By Pat Loeb
PHILADELPHIA (CBS) -- Today is the 227th anniversary of the signing of the U.S. Constitution in Philadelphia -- but a new survey by the Annenberg Public Policy Center at the University of Pennsylvania finds Americans know surprising little about the document. A new online resource center hopes to change that.
Annenberg Center director Kathleen Hall Jamieson says many of the 1,400 adults surveyed had funny ideas about how government works.
"Just barely a third of respondents can name all three branches of government and about a third can't name any one," she says. "Barely over a quarter know that it takes two-thirds of the House and Senate to override a presidential veto, and one in five think that a 5-4 (U.S.) Supreme Court decision goes back to Congress and then Congress decides."
Jamieson is not the only one concerned about this. The National Constitution Center, Library of Congress and 20 others are joining the center to create the Civics Renewal Network.
"There are all sorts of great, high-quality, no-cost materials that parents can show their kids," she says, "that teachers can use in classrooms, that immigrants trying to understand our system of government can turn to.
Jamieson says the survey showed better-educated, politically-engaged people were more likely to understand government better.
Think you could pass the test to become a U.S. citizen? Take a sample quiz here.
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