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МОСКОВСКИЙ ГОСУДАРСТВЕННЫЙ ИНСТИТУТ

МЕЖДУНАРОДНЫХ ОТНОШЕНИЙ (У) МИД РФ

_____________________________________________

КАФЕДРА АНГЛИЙСКОГО ЯЗЫКА № 2




Составители:

доцент Вишневская Людмила Петровна

доцент Тимченко Мария Владимировна


Основы политической системы США


The Way They Run America


МОСКВА

2011



CONTENTS





pp.

Предисловие

3

Introduction

6

Unit 1 The Legislature

8

Unit 2 The Executive

26

Unit 3 The Judiciary

39

Unit 4 The Elections

58

Reader

81

Bibliography

160

Предисловие


Предлагаемое учебное пособие представляет собой аутентичный комплексный курс, направленный на освоение определенного набора культурно-исторических и социально-политических реалий, связанных с государственным строем и политической системой США. Настоящее издание предназначено для студентов изучающих английский язык для практического использования в области международных экономических отношений. Следует подчеркнуть, что пособие служит исключительно лингвострановедческим целям и отнюдь не является пособием по политической или юридической системе США. Предлагаемые темы затрагивают широкий круг актуальных вопросов, важных для осуществления межкультурной коммуникации и в определенной степени связанных с деятельностью в области международных отношений в условиях углубляющейся экономической и политической интеграции. Информация об основах политической системы, государственного строя и политико-культурных стереотипов США имеет исключительно дидактический характер и представлена в виде тщательно отобранных современных материалов и рассчитана на учащихся, обладающих высоким уровнем обще языковой подготовки (advanced level).

Пособие направлено на решение следующих конкретных учебных задач:

  • значительно расширить словарный запас студентов по изучаемым темам как активный, так и пассивный;

  • совершенствовать умения и навыки ознакомительного, просмотрового, поискового и аналитического чтения;

  • совершенствовать умения и навыки разных видов говорения, в том числе ведения беседы и дискуссии, выступления с сообщением и докладом;

  • совершенствовать умения и навыки письменной речи, включая разные виды эссе, доклады, аналитические обзоры и реферирование;

Навыки, отрабатываемые в пособии, соответствуют квалификационным требованиям владениям английским языком, предъявляемым к бакалаврам в области международных экономических отношений и Программы кафедры английского языка №2 МГИМО.

Названные задачи определяют структуру пособия, которое состоит из базового курса (Units 1-4), книги для чтения (Reader), пособия для работы с аудиопленкой (Audio Guide) и разработки для работы с видеоматериалом (Video Guide).

Все части курса связаны между собой методически и тематически. Каждая из четырех глав базового курса представляет собой комплекс текстов с лингвострановедческим комментарием, словарем и аппаратом заданий.

Книга для чтения содержит отрывки из художественным и публицистических произведений с комментариями и заданиями к ним.

Для работы с аудиопленкой предлагается комплекс комментариев и заданий, направленных как на проверку понимания и умения реферировать услышанное, так и на более творческие виды деятельности.

Разработка по видеофильму содержит комплекс заданий на понимание и обсуждение увиденного.

Пособие рассчитано на двадцать восемь часов аудиторных занятий. Каждый дидактический блок пособия рассчитан на шесть часов аудиторных занятий. Учебное пособие будет применяться в сочетании с мультимедийной программой кафедры английского языка №2 «США. Политическая система».

«В соответствии с Законом Российской Федерации от 9 июля 1993 года №5351-1 автор данного пособия использовал в своей работе с обязательным указанием имени автора, произведение которого используется, и источника заимствования правомерно обнародованные произведения и отрывки из них в качестве иллюстраций (в широком смысле) в объеме, оправданном поставленной целью или методикой».

Методическая записка

Пособие направлено на решение следующих конкретных учебных задач:

  • значительно расширить словарный запас студентов по изучаемым темам как активный, так и пассивный;

  • совершенствовать умения и навыки ознакомительного, просмотрового, поискового и аналитического чтения;

  • совершенствовать умения и навыки разных видов говорения, в том числе ведения беседы и дискуссии, выступления с сообщением и докладом;

  • совершенствовать умения и навыки письменной речи, включая разные виды эссе, доклады, аналитические обзоры и реферирование;

Предлагаемые темы затрагивают широкий круг актуальных вопросов, важных для осуществления межкультурной коммуникации и в определенной степени связанных с деятельностью в области международных отношений в условиях углубляющейся экономической и политической интеграции. Информация об основах политической системы, государственного строя и политико-культурных стереотипов США имеет исключительно дидактический характер и представлена в виде тщательно отобранных современных материалов и рассчитана на учащихся, обладающих высоким уровнем обще языковой подготовки (advanced level).

