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The President

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					The President
  Chapter 13
Section 1—The president’s Job
         Description

                  The President must fill a
                   number of roles all at one
                   time. These roles
                   include:
                      chief of state
                      chief executive
                      chief administrator
                      chief diplomat
                      commander in chief
                      chief legislator
                      party chief
                      chief citizen
               Chief of State

 This means that he is
  the ceremonial head
  of the government.
 This is a PR role,
  much like the Queen
  of England, who does
  not have any real
  power, but is the
  symbol of the nation.
             Chief Executive

 The Constitution vest thePresident with
  the executive power of the United States.
  That is broad power.
 He is the one who carries out and
  enforces laws and directs the operation of
  the country.
           Chief Administrator

             the ultimate boss of everyone
 President is
  employed by the federal government.
 The government can only operate through
  people and agencies that “administer” the
  laws.
Chief Diplomat

          President is the
           maker of and
           spokesman for
           American Foreign
           Policy
Commander in Chief

          President is the
           ultimate boss of
           everyone in the
           armed forces and
           controls the generals.
          Civilian control over
           the military is one of
           the hall-marks of a
           democracy and an
           important protection
           against tyranny.
             Chief Legislator

 This is not part of President’s official job
  description, because Congress is in
  charge of legislation.
 Over time the presidents have become
  active in setting the legislative agenda and
  in proposing legislation through
  congressman close to the administration.
Chief of Party

          President is the head
           of his political party
           and can do much to
           shape the direction it
           takes and the types of
           candidates that the
           national party
           supports.
                Chief Citizen

 Representative of the
  people against private
  interests.
 Public watch-dog.
 Not all Presidents
  have embraced this
  role.
 T. Roosevelt did to a
  great degree
Qualifications

          Formal
           Qualifications
              Natural-Born Citizen
              35 years old
              Lived in the US for at
               least 14 years
          Informal
           Qualifications?
The President’s Term
     Framers: unlimited four-year terms.
     As a matter of practice, Presidents and
      their parties followed Washington’s
      example and limited themselves to two
      terms.
     FDR broke the no two-term tradition and
      was elected four times.
     In response, 22nd Amendment. Limits
      president to two terms.
     VP who becomes president can only run
      once if filled more than half of term he
      inherited.
                 Pay and Benefits

   Presidents Salary is fixed by
    Congress (can’t be increased or
    decreased during the president’s
    term).
   Currently 400,000.
   Also, 50,000 expense account
   Benefits—House, car, plane,
    vacation home, offices and staff.
   Former Presidents get pension
 Section 2—Presidential Succession and
          the Vice Presidency

 One-in-five Vice Presidents
  have become President
  because of death or
  resignation.
 Five of our last 11
  presidents have been vice
  presidents at some point.
 Humphrey, Mondale and
  Gore were nominated by
  their parties.
 Vice Presidency is a much
  more important stepping-
  stone to the presidency
  than it once was.
The Constitution and Succession

             VP automatically takes over as
              president if Pres. dies, resigns
              or is removed from office.
             John Tyler and the 25th
              Amendment
             Congress fixes the order of
              succession after VP. Currently
              Speaker of the House; President
              Pro Tempore of the Senate.
                   Presidential Succession Act of
                    1947
                   No longer as important. Because
                    of 25th Amendment
                Presidential Disability

   Before the 25th Amendment
    there was no provision for
    dealing with a disabled
    president.
       Garfield and Wilson
 25th Amendment fixes this
  problem
 Voluntary Disability (Sect. 3)
       VP becomes acting president if
        President informs congress in
        writing that he is unable to
        discharge the powers and duties
        of the office.
              Presidential Disability
   Involuntary Disability (Sect. 4)
       VP becomes acting president if VP and a majority of
        the members of the cabinet inform Congress in
        writing that the President is incapacitated.
   Disability disputes:
       Under both sections, President gets his powers back
        once he informs Congress that there is no disability.
       But, if VP and Majority of Congress challenge this
        within four days, President does not get powers back
       Congress then has 21 days to decide.
       Must be a 2/3 vote of both houses that President is
        unable to discharge duties.
The Vice Presidency

             The VP has only
              three formal duties:
                 Preside over the
                  senate
                 break ties,
                 help decide questions
                  of presidential
                  disability.
                  History of the VP

   A dead-end job
   a way to get rid of troublesome
    politicians.
   Some dreadful VPs.
   VP was often selected for political
    reasons
   VP’s were often jettisoned
    between elections
   Historically, VPs have had little
    direct involvement in government.
       Why?
                   Modern VP
 Section 2 of 25th Amendment provides
 that president shall appoint a VP if the
 office becomes vacant. Must be
 confirmed by Congress.
     Happened Twice. Ford; Nelson Rockefeller
 Recent VPshave had much more power
 and responsibility?
     Will the trend continue?
 VP   now a stepping stone to White House
 Section 3—Presidential Selection: The
            Framers’ Plan
 The Framers   engaged in lots of debate
  about how to choose the president.
 Possibilities—
     Select by Congress
     Select by direct election
     Selected by state legislatures
     Selected by specially elected electors.
 Pros and    Cons of Each?
     Original Constitutional Plan

