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Еxecutive branch
By Ira Sahanda
11B form
The Executive Branch is headed by the President
and the Vice President. In addition, it includes the
executive departments, which deal with general
topics, and the heads of departments, who are
known as Secretaries. Each Department, in turn, is
divided into a number of bodies, which are known
as agencies, services, commissions, councils,
bureaus, authorities, offices, administrations, and
The President
The President is the highest elected official in
the United States.
The Constitution grants the President a numbers of
powers, including:
 to implement laws passed by Congress.
 Representing the United States in foreign affairs.
Command of the armed forces.
 Veto power over bills passed by both houses of
Congress. Congress can only override a presidential
veto by a 2/3 vote.
 Nominating Supreme Court justices, executive
officials, ambassadors and other public officers.
 Removing high-level executive officers at any time
and for any reason. The President's power to remove
lower-level executive officials may be limited by
Congress, however.
 Pardoning any person who has been convicted of a
crime, except impeachment and civil contempt.
If the President vacates office for any reason whatsoever,
the Vice President becomes President. After the Vice
President, the line of succession is as follows:
 Speaker of the House of Representatives
 President pro tempore of the Senate
 Secretary of State
 Secretary of the Treasury
 Secretary of Defense
 Attorney General (Department of Justice)
 Secretary of the Interior
 Secretary of Agriculture
 Secretary of Commerce
 Secretary of Labor
 Secretary of Health and Human Services
 Secretary of Housing and Urban Development
 Secretary of Transportation
 Secretary of Energy
 Secretary of Education
 Secretary of Veterans Affairs
 Secretary of Homeland Security
The Vice President
The Vice President's only executive function in the Constitution is to become
President in the event that the President dies or is incapacitated. The 25th
Amendment provides that this may occur when:
"the President transmits to the President pro tempore of the Senate and the
Speaker of the House of Representatives his written declaration that he is unable
to discharge the powers and duties of his office, and until he transmits to them a
written declaration to the contrary;" or
"the Vice President and a majority of either the principal officers of the executive
departments or of such other body as Congress may by law provide, transmit to
the President pro tempore of the Senate and the Speaker of the House of
Representatives their written declaration that the President is unable to
discharge the powers and duties of his office."
Additionally, "whenever there is a vacancy in the office of the Vice President, the
President shall nominate a Vice President who shall take office upon
confirmation by a majority vote of both Houses of Congress."
In practice, the Vice President often takes an active role in policy making.
The Vice President also serves as president of the Senate, but cannot vote
except to break a tie.
Each state is entitled to choose a number of Electors equal to the
number of Representatives and Senators it elects to Congress. Thus,
a state will choose no less than three electors- two for the Senators,
and one for the minimum of one Representative.
 The state may choose its Electors in any way it pleases. However, all
the states allow the people to choose all Electors.
 If, however, no candidate received a majority, then the House of
Representatives would choose one of the top five candidates as
President. In voting for President, each state casts one block vote.
In any case, whichever other candidate
holds the greatest number of votes other
than the candidate elected President
becomes Vice President. In case of a
tie for second-place, the Senate elects the
Vice President.
Executive departments
At present, there are fifteen executive departments.
They are the departments of:
 Department of Agriculture (USDA)
 Department of Commerce (DOC)
 Department of Defense (DOD)
 Department of Education (ED)
 Department of Energy (DOE)
 Department of Health and Human Services (HHS)
 Department of Homeland Security (DHS)
 Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD)
 Department of Justice (DOJ)
 Department of Labor (DOL)
 Department of State (DOS)
 Department of the Interior (DOI)
 Department of the Treasury
 Department of Transportation (DOT)
 Department of Veterans Affairs (VA)
 Each department is subdivided into a number of agencies,
bureaus and other divisions.
Executive agencies
In addition to the Cabinet departments, there
are certain independent bodies which are not
part of any department, but report directly to
the Executive Office of the President. These
 Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)
 National Aeronautics and Space Administration
 Office of Management and Budget (OMB)
 Office of National Drug Control Policy (ONDCP)
 Office of the United States Trade Representative
The Cabinet currently consists of the Vice President, the White
House Chief of Staff, the heads of each executive department,
and the heads of the EPA, OMB, ONDCP and USTR.
Thank you for your attention!
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