must have bicameral
legislatures.
d. some term limits for members of
Congress violates U.S. Constitution.
13. The legislative redistricting maps approved
by the 82nd Texas Legislature in 2011 were
challenged because
a. they appeared to discriminate
against the election of historical
minority groups.
b. they appeared to favor the election
of Republicans.
c. they appeared to favor the election
of incumbents.
d. they appeared to discriminate
against the election of Democrats.
14. Under the Texas Constitution, those serving
in the Texas legislature
a. cannot hold another government
office.
b. are able to hold more than one
government office.
c. can be paid by another governmental
entity.
d. cannot earn money from private
sector sources.
15. Which of the following is not listed in the
Texas Constitution as a qualification for
membership in the Texas legislature?
a. U.S. citizenship
b. Residency in the district
c. College degree
d. Voter qualification
16. Which of the following groups dominates the
membership of the Texas legislature?
a. Anglo Protestant men
b. Hispanic Catholic men
c. African American Protestant men
d. Anglo Catholic women
17. Which statement about women in the Texas
state legislature is true?
a. In recent elections, the number of
women elected to the state
legislature has increased.
b. The percentage of women in the
state legislature is equal to the
percentage of women in the general
population.
c. In recent elections, the number of
women elected to the state
legislature has declined.
d. Female legislators have always been
treated with respect and dignity by
their male colleagues.
18. Educationally, most members of the Texas
legislature have
a. attended institutions of higher
learning.
b. only completed high school.
c. received post-graduate degrees.
d. attended private, not public school.
19. Republican membership in the Texas
legislature has
a. remained at about the same level
since 1961.
b. tended to be elected from major
cities.
c. currently constitutes a majority in
both chambers
d. been mainly due to the support of
Latino voters.
20. Turnover in the Texas legislature is most
likely to be high in those
a. elections immediately before
redistricting.
b. elections immediately after
redistricting.
c. gubernatorial election years.
d. presidential election years.
21. The lieutenant governor also functions as the
state’s
a. Speaker of the House.
b. adjutant general.
c. president of the Senate.
d. attorney general.
22. Which of the following is not correct
regarding the lieutenant governor of Texas?
a. He or she is chosen by direct
popular vote.
b. He or she is the presiding officer of
the Texas Senate.
c. He or she is first in line of
succession to fill a governorship
vacancy.
d. He or she receives a constitutional
salary of $46,000 per year.
23. Which of the following is not a power
accorded to the lieutenant governor by the Texas
Constitution or Senate rules?
a. Voting on all bills before the Senate
b. Recognizing senators wishing to speak
c. Appointing the chairs of all Senate
committees
d. Sending all bills to standing
committees
24. Which of the following is not true regarding
the Speaker of the Texas House of
Representatives?
a. He or she is selected by direct
popular vote in a general election.
b. He or she may appoint all committee
chairs.
c. He or she refers all bills to standing
committees.
d. He or she is the joint chair of the
Legislative Budget Board.
25. In the Texas House, a committee that
considers legislation and recommends whether it
should or should not pass is called a(n)
a. procedural committee.
b. substantive (standing) committee.
c. interim committee.
d. joint (two-house) committee.
26. A bill making exception to general law for a
named individual is known as a
a. concurrent resolution.
b. special bill.
c. general bill.
d. local bill.
27. To enact a law applying specifically to Collin
county, the Texas legislature would pass a
a. special bill.
b. local bill.
c. joint resolution.
d. concurrent resolution.
28. The legislature may require reports from
state agencies under a procedure known as
a. auditing.
b. consultation.
c. oversight.
d. gerrymandering.
29. Before making an appointment, the governor
is expected to consult with the senator of an
affected district, a process called senatorial
a. filibuster.
b. privilege.
c. immunity.
d. courtesy.
30. Most of the governor’s board and
commission appointments to head state agencies
must be submitted and approved by
a. at least two-thirds of the Senate.
b. the relevant Senate committee.
c. a majority of the House of
Representatives.
d. at least a simple majority vote of the
Justices on Supreme Court.
