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The President and the Executive Branch
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The President and the Executive Branch

Chapter 7Slide2

The President and the Vice President

Qualifications for President

35 years old

Native-born “American” citizen

Resident US for at least 14 years

Presidential Trends

All but one have been Protestant ChristianMost have college degreesMany were lawyers, most came from states with large populationsPast 50 years office has been open to wider groups of people (women, non-Protestant, African Americans)Slide3

The President and the Vice President

Electing a President

Presidential elections every 4 years, Constitution does not provide for direct electionsSystem based on the

electoral college

Each state appoints electors, who then vote for one of the major candidates

When you vote for president, not voting for president, but elector who pledges to vote for the candidate

Electoral votes total of its U.S. Senators and Reps. (AR 6, CA 55)Candidates need 270 of 538 electoral votes to win the presidencySlide4

The President and the Vice President

Term of Office

Until 1951 no limits on how many terms President could serve22nd Amendment (1951) limits president to 2 terms or maximum 10 yrs if began during another President’s term

Term lasts 4 years

Salary $400,000 a year plus travel expenses, lives and works in the White House

Staff of 80 takes care of the President, family

Camp David in Maryland serves as a retreatThe President has many methods of paid travelSlide5

The President and the Vice President

Vice President Qualifications are the same as the President

Vice Presidents rarely in the public eye, purpose head of Senate, be prepared to take over if something happens to the President9 Vice Presidents have taken over in U.S. History

John Adams: “I am Vice President. In this I am nothing, but I may become everything


The President and the Vice President

Presidential Succession8 Presidents have died during office, the Constitution states vice president will take on the “powers and duties” of the presidency

1947, Congress passed the Presidential Succession Act, line of succession after the vice president1) President2) Vice President

3) Speaker of the House

4) President Pro Tem

5) Secretary of State

6) Order Cabinet post createdSlide7

The President and the Vice President

25th Amendment (1967)

President leaves or dies, the vice president becomes president, chooses another VPGives VP a role in determining whether a president is disabled or unable to do the job

Only been used three times

VP Spiro Agnew resigned in 1973 and Pres. Nixon replaced by Gerald Ford who replaced Nixon as president in 1974


Ronald Reagan needed surgery, told Congress he couldn’t lead, VP George H.W. Bush assumed the presidency for about 8 hoursSlide8

The President's Job

Constitutional Powers

Executive Power –described in Article IIMain job is to carry out the laws passed by Congress

Other powers/ duties:

Veto bills passed by Congress

Call Congress into special session

Commander in chief Receive leaders, officials of foreign countriesMake treatiesAppoint heads of executive agencies, federal court judges, ambassadors, and other gov’t officials

Pardon people convicted of federal crimesState of the Union address every year discusses the most important issues facing nation Slide9

The President's Job

Roles of the President

Chief Executive

In charge of 15 cabinet departments and 3 million workers of the federal government


executive orders

(rule or command that has the force of law), executive orders deal with big issues (integration of the armed forces in 1948)Appoints judges to the Supreme and federal courts, pending Congressional approval Power to pardon, reprieve, or give amnestySlide10

The President's Job

Chief Diplomat-

directs foreign policy toward other countries, decides how the U.S. will act Commander in chief of all armed forces President and Congress share power to declare war, Congress has only declared war 5 times, president has sent troops into action overseas more than 150 times



War Powers Resolution

-president must notify Congress within 48 hours when troops sent to battle, must be brought home after 60 days unless Congress gives approval for them to remain longerSlide11

The President's Job

Legislative Leader

Influences Congress with legislation that he would like to see passed

Makes speeches to build support for his program and campaigns to get his ideas supported by Congress

Head of State-

President is living symbol of the nationEconomic Leader- President plans the federal government’s budgetParty Leader- gives support to fellow party members by giving speeches, help them in campaigns, raising moneySlide12

Making Foreign Policy

A nation’s overall plan for dealing with other nations is

foreign policyGoals of foreign policy

National security (keep country safe from attack)

International trade

Promoting world peace

Promote democracy, preserve basic human rights, encourage peaceful governments Works with the State Department, Defense Department, the Central Intelligence Agency, and the National Security Council Give the president advice on foreign relations

“The State Department wants to solve everything with words and the generals with guns”-President Lyndon Johnson Slide13

