United States Constitution Essay

2259 words - 9 pages

The United States Constitution was written by our founding fathers to be the supreme law of the land. It contains the rights and liberties of the American people, and also the formation of the national government. In addition, it establishes the three separate branches of our government, the executive, the legislative and the judiciary. Their intent was to set up the legislative branch, or Congress, as the "First Branch" of the government. They did this by giving it a far wider assortment of institutional powers than the Executive branch. Early on Congress did in fact perform their duty as the dominant branch in government. The Legislature appears to be stronger on paper, but currently that is not the case. It seems that over time the Chief Executive has risen up and became the more powerful section of the United States government.Our government is divided among three separate branches. One of these branches is the law making body known as Congress. Congress is derived on the concept of bicameralism and is composed of two chambers both with equal powers. The 100 member Senate, based on two senators per state, and the 435 member House of Representatives based on population of the state they are representing. Members of both divisions are directly elected by the people. The House and the Senate need to work together in order to accomplish tasks. Even though they are both part of the Congress they have different characteristics. The most obvious is the amount of members each one has (435-100). The length of the term for members is also different. Members of the House serve for two years, and the members of the Senate serve for six years. Therefore when it comes election time (which occurs every other year) every member of the House runs for re-election and only a third of the Senate needs to run for re-election. The members of the Senate also have a much larger and more diverse constituency then the members of the House. Senators average five million people in their constituency, whereas the members of the House only average 650,000 constituents. House members are thought of as policy specialists because they only have one major committee assignment. Senators have a few major committee assignments and are known to be generalists. The relationship each part of Congress has to the people is another dissimilarity. Senators are much more public and are somewhat the show horses of Congress. The House is the people's branch and the Senate is the elitist's branch.Being a member of Congress is a very important and influential job. There are many qualifications to be met before one can be accepted to this very proud group of individuals. In order to be a member of the House of Representatives you must be at least twenty-five years old, and have been a citizen of the United States for seven years. You must also be a resident of the state that you are being elected to represent. This is also true for being a Senator. However, Senators must be at least thirty...

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