The Branches of the U.S. Federal Government Essay by writingsensation

The Branches of the U.S. Federal Government
This paper discusses the historical and present balance of power among the three branches of the U.S. federal government.
# 68435 | 980 words | 6 sources | APA | 2005 | US
Published on Aug 17, 2006 in Political Science (U.S.) , Law (Constitution)

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This paper explains that the constitutional system of checks and balances has served the country well over the years, notwithstanding its original intent to avoid majoritarian power. The author points out that the amount of power wielded by one branch of the federal government compared to the others has tended to swing from one extreme to another, expanding in scope and power until brought under control by the checks and balances of the others. The paper relates that, since 9/11, the president has emerged as the temporary heavyweight champion among the three branches of government today; however, when the real and perceived threats to the nation's interests have been resolved, it would seem certain that the system of checks and balances would provide the impetus needed to once again diminish the powers of an "imperial presidency".

From the Paper:

"According to "Black's Law Dictionary" (1990), checks and balances are an "arrangement of government powers whereby powers of one governmental branch check or balance those of other branches." This separation of powers, of course, has been a fundamental feature of the American federal government from the outset, but the intent, purpose and net effect of this approach has not been exactly what the Founders may have envisioned. When the nation's Founders gathered to forge a constitution, Goldwin and Schambra (1980) suggest that the checks and balances provisions that were adopted were not intended to keep the forces of government under control but were rather intended to keep the popular majority from exercising any substantive degree of influence over its operation."

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