31. If a governor or other elected executive
official is suspected of criminal activity,
a. the Texas House may bring charges
through impeachment, after which
the Texas Senate would render
judgment.
b. the Texas Senate may bring charges
through impeachment, after which
the Texas House would render
judgment.
c. the Texas Rangers may bring
charges through impeachment, after
which the Texas Supreme Court
would render judgment.
d. the Texas Ethics Commission may
bring charges through impeachment,
after which the Texas Senate would
render judgment.
32. After its first reading in the House of
Representatives, a bill is
a. debated and voted upon.
b. referred to the appropriate
committee.
c. forwarded to the Senate for its
action.
d. referred to the House Rules
Committee.
33. House rules prohibit ghost voting, a practice
which involves representatives
a. scaring another representative into
voting their way.
b. pressing the voting button for
another representative.
c. having a senator vote for them.
d. not voting when present in the
chamber.
34. The Texas Senate has __________ to control
the flow of bills from standing committees to the
floor.
a. one calendar committee
b. no calendar committees
c. two calendar committees
d. four blocker committees
35. A senator can attempt to delay or impede a
bill’s passage by speaking on the floor as long as
physically possible, which is called
a. filibustering.
b. gerrymandering.
c. invoking cloture.
d. senatorial privilege.
40. The agenda for special sessions in the Texas
legislature are set by the
a. lieutenant governor and the Texas
Speaker of the House.
b. governor.
c. Texas supreme court.
d. chair of the joint committee on special
sessions.
36. When the House and Senate pass a bill with
different language in each version,
a. the bill will die because further
action cannot occur until the two
agree.
b. the bill will go to a House-Senate
conference committee.
c. one chamber will have to accept the
language of the other.
d. the governor will indicate a
preference for one chamber’s bill.
41. What is the main difference between a bill
and a resolution?
a. A resolution is just another name for a
bill.
b. A resolution deals only with issues
affecting local government, while a bill
deals with the entire state.
c. All bills require the signature of the
governor, but no resolution does.
d. Unlike a bill, a resolution, if passed, lacks
the force of a public law.
37. After a bill passes both houses of the Texas
legislature, it then
a. must be reviewed by the courts
before becoming law.
b. automatically dies if vetoed by the
governor.
c. becomes law only with the
governor’s signature.
d. becomes law with or without a
governor’s signature.
38. One of the most notable effects of
bicameralism in the Texas legislature is that it
a. speeds up the process of legislation by
dividing the labors between two separate
institutions.
b. works to the benefit of the more densely
populated urban areas.
c. allows for sparsely populated rural
counties to receive more of a voice in the
legislature.
d. permits more opportunities to kill or
significantly modify a bill.
e. allows more bipartisan support for most
bills.
42. In Texas, who can write a bill?
a. only a member of the legislature
b. the legislature or someone officially
authorized by the legislature
c. any government official
d. anyone at all
43. In the Texas legislature, all bills dealing with
state revenue must
a. start in the House of Representatives.
b. be initiated by the governor’s official
budget plan.
c. pass both houses of the legislature with a
twothirds majority.
d. start in the state senate.
44. In the Texas legislature, the referral of a bill
to a standing committee in the House and the
senate is the job of the
a. governor.
b. secretary of state.
c. Speaker of the House and lieutenant
governor.
d. sergeant of the House and senate
45. When the governor strikes out specific
spending provisions in large appropriations bills,
it is called
a. pigeonholing.
39. What is the function of the “local and
b. the pocket veto.
consent” calendar?
c. the line-item
veto.
a. It marks the date by which legislators must vote on specific
bills.
d.
the
post-adjournment
b. It is the calendar for all private bills sponsored by members of the legislature. veto.
c. It is reserved for uncontroversial bills that are not expected to have major opposition.
d. It describes the voting schedule for those bills that require approval by both the legislature and local communities.
