AP US GOV Summer Packet

Torres- AP US Government Summer Reading Fall 2013
In order to prepare for the AP US Government class, you will be required to complete the following summer
assignment. There are multiple components, so please take care to read through the directions carefully. The
summer assignment is due the first day of class. Failure to hand in a summer assignment is
grounds for dismissal from the course.
1. Vocabulary – Define each of the vocabulary words. Don’t just write down Mr. Webster’s definition. Understand the
term in its political context, and use your own words to explain it. Consider this: if I were to give you an open-notebook
test on these terms, would you feel comfortable with your answers?
2. Essay – You will write a clear, well-documented essay with a clear thesis, comparing and contrasting Republicans and
Democrats. The essay should address the historical evolution of the two parties, changing viewpoints, and target
demographics. Also, you should include their positions of some of the following topics: drugs, crime control, abortion,
social security, economy, gun control, immigration, gay rights, and health care. Be sure to address the nuances within
the party – you will find that in some cases, there are differing views, even within the party. The essay should be
approximately 3-5 pages long.
3. Current Events – You are required to collect at least 10 newspaper or magazine clippings pertaining to United States
politics. It is important that you are informed and up to date on the major events occurring in the U.S. (as a student in
AP Government and as a conscientious citizen). You need 2 articles from June, 4 articles from July, and 4 articles from
August. For each article, include a short summary and your views on the issue. *Note* You may have more than 10
4. Book Review- Order from Amazon or any retailer The Thirteen American Arguments: Enduring Debates That Define
and Inspire Our Country, (prices range from $3-$10 depending on condition of the book). Pick 6 chapters to write
reflections (1-2 pages typed, double space 12 pt. Times New Roman font) in which you compare the arguments made
and which argument is more justified.
AP US Government Vocabulary
Americans with Disabilities Act
Amicus Curiae brief
Appellate courts
Bill of attainder
Blanket primary
Block grants
Brady bill
Brown v. Board of Education
Budget and Impoundment Control
Congressional Budget Office
Contract with America
De facto segregation
De jure segregation
Ex post facto
Exclusionary rule
Executive order
Franking privileges
Gatekeeper role
Gender gap
Great Society
House Ways and Means
Interest groups
Issue ads
Judicial activism
Judicial restraint
Line item veto
McCain-Feingold Act
Motor Voter Act
Pentagon Papers
Necessary and proper clause
New Deal Coalition
Office of Management and Budget
Pocket veto
Pork barrel
Revenue sharing
Rule of propinquity
Selective incorporation
Soft money
Split ticket voting
Torres- AP US Government Summer Reading Fall 2013
Stare decisis
War Powers Act
For this course, it’s important that you understand the basics of our government. Who better to learn the basics from
than the men who wrote and argued in favor of the federal constitution proposed at the conclusion of the Constitutional
Convention? Each of the Federalist Papers were meant to be persuasive essays in support of the new constitution. Print
and read each document from the websites below. Answer the questions below AND highlight the portion of the text
that answers each question. It is also suggested that you number the highlighted portion so you know which answer the
text relates to.
Primary Sources:
Federalist 10: http://www.constitution.org/fed/federa10.htm
Questions on Federalist Number 10:
1. What are factions, according to Madison and where does he write of them?
2. What are the causes of faction, according to Madison?
3. What is the most common and durable source of faction, according to Madison?
4. How could we cure the "mischiefs of faction," according to Madison? Why are these remedies worse than the
disease, according to Madison?
5. What is Madison's solution for controlling the effects of factions?
6. What is a republic, what is a pure democracy, and how do they differ?
7. How does a republic inhibit the effects of factions, according to Madison?
Federalist 51: http://www.constitution.org/fed/federa51.htm
Questions on Federalist Number 51:
1. Which branch of government did Madison think would be the weakest?
2. Which methods does Madison suggest to check the powers of government?
3. How is the separation of powers between the three branches assured?
4. Which branch appears as an exception to the separation of powers norm? Why is this exception not dangerous?
5. What are the two great advantages of federalism, according to Madison?
6. What is the "end" (supreme goal) of government, according to Madison?
7. What is Madison's view of human nature and how does it affect his prescriptions for the republic?
Federalist 78: http://www.constitution.org/fed/federa78.htm
Questions on Federalist Number 78:
1. What is important about the new role of the federal judiciary?
2. Why does the judiciary need to be independent in a republic, according to Hamilton?
3. Why do judges need life appointments, according to Hamilton? Do you agree?
4. According to the author, why are the courts vital to a limited constitution?
5. Why does the author believe that judges have permanent tenure?
6. What is the author’s attitude toward the proposed Supreme Court of the United States?
Torres- AP US Government Summer Reading Fall 2013
If you have any questions, you can contact me at [email protected] . It may take a few days for me to reply, so do not
wait until the last minute to ask questions. The summer assignment is due the first day of class.
Failure to hand in a summer assignment is grounds for dismissal from the course.