I shall post videos, graphs, news stories, and other material there. We shall use some of this material in class, and you may review the rest at your convenience. You will all receive invitations to post to the blog. (Please let me know if you do not get such an invitation.) I encourage you to use the blog in these ways:
To post questions or comments about the readings before we discuss them in class;
To follow up on class discussions with additional comments or questions.
To post relevant news items or videos.

There are only two major limitations: no coarse language, and no derogatory comments about people at the Claremont Colleges.

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Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Take-Home Final

CMC Government 101
United States Congress
Professor Pitney
20 April 2009

Take-Home Final

Answer question 1, and one of the other three.

1. Take any of JFK’s “profiles in courage.” How does this story illustrate differences between the Congress of its time and the Congress of today? Are there any important similarities?

2. Are the “two Congresses” converging? Are the two chambers converging? Explain, with reference to Baker, Davidson, Oleszek, and Lee, and other class materials.

3. See this article. In light of the history of congressional-presidential relations, do you agree or disagree? Answer with reference to Fisher and other class materials.

4. Consider this statement: “The usual textbook discussion of how a bill becomes a law no longer provides a complete understanding of the standard operating procedure of Congress.” Explain, with specific examples. Is this development good or bad for Congress?

  • Your answers should display a thorough and detailed understanding of the readings and discussions. Write carefully and concisely.
  • Exams should be typed, stapled, double-spaced, and between six and seven pages long (including both answers). I will not read past the seventh page.
  • Cite your sources. You may use either endnotes or parenthetical references to a reference list. In either case, put your documentation in a standard format (e.g., Turabian or Chicago Manual of Style). The endnotes or reference sheet will not count against the page limit.
    Watch your spelling, grammar, diction, and punctuation. Errors will count against you.
  • Return exams to me no later than May 6, 2009. Papers will drop a gradepoint for one day’s lateness, a letter grade after that. (Since the deadline for senior grades is noon on May 8, two days’ lateness will mean a failing grade for graduating seniors.)

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