Названные задачи определяют структуру пособия, которое состоит из базового курса (Units 1-4), книги для чтения (Reader), пособия для работы с аудиопленкой (Audio Guide) и разработки для работы с видеоматериалом (Video Guide).

Все части курса связаны между собой методически и тематически. Каждая из четырех глав базового курса представляет собой комплекс текстов с лингвострановедческим комментарием, словарем и аппаратом заданий.

Для работы с аудиопленкой предлагается комплекс комментариев и заданий, направленных как на проверку понимания и умения реферировать услышанное, так и на более творческие виды деятельности.

Разработка по видеофильму содержит комплекс заданий на понимание и обсуждение увиденного.

Пособие рассчитано на двадцать восемь часов аудиторных занятий. Каждый дидактический блок пособия рассчитан на шесть часов аудиторных занятий.

UNITED STATES OF AMERICA


INTRODUCTION


The United States of America is a federal union of 50 states or commonwealths. Its basic law is the Constitution, adopted in 1789, which prescribes the structure and method of national government and lists its rights and fields of authority, other rights and activities being reserved to the individual states. All government in America, therefore has the dual character of both Federal and State Government.

The basic principle of all American government is the separation of the three branches: legislative, executive and judicial, with a system of “checks and balances”. This system is a basic part of the structure of the American government system. No person or institution can have unlimited authority. Each branch of the national government shares and limits some of the powers of the other branches.


CHECKS AND BALANCES

IN AMERICAN GOVERNMENT

PRESIDENT

Executive Branch








Override veto (2/3 majority).

Impeach President and Vice President.

Ratify appointments and treaties (Senate).

Conduct investigations.


Appoint judges.

Give pardons and reprieves.



Judicial review of executive actions.


Veto legislation.

Exercise political leadership.

Influence public opinion.








Establish lower courts.

Set judicial salaries.

Ratify appointment (Senate).

Impeach judges.








SUPREME COURT AND OTHER FEDERAL COURTS

Judicial Branch

CONGRESS

Legislative Branch


Judicial review of legislation.



Checks and balances is a major principle of the American governmental system whereby each department of the government exercises a check upon the actions of the others. The principle operates not only among the legislative, executive, and judicial branches but between the two Houses of the legislature and between the States and the national government. Each department has some authority to control the actions of one or more of the others by participation in their functions. Examples include the President’s veto power and the Congressional power to override the veto; judicial review of legislative and executive actions; presidential appointment of judges with senatorial approval; and the Congressional power to impeach.

The check and balance system stresses the interdependence (rather than the complete separation) of the various units of government.

UNIT 1

THE LEGISLATURE


Section 1. Read the text and answer the following questions.


TEXT 1


Congress


Read the text and answer the following questions.


  1. What is the function of the legislative branch of the government?

  2. What do you know about the work and the structure of Congress?

  3. What are the powers of Congress?

  4. Name the powers of the Senate which are not accorded to the House of Representatives.

  5. What are the sole powers of the House of Representatives?


The legislative branch of the federal government is represented by Congress - a bicameral lawmaking body. There are two houses of Congress. The Senate (the upper chamber) and the House of Representatives (the lower chamber). Its existence, authority, and limitations are provided by the Constitution. The function of the legislative branch of the government is to make the laws and to finance the operation of the government through levying taxes and appropriating money requested by the executive branch.

A Congress commences January 3 of each odd-numbered year. The term of Congress is the period during which a Congress remains in session between elections. Each Congress is numbered in sequence and has a life span of two years. Custom divides each term of Congress into two yearly (annual) sessions. Congress may be convened by the President for a special session. President Truman used this constitutional power in 1948. He recalled the legislators to work on a series of education, health, and civil rights bill. Special sessions, however, are rare.

