Q64A: Who can vote in federal elections, run for federal office, and serve on a jury in the United States? 

A. Every individual over 18 residing in the United States 
B. Everyone who is not a felon residing in the United States
C. Permanent residents (green card holders) or citizens in the United States
D. Citizens of the United States only

Q64B: What are two responsibilities that are only for United States citizens? 

A. vote in a federal election and vow to keep peace among one’s self and other citizens
B. pay taxes and recite the National Anthem
C. serve on a jury and vote in a federal election
D. pledge allegiance to the President and pay taxes

Q64C: What are two rights that are only for United States citizens? 

A. voting in a federal election and running for federal office
B. freedom of religion and running for federal office
C. voting in a federal election and creating federal laws
D. ability to bear arms and appeal claims

Question Background Information


The Founding Fathers created a representative republic, one where the government answered to its citizens—and whose offices were filled by them. 

Citizenship brings with it many rights, but also related responsibilities. For example, serving on a jury, which enables one to ensure a fair trial for citizens, is limited to citizens. While service on a jury is often depicted as something to be dreaded, as Alexis de Tocqueville observed, service on a jury is one of the best ways to learn about how government works.

Knowing how government works is also an important part of voting in federal elections, which is both a right and responsibility of citizenship. 

Between these two responsibilities, the people of the nation have considerable power, for they are able to determine their leaders as well as how the laws are applied. If they do not feel the leaders are capable, then they can vote them out. If they do not feel the laws are just, then they can seek to have them changed. If they feel that the accused is not guilty or is unjustly charged, then they can choose to not convict.

Finally, while not all American citizens have a responsibility to run for federal office, the right to do so is limited to U.S. citizens.

Running is not reserved for those who meet certain income levels or who belong to certain families; rather, running is something that anyone can do so long as he or she meets the requirements set forth by the Constitution (for congressional seats or the presidency) or by state constitutions or municipal rules (for all other elected offices). This means that people who believe their needs are not being met by the current elected officials are able to take matters into their own hands and do something. They can run for office and, if they win, work to make the change that they want to see.

Additional Content

Offline Activity


The Founding Fathers created a government that invites participation by the people. In addition to citizens being able to elect their leaders, they are able to serve on juries to determine the application of the law to their peers. In this activity, the students will have a chance to create public service announcements about the importance of serving on a jury. 


  • Provide each group with The Value of Jury Duty. 
  • Provide each group with Types of Advertising. 
  • Provide each group with Tocqueville, “Trial by Jury Considered as a Political Institution,” (from Democracy in America)
  • If this is a graded activity, a rubric is available. 
  • Gather necessary art materials for the students (e.g. poster board, colored pencils, markers, old magazines, scissors, glue, etc.) or instruct them to bring them to class.

Required files

The Teaching Materials for this exercise includes a rubric.

Teaching Materials.


  1. Divide the class into groups of 3-4 based on the students’ individual levels. Group A is the group that needs some extra support. Group B is the core group that has the core knowledge to complete the activity. Group C is the enrichment group that has mastered the material; Group C students are prepared to extend their knowledge. Each group should have at least one student from Group A, one from Group B, and one from Group C. 
    • If students are in pairs rather than groups, then divide them based on ability as well, pairing those who need support (Group A) with those who have core knowledge and/or have mastered the material (Groups B and C). 
  2. Explain that the students will create public service announcements that will encourage people to serve on juries.  
    • Brainstorm with the class. Ask them why people would want to serve and why they might not want to serve. 
  3. Provide the students with the advertising handout. Ask them about the different types of advertising and why they think some are or are not effective.  
  4. Provide the students with the necessary handouts and materials to create the advertisements.  
  5. Circulate throughout the room as the groups complete the ads to check for understanding.  
  6. Upon completion, invite the groups to present their advertisements to the class. 
    • Discuss the reasons that the students chose the approach that they did and why they feel it would be effective.  

Discussion Prompts

Below are two discussion prompts that can be used by teachers in a classroom setting. 

  • The first discussion prompt will be one that is designed to support students that are not really understanding the content in a way that would help them to answer the test question. 
  • The second discussion prompt will be one that is designed to further student understanding of the content by making real-world connections, including connections to current events and historical events.


“Of the people, by the people, for the people” is not simply a nice phrase that wraps up the Gettysburg Address. It is a summary of what the Founding Fathers sought to create: a nation where the citizens played a role in their government and where the government pursued the good of the people. To ensure that citizens have a role in the operations of their government, citizens have a right to vote, to serve on a jury, and to run for federal office.

Prompt 1

The Founding Fathers sought to ensure that the citizens of the new nation would have a voice in their government. As a result, they provided for rights and responsibilities specific to U.S. citizens. Can you name one and explain why it is important? What is another right of U.S. citizens to participate in their government?

Prompt 2a

The United States is a representative republic, which means that the people are represented by their fellow citizens they elect. In the U.S., so long as someone meets the requirements, he or she can run for an office. Aside from the basic rule of citizenship, as well as age and residency requirements, do you think that there should be other (e.g., education or professional) requirements as well? For some offices? Why or why not? 

Prompt 2b

According to the Sixth Amendment, “the accused shall enjoy the right to a speedy and public trial, by an impartial jury of the State and district wherein the crime shall have been committed.” Why is it important to have jury trials at all? Use examples from current and past events to support your answer.

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