46. Why is the comptroller of public accounts so
important to the legislature?
a. The comptroller is responsible for setting
the salary and compensation packages for
legislators.
b. The comptroller informs the legislature
how much money it has to spend on the
budget.
c. The comptroller investigates suspected
illegal campaign contributions.
d. Whoever is comptroller is also the Speaker
of the House.
47. In the Texas House of Representatives, who
has the power to allow members to speak in floor
debates?
a. the Speaker of the House
b. the leader of the party of which the
representative is a member
c. the lieutenant governor
d. no one—House members do not need
official permission to speak in floor debates.
48. Legislative districts in the Texas House and
Senate are
a. based on proportional representation.
b. single-member districts.
c. multiple-member districts.
d. redistricted every four years.
49. The governor of Texas is constitutionally
allowed to serve
a. 2 four-year terms.
b. unlimited terms.
c. a single four-year term.
d. 3 two-year terms.
50. It is common for governors to repay
major contributors to their election
campaigns with
a. appointments to key
policymaking positions.
b. direct cash payment from
the state Treasury.
c. nothing more than sincere
thanks.
d. ceremonies to name roads
and bridges after them.
51. To gain support for their legislative agendas,
Texas governors rely on all the following, except
their
a. skills in personal relations.
b. strong constitutional powers.
c. competent staff assistance.
d. persuasion and arm-twisting.
52. Which of the following is true of a
governor’s informal power?
a. It stems from popularity with the
public and is based on traditions,
symbols, and ceremonies.
b. It is rooted in the constitutional
power to appoint officials.
c. It is used only rarely and in extreme
circumstances.
d. It depends heavily on the support
she or he gets from the lieutenant
governor.
53. The constitutional role of “commander-inchief” allows the Texas governor to use the
Texas National Guard and State Guard to do all
the following, except
a. impose martial law.
b. deploy military forces overseas.
c. help with federal border security.
d. assist in state disaster relief
operations.
54. The governor’s most significant
constitutional budget power is
a. transferring funds from one line
item to another.
b. reducing funds in one or more line
items on his own initiative.
c. vetoing all or part of the biennial
legislative appropriations act.
d. submitting a draft budget for
legislative consideration.
55. The governor’s legislative powers include all
the following, except
a. signing or vetoing bills passed by
the legislature.
b. appointing the chairs of legislative
committees.
c. proposing legislation in messages to
legislators.
d. calling special sessions and setting
their agenda.
56. In the case of a person facing a death
sentence, the governor of Texas may
independently
a. grant a full pardon to a person
convicted of a felony.
b. remit a fine to a person who has
been assessed one.
c. grant one 30-day stay of execution
of a death sentence.
d. commute a death sentence to life
imprisonment at hard labor.
57. For a Texas governor, what is the benefit of a
post-adjournment veto?
a. It requires a two-thirds majority from both
houses to override it.
b. The legislature is prevented from overriding
it.
c. It allows the governor to veto specific
provisions of a bill.
d. It is the only way to veto legislation without
giving reasons.
e. It requires a unanimous vote from both
houses to override it.
58. In Texas, what is the primary effect of a plural
executive?
a. It dilutes the power of the governor and
fragments the executive branch.
b. It grants the governor additional powers,
since it makes for a powerful executive
branch.
c. It makes the executive branch less
accountable to the voters.
d. It leads to excessive corruption within the
executive branch.
e. It puts too much power in the hands of a
small group of officials.
59. What makes the greatest difference between
strong and weak governors of Texas?
a. the willingness to use formal powers
b. the frequency of vetoes
c. the differences in personality
d. the partisan makeup of the legislature
e. the percentage of the total vote they receive
in their election bid
60. In Texas, which officer in the plural executive is
not elected by voters?
a. the secretary of state
b. the attorney general
c. the comptroller
d. the lieutenant governor
e. the commissioner of agriculture
61. Which of the following about the lieutenant
governor in Texas is incorrect?
a. The lieutenant governor is chair of the
legislative Budget Board.
b. The lieutenant governor presides over the
senate.
c. The lieutenant governor is elected in a
statewide election.
d. The lieutenant governor’s powers are
primarily executive, not legislative.
e. The lieutenant governor is first in line for
succession of the governor.
