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The Executive Branch Essay

I.The President of the United States: George W. Bush

i.Requirements to Hold Office: You must be at least thirty-five years old, a natural born citizen of the United States, and a resident of the US for no less than fourteen years.

ii.Duties and Powers: The President must execute laws, commission all officers of the United States, and adjourn or convene both houses. It is also a duty of the President to pass and regulate laws. With the consent of the Senate he may make treaties. He can appoint ambassadors, public ministers, judges of the Supreme Court, and other officers of the United States. The President is named the commander in chief of the Army and Navy of the United States, as well.

iii.Length of Term of Office: “The executive Power shall be vested in a President of the United States of America. He shall hold his Office during the Term of four Years. …(Article II of the Constitution)” Also, according to the twenty-second amendment the President can not hold office more than two terms.

iv.Appointment: Presidential elections are held once every four years. In order to vote you must be a U.S. citizen of eighteen years of age or older. The votes are counted by popular and electoral votes. The majority decision of popular votes goes to choose the electoral votes for that state.

v.Salary: $400,000-plus $50,000 non-taxable expense account

II.Vice President of the United States: Richard B. Cheney

i.Requirements: You must be at least thirty-five years old, a natural born citizen of the United States, and a resident of the U.S. for no less than fourteen years.

ii.Duties and Powers: Presiding officer of the U. S. Senate. If something were to happen to the President the Vice President will take over his position as President and his duties. In the senate, he may make the decision to break a tied vote.

iii.Length of Term of Office: He has a four year term along with the president.

iv.Procedure for Election or Appointment: The President and Vice President run as a pair. If the Vice President’s partner, the candidate for President, is elected then he too will take on the responsibility of the office with him.

v.Salary: $192,600-plus $10,000 taxable expense account.


i.Requirements: Must be approved by the Senate

ii.Duties and Powers: Each department has its own set of rules. See each department below for explanations.

iii.Length of Term of Office: President may alter at leisure.

iv.Procedure for Election of Appointment: Appointed by the President with approval of Senate.

v.Salary: $166,700-however, it may vary by department.


a.Department of Agriculture- Secretary, Ann M. Veneman; Watches over agricultural production to make sure prices are fair and food is safe to eat.

b.Department of Commerce- Secretary, Donald L. Evans; works to promote international trade, economic growth, and technological advancement.

c.Department of Defense- Secretary, Donald H. Rumsfeld; in charge of overseeing everything related to the nation’s military security, directs Army, Navy, Marine Corps, and Air Force. Also responsible for flood control, development of oceanographic resources, and management of oil reserves.

d.Department of Education- Secretary, Roderick R. Paige; Administers more than 150 federal education programs, including student loans, migrant worker training, vocational education, and special programs for the handicapped.

e.Department of Energy- Secretary, Spencer Abraham; Accountable for the research and development of energy technology; energy conservation.

f.Department of Health and Human Services- Secretary, Tommy G. Thompson; Manages Social Security; funds Medicare and Medicaid; offers social services; works to control preventable and infectious diseases.

g.Department of Housing and Urban Development- Secretary, Melquiades R. Martinez; Supports community development; conducts fair-housing laws; provides affordable housing and rent subsidies.

h.Department of the Interior- Secretary, Gale A. Nortan; Protects the natural environment; develops the country’s natural resources; manages national parks, monuments, rivers, etc.;oversees wildlife refuges, research centers, and environmental protection of public land.

i.Department of Justice- Secretary, John Ashcroft; Supervises U.S. district attorneys and marshals, federal prisons and other penal institutions; represents the government in legal matters and gives legal advice to President and/or other members of the Cabinet; administers immigration laws.

j.Department of Labor- Secretary, Elaine L. Chao; Protects rights of workers; helps to improve working conditions; encourages good relations between labor and management.

k.Department of State- Secretary, Colin L. Powell; Advises the president on foreign-policy issues; maintains relations between foreign countries and the U.S.; negotiates treaties and agreements with foreign nations.

l.Department of Transportation- Secretary, Norman Y. Mineta; Sets the nation’s transportation policy; supervises the coast guard.

m.Department of the Treasury- Secretary, Rosario Marin; Reports to Congress and the President on the financial state of the government and the economy; regulates the interstate and foreign sale of alcohol and firearms; regulates tax laws and collects Federal taxes.

n.Department of Veteran’s Affairs- Secretary, Anthony J. Principi; presents benefits and services to veterans and their dependents such as offering a medical care program or education.

o.Department of Homeland Security- Secretary, Tom Ridge; its goals are to prevent terrorist attacks within the U.S.; reduce America’s vulnerability to terrorism and minimize the damage and recover from attacks which do occur.

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