US officials flunk test of Amerian history, economics, civics

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US elected officials scored abysmally on a test measuring their civic knowledge, with an average grade of just 44 percent, the group that organized the exam said Thursday.

Ordinary citizens did not fare much better, scoring just 49 percent correct on the 33 exam questions compiled by the Intercollegiate Studies Institute (ISI).

"It is disturbing enough that the general public failed ISI's civic literacy test, but when you consider the even more dismal scores of elected officials, you have to be concerned," said Josiah Bunting, chairman of the National Civic Literacy Board at ISI.

"How can political leaders make informed decisions if they don't understand the American experience?" he added.

The exam questions covered American history, the workings of the US government and economics.

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Caroline Hill - 11/21/2008

yet again ISI establishes tests designed to promote failures. Look at the full story and and the last paragraph at the question that had the most 'wrong' answers. I concur that people should have better knowledge of history and civics, and that it's appalling that 20% of people thought that the Electoral College was set up to monitor presidential debates, but is it surprising that 40% thought the president could 'declare war' when all our recent wars have been engaged in more or less unilaterally by presidents? (and without formal declarations of war by Congress)