62. The chief lawyer for Texas is the
a. chief justice of the state supreme court.
b. attorney general.
c. secretary of state.
d. state comptroller.
63. The ______ is the oldest state agency in Texas.
a. General Land Office
b. Texas Ranger Division
c. Railroad Commission
d. Agriculture Commission
64. In Texas, what is the most important power of
the state comptroller?
a. estimating tax revenues for the legislature
b. overseeing the state police and the Texas
Rangers
c. enforcing all state land-use and takings laws
d. regulating the oil industry in the state
65. What is the purpose of the Sunset Advisory
Commission in Texas?
a. It reviews state agencies every twelve years
to see if they are still needed.
b. It administers state programs for the elderly.
c. It oversees the retirement of state
bureaucratic workers.
d. It operates all state retirement homes.
True/False Indicate whether the statement is true (A)
or false(B).
____t 66. The typical Texas legislator is a white,
upper-class, male Protestant.
____t 67. The Texas legislature meets in regular
session once every two years.
____f 68. The Texas House of Representatives is
responsible for both impeaching government
officials and holding the trial after
impeachment.
____f 69. Unlike the U.S. Senate, the Texas Senate
does not permit filibusters.
____t 70. The governor of Texas has the authority to
exercise a line-item veto.
____t 71. The Texas constitution forbids the
legislature to borrow money to conduct the
daily operations of government.
____f 72. Members of the Texas House of
Representatives are permitted to speak on
the House floor for as long as they wish.
____f 73. The secretary of state in Texas is
responsible for redrawing legislative districts
every ten years.
____f 74. The Texas governor has many formal
powers, making him or her one of the United
States’s strongest chief executives.
____f 75. The governor of Texas currently serves a
two-year term in office.
____t 76. Texas has a plural executive made up of
multiple popularly elected offices.
____f 77. The attorney general in Texas is responsible
for overseeing the registration of voters.
____t 78. In Texas, the lieutenant governor is also the
president of the senate and may cast a vote
to break a tie.
Essay
1. Describe the structure and organization
of the Texas legislature. Consider the
following questions: What are some of
the effects of bicameralism? What are
committees and what are their roles?
When is the Texas legislature in regular
session?
2. What is the plural executive? Describe
the offices that constitute the plural
executive in Texas. How does this
compare with the executive branch of
government under the U.S.
Constitution? What are the political
principles behind the creation of the
plural executive?
3. The office of Texas governor is one of
the weakest in the nation. Why is this the
case? What are some of the limitations
that the Texas constitution places on the
governor? What are some of the informal
powers the governor may use to bolster
the power of the office?
Texas Legislature and Executive Version B
1. Functions of the Texas legislature include all
of the following, except
a. appointing state judges.
b. proposing constitutional
amendments.
c. enacting legislation.
d. removing executive and judicial
officials.
2. The number of senators in the Texas
legislature is
a. 400.
b. 150.
c. 40.
d. 31.
3. The Texas legislature is ___________,
meaning that it is composed of two chambers.
a. unitary
b. bilateral
c. bicameral
d. unicameral
4. The Texas House of Representatives consists
of __________ members.
a. 400.
b. 150.
c. 40.
d. 31.
5. Legislative redistricting for both houses in
Texas routinely occurs
a. the first even-numbered year in a
decade.
b. the first odd-numbered year in a
decade.
c. every even-numbered years.
d. every odd-numbered years.
6. Which of the following is true of members of
the Texas Senate?
a. They usually serve terms of four
years with no term limits.
b. They usually serve terms of four
years with a limit of 3 terms.
c. They usually serve terms of two
years with no term limits.
d. They usually serve terms of two
years with a limit of 3 terms.