By law, the Congress of the US contains 535 members. A Member of Congress is a person elected to either the Senate or the House of Representatives. A Member of the Senate is usually referred to as Senator and must be at least 30 years of age, must have been a citizen of the United States for 9 years, and must be a resident of the State he or she will represent in Congress. The Senate is composed of 100 voting members, two from each of the 50 states. Each state is entitled to be represented in the Senate by two senators, without regard to density of population.

Senators are elected for six-year terms which overlap. Thus in any election year, only one-third of the Senate is affected, the remaining two-thirds being members whose terms have not expired.

The House of Representatives has 435 voting members in addition to two representatives from Puerto Rico and the District of Columbia, who are not entitled to vote. The members of the House are called representatives or congressmen (or congresswomen). They are elected for a two-year term. A Member of the House of Representatives must be at least 25 years of age, must have been a United States citizen for at least 7 years, and must reside in the State from which he or she is sent to Congress.

Many members of Congress are regularly re-elected, and so some of them serve for over 20 years.

Included in the powers of Congress are the powers to assess and collect taxes, to regulate foreign and interstate commerce, to coin money, to establish courts inferior to the Supreme Court, to declare war and to raise and maintain an army and navy. Another power possessed by Congress is the right to propose amendments to the Constitution whenever two thirds of both Houses shall consider it necessary.

Under the Constitution the Senate is granted certain powers not accorded to the House of Representatives. It confirms or rejects appointments made by the President, ratifies treaties, tries impeached officers, elects a Vice President if no candidate has a majority of the electoral vote. The House of Representatives is granted the sole right of originating revenue bills, impeaching civil officers and electing a President if no candidate has a majority of the electoral vote.


Task 1. Find in the text the English for:


  1. двухпалатный законодательный орган;

  2. верхняя палата, нижняя палата;

  3. облагать налогами;

  4. выделять (ассигновать) средства;

  5. ежегодная сессия Конгресса;

  6. в соответствии с законом;

  7. (не) иметь право голоса;

  8. предлагать поправки к Конституции;

  9. утверждать или отклонять кандидатуры (назначения), предложенные президентом;

  10. получить большинство голосов на выборах.



TEXT 2


Congressional organization


Read the text and answer the following questions.


  1. How is party work organized in Congress?

  2. What are the Speaker’s powers in the House?

  3. What are the legislative powers of the US Vice-president?

  4. What are the whips responsible for?

  5. What are the three major categories Congressional committees fall into?

  6. What dilemma does Congress solve by using the committee system?


Members of Congress organize themselves in several ways to conduct “the people's business” as efficiently as possible. The most important of these is by party. Special party groups pick the officers of each chamber and decide which committees members will work on. Each party gets a number of committee members equal to the percentage of seats it won in the last elections. The majority party wins the leadership positions and the most committee staffing.

Congress has well over 100 caucuses (interest groups formed to lobby other members) that allow members to gather in groups that are increasingly important rivals to the parties as the source of policy proposals. There are conservative, moderate and liberal caucuses for each party, as well as caucuses formed to promote regional, economic, ethnic, racial and women’s issues that cross both party and chamber divisions.

The House of Representatives is led by a presiding officer known as the Speaker. Traditionally, the leader of the majority party holds this powerful post. Among the Speaker’s powers are:

  1. Power to recognize members. House members cannot take the floor to speak unless they are recognized by the Speaker. By controlling debate on a particular bill, the Speaker can influence its passage or defeat.

  2. Power to interpret House rules. This power enables the Speaker to refer bills to favorable committees to appoint special and conference committee members, to delay or speed up the passage of legislation.

  1. The Speaker may also vote on any issue but seldom does so except to break a tie.

The majority party elects the Speaker at a special party conference, or caucus, which is held at the beginning of each new term.

If both the President and Vice President die at the same time, the Speaker is next in line for the presidency.

Each house has a majority and a minority leader. House leaders who belong to the President’s party work with the White House to pass the administration’s legislative program. Each party awards its floor leadership positions to senior members who have demonstrated superior political skills. The majority and minority party leaders work with the Speaker of the House and the President of the Senate.

