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US Constitution: Checks and Balances

The Constitution provides for three branches of government that are each to check the other.  We call this system the check and balance approach to government or the separation of government powers. 

The purpose of this type of foundation is to prevent any part of government getting too powerful and becoming corrupt.  Thus, the powers of each body are limited.    

The three branches outlined in the Constitution are the Executive, Judicial, and the Legislative. 

Legislative Branch Powers

The legislative body creates most of the laws and rules of the land.  The legislators debate bills and compromise with each other on what should be done in the country.  The House originates bills and the senate approves them (or stops them).  The president can veto any legislation, but the presidential veto can be overruled with a two thirds vote of the House and the Senate.  The judicial branch can also prevent legislation that does not follow the laws properly. 

Executive Branch

The president can veto passed legislation.  He or she is also commander over the armed forces.  This branch also has the power to appoint judges and to pardon people. 

Congress really has more power than the president and can prevent the executive branch from doing a lot.  If the president and congress agree on what needs done, a great deal can be accomplished in a relatively short amount of time.  

Judicial Branch

The judicial branch may review legislation to make sure it is legal or not.  They will interpret laws or suits that are presented.  To provide for equality under the law, the judicial branch is necessary to make sure that laws are followed.  The judicial branch can prevent the executive or legislative branch from doing illegal things. 

For a further discourse on powers, you may visit us constitution . net.

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