Congress and the President

Congress and the President

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Congress and the President

Today, we will discuss the beginning of the Constitution of the United States and how it is in present day. The founding fathers wrote the Constitution to develop the national government of America, as well as, guarantee basic rights for the citizens (“Constitution, 2018). It was decided that there would be three branches, executive, legislative, and judicial. It was also decided that there would be two chambers of Congress, the Senate and House of Representatives. The Constitution states that each state will have two Senators along with a certain number of Representatives in the House, depending on the population size.

Congress

Congress is part of the legislative branch in the United States. There are many powers that Congress holds. Some of these powers include making laws, the ability to declare war, regulate commerce, raise an army or navy, and establish immigration rules (“The Powers of Congress”, 2019). There are two chambers that make up Congress, the Senate and the House of Representatives. The Constitution indicates that each state will have two senators , while the members of the House are based on the population size of each state, with there being at least one representative per state. The members of the House of Representatives serve two year terms, while the members of the Senate each serve six year terms. In the Senate, there are 100 members, with the House of Representatives totaling 435 members (Krutz & Waskiewicz, 2017, Chapter 11). Senate has the power of approving many of the presidential appointments. The House of Representatives has the power of creating revenue bills along with the power of impeachment. When it comes to passing a bill, it takes both the House and the Senate to approve the bill before it goes to the President for final review. The President then has the choice to either approve or veto the bill.

The President

The President of the United States is part of the executive branch. The executive branch also includes the Vice President and the Cabinet. The President is in the most visible position in the United States (Krutz & Waskiewicz, 2017, Chapter 12). The President of the United States is the head of state, the head of government, and the Commander in Chief of the armed forces (“The Executive Branch”, n.d.). The President has the main responsibilities of executing and enforcing laws, appointing heads to the federal agencies, and to sign treaties with foreign nations. The Constitution states that in order to be eligible for Presidency, the person must be at least thirty five years old, be a “natural” born citizen, and live in the United States for a minimum of fourteen years (Krutz & Waskiewicz, 2017, Chapter 12). The President has the ability to remove any federal officials, with the exception of judges and justices. The founding fathers did not initially have this intent when developing the Constitution.

Founding Fathers

The US Constitution was signed by thirty nine of the fifty five delegates that were in attendance of the Constitutional Convention in 1787. Even though this took place in 1787, the Constitution was not ratified until 1789, as there were a few states who were holding out on signing (“Delegates of the Continental Congress Who Signed the United States Constitution”, n.d.). The purpose of the convention was to address the weaknesses in the Articles of Confederation, but when the convention started, everyone realized that there really needed to be a new document in place that would create a much stronger government than the Articles ever could. At the end of the convention, there was a new and stronger federal government in place that also established three separate branches: legislative, executive, and judicial.

Evolution of the Presidency

From the 1800s to around the 1930s, Congress was the dominant branch for the US government. This did not change until the 20th century when the executive branch gained equal power to the legislative branch (“The Evolution of the Presidency”, n.d.). Before this shift in power, the president is primarily responsible for appointing federal workers. It was not until after the Cold War that the office of the president really began to be the dominant power. It was during this time that Congress relinquished to the president when it comes to the matters of war powers along with foreign policies. Since this time, Congress has continued to be influential when it comes to domestic affairs.

Current Administration

With the government today, it can be difficult to determine what part of the government holds what powers. Today, Congress and the president seem to buttheads rather frequently. The democratic party holds the majority of Congress, which is a large part of why Congress and the president are currently disagreeing on the majority of topics being presented by either side. With all of the disagreements taking place between Congress and the president, it seems as though they are not putting the American people’s best interests first. With the president and Congress not putting the American people first, they are failing to work within the powers of the Constitution.

References:

Constitution(2018). Retrieved from https://www.history.com/topics/united-states-constitution/constitution 

The Powers of Congress(2019). Retrieved from http://www.ushistory.org/gov/6a.asp 

Krutz, G., & Waskiewicz, S. (2017). American Government . Retrieved from The University of Phoenix eBook Collection database.

The Executive Branch(n.d.). Retrieved from https://www.whitehouse.gov/about-the-white-house/the-executive-branch/ 

Delegates of the Continental Congress Who Signed the United States Constitution(n.d.). Retrieved from https://history.house.gov/People/Continental-Congress/Signatories/ 

The Evolution of the Presidency(n.d.). Retrieved from http://www.ushistory.org/gov/7a.asp