American Politics Information.

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American Politics Information.

Post by 1916 on Wed Jan 13, 2010 12:11 pm

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Politics_of_the_United_States

The United States is a presidential, federal republic, in which the President of the United States (the head of state and head of government), Congress, and judiciary share powers reserved to the national government, and the federal government shares sovereignty with the state governments. Federal and state elections generally take place within a two-party system, although this is not enshrined in law.

The executive branch is headed by President and is independent of the legislature. Legislative power is vested in the two chambers of Congress, the Senate and the House of Representatives. Judicial power is exercised by the judicial branch (or judiciary), composed of the Supreme Court and lower federal courts. The judiciary's function is to interpret the United States Constitution as well as federal laws and regulations. This includes resolving disputes between the executive and legislative branches. The federal government of the United States was established by the