The floor leaders are assisted by party whips in each house. The whips (of the majority and minority parties) keep track of all important political legislation and endeavor to have all members of their party present when important measures are to be voted upon. When the vote is likely to be close they check up, find out who is out of the city, and advise absentees of the important measures coming up. Party whips use many methods to get the job done, from polite debate to political arm-twisting. The office of whip is unofficial and carries no special salary. Each whip, however, is allowed certain additional help, sufficient office space, and is permitted to incur additional expenses in the performance of his duties.

The Vice President of the United States serves as the President of the Senate. In practice, Vice Presidents seldom preside over the Senate unless a close vote on important bill is expected. The Vice President may not take part in debates but casts the deciding vote in case of ties.

The Senate also elects one of its members to the post of President pro tempore. This Senator presides over the Senate when the vice presidency is vacant or when the Vice President is absent.


How the committee system is organized


Every year Congress staggers under a work load that is increasing in size and complexity. A single energy bill, for example, might run to 400 pages or more. Members cannot be fully informed on every issue, nor can members study every problem in depth. Congress solves this dilemma by using committee system. Serving on committees gives legislators a chance to concentrate on one or two areas of legislation that especially interest them. Each committee holds hearings on matters related to its area and authority. A bill that would set up a new foreign aid program, for example, would be heard before the Senate Committee on Foreign Relations and the House Committee on Foreign Affairs.

Congressional committees fall into three major categories:

  1. Standing committees. They are permanent, regular units with jurisdiction over certain subject matters of legislation and law. Each of the permanent committees studies new bills that fall under its jurisdiction. The House has 22 and the Senate has 16. Each standing committee further divides itself into subcommittees that handle specialized committee business. Congressional committees also depend on expert staffs to aid them in their work.

  2. Special committees are created when a situation develops that can’t be handled by normal committee procedure. These “select” committees, as they are sometimes known, disband after their particular tasks are finished.

In recent years, special committees have looked into the problems of aging, hunger, Indian affairs, and government intelligence agencies.

  1. The House and Senate versions of the same bill often differ. When this happens, the leadership appoints a temporary conference committee. Conference committee members meet, settle their differences through compromises, and write a conference report. Both houses must accept or reject the report without amendment. The conference committee thus plays a key role in deciding a bill’s final form.



Task 1. Find in the text the English for:


  1. руководить работой законодательной ветви власти;

  2. занимать пост (должность);

  3. взять слово (в Конгрессе);

  4. предоставлять слово;

  5. затягивать или ускорять прохождение законопроекта;

  6. равное распределение голосов;

  7. партийная конференция;

  8. почти равное количество голосов “за” и “против”;

  9. отдать решающий голос;

  10. председательствовать (в Сенате, Палате);

  11. следит за ходом, развитием чего-либо;



TEXT 3


How a Bill becomes a Law


Read the text and answer the following questions.


  1. Who originates bills?

  2. What are the steps in the law-making process in both chambers?

  3. What happens to bills during committee hearings?

  4. What are the main types of votes in Congress?

  5. How do the House and the Senate work out their differences on a bill?

  6. What choices does a President have when a bill reaches the White House?





Either house - the Senate or the House of Representatives may offer a bill (but only the House proposes finance bills). All bills are immediately referred to a legislative committee. The committee responsible for a particular bill holds hearings on it. Experts appear before the committee and offer suggestions and opinions about the bill. After the hearings, the committee reports its recommendations to the House. If a committee chooses not to consider the bill, the bill dies.


Delaying tactics (filibuster, riders)

The Senate’s smaller size results in fewer bills and simpler rules. The 100 members guard one right jealously - the tradition of unlimited debate. On occasion, a senator or group of senators uses unlimited debate to keep the Senate from voting on a bill. This tactic is known as a filibuster. In order to keep the floor, senators must remain standing and speak continuously. The senator reads novels, newspapers, recipes, and other unrelated materials to a nearly empty chamber. Exhausted senators often yield the floor to other members of the filibuster team in order to gain time for a quick nap. This delaying tactic can go on and on and on. A filibuster against the Civil Rights Act of 1964 lasted three months before it was ended.

The Senate can end a filibuster by invoking the closure rule. Despite the frustration caused by filibusters, the Senate rarely votes for closure. Most senators vote against closure motions because the next filibuster might be their own.

The filibuster is a delaying tactic available only to Senators.