7. Which of the following is true of members of
the Texas House of Representatives?
a. They serve terms of four years and
are limited to 3 terms.
b. They serve terms of four years with
no term limits.
c. They serve terms of two years and
are limited to 3 terms.
d. They serve terms of two year terms
with no term limits.
8. A vacancy in the Texas House or Senate
arising during a term is filled by
a. the chamber’s presiding officer.
b. the Legislative Redistricting Board.
c. a special election.
d. governor’s appointment.
9. Regular sessions of the Texas legislature meet
for
a. 140 days, in odd-numbered years.
b. 150 days, every single year.
c. 140 days in even-numbered years.
d. 150 days, every four years.
10. Which of the following is not true regarding
special sessions of the Texas legislature?
a. They may only meet for 30 days.
b. They have their agenda set by the
governor.
c. They may only be called by the
governor.
d. They are limited to three per year.
11. The redistricting practice of drawing
legislative districts to favor one group or party is
called
a. electioneering.
b. packing.
c. gerrymandering.
d. filibustering.
12. The U.S. Supreme Court found in Reynolds
v. Sims (1964) that
a. legislative districts of bicameral
state legislatures must have
substantially equal populations.
b. only the lower house of state
legislatures must have substantially
equal populations.
c. all states must have bicameral
legislatures.
d. some term limits for members of
Congress violates U.S. Constitution.
13. The legislative redistricting maps approved
by the 82nd Texas Legislature in 2011 were
challenged because
a. they appeared to discriminate
against the election of historical
minority groups.
b. they appeared to favor the election
of Republicans.
c. they appeared to favor the election
of incumbents.
d. they appeared to discriminate
against the election of Democrats.
14. Under the Texas Constitution, those serving
in the Texas legislature
a. cannot hold another government
office.
b. are able to hold more than one
government office.
c. can be paid by another governmental
entity.
d. cannot earn money from private
sector sources.
15. Which of the following is not listed in the
Texas Constitution as a qualification for
membership in the Texas legislature?
a. U.S. citizenship
b. Residency in the district
c. College degree
d. Voter qualification
16. Which of the following groups dominates the
membership of the Texas legislature?
a. Anglo Protestant men
b. Hispanic Catholic men
c. African American Protestant men
d. Anglo Catholic women
17. Which statement about women in the Texas
state legislature is true?
a. In recent elections, the number of
women elected to the state
legislature has increased.
b. The percentage of women in the
state legislature is equal to the
percentage of women in the general
population.
c. In recent elections, the number of
women elected to the state
legislature has declined.
d. Female legislators have always been
treated with respect and dignity by
their male colleagues.
18. Educationally, most members of the Texas
legislature have
a. attended institutions of higher
learning.
b. only completed high school.
c. received post-graduate degrees.
d. attended private, not public school.
19. Republican membership in the Texas
legislature has
a. remained at about the same level
since 1961.
b. tended to be elected from major
cities.
c. currently constitutes a majority in
both chambers
d. been mainly due to the support of
Latino voters.
20. Turnover in the Texas legislature is most
likely to be high in those
a. elections immediately before
redistricting.
b. elections immediately after
redistricting.
c. gubernatorial election years.
d. presidential election years.
21. The lieutenant governor also functions as the
state’s
a. Speaker of the House.
b. adjutant general.
c. president of the Senate.
d. attorney general.
22. Which of the following is not correct
regarding the lieutenant governor of Texas?
a. He or she is chosen by direct
popular vote.
b. He or she is the presiding officer of
the Texas Senate.
c. He or she is first in line of
succession to fill a governorship
vacancy.
d. He or she receives a constitutional
salary of $46,000 per year.
23. Which of the following is not a power
accorded to the lieutenant governor by the Texas
Constitution or Senate rules?
a. Voting on all bills before the Senate
b. Recognizing senators wishing to speak
c. Appointing the chairs of all Senate
committees
d. Sending all bills to standing
committees
24. Which of the following is not true regarding
the Speaker of the Texas House of
Representatives?
a. He or she is selected by direct
popular vote in a general election.
b. He or she may appoint all committee
chairs.
c. He or she refers all bills to standing
committees.
d. He or she is the joint chair of the
Legislative Budget Board.
