Government Semester Project

By: Ashlyn Keltner

Standard 1: Understand the Rights and Responsibilities of Each Citizen and Demonstrate the Value of Lifelong Civic Action

What are the rights and responsibilities of each citizen? What is the difference between civic duty and civic responsibility? What is the value of lifelong civic action?

A citizen of the United States had the right to bear arms, to express themselves, freedom of religion, the right to a fair trial by jury, the right to vote, the freedom to pursue life, liberty, and happiness. A citizen of the United States has the responsibility to defend the Constitution against all enemies foreign and domestic, has the responsibility to respect the rights, beliefs, and opinions of others, serve in jury when summoned, and stay informed on issues.

The difference between civic duty and civic responsibility is that civic duty is something that's encouraged but isn't required. Civic duty would be voting, volunteering, being on the committee, serving in the military, going to school and work. Civic responsibility is something that IS required as a U.S. citizen. Civic responsibility would be paying taxes, community service, jury duty, and following the laws.

The value of life long civic action is that it's fulfilling. It makes a person feel as if they contributed to something important.

Standard 2: Understand how the Government Established by the Constitution Embodies the Principles of Democracy

How is the U.S. government established by the Constitution? How does the Constitution embody the enduring values and principles of democracy and republicanism? (Hint: 6 Principles)

The U.S Constitution established America's national government and fundamental laws, and guaranteed certain basic rights for the citizens. The Principles of Democracy helped establish the U.S Government.

Principles of Democracy

  • Citizen Participation - Provides private individuals an opportunity to influence public decisions.
  • Equality - The state of being equal, especially in status, rights, and opportunities.
  • Political Tolerance - Willingness to extend basic human rights- to speak, to publish, to run for office.
  • Accountability - An obligation or willingness to accept responsibility.
  • Transparency - Easy to perceive or detect.
  • Regular, Free, and Fair Elections - Equal opportunities
  • Economic Freedom - Freedom to choose how to produce, sell, and use your own resources, while respecting others’ rights to do the same.
  • Control of the abuse of power - Making it so no one can use their position in power in an abusive way.

The Constitution embodies the enduring values and principles of democracy and republicanism by the 6 principles.

The Six Principles:

Popular Sovereignty

  • Popular Sovereignty's purpose is to give power to the people. The officials are elected by the people. Popular Sovereignty allows the authority of a state or government be created or sustained by the people.


  • Republicanism is the belief that a government should be based on the consent of the people by voting for political representatives.


  • Federalism is a system of a government where power is shared among the central or federal government and the states.

Individual Rights

  • Individual Rights are the liberties of each individual to pursue life and goals without interference from other individuals or the governments.

Limited Government

  • Limited Government is to retrains government power, lessens distrust for the government, and it discourages the abuse of citizens.

Separation of Powers

  • Separation of Powers is to divide the power between the three branches; power to review laws, power to make laws, and power to enforce laws.

Check and Balances

  • Check and Balances allow each branch to have different abilities. It limits the power of each branch, slows down the government, and prevents to much power from being allowed in.

Standard 3: Understand the Purpose and Function of Each of the Three Branches of Government Established by the Constitution

What is the purpose and function of each of the three branches of government established by the Constitution?

Legislative Branch

  • Purpose

    • The purpose of the Legislative Branch is to create, amend, and repeal laws. Also known as Congress.

  • Function

    • The function of the Legislative Branch is to create or change laws.

Executive Branch

  • Purpose

    • The purpose of the Executive Branch is to make laws official and enforce the laws that are created by the Legislative Branch.

  • Function

    • The function of the Executive Branch is to enforce the laws.

Judicial Branch

  • Purpose

    • The purpose of the Judicial Branch is to interpret the meaning of laws, apply laws to individual cases, and decide if laws violate the Constitution. The Judicial Branch regulates the the Federal Court System.

  • Function

    • The function of the Judicial Branch is to interpret the meaning of laws, apply laws to individual cases, and decide if laws violate the Constitution.

Standard 4: Understand the Similarities and Differences Among the Complex Levels of Local, State, and National Government

What are the similarities and differences among the complex levels of local, state, and national government?


  • Similarities Between Local and State

    • The people are divided between state and local government. The Federal Government aren’t granted to the power. The power is reserved for the states.

  • Differences

    • The state government share the power in different way throughout. The local government only has two levels of power.


  • Similarities Between State and and National

    • National and State government share the power. National and State government both make and enforce the laws.

  • Differences

    • National Government can’t ratify amendments. Although State Governments can.


  • Similarities Between Local and National

    • On a National level, the country is divided into 650 Parliamentary Constituencies. In each area a voter elects a Member of Parliament. The Member of Parliament sits in the House of Commons and represents them. Well the Local Government does the exact things, just everything is smaller.

