American Government 02/03/09 American Government Spring 2009 Tuesday, February 3, 2009 ARRIVED 20 MINUTES LATE Alexander Hamilton Washington?s chief artillery officer Very reluctant to part company with the British Understood that you had to have a vital president with considerable powers Needed institution to mediate disagreements between the states House of Representatives ? closest to the people ? most repose to the people because of two year terms So they decided to work on taxes in the House Six year terms of the Senate protected it from the people Elected by state legislatures Another deal for the states ? encourages them to join States unwilling to surrender sovereignty This practice prevailed until 1913 until the 17th amendment allowed for direct election of senators Senate confirms the president?s cabinet Court justices, Associate Justices of the Supreme Court Simple Majority Presidential nominations, the cabinet especially, are rarely rejected Most often people withdraw when there are problem Power to ratify treaties Requires 2/3 Treaties don?t do terribly well Presidents don?t usually bring treaties to the senate The relationship between the new federal government and the state Federal ? central government and subsidiary state government Needed to have certain incentives for the states to join Article 4 of the Constitution ? governs the whole relationship Provision in the constitution that it would come into effect when 9/13 states agreed But any alteration would require all 13 states Article 1 ? all legislative powers herein granted will be invested in the Congress (Senate and House) Members shall be elected for 2 year term They set qualifications for election as 25 years of age Life expectancy wasn?t very long Calls for a census Original purpose was to determine the population of the states to decide how many representatives the states get Senators must be 30 years old Vice President in charge of the Senate Vice president is a hybrid individual The only vote that the Vice President has is to break a tie President Pro-Tempore ? understood that the VP wouldn?t be there all the time, so they have someone else preside Now the senator of the majority party that has been there the longest Impeachments ? House of Representatives Impeachment is merely an accusation The actual trial is for the senate During senate trials, the presiding officer is the chief justice Important Clauses Senators and representatives shall receive compensation for their services from the federal government Speech and Debate Clause ? ?shall in all Cases, except Treason, Felony, and Breach of the Peace, be privileged from Arrest during their attendance at the Session of their Respective Houses, and in going to and from the same, and for any Speech or Debate in either House, they shall not be questioned in any other Place.? If a senator libels you on the floor they can?t be held accountable All bills for raising revenue (taxes) should originate in the House of Representatives, but the senate Presentment Clause: Every bill which passes the house and the senate should be brought before the President of the United States ? if he approves it, he signs, otherwise, sends it back with his objections If the president does nothing, the bill sits on the desk unsigned and un-vetoed for ten days, it?s passed into law Except: Pocket Veto ? if during that 10-day period Congress is out of session, he has nowhere to send it - it?s just as if the president had vetoed it Congress can always override a veto with a 2/3 vote of both houses 1 PAGE PAGE 2
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