BEFORE YOU READ In the Preamble and Article I, you learned about the powers of Congress.
In Articles 2 and 3, you will read about the powers of the president and the powers of the judiciary.
AS YOU READ Continue to use the chart you began in the last section to take notes on the powers of the executive and the judicial branches of government.
Article 2. The Executive (pages 256–259) What are the powers of the president? Article 2 sets up the executive branch. Section 1.1 creates the offices of the president and the vice- president. It also sets their terms at four years. The president is the leader of the executive branch. The president’s chief responsibility is to execute, or carry out, the laws of the nation.
Section 1.2 sets up the Electoral College to elect the president. The president and vice-president are elected by electors chosen by the states.
Section 1.3 created the original rules for the election of the president. In this system, the electors used only one ballot to elect both the president and the vice-president. The candidate that received the most votes became president. The candidate with the second most votes became vice-president.
This system did not work well. The election of 1796 resulted in a vice-president from a different political party than the president. The election of 1800 resulted in a tie between two candidates of the
Reading Study Guide The Constitution Handbook (pages 256–261) Articles 2 and 3: The Executive and the Judiciary
TERMS & NAMES electoral college Electors chosen by the states to elect the president and vice-president succession Order in which the office of president is filled if it becomes vacant before an election State of the Union Address Message delivered by the president each year Supreme Court Highest federal Article 2: The Executive
court in the United States
Article 3: The Judiciary
same party. The House of Representatives went through many votes before settling the issue. (To prevent such problems from happening again, the 12th Amendment was passed in 1804. It called for separate ballots for president and vice–president.)
The Electoral College is still important. Each state has as many electors as it has senators and representatives in Congress. The candidate that gets the most votes in a state almost always gets all the electoral votes of that state.
Section 1.5 sets the qualifications for the president. To be president, a person must be:
• a natural-born citizen
• 35 years old, and
• a resident of the United States for 14 years. Section 1.6 explains succession, or what happens if a president cannot complete his or her term. The vice- president takes the president’s office if the president is unable to finish the term. The Congress has the power to decide who should become president if neither the president nor vice-president can finish the term.
THE CONSTITUTION 85
Articles 2 and 3: The Executive and the Judiciary continued
86 THE CONSTITUTION...