25. In the Texas House, a committee that
considers legislation and recommends whether it
should or should not pass is called a(n)
a. procedural committee.
b. substantive (standing) committee.
c. interim committee.
d. joint (two-house) committee.
26. A bill making exception to general law for a
named individual is known as a
a. concurrent resolution.
b. special bill.
c. general bill.
d. local bill.
27. To enact a law applying specifically to Collin
county, the Texas legislature would pass a
a. special bill.
b. local bill.
c. joint resolution.
d. concurrent resolution.
28. The legislature may require reports from
state agencies under a procedure known as
a. auditing.
b. consultation.
c. oversight.
d. gerrymandering.
29. Before making an appointment, the governor
is expected to consult with the senator of an
affected district, a process called senatorial
a. filibuster.
b. privilege.
c. immunity.
d. courtesy.
30. Most of the governor’s board and
commission appointments to head state agencies
must be submitted and approved by
a. at least two-thirds of the Senate.
b. the relevant Senate committee.
c. a majority of the House of
Representatives.
d. at least a simple majority vote of the
Justices on Supreme Court.
31. If a governor or other elected executive
official is suspected of criminal activity,
a. the Texas House may bring charges
through impeachment, after which
the Texas Senate would render
judgment.
b. the Texas Senate may bring charges
through impeachment, after which
the Texas House would render
judgment.
c. the Texas Rangers may bring
charges through impeachment, after
which the Texas Supreme Court
would render judgment.
d. the Texas Ethics Commission may
bring charges through impeachment,
after which the Texas Senate would
render judgment.
32. After its first reading in the House of
Representatives, a bill is
a. debated and voted upon.
b. referred to the appropriate
committee.
c. forwarded to the Senate for its
action.
d. referred to the House Rules
Committee.
33. House rules prohibit ghost voting, a practice
which involves representatives
a. scaring another representative into
voting their way.
b. pressing the voting button for
another representative.
c. having a senator vote for them.
d. not voting when present in the
chamber.
34. The Texas Senate has __________ to control
the flow of bills from standing committees to the
floor.
a. one calendar committee
b. no calendar committees
c. two calendar committees
d. four blocker committees
35. A senator can attempt to delay or impede a
bill’s passage by speaking on the floor as long as
physically possible, which is called
a. filibustering.
b. gerrymandering.
c. invoking cloture.
d. senatorial privilege.
40. The agenda for special sessions in the Texas
legislature are set by the
a. lieutenant governor and the Texas
Speaker of the House.
b. governor.
c. Texas supreme court.
d. chair of the joint committee on special
sessions.
36. When the House and Senate pass a bill with
different language in each version,
a. the bill will die because further
action cannot occur until the two
agree.
b. the bill will go to a House-Senate
conference committee.
c. one chamber will have to accept the
language of the other.
d. the governor will indicate a
preference for one chamber’s bill.
41. What is the main difference between a bill
and a resolution?
a. A resolution is just another name for a
bill.
b. A resolution deals only with issues
affecting local government, while a bill
deals with the entire state.
c. All bills require the signature of the
governor, but no resolution does.
d. Unlike a bill, a resolution, if passed, lacks
the force of a public law.
37. After a bill passes both houses of the Texas
legislature, it then
a. must be reviewed by the courts
before becoming law.
b. automatically dies if vetoed by the
governor.
c. becomes law only with the
governor’s signature.
d. becomes law with or without a
governor’s signature.
38. One of the most notable effects of
bicameralism in the Texas legislature is that it
a. speeds up the process of legislation by
dividing the labors between two separate
institutions.
b. works to the benefit of the more densely
populated urban areas.
c. allows for sparsely populated rural
counties to receive more of a voice in the
legislature.
d. permits more opportunities to kill or
significantly modify a bill.
e. allows more bipartisan support for most
bills.