Members of Congress often use amendments as a way of delaying action on a bill they oppose. Amendments meant to delay a bill are often tacked on as riders - amendments that have little or no relation to the main bill. Members who might have voted for the bill may withdraw their support because they object to the riders. In addition, each rider must be debated.

Following the committee action the bill is debated on the floor of each house. Then the vote is taken. A voice vote involves a general chorus of “ayes” and “nayes”. The chairperson decides which side has the majority. If a member questions the result, a rising vote may be called for. In this case the presiding officer “counts heads” when the members stand to support or oppose the bill. Most lawmakers prefer voice votes and rising votes because no public record is kept of how they voted. If one-fifth of the members present demand it, the presiding officer calls for a roll-call vote, when each vote is recorded separately. In the Senate, a clerk reads the Senators’ names one at a time and records their votes. In the House an electronic system replaced the roll call in 1973. If a bill is defeated in either house, it dies. If the House of Representatives and the Senate approve similar bills with some different provisions, both bills go to a conference committee, in which selected legislators work to adjust the differences.

A bill passed in one House is called an “engrossed bill” (отредактированный законопроект, принятый одной из палат), and the final authoritative copy of a bill passed by both Houses and signed by their presiding officers is called “enrolled bill” (окончательный проект закона для представления на утверждение президента).

The bill becomes law following one or several steps by the president. He may approve the bill and sign it; he may sign the bill with a statement expressing his disapproval; or he may simply not sign the bill, in which case it automatically becomes law after ten days. But if the president wants to prevent the bill from becoming law, he vetoes it. But the proposal may still become law if two thirds of each house of Congress vote for it, thus overriding, or defeating the president’s veto. When a president puts a bill into his “pocket” and holds it until Congress adjourns, the bill dies. Known as a “pocket veto”, this action has several advantages. For one thing, it allows a President to veto a bill without announcing the reasons for the veto. More important, the pocket veto makes it unnecessary for a President to spend political capital to sustain a veto in Congress.


Task 1. Find in the text the English for:


  1. передавать законопроект на рассмотрение в комитет палаты;

  2. рассматривать законопроект;

  3. одобрить и подписать законопроект;

  4. наложить вето на законопроект;

  5. преодолеть президентское вето;

  6. окончание работы Конгресса, перерывы между сессиями.



Section 2. Glossary


to vest power (in)

to vest smb with [usually passive]

облекать властью

to levy taxes

облагать налогами, взимать налоги

to appropriate

ассигновать

bicameral

двухпалатный

odd-numbered

even-numbered

нечетный

четный

regular session

очередная сессия

special (extraordinary) session

специальная (чрезвычайная) сессия

to be in session

заседать

transaction of business

ведение дел

to convene / to call Congress, session

созывать Конгресс, сессию

under standing order

согласно существующему регламенту/порядку

majority leader

лидер большинства

minority leader

лидер меньшинства

to be in the minority/majority

быть в меньшинстве/большинстве зд. о политической партии в Конгрессе

to keep a check on

осуществлять контроль за…

caucus

совещание фракции Конгресса (чаще демократической)

bill

законопроект

pertaining to

относящийся к

to introduce a bill/

to originate a bill

вносить законопроект на рассмотрение палаты

to draw a bill

составлять (формулировать) законопроект

to recall a bill

отклонять законопроект

standing committee

постоянный комитет




special committee/ conference committee

согласительный комитет

to stand for election

баллотироваться; зд. подлежать (пере)избранию

term of office

срок пребывания на посту, срок полномочий

to hold office

занимать пост

to expire

истекать (о сроке)

to preside

председательствовать, выполнять функции председателя

President of the Senate

председатель Сената

president pro tempore

председатель pro tempore (лат).; временный председатель Сената

constituents

избиратели

power of recognition

право предоставлять слово

to recognize smb.

предоставлять слово кому-либо

to keep track (of)

следить за (ходом дел и т.п.)

tie vote

равное количество голосов, поданных «за» и «против»

close vote

почти одинаковое число голосов “за” и “против” при голосовании

division

голосование (путем вставания)

tellers

счетчики

roll call

поименное голосование

to adjourn

объявлять перерыв между сессиями

to veto legislation/

a bill

наложить вето на законопроект

to override the president’s veto

преодолеть президентское вето



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