Test your knowledge! Free course on the presidency.
1. Why did the framers decide that Presidents were to be elected by an Electoral College?
- They didn’t want citizens to get into partisan fights over who should be president.
- If Congress chose the president, then the president might feel obligated to those who elected him or her.
- They believed only college professors had the connections needed to choose wisely.
2. By 1828, all but two states had adopted rules requiring that the electors they send to the Electoral College must vote in accordance with the popular vote in their state. Who was excluded from that popular vote?
- Enslaved people.
- Indigenous people.
- Men who paid taxes or held property.
3. After 1828, who did presidents feel accountable to?
- The citizens who were eligible to vote.
- The legislators in each state government that chose and instructed their representatives in the Electoral College.
4. From 1828 onward, presidents could claim substantial political backing in the form of the voters who elected them. What was the political impact of this change?
- Presidents could use the support of their voters to assert themselves against Congress.
- Presidents could use their voter base to become national leaders and agenda-setters.
- Presidents could make their own laws.
5. Why did Congress adopt the twenty-second amendment in 1947 to limit each president to a maximum of two terms in office?
- They feared a president could use their time in office to entrench themselves to the disadvantage of competitors or Congress itself.
- They believed the effectiveness of a president faded after the second term.
6. Is there a downside to term limits?
- Yes, while term limits protect us against entrenchment, they also deny us the opportunity to reward or hold accountable a second-term president.
- Second-term presidents may feel less accountable to citizens since they are no longer allowed to compete for our votes.
- There is no down-side.
Answers: For all questions, only the last choice is incorrect.
Image: The White House.
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