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The Executive Branch

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Mary Beverly

on 24 October 2018

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Transcript of The Executive Branch

Road to the
White House

Video Clips
Who helps?
Roles of the

The Presidency
Constitutional Requirements
- Natural born citizen
- 35 years of age
- 14 years of U.S. residency
Are there informal
Most presidents have been elected
Once elected the term is for four years.
22nd Amendment (1951)
- limits president to 2 terms
- plan by which presidential vacancy is filled
- 9x in US history (resignation or death)
Presidential Succession Act of 1947
- VP
- Speaker of the House
- President Pro Tempore
- Secretary of State
- Secretary of Treasury
- Secretary of Defense
- Attorney General
- and then other Cabinet offices in
order of creation
25th Amendment
- VP moving up to President is clearly President (not acting president)
- Calls for VP vacancy to be filled by President and approved by Congress
- also discusses presidential
The Veep
According to Constitution
- President of Senate (votes in ties)
- Becomes President if needed
25th Amendment
- helps decide presidential disability
Must also be
- 35
- natural born citizen
- 14 years resident
- House acts like a grand jury
- Senate can convict the president of the charges with a 2/3 vote and remove him from office.
- Senate acts a jury
(If President is on trial, Chief Justice presides)
- Roughly the political equivalent of an indictment in criminal law
- House may impeach the president for “Treason, Bribery, or other high Crimes and Misdemeanors”
Bill Clinton
Andrew Johnson
Who has been impeached?
Member of the US cabinet who stays at a secure location during the State of the Union, presidential inaugurations, and other occasions when all the top leaders are gathered
Designated Survivor
Chosen for a number of reasons
Geographical balance
Bring party back together at the convention
To overcome candidate shortcomings
To bring social or cultural balance to ticket
Vice President
-Before 1970’s- main job was waiting
-Recently- more involved with policy discussion and important diplomacy
-Recent presidents have chosen VPs with considerable political experience
Not mentioned in the Constitution
Washington’s cabinet
Attorney General

Size has increased by President requesting new executive departments be created (Congress has the power to create them)
- Consists of 14 secretaries and the attorney general
- Appointees must be voted on by Senate
Health and Human Services
Housing and Urban Development
Veterans’ Affairs
Homeland Security
Cabinet Departments

- Gives State of the Union
- can veto legislation
(Once Congress has signed a bill president can
Sign, veto, let it become law without his signature, or pocket veto)
-Congress can override veto with a 2/3 vote
Chief Legislator

- Some governors have a line item veto that allows them to veto just parts of a bill
- In 1996 Congress allowed the President to have this power in appropriations bills
- The Supreme Court voided the law in Clinton v. City of New York (1998)
Line item veto
- Presidents have become more active in making agenda.
- Presidents have a hard time getting Congress to pass their programs during times of divided government
(Congress and President from different parties)
“gridlock” – the inability to accomplish goals
Con – government operation shuts down
Pro – slows the decision making process
Can campaign for party members

Presidential coattails- voters cast their
ballots for congressional candidates of the president’s party because they support the president

President’s party typically loses seats in
midterm elections
Party Leader
-Directs the actions of our ambassadors.
-Negotiates treaties (2/3 Senate must approve)
-Executive agreement –deal between heads of state, no need for Senate approval
-Diplomatic Recognition – power to officially recognize foreign gov as legit
Ex. 1917-1933 – USSR not recognized
Ex. 1949-1970s – China not recognized
Chief Diplomat
-President can send armed forces abroad
(Congress has not declared war since WWII)

-Commands a vast nuclear arsenal
“football”- briefcase with codes needed to unleash nuclear war
Commander in Chief
War Powers Resolution, 1973
-President must report to Congress within 48 hours after deployment
-If Congress does not OK in 60 days, must withdraw
-Check on president, attempt to limit president
Presidents have ignored the law.
Way president handles a crisis can make or break a president’s image
Example- George W. Bush on 9/11
One person (president) can come to quicker decisions than a group (Congress)
Crisis Manager
- Acts as example for and symbol of the U.S.
- Represents America at special occasions and ceremonies.

(Kings and Queens are heads of state.)
Head of State
Chief Guardian of the Economy
- unemployment, inflation, taxation, business,
and general welfare of the nation.
He does not control the economy, but he gets credit if it goes well.
Other stuff you need
to know

Issued by President and have force of law
(power to enforce the Constitution, treaties, laws, etc.)
FDR – allowed Japanese internment
Truman – integrated military
Eisenhower – sent federal troops to integrate a school
Executive Orders

Privacy is needed for candid advice from advisers without political pressure
Executive privilege
The right to privacy of conversation between advisers and president

SCOTUS has stated it most effectively applies
when concerned with national security.
US v. Nixon
Nixon refused to hand over recorded conversation and claimed this

Court ruled in favor of US, but allowed that
there was a limited executive privilege in
areas of military and diplomatic affairs.

Found in Article II
Brief, vague
- Serve as administrative head
- Act as commander in chief
- Convene Congress (call into special session)
- Veto
- Appoint officials
- Make treaties
- Grant pardons
Powers of President
Over time presidents have expanded by claiming inherent powers
This forces Congress and courts to either go along with or against it
By claiming a new power they leave more power to their successors

Ex- Lincoln during Civil War
Inherent Powers
- Presidents depend on others’ cooperation to get things done
- Must be able to bargain, deal with adversaries, and choose priorities
- Reputation is hurt if president pushes hard for a bill that is ultimately defeated
Power to persuade
Public appearances have increased sharply since WWII
Popularity is highest during president’s first year- “honeymoon period”
The President and the public
- Public appearances have increased sharply
since WWII
- Popularity is highest during president’s first year- “honeymoon period”
The President and the public
Affected by
Economic conditions
Major events
Wars with heavy casualties
Presidential popularity
- Presidents monitor their popularity
- Some argue that because of this presidents are unwilling to champion unpopular causes or take stands that might affect their ratings
In the 20th century the presidency became more powerful.

The modern presidency began with FDR who led during two major crises
- Great Depression
FDR also personalized the presidency with his use of radio fireside chats directly with Americans.

The modern president
- leads a large government
- plays an active and leading role in foreign and domestic policy
- plays a strong legislative role
- and uses technology to get close to Americans
The Modern Presidency
Executive Office of the President
3 Major Policymaking Bodies are in the EOP
The National Security Council
- coordinates military and foreign policy
- Includes POTUS, VPOTUS, Sec of State, Sec of Defense
- is managed by the national security assistant
- (The Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff and the Director of National Intelligence serve as advisors)
Council of Economic Advisers
- advise president on economic policy
- 3 members appointed by POTUS
Office of Management and Budget
- prepares the President's budget and provides advice on proposals from departments and agencies
White House Staff
Staff of about 600
Key aides include:
-chief of staff
-congressional liaisons
-press secretary
-national security assistant
One role of POTUS is chief executive.

He is in charge of a bureaucracy that
spends more than $3 trillion a year and
has more than 4 million employees.

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