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GOV CH 13 1-2 THE PRESIDENCY

Multiple Choice
Identify the choice that best completes the statement or answers the question.
 
 
The President

As the head of the executive branch of the U.S. government, the president holds one of the most powerful and important elective offices in the world. Yet when the founders created the presidency in 1787, the United States was a new nation of only four million people . The past two centuries have seen the office formed and expanded by the personalities and policies of the various occupants, as well as by custom and tradition. Over the years, the office has evolved to meet changing needs and circumstances .
 

 1. 

The President is the
a.
chief legislative officer of the U.S.
c.
Chief Justice of the U.S.
b.
chief executive of the U.S.
d.
all of these
 

 2. 

Which statement is true?
a.
The presidency has not changed since it was established in Article 3 of the Constitution
c.
The presidency has changed over the years to meet the changing conditions in the world and U.S.
b.
The presidency has not changed since it was established in Article 2 of the Constitution
d.
All of these statements are true
 
 
Creating the Presidency

Creating the executive branch of the national government was one of the most important tasks faced by the delegates to the Constitutional Convention of 1787 . Given their previous experience with kings and royal governors, most delegates did not want a monarchy- not even an elected monarchy, which Alexander Hamilton once argued for in a two-hour-long speech . The delegates wanted the ultimate source of power to rest with the people . They also recognized, from watching the Articles of Confederation in action, the need for an executive branch . In order to determine how the executive branch would be formed, the founders analyzed the British monarchy and the roles of governors in American colonial and state governments. They also studied the writings of European thinkers, such as Locke and Montesquieu

For weeks, delegates quarreled over how much power the executive branch should have and what the relationship of the executive to the legislative branch should be . Some delegates, such as James Madison and Governor Morris, argued for a strong, independent executive that would be a "check" on an overly ambitious legislature . Others wanted a weak executive appointed by Congress and subject to its will. Everyone was seeking a proper balance of power. Morris summed up the problem as follows:

Make him too weak: the legislature will usurp [take for itself] his power. Make him too strong: he will usurp on the legislature.

Some liked the idea of a committee executive-a group of several persons, each holding executive power in a particular area. In the end, they rejected the committee arrangement. A single official, according to one political scientist, James Q. Wilson, could act with "energy, dispatch, and responsibility."

The source of the president's authority is Article II of the Constitution, which says that "the executive power shall be vested in the president of the United States of America." This makes the president of the United States the nation's chief executive, or head of the executive branch . The Constitution then sets out the president's relatively limited constitutional responsibilities .

Because the Constitution defined presidential powers in broad general statements, the founders were uncertain as to just how the president would perform the various roles. Only experience would tell.
 

 3. 

The Founding Fathers learned from the Articles of Confederation that they needed a strong executive to make government work well. They also did not want an executive to be so strong that he would become a king of the country.
a.
true
b.
false
 

 4. 

The Founding Fathers
a.
just followed the model of the English monarchy in writing Article 2 of the constitution
c.
studied, researched and compromised in creating the executive branch of government
b.
found it easy to create the executive branch of government
d.
ignored the ideas of Locke in writing Article II of the constitution
 

 5. 

The Founding Fathers wanted to
a.
establish a weak president because they were afraid of legislative power
c.
make the Supreme Court superior to the executive branch
b.
establish a strong president because they were afraid of too much executive power
d.
balance the power of the presidency so it would not userp the power of the other branches 
 

 6. 

What is the source of presidential power?
a.
Article I of the Constitution
d.
The Articles of Confederation
b.
Article II of the Constitution
e.
Supreme Court decisions
c.
Article III of the Constitution
f.
Laws passed by Congress
 
 
Qualifications
The Constitution lists only three formal qualifications for becoming president. Other, informal qualifications are personal qualities that Americans, over time, have come to expect their presidents to have.

Formal Qualifications

The Constitution says that the president must (1) be a "natural-born citizen," (2) be at least thirty-five years old, and (3) be a resident of the United States at least fourteen years before taking office

One element of the American dream is the idea that anybody can be president. Indeed, millions of Americans meet the three constitutional requirements. Like members of Congress, however, most presidents thus far in history have not been typical of the population as a whole. Rather, they have shared certain characteristics. In reality, then, there seem to be important informal requirements for becoming president of the United States
 

 7. 

Which of the following is not a formal requirement for becoming president
a.
be at least thirty-five years old
c.
be a "natural-born citizen,
b.
receive a majority of the popular vote the office
d.
be a resident of the United States at least fourteen years before taking office
 

 8. 