42. In Texas, who can write a bill?
a. only a member of the legislature
b. the legislature or someone officially
authorized by the legislature
c. any government official
d. anyone at all
43. In the Texas legislature, all bills dealing with
state revenue must
a. start in the House of Representatives.
b. be initiated by the governor’s official
budget plan.
c. pass both houses of the legislature with a
twothirds majority.
d. start in the state senate.
44. In the Texas legislature, the referral of a bill
to a standing committee in the House and the
senate is the job of the
a. governor.
b. secretary of state.
c. Speaker of the House and lieutenant
governor.
d. sergeant of the House and senate
45. When the governor strikes out specific
spending provisions in large appropriations bills,
it is called
a. pigeonholing.
39. What is the function of the “local and
b. the pocket veto.
consent” calendar?
c. the line-item
veto.
a. It marks the date by which legislators must vote on specific
bills.
d.
the
post-adjournment
b. It is the calendar for all private bills sponsored by members of the legislature. veto.
c. It is reserved for uncontroversial bills that are not expected to have major opposition.
d. It describes the voting schedule for those bills that require approval by both the legislature and local communities.
46. Why is the comptroller of public accounts so
important to the legislature?
a. The comptroller is responsible for setting
the salary and compensation packages for
legislators.
b. The comptroller informs the legislature
how much money it has to spend on the
budget.
c. The comptroller investigates suspected
illegal campaign contributions.
d. Whoever is comptroller is also the Speaker
of the House.
47. In the Texas House of Representatives, who
has the power to allow members to speak in floor
debates?
a. the Speaker of the House
b. the leader of the party of which the
representative is a member
c. the lieutenant governor
d. no one—House members do not need
official permission to speak in floor debates.
48. Legislative districts in the Texas House and
Senate are
a. based on proportional representation.
b. single-member districts.
c. multiple-member districts.
d. redistricted every four years.
49. The governor of Texas is constitutionally
allowed to serve
a. 2 four-year terms.
b. unlimited terms.
c. a single four-year term.
d. 3 two-year terms.
50. It is common for governors to repay
major contributors to their election
campaigns with
a. appointments to key
policymaking positions.
b. direct cash payment from
the state Treasury.
c. nothing more than sincere
thanks.
d. ceremonies to name roads
and bridges after them.
51. To gain support for their legislative agendas,
Texas governors rely on all the following, except
their
a. skills in personal relations.
b. strong constitutional powers.
c. competent staff assistance.
d. persuasion and arm-twisting.
52. Which of the following is true of a
governor’s informal power?
a. It stems from popularity with the
public and is based on traditions,
symbols, and ceremonies.
b. It is rooted in the constitutional
power to appoint officials.
c. It is used only rarely and in extreme
circumstances.
d. It depends heavily on the support
she or he gets from the lieutenant
governor.
53. The constitutional role of “commander-inchief” allows the Texas governor to use the
Texas National Guard and State Guard to do all
the following, except
a. impose martial law.
b. deploy military forces overseas.
c. help with federal border security.
d. assist in state disaster relief
operations.
54. The governor’s most significant
constitutional budget power is
a. transferring funds from one line
item to another.
b. reducing funds in one or more line
items on his own initiative.
c. vetoing all or part of the biennial
legislative appropriations act.
d. submitting a draft budget for
legislative consideration.
55. The governor’s legislative powers include all
the following, except
a. signing or vetoing bills passed by
the legislature.
b. appointing the chairs of legislative
committees.
c. proposing legislation in messages to
legislators.
d. calling special sessions and setting
their agenda.
56. In the case of a person facing a death
sentence, the governor of Texas may
independently
a. grant a full pardon to a person
convicted of a felony.
b. remit a fine to a person who has
been assessed one.
c. grant one 30-day stay of execution
of a death sentence.
d. commute a death sentence to life
imprisonment at hard labor.
