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CE.6 - National Government

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John Sheridan

on 27 January 2015

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Transcript of CE.6 - National Government

Our Federal Government
Structure and Powers: National Government
The Constitution of the United States defines the structure and powers of the national government.
The powers held by government are divided between the national government in Washington, D.C.,
and the governments of the 50 states. (principle: federalism)
Structure of the national government as set out in the United States Constitution
(Legislative, executive, and judicial powers of the national government as distributed
among three distinct and independent branches of government.)
Congress: Make the laws for the nation
President: Executes the laws of the land
Federal Courts: Interpret the laws
The Lawmakers (CE.6a,c)
Congress – formal powers are limited by the Constitution of the United States
A bicameral legislature (having two houses) consisting of the
House of Representatives
(435 members, based upon populations of the states) and the
(100 members – two per state)
the annual budget

Such as:
Federal judges/justices
Federal agencies (CIA, FBI, EPA, Federal Reserve Bank)
Cabinet officers/Department heads
Raises revenue through
and other levies

Declares war
A legislator (or lawmaker) has legislative powers. These powers are either expressed or implied:
Remember this acronym:
Reserved - powers for the states
Implied -
not specifically listed, used to carry out expressed powers
Denied - not given to the states or national government
- specifically listed in the Constitution
Shared - given to both the national and state governments
The lawmaking process in Congress:
Introducing a bill by a Senator
Working in committees
Debating the bill
on the floor
Voting on the bill
House of
Introducing the bill by
a Representative
Working in committees
Debating the bill on the
Voting on the bill
Sending the bill to the
president to sign into law
The Executives (6a,d)
The executive branch at the national level executes (carries out) the law. It also has a key role in the
policy making process. The powers of the executive branch are defined in the Constitution of the
United States of America.
executive officer
of the nation
Prepares the
annual budget
for congressional action
Appoints cabinet officers, ambassadors, and federal judges
Administers the federal bureaucracy
What are some ways the executive branch influences policy making?
Executives might be seen –
Proposing legislation in an annual speech to Congress
(State of the Union Address)
Appealing directly to the people
Approving or vetoing
who carry out the laws
The president has cabinet departments, agencies,
and regulatory groups to interpret and execute the laws.
The president exercises power as:
Chief of state
: Ceremonial head of the government
Chief executive
: Head of the executive branch of government
Chief legislator
: Proposer of the legislative agenda
: head of the nation’s armed forces
Chief diplomat
: Architect of American foreign policy
Chief of party
: Leader of the political party that controls the executive branch
Chief citizen
: Representative of all of the people
Presidential power has grown in the years since the Constitution was ratified.
The Judicial Branch (6a)
Consists of the federal courts, including the Supreme Court, the highest court in the land
The Supreme Court exercises the power of judicial review.
The federal courts try cases involving federal law and questions involving interpretation of the Constitution of the United States.
Full transcript