Any U.S. citizen can become president.
a.
true
b.
false
 
 
Informal Qualifications

Political experience has become an unwritten but important qualification for the presidency . One of only two presidents in this century without such experience was Dwight D. Eisenhower, whose success as a general in the U.S. Army during World War II led to his election as president. Presidential candidates have commonly been U.S . senators or state governors . Experience in government and politics allows these individuals not only to form the political alliances necessary to obtain the nomination but also to become known to the public . Those who currently hold public office have the resources to build a political following and to campaign.

Another informal qualification is political acceptability. Candidates with a moderate position reflect the views of the majority of Americans and are more likely to be nominated and elected. Usually, candidates with extremely liberal or extremely conservative political views have little chance of winning a nomination, much less an election . There are exceptions, however, such as the election of conservative Republican Ronald Reagan over the moderate incumbent President Jimmy Carter in 1980.

Presidents have also shared several common characteristics . All have been white and male. Most have been descendants of immigrants from northern Europe . Most have been lawyers, members of Congress, or state governors. Traditionally, presidents have been married, Protestant, and financially successful. A few, such as Harry S Truman, have come from poor families; others, such as Theodore and Franklin Roosevelt and John E Kennedy, have come from wealthy families. Most, however, have come from more modest circumstances and have been self-made men. All modern presidents except Harry Truman have had college educations.
 

 9. 

Why is it important to have political experience to run for president
a.
candidates need to be known by the public
c.
need to have political alliances
b.
need to know how to win primary elections
d.
all of these are important informal qualifications
 

 10. 

To win the presidency experience has shown that it is important to
a.
have more moderate views
c.
be far right or far left to appeal to the party base
b.
have extreme ideological views
d.
none of these are important
 

 11. 

Who is the only modern president that did not have a college education
a.
Dwight Eisenhower
c.
Franklin Roosevelt
b.
Theodore Roosevelt
d.
Harry Truman
 
 
Term

The Constitution states that a president "shall hold his office during the term of four years." The framers of the Constitution agreed that four years was long enough for a president to gain experience, demonstrate abilities, and establish stable policies .

The Constitution placed no limit on the number of terms a president might serve. George Washington served two terms as president but declined to seek a third. He established a tradition followed by all presidents well into the twentieth century. Franklin D. Roosevelt, however, broke with this tradition in 1940, when he ran for a third term and won. In 1944 he ran for a fourth term and won again. In 1951 the Twenty second Amendment was added to the Constitution. Section 1 of that amendment begins as follows : 

No person shall be elected to the office of the President more than twice, and no person who has held the office of President, or acted as President, for more than two years of a term to which some other person was elected President shall be elected to the office of President more than once.
 

 12. 

George Washington said that a person should not serve as president for more than two terms. All presidents followed that informal standard until _____ took office and broke the tradition.
a.
Harry Truman
c.
Theodore Roosevelt
b.
Dwight Eisenhower
d.
Franklin Roosevelt
 

 13. 

Which amendment to the Constitution fixed to term of office for the president to two terms
a.
17th
c.
21st
b.
18th
d.
22nd
 

 14. 

The original constitution said
a.
set term limits to two terms
c.
set the term of office to 6 years
b.
did not say how many times a person can run for president
d.
set the term of office to the same number of years as the senate
 
 
Compensation

A president receives a salary, determined by Congress, which cannot be increased or decreased during a given term of office. Currently, the president receives $200,000 a year in salary and $50,000 a year for travel, entertainment, and other official expenses.

Of course, the president receives many other special benefits . One is the right to live in the White House, a luxurious 132-room mansion on 18.3 acres of land in the heart of the nation's capital . The White House is equipped with a staff of more than eighty persons, including chefs, gardeners, maids, butlers, and a personal tailor. It has a tennis court, a swimming pool, bowling lanes, and a private movie theater. The president is also provided with a special fleet of automobiles, jetliners, and helicopters, including the presidential jet, Air Force One. In addition, the president has the use of Camp David, a resort hideaway in the Catoctin Mountains of Maryland; medical and dental care; a large suite of offices, including the Oval Office ; a large staff; and Secret Service protection for his family. The president does, of course, pay taxes, just like other citizens of the United States .
 

 15. 