  • Difference

    • A Local Government is responsible for a part of a country. Usually a Local Government is responsible for a town or town council. A National Government is responsible for a whole country.

Standard 5: Understand Strategies for Effective Political Action that Impacts Local, State, and National Governance

What are effective strategies for political action? How does this political action impact local, state, and national governance?


  • Strategies

    • Work with locals to develop a campaign strategies and political programs.

    • Help locals to develop relationships with their Legislative Representatives

    • Create relationships with Legislators and the staff

    • Work together effectively with the locals regarding state offices


  • Strategies

    • Create a Political Action Committee

    • Follow all appropriate State and Federal regulations

    • Figure out what the State requirements are

    • Consult with the experts


  • Strategies to Become the President

    • Fundraise and campaigns

    • Meet standards set by the U.S. Constitution

    • Declare candidacy and place an application in with the Federal Election Commission

    • Go to Party Conventions

    • Party Primaries, Caucuses, and Delegates

    • General election campaign

    • Win popular and electoral votes

This political actions gives runners at a local, state, and national level a better chance at possibly winning. It helps them be more likable because they're putting themselves out there to the people. The runners are also helping the people get closer to the Legislators, which allows the people to be heard.

Standard 6: Understand How Laws are Established at the Local, State, and National Levels

How are laws are established at the local, state, and national levels?


  • At the Local level the laws are established by being drafted along the guidelines that were issued by Parliamentary Counsel under the Legislative Standard Act. The Legislative Standard Act was created in 1992. When a law is being created the Local try to reach a compromise with the State. The Local makes sure that the State’s interests are in the considered Local law. As they are reviewing the proposed law, they look for anti-competitive provisions. Anti-competitive provisions in a local law is a provision which creates a barrier to enter a market or compete within a market. The Local laws become an actual law when it’s approved by the Council. Once the Local law is approved, the public and Minister for Local Government are notified. The laws are copied for inspection or purchase.


  • At the State level laws are established by the State. The State’s staff comes up with an idea that would be a good law, then they form a bill. In the beginning the bill is just a draft, which if it is approved then becomes a law. After the State makes sure the bill is in order, it is then proposed. The bill is passed out to each and every senator. Once the Committee reviews the bill, they either make changes, send it back with or without changes, or they table the bill. If the Senate sends the bill back with no changes, it is later to be voted on. If the bill is passed then it moves on to another branch of the Congress. If it’s passed in the Congress, it voted on by the House of Representatives. If the bill is passed by both the Senate and the House of Representatives, it’s sent to the President. If the President approves the bill, the bill becomes law.


  • At the National level laws are established by introducing a bill and getting it referred to a Committee. Once the bill is referred to the Committee, there are floor debates and votes. If the vote passes that chamber, the bill moves on to the next chamber. Once it has been through all the chambers, a conference is held. At the conference they look at the changes each chamber had made to it. The final product of the bill is sent to the President. The President has the power to either approve or veto the bill. If by any chance the President vetoes a bill, the Congress holds the decision to override the veto.

Standard 7: Understand how Various Political Systems Throughout the World Define the Rights and Responsibilities of the Individual

How do various political systems throughout the world define the rights and responsibilities of the individual?


  • Rights

    • People that live under Communism barely have any rights

    • The rights are repressed even basic human rights

      • No freedom of speech or religion

      • No free and honest elections or media

      • No expectation or right to the internet

    • Equal distribution of wealth

  • Responsibilities

    • Pay a high income-tax to the government

    • College-aged student must disavow all religion

    • Strive to achieve equal distribution


  • Rights

    • Respect for human rights

    • Freedom of association

    • Freedom of expression and opinion

    • Free, independent media

    • Fair trial by jury

    • Fair elections

  • Responsibilities

    • Serve on jury

    • Military service

    • Pay taxes

    • Respecting rights

    • Obeying laws


  • Rights

    • No right to choose leaders or vote

    • Might have the right to manage local affairs

  • Responsibilities

    • Citizens barely have any responsibilities

    • Government controls everything

Standard 8: Understand the Role of the United States in Current World Affairs

What is the role of the United States in current world affairs?

The United States from the beginning has always been involved in different affairs. There were a few times the U.S didn’t want to be involved but then were pulled into it. Such as World War 2. Although the United States main interest has always been defending the American constitutional system and the common interest of the American people. The United States has been committed to providing defense, protecting freedoms, and seeking peaceful relations with other nations. That’s literally what the United States does. The United States makes sure that other nations are doing okay and if there’s any area we can help out, we do. In turn when it comes time that the U.S needs help, those nations are there. We send out troops all over the world to help out when in fact we don’t have to. Yet we still do. In recent events the United States is helping Iraq with ISIS. When there’s not a threat to a civilian, we air strike ISIS. The United States gets involved in almost everything.