 President to   be selected by a special body
  of electors
 Each state would have as many electors
  as it had representative AND Senators.
 Electors chosen in each state by a method
  specified by the state legislature.
 Each elector casts two votes for president,
  can’t double up.
 Counted in a joint session of Congress
        Original Constitutional Plan

   Person with the most votes, if a majority,
    becomes President.
   Person with the second most votes becomes
    Vice President.
   If tie, or no majority, President selected by the
    House of Rep. between top three.
   If tie for VP, chosen by the Senate between top
    two.
   Intended that electors be bright, respectable free
    agents.
                   12th Amendment

 Original system worked for
  only three elections.
 1800. Rise of parties
  messes up the system.
 Jefferson v. Adams (v.
  Burr)
 12th Amendment
       Separates vote for president
        and Vice President
   Section 4—Nominating Presidential
            Candidates Today

 Constitution does not provide a method of
  selecting candidates, because didn’t
  foresee parties.
 A number of methods have been used
  over the years.
 Congressional Caucus—1800-1824.
     Both parties congressional delegations met
      and chose a candidate. Was objected to
      because not democratic.
              Conventions
A   big meeting at which delegates from
  each state vote to determine who the
  nominee will be.
 Mostly governed by party rules and a few
  state laws effecting the selecting of
  delegates.
 Summer before the presidential election.
  By tradition the party out of power goes
  first in July, then the party in power in
  August.
Conventions

       Usually in a major city
        with the facilities to
        handle. Also often in
        a city that is
        strategically
        important.
       Party tells each state
        how many delegates
        they will have.
       super-delegates
             Selection of Delegates

   Delegates are selected in a number of ways.
   In the early days of primaries, delegates came to the
    convention as free agents; unclear who the candidate
    would be before the convention began.
   Now, delegates usually come to the convention pledged
    to a particular candidate, so that outcome of convention
    vote is well-known before-hand.
   Presidential Primaries: 3/4 of all delegates come from
    states that hold primary election where votes select
    delegates that will vote for a particular candidate.
   Rest pick delegates at caucuses
                    Primaries
   Process varies greatly from state to state
    because process controlled by state law.
   States prefer to hold their primaries first. Why?
   The primaries have come earlier and earlier to
    the point that in 2004 the nominees were clear
    by mid-spring.
   Democrats prohibit winner-take-all primaries, so
    that delegates are divided based on vote totals
    to long as a candidate polls at least 15 percent.
   Now few winner-take-all primaries because state
    laws have accommodated the democratic
    requirement.
    Evaluation of the Presidential Primary

 While complicated, are also vital
  and important. Help test the
  candidates to make sure that the
  one selected is able to handle the
  pressures of a campaign.
 Allow dark-horses, such as Jimmy
  Carter and Bill Clinton, to emerge.
 Becoming harder for unknowns to
  break through. Need more money
  and organization at the outset.
   The Electoral College Today
   Voters don’t vote for the presidential candidates,
    they vote for electors pledged to those
    candidates.
   Presidential Election (for electors) is always on
    the Tuesday after the first Monday in November.
    (Date is set by Congress.)
   Electors are winner take all in all states except
    Maine and Nebraska.
   In most states, the names of the electors do not
    even appear on the ballot.
           Section 6—The Election

 Electors meet in the state capitals on the
  Monday after the second Wednesday in
  December. Votes are cast, sealed and sent to
  Washington.
 Votes are opened and counted on January 6.
 If no candidate has a majority (270 of 538) , the
  House of representatives must select the
  president from the top three candidates.
 If the house fails to pick a President by January
  20, under the 20th Amendment the newly
  elected Vice President shall act as President
  until it does.
      Flaws in the Electoral College
                 the chance that the person
 First problem is
 receiving the majority of votes will not win
 the presidency. Two reasons,
     1) winner take all nature of electoral votes
      means that it doesn’t matter by how many
      votes one wins a state.
     2) Secondly, electoral votes are not
      distributed evenly.
        Flaws in the Electoral College

   The Second Major Defect
       Unfaithful Electors.
   The Third Major Defect
       Elections could be determined by the House.
       Voting is by states and thus the small states have a
        much bigger voice.
       Also, if a state’s delegates can’t agree, they could
        loose their vote entirely, since it is a collective vote.
       Also, must be a majority vote. They might not be able
        to get a majority, either.

				
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