We the People U.S. Constitution - Elections and Terms in Office

Use these resources to answer the questions. Printer versions: pdf | Digital answer document

Interactive Constitution Project Vote Smart web site United States Constitution
Ben's Guide to U.S. Government USConstitution.net Constitution of the United States - National Archives

1. Article I sets out how members of the U.S. House of Representatives and U.S. Senate are elected.

Who elects Members of the U.S. House of Representatives?

What are the qualifications for a candidate for U.S. House of Representatives?

How long is a House member's term of service?


Who elects Members of the U.S. Senate?

What are the qualifications for a candidate for the U.S. Senate?

How long is a Senator's term of service?

Why was the seventeenth amendment proposed?


2. Article II of the Constitution outlines how the President and Vice President of the United States are chosen.

Summarize the original process.

Why was this process changed by the Twelfth Amendment?


3. Term limits - George Washington served two terms as U.S. President. He then retired.
For over a century after that, every U.S. President followed his example. They served no more than two terms in office.

Which President broke with that custom?

Which amendment limits the number of years a President may serve as Chief Executive?

How many years can someone be President of the United States of America?

Do you agree with these limits? Why?


4. The most important right citizens have is the right to vote. Each state has the power to decide which citizens in the state can vote.

The Constitution guarantees the right to vote to:


In the beginning, some states only permitted white, male landowners over the age of 21 to vote.
Write the numbers of the amendments of the United States Constitution that impacted the right to vote.
For whom did each amendment guarantee enfranchisement?


What are the qualifications to register to vote in your state?


5. The citizens of the United States of America do not directly elect the President or the Vice President.
Presidents are elected by the electors in the Electoral College.

What is meant by the term Faithless Elector?


How many electors does your state have? How is this number determined?


red checkmark Food for thought:

What is meant by the election terms battleground or swing state?



Did you know? On July 2, 1776, New Jersey gave "all inhabitants" of adult age with a net worth of 50 pounds the right to vote. Women property holders then had have the vote until 1807, when the state limited the vote to "free, white males."
When did women gain the right to vote in your community?


In some states, convicted felons are prohibited from voting. Can they vote in your state?


Should convicted felons be denied the right to vote? Why?



I - Electoral College Love it of Leave It?

In the Presidential election, you vote for Candidate A. In your state, Candidate B gets the majority of the votes.
Your state's Electoral College members cast all their votes for Candidate B.

Critics of the Electoral College process argue that then your vote is changed to Candidate B. Some leaders support changing the Presidential election process to a popular vote.

Do you support abolishing the Electoral College or keeping it?

Essay II Digital Privacy and the US Elections

Watch - PBS Frontline: The Digital Factor in Election 2012 -

Read - Campaigns Mine Personal Lives to Get Out Vote by Charles Duhigg, New York Times, October 13, 2012

“In the weeks before Election Day, millions of voters will hear from callers with surprisingly detailed knowledge of their lives. These callers — friends of friends or long-lost work colleagues — will identify themselves as volunteers for the campaigns or independent political groups.”

Respond – Should political campaigns be invading your privacy in this way? Should political campaigns be giving your private information to your friends or strangers?


"The ballot is stronger than the bullet." Abraham Lincoln

red checkmark Extras:

Alice Paul's Fight for Suffrage Election letter to the editor project
Susan B. Anthony, the Constitution and the Vote Create a youth voter campaign
Election Vocabulary Puzzle project Ballot Access Reforms | Constitution Facts ms/hs
Constitution - Electoral College & Electing the President Women's Suffrage project
April Civics Internet Hunt Running for Elected Office - a how to project

Term limits Who represents you? Frontline: The Digital Factor in Election 2012 invading privacy
Explore Civics Knowledge Project Vote Smart The Alternative Vote Explained YouTube
By the People - Dissect an Ad Evaluate a Platform Interpret a Debate Analyze a Poll
Civics & History Bill of Rights adv. Elections & Voting Bill of Rights begin Quotes about government 100 Milestone Documents

Internet Hunts / Nature / Computers / Puzzles & Projects / Pennsylvanians / Problem Based Learning / Site map / Home

All trademarks, copyright and logos belong to their respective owners.

posted 3/2006, revised Nov 2012 by Cynthia O'Hora In the spirit of Thomas Paine released to public domain

tree icon Save a tree - use a digital answer format - Highlight the text. Copy it. Paste it in a word processing document. Save the document in your folder. Answer on the word processing document in a contrasting color (not yellow) or font (avoid blackmore, brodfont dear or other ornate artistic fonts). Save frequently as you work. Be sure to enter your name & the date at the top of the document. Submit via email attachment or class drop box. Bad things happen: Save a copy of the response document for your records.

Proof read your responses. It is funny how speling errors and typeos sneak in to the bets work. smiling icon

How to: Make your own printer ready paper answer sheet with lines.