Which statement is true
a.
The president receives a high salary but very few additional benefits
c.
The president has to pay for his residence in the White House
b.
The president has to pay for his own health and dental benefits
d.
none of these statements are true
 
 
Presidential Succession

Eight presidents have died in office . Four died of natural causes, and another four died from assassins' bullets. One president, Richard Nixon, was forced to resign (Nixon resigned on August 9, 1974) . Because of the possibility that a president will not be able to serve a full term, it is very important that an order of succession to the office of president be established . An order of succession is a legal procedure by which government leaders will succeed to the presidency should the president die, become disabled, or be removed from office .

Order of Succession

The Constitution originally said only that if the president died or could no longer serve in office, the "powers and duties" of the office were to be carried out by the vice president. It did not indicate that the vice president would actually become president. In 1841, however, after the death of President William Henry Harrison, Vice President John Tyler not only took over Harrison's duties but also became president. Thus began a tradition of vice presidents' assuming the presidency.

In 1967, a few years after the assassination of President John E Kennedy, the Twenty-fifth Amendment was passed to officially settle the question of presidential succession . The amendment says that the vice president does indeed become president when the office is vacant . Because the vice presidency is then vacant, the new president chooses a new vice president, subject to a majority vote of both chambers of Congress.

The Twenty-fifth Amendment was used for the first time in 1973 when Vice President Spiro Agnew resigned from office. President Richard Nixon named Gerald Ford as his new vice president, and Ford's nomination was approved by Congress. A year later, when President Nixon resigned from office, Vice President Ford became president, and Ford nominated Nelson Rockefeller to be vice president. Congress again approved the nomination. Gerald Ford thereby became the first person in the history of the republic to become president without having been elected as either vice president or president. 

The order of succession following the vice president was fixed by Congress in the Presidential Succession Act of 1947 .

Not everyone agrees with the current order of succession after the vice president. The next in line is the Speaker of the House, whose political party could be different from that of the president . A change in parties would weaken continuity in the office. For this reason, some argue that the heads of the cabinet departments, who were appointed by the president, should follow the vice president in the order of succession.
 

 16. 

Formally established the rule that the Vice President should take office if the President dies.
a.
original Constitution
c.
25th Amendment
b.
Presidential Succession Act of 1947 .
d.
21st Amendment
 

 17. 

Who becomes President if the President and Vice President are both unable to serve?
a.
Secretary of State
c.
Senior Senator in the same party as the President
b.
Speaker of the House
d.
Senior House member in the same party as the President
 

 18. 

Why do some people object to the Speaker of the House being third in line to take office if the President and Vice President are unable to serve?
a.
The Speaker usually does not have enough political experience
c.
The Speaker usually does not have enough administrative experience
b.
The Speaker might be from the same party as the former president and establish too much power in the executive branch
d.
The Speaker might be from a different party and change the policies of the former president too much
 
 
Presidential Disability

The Twenty-fifth Amendment also describes the steps to be followed should a president become disabled while in office . The amendment provides that the vice president shall become acting president under one of two conditions: (1) if the president informs Congress of an inability to perform in office or (2) if the vice president and a majority of the cabinet inform Congress, in writing, that the president is disabled . In either situation, the president may resume the powers and duties of the office by informing Congress that no disability exists . If, however, the vice president and a majority of the cabinet contend that the president has not recovered, Congress has twenty one days to decide the issue by a two-thirds vote in the House and Senate.

Presidents have become disabled in office on a few occasions. James Garfield lingered for eighty days before he died from an assassin's bullet in 1881 . Woodrow Wilson suffered a paralytic stroke in 1919 and was an invalid for the rest of his second term. Dwight Eisenhower had several temporary but serious illnesses while in office, including a heart attack in 1955 and a mild stroke in 1957.

When President Ronald Reagan underwent surgery for removal of a cancerous growth on July 13, 1985, he informally followed the provisions of the Twenty-fifth Amendment when he temporarily transferred power to Vice President George Bush. Just before the operation began, Reagan signed letters to the Speaker of the House and the president pro tem of the Senate indicating that the vice president "shall discharge those powers and duties in my stead commencing with the administration of anesthesia to me." When he recovered from surgery later in the day, Reagan transmitted another letter to both officials announcing that he was again in charge. Most legal experts saw Reagan's acts as the first official use of this provision of the Twenty-fifth Amendment.
 

 19. 

If the President becomes disabled, who needs to be informed of the intention to remove him from office during the disability?
a.
The Vice President
c.
The Congress
b.
The Cabinet
d.
The Supreme Court
 
 
The Office of Vice President

During most of American history, the office of vice president has been seen as a fairly insignificant position. Indeed, it has been avoided by some ambitious politicians . In 1848, Daniel Webster declined the Whig Party's nomination as vice presidential candidate by saying, "I do not propose to be buried until I am dead."

