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The branches of the government







Cabinet of Secretaries



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House of Representatives
8 Associate Justices



The United States of America is a presidential republic. The government is divided into three branches: legislative (the US Congress), executive (the President and his Administration) and judicial (the US Supreme Court).

There are two main political parties in the USA: the Democratic (symbolized by a “donkey”) and the Republican (its symbol is an “elephant”). The US President is both the head of the state and government. He is elected for a four-year term. Presidential elections are held every leap year on the first Tuesday after first Monday in November. The President is assisted by Secretaries who are the heads of the executive departments.

The Supreme Court consists of Chief Justice and eight Associate Justices who are appointed for life. It is supposed to decide whether a law of the Congress or an executive order of the President is constitutional or not.

The form of US government is based on the Constitution of September 17, 1787, adopted after the War of Independence. In December 1791, the Congress adopted ten amendments to the Constitution, known as the Bill of Rights. The latter enumerated what the government controlled by the oligarchy was not going to be allowed to do, which was, of course, an important democratic gain for people.

The Congress of the United States is composed of two houses, the Senate and the House of Representatives. The Senate represents the states and the House represents the population according to its distribution among the states. All states have electoral requirements of the same nature. First of all they are residence requirements.

Through its power over the purse, the US Congress can control much that relates to foreign policy, also it is a governmental body that determines taxation.

Each of the fifty states of the USA has a constitution patterned after the federal Constitution, with its divisions of power: legislative, executive, and judicial.

The Presidency means not only a man: means an institution – the “executive branch” of the government.

The Supreme Court is the highest court in the country and the head had of the judicial branch of US government. The federal and state courts have the power of “judicial review”. Also there are about ninety district courts in different parts of the United States. American judicial practice is firmly committed to the idea of jury trails. The Constitution guarantees them for both criminal and civil cases. According to the US judicial doctrine, “justice is relationship in which each citizen or group receives due respect and return”.


Task 2. Agree or disagree with the following statements:

1. The USA is a monarchy.

2. The Constitution of the USA was adopted in 1867 after the Civil War.

3. There are three main political parties in the USA.

4. Chief Justice is appointed for life.

5. There are two houses in the congress of the USA, House of Lords and House of Commons.

6. The US Congress is not allowed to control foreign policy.

7. The constitution of each state differs from the federal Constitution.


Task 3. Answer the question:

1. Is the USA a monarchy or republic?

2. What main political parties are there in the USA and what are their symbols?

3. When are presidential elections held?

4. What power does the US President have?

5. What does the Supreme Court consist of?

6. When was the US Constitution adopted?

7. How many houses is the legislative branch of the USA composed of?

8. What is the US Senate responsible for?

9. What is the main electoral requirement?

10. What is American judicial practice based on?


Date: 2015-12-11; view: 1202

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