64. For a Texas governor, what is the benefit of a
post-adjournment veto?
a. It requires a two-thirds majority from both
houses to override it.
b. The legislature is prevented from overriding
it.
c. It allows the governor to veto specific
provisions of a bill.
d. It is the only way to veto legislation without
giving reasons.
e. It requires a unanimous vote from both
houses to override it.
65. In Texas, what is the primary effect of a plural
executive?
a. It dilutes the power of the governor and
fragments the executive branch.
b. It grants the governor additional powers,
since it makes for a powerful executive
branch.
c. It makes the executive branch less
accountable to the voters.
d. It leads to excessive corruption within the
executive branch.
e. It puts too much power in the hands of a
small group of officials.
66. What makes the greatest difference between
strong and weak governors of Texas?
a. the willingness to use formal powers
b. the frequency of vetoes
c. the differences in personality
d. the partisan makeup of the legislature
e. the percentage of the total vote they receive
in their election bid
67. In Texas, which officer in the plural executive is
not elected by voters?
a. the secretary of state
b. the attorney general
c. the comptroller
d. the lieutenant governor
e. the commissioner of agriculture
68. Which of the following about the lieutenant
governor in Texas is incorrect?
a. The lieutenant governor is chair of the
legislative Budget Board.
b. The lieutenant governor presides over the
senate.
c. The lieutenant governor is elected in a
statewide election.
d. The lieutenant governor’s powers are
primarily executive, not legislative.
e. The lieutenant governor is first in line for
succession of the governor.
69. The chief lawyer for Texas is the
a. chief justice of the state supreme court.
b. attorney general.
c. secretary of state.
d. state comptroller.
70. The ______ is the oldest state agency in Texas.
a. General Land Office
b. Texas Ranger Division
c. Railroad Commission
d. Agriculture Commission
71. In Texas, what is the most important power of
the state comptroller?
a. estimating tax revenues for the legislature
b. overseeing the state police and the Texas
Rangers
c. enforcing all state land-use and takings laws
d. regulating the oil industry in the state
72. What is the purpose of the Sunset Advisory
Commission in Texas?
a. It reviews state agencies every twelve years
to see if they are still needed.
b. It administers state programs for the elderly.
c. It oversees the retirement of state
bureaucratic workers.
d. It operates all state retirement homes.
True/False Indicate whether the statement is true (A) or false(B).
____ 73. The typical Texas legislator is a white, upper-class, male Protestant.
____ 74. The Texas legislature meets in regular session once every two years.
____ 75. The Texas House of Representatives is responsible for both impeaching government officials and
holding the trial after impeachment.
____ 76. Unlike the U.S. Senate, the Texas Senate does not permit filibusters.
____ 77. The governor of Texas has the authority to exercise a line-item veto.
____ 78. The Texas constitution forbids the legislature to borrow money to conduct the daily operations of
government.
____ 79. Members of the Texas House of Representatives are permitted to speak on the House floor for as
long as they wish.
____ 80. The secretary of state in Texas is responsible for redrawing legislative districts every ten years.
____ 81. The Texas governor has many formal powers, making him or her one of the United States’s
strongest chief executives.
____ 82. The governor of Texas currently serves a two-year term in office.
____ 83. Texas has a plural executive made up of multiple popularly elected offices.
____ 84. The attorney general in Texas is responsible for overseeing the registration of voters.
____ 85. In Texas, the lieutenant governor is also the president of the senate and may cast a vote to break
a tie.
Essay
1. Describe the structure and organization of the Texas legislature. Consider the following
questions: What are some of the effects of bicameralism? What are committees and
what are their roles? When is the Texas legislature in regular session?
2. What is the plural executive? Describe the offices that constitute the plural executive in
Texas. How does this compare with the executive branch of government under the U.S.
Constitution? What are the political principles behind the creation of the plural
executive?
3. The office of Texas governor is one of the weakest in the nation. Why is this the case?
What are some of the limitations that the Texas constitution places on the governor?
What are some of the informal powers the governor may use to bolster the power of the
office?
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