Despite the slighting of the vice presidency, the office is important . As John Adams also said, "I am vice president . In this I am nothing, but I may be everything." If the president should die, become disabled, or be removed from office, the vice president becomes our new national leader.

Duties

The vice president is given only two duties by the Constitution . The first duty is to preside over the Senate. Aside from casting a tie-breaking vote, however, this responsibility is mainly ceremonial. Recent vice presidents have usually turned much of this job over to the president pro tem of the Senate.

As you have learned, another vice-presidential duty under the Twenty-fifth Amendment is to help decide whether the president is disabled and to assume the duties of the presidency if necessary.
 

 20. 

Which is a duty of the Vice President?
a.
Assume office if the President cannot serve
c.
both of these are formal duties
b.
Vote in case of a tie in Senate Vote
d.
both are informal duties
 

 21. 

The Vice President has no part in determining if the President is disabled because that would be a conflict of interest
a.
true only the President and Congress can determine if he is disabled
b.
false -
 
 
Qualifications and Compensation

The official qualifications for vice president are the same as those for president . A vice president must be a natural-born citizen, at least thirty-five years of age, and a resident of the United States for at least fourteen years. The vice president receives a salary of $175,400 a year, plus a yearly expense allowance . The official residence of the vice president is a mansion on the grounds of the Washington Naval Observatory. The vice president has an office in the White House and in the Capitol, each with a large staff; special transportation  , including the official vice-presidential plane, Air Force Two; and protection by the Secret Service.
 

 22. 

The President has to be a natural born citizen of the U.S. but the Vice President can be foreign born.
a.
true
b.
false
 

 23. 

The formal qualifications for the Vice President are the same as those for the President
a.
true
b.
false
 
 
Selection of the Vice President

The selection process normally begins at the party's national conventions when the presidential nominees name their running mates. Often, the choice of a running mate is influenced by the need to balance the ticket in order to improve the presidential candidate's prospects of winning. Thus, the vice-presidential candidate often comes from a region of the country or a wing of the party that is different from that of the presidential candidate . If the presidential nominee is from the South, the vice-presidential nominee may be from the North or West. If the presidential nominee comes from an urban background, the vice-presidential nominee may come from a rural background

Like the president, the vice president is officially elected by the electoral college and serves a four-year term . Unlike the president, however, the vice president has no limits on the number of terms he or she may serve . The vice president is not subject to removal from office by the president.
 

 24. 

The Vice President is selected to run for office
a.
at the national conventions
c.
in the general election
b.
in the primary elections
d.
after the president is elected
 

 25. 

Who elects the Vice President?
a.
the Senate
c.
the popular vote
b.
the Electoral College
d.
the Congress
 

 26. 

If the President decides he does not like the Vice President he can remove him from office.
a.
true
c.
true if the House agrees
b.
false
 
 
More Involvement?

The assassination of President John E Kennedy in 1963 and attempts on the lives of President Gerald Ford and President Ronald Reagan have focused more public attention on the office of vice president. Since the time of President Eisenhower, presidents have begun to take their vice presidents more seriously, involving them in some activities to  represent the president overseas, take part in cabinet meetings, and serve on the National Security Council and on various commissions. By becoming more involved, the vice president assumes a slightly more influential role in the administration and is more qualified to take over the presidency if necessary.

Vice presidents become much more visible to the public during a president's second term. The reason is obvious. The president usually wants the vice president to become the next president and so starts giving the vice president more responsibilities. During the next presidential campaign, the vice president can point to this experience as a qualification for election
 

 27. 

In the past people ignored the Vice President. Today people are more focused on the Vice President and the office has been given an expanded role by the President. Why?
a.
The modern threats to the President
c.
the media
b.
The increase in U.S. population
d.
party politics
 

 28. 

Why do people pay more attention to the Vice President during the second term of the President?
a.
the VP may be a potential Presidential candidate
c.
he is better known by the people and the media
b.
the VP has more experience in the job
d.
the Constitution expands the role of the VP during his second term
 

 29. 

Who is the current Vice President of the United States?
a.
Richard Cheney
d.
John Ashcroft
b.
Joe Biden
e.
Russ Fiengold
c.
Bill Fisk
f.
Albert Gore
 



 
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