Federal Government Three Branches: Legislative Executive Judicial
Legislative Branch • Created by the first article of the Constitution • Set requirements of those who serve in Congress • Constitution created a bicameral legislature
Bicameral Legislature Senate • Two Representatives from each state • Qualifications: 35 yrs old, citizen of U.S. for 9 yrs, and resident of state he/she represents • Terms spread out so that only 1/3 of the whole Senate is elected in a single election • Total Members= 100 House of Representatives • Based on population • Larger states= more reps • 2013- MS=4, California=53 • Qualifications: 25 yrs old, citizen of U.S. for 7 yrs, and resident of state he/she represents. • Two year terms-elected in Nov. on even number years • Total Members=435 • Reapportionment Act of 1929 set limit. Mississippi’s Current Senators: Thad Cochran & Roger Wicker Mississippi’s Current Representatives: Alan Nunnelee, Bennie Thompson, Gregg Harper, Steven Palazzo
Legislative Powers • Expressed Powers- those specifically given to Congress in Constitution • Implied Powers- given to Congress in Article I, of Constitution…AKA the Elastic Clause • Elastic Clause- gives Congress the authority to make all laws “necessary and proper” for carrying out the expressed powers granted in the Constitution
Legislative Powers Impeachment Powers Other Powers Bills to raise revenue must start in House Senate- ratify treaties and confirm the presidents choice of individuals to serve as cabinet members • House of Representatives has the power to impeach (bring charges against a public official while that person is still in office) • The Senate has the power to try that impeached official.
Executive Branch • 1787- Constitutional Convention decided to have a single chief executive- PRESIDENT • Electoral College chooses president
Choosing a President • Electoral College members are chosen from each state • Number of electors from each state equals the number of representatives it has in Senate and House. • So altogether there are 538 electoral college votes... 100 from Senate, 435 from House, and District of Columbia gets 3 votes • A vote for a presidential candidate is basically a vote for the candidates electors. • Whoever wins the popular vote in each state wins that state’s electoral votes
Executive Branch:The Presidency, Vice President, 15 Cabinet members, and Various agencies • President & Vice President- at least 35 years old, natural born citizen, and resident of U.S. for at least 14 years. • Both elected for four years and can be re-elected once • Vice President- assumes the presidency if president dies, resigns, or is impeached. • If VP cannot assume the duties, government follows a line of succession
Officer Current Official First 13 in the Presidential Line of Succession
The Judicial Branch • Supreme Court and all lower federal courts • Duties include: deciding on the meaning of the Constitution and laws. Also protects individual citizens from any ill treatment by other branches of government
Supreme Court • Highest court in the land • Made up of Chief Justice and 8 associate judges, President appoints these positions • Serve for life or retire • Has both original and appellate jurisdiction • Greatest power- Judicial Review-ability to set aside the actions of the legislature or executive branches of any government agency. • Court can declare laws or presidential acts as unconstitutional.
Other Federal Courts Judiciary Act of 1789- established circuit courts of appeal and district courts Congress divided nation into 11 judicial circuits Each circuit- between 1 and 24 judges MS is in 5th Federal Circuit Court District District courts- use juries and witnesses in trial Appellate courts- no juries or witnesses, just lawyers