Making Foreign Policy

Tools of Foreign Policy

Creating Treaties and Executive Agreements

The Senate must approve treaties by a 2/3 vote

President can go around the Senate by issuing an executive agreement

Appointing Ambassadors

: the president appoints ambassadors (representatives to countries that the U.S. recognizes)Foreign Aid: assists other countries in times of crisis by providing supportInternational Trade: makes agreements with other nations about what products traded and the rules for trading; issues trade sanctions or embargos on countries

Military Force: send troops to foreign countries even if Congress has not declared warSlide14

Presidential Advisers and Executive Agencies

Executive Office of the President

Created 1939 by FDRWhite House Office500 people work directly for the President Most powerful the chief of staff


assistant for domestic affairs


lawyer to the president, press secretaryWhite House Office screens the flow of information and people trying to reach the PresidentThey decide who gets to speak to the President Slide15

Presidential Advisers and Executive Agencies

Office of Management and Budget (OMB)Prepares federal budget, monitors spending by hundreds of government agencies

National Security Council (NSC)Helps the President coordinate military, foreign policyMembers include the vice president, secretary of state, secretary of defense, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff group of the top commander of each of the armed forces

The NSC supervises the CIA which gathers information about gov’ts of other countriesSlide16

Presidential Advisers and Executive Agencies

Council of Economic Advisers (CEA)

President names members, Senate approves themGive president advice about economic matters (employment, tax policy, inflation, and foreign trade)Slide17

Presidential Advisers and Executive Agencies

Cabinet – group of presidential advisers, not specified in Constitution, head of 15 top level executive departmentsDeveloped over time through custom and usage

Make important policy decisionsMeet when president finds necessaryHeads of departments must be approved by senateSlide18

Cabinet Positions

Department of State

Plans and carries out the nations’ foreign policesDepartment of the TreasuryCollects, borrows, spends, and prints money

Department of Defense

Manages the armed forces

Department of Justice

Responsible for all aspects of law enforcementDepartment of the Interior Manages and protects the nation’s public lands and natural resourcesDepartment of AgricultureAssists farmers and consumers of farm products

Department of CommerceSupervises trade, promotes U.S. tourism and businessDepartment of Labor

Concerned with the working conditions and wages of U.S. workersSlide20

Cabinet Positions

Department of Health and Human Services

Works for the health and well-being of all AmericansDepartment of Housing and Urban DevelopmentDeals with the special needs and problems of cities

Department of Transportation

Manages the nation’s highways, railroads, airlines, and sea traffic

Department of Energy

Directs the energy plan for the U.S.Department of EducationProvides advice and funding for schoolsDepartment of Veterans AffairsDirects services for veterans

Department of Homeland SecurityEstablished in 2002 in response to 9/11, oversees America’s defense against terrorist attacksSlide21

Presidential Advisers and Executive Agencies

Vice President and the First Lady

Vice presidents usually have little powerChanged recentlyFirst Lady- wife of presidentNot mentioned in Constitution, take on causes close to themSlide22

Presidential Advisers and Executive Agencies

Federal Bureaucracy

– agencies and employees of executive branch Bureaucrats/civil servants – people who work for federal gov’t

Executive branch carries programs created by Congress

Turn new laws into action

Administer the day-to-day operations of the federal

govtFederal agencies regulate various activitiesSlide23

Presidential Advisers and Executive Agencies

Executive Agencies

Independent agencies responsible for certain specialized areasNASA Government Corporations

50 independent agencies that act like private businesses

Senate approves president’s choice of a board to run corp.

Charge fees for services, but not supposed to make a profit

Example – USPS (Post Office)Regulatory Boards & CommissionsPresident appoints members, approved by SenateTo protect the publicMake & enforce rulesFCC – Federal Communications Commission Slide24

Presidential Advisers and Executive Agencies



Political appointees

– chosen by president, proven executive ability or important supporters of the president’s election campaign

Civil service workers

– approx. 90% of all national govt workers, based on experience.Civil service system – the practice of hiring workers on the basis of open, competitive examinations & merit.Spoils system – before 1883 – jobs went to people as a reward for political support (reformed under Pendleton Act)

Merit system – civil service system, workers have to meet standards, pass tests

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The President and the Executive Branch - Description

Chapter 7 The President and the Vice President Qualifications for President 35 years old Nativeborn American citizen Resident US for at least 14 years Presidential Trends All but one have been Protestant Christian ID: 715224 Download Presentation

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