I give to everybody. When they call, I give.
The Executive Branch The executive branch of the United States consists of the President and the federal bureaucratic agencies, of which the President is officially the head.
Of course no person can do all this by him or herself, so the purpose of the federal bureaucracy is to do the actual enforcement and international representation while the President oversees the operation of this machinery of government and tries to set policy, with as much freedom from congressional direction as he or she can manage.
The president serves a 4 year term. Since ratification of the 22nd Amendment inpresidents have been limited to 2 terms of office. This allows a President to serve up to a maximum of 10 years in office, although in practice this has never happened. Presidential Responsibilities and Powers The Constitution gives the President a number of responsibilities, Congress has added to that list, and some others presidents have successfully claimed over the years.
This is an important principle in American politics, ensuring that the military is always under civilian control. The President is the last line in the federal criminal justice system, able to pardon people who have been convicted of crimes against the U. The purpose of this power is to prevent miscarriages of justice, but at times it has appeared to be used to protect presidential allies from facing the just consequences of their alleged crimes.
There is no check on this power. As the representative of the U. Neither Congress nor the Courts can require the President to negotiate a treaty or forbid him from doing so.
This power also enables presidents to choose between two rival factions claiming to be the legitimate government of a country, such as our recognition of the anti- communist Kuomintang as the internationally recognized government of China in the late s even though they had lost a civil war with the communists and been forced off the mainland, controlling only the small island of Formosaand our subsequent shift to recognition of the communist government on the mainland in Convening and Adjourning Congress: The president has authority to adjourn Congress if the two chambers cannot agree on a time of adjournment, and may also convene one or both houses for special purposes if they are not currently meeting.
When the Constitution was drafted, Congress was expected to meet only a few months each year, but now that Congress meets almost year- round, the exercise of either of these powers is exceedingly rare.
Most laws passed by Congress give the executive a good deal of leeway in figuring out how to implement them. Congress finds it difficult to specify precisely how laws should apply, so often they focus on the general outcomes they hope to achieve and authorize the executive branch agencies under the direction of the President to write the specific regulations that make the laws effective.
Although these regulations are not technically law they have the force of law. As we saw above, Congress has the constitutional authority and duty to pass a federal budget. In the late 19th and early 20th centuries, Congress found it increasingly difficult to manage this task on their own, so with the Budget and Accounting Act of they required the President to submit a budget proposal for Congress to consider.
This shifted considerable agenda- setting power to the President, as they get the first shot at defining the issues and where public spending should be directed.
Presidentially Claimed Inherent Powers Inherent are powers that are not listed in the Constitution, nor granted to presidents by Congress, but that are claimed to be inherent to the nature of executive authority. Because these are not constitutionally nor statutorily specified, and because presidents have an incentive to try to expand their power, these claims are often controversial.
But unless checked by Congress or the judiciary, they gain legitimacy through use and custom. Presidents are the head of the executive branch of the government, but often they have little direct control over what federal agencies do.
Presidents sometimes try to exert control by issuing executive orders to the agencies. These orders may be about reorganizing certain agencies, or about how they will implement rules. For example President Reagan issued an executive order requiring that all agencies had to get approval for new federal regulations from the Office of Management and Budget OMB before the rules could take effect—previously the agencies did not need approval from a higher authority than their own director, and because the OMB is closely controlled by the President, this gave the President more control over which regulations were approved.
The key point about executive orders is that they apply only to the executive branch—they are not laws and do not have the effect of laws. They also do not bind future presidents, who can ignore or revoke them simply by drafting a new executive order. Executive agreements are agreements made by the President with other countries that, unlike treaties, do not normally need Senate approval.
They are often used as an end- run around the difficulty of getting Senate approval. Because they are not official, as treaties are, executive agreements do not always have the force of law, and are more easily ignored or revoked.
Executive privilege is the claim that presidents do not have to reveal to Congress personal communications with advisers. Growth of Presidential Power The presidency has grown tremendously in power in the past century, transforming its role in the American political system. The Framers of the Constitution separated the executive from the legislative because they were worried about congressional dominance and wanted a check on it, and in the late s Congress still dominated the president enough for future president Woodrow Wilson to write his PhD dissertation as a critique of Congressionally dominated governance.
This change worries many presidential scholars. At present there appears to be no end to or effective means of countering this unbalancing of the American government. The Judiciary The judicial branch of the U. All members of the federal judiciary are appointed by the President, with the approval of the Senate, and serve for life, or until they choose to resign or retire.
Each state has at least one, with larger states having two. There is also a District Court just for Washington, D.An Overview of the American Political System **DRAFT** This chapter provides an overview of the political system of the United States, focusing on federalism, separation of powers with checks and balances, the three branches .
Event summary of the Brookings/Transparency International symposium on political corruption. The government is corrupt, out of touch and indifferent to the interests of the American people. Politicians are more interested in protecting their own power than in doing what’s right for America.
The modern political party system in the United States is a two-party system dominated by the Democratic Party and the Republican Party. These two parties have won every United States presidential election since and have .
Those ratings that castigate Afghanistan and some other poor countries as hopelessly “corrupt” always imply that the United States is not corrupt.
VOA reports: While it is true that you don’t typically have to bribe your postman to deliver the mail in the US, in many key ways America’s political and financial practices make it in absolute terms far more .
The government of the United States is based on a written constitution. At 4, words, it is the shortest national constitution in the world. On June 21, , New Hampshire ratified the Constitution giving it the necessary 9 out of 13 votes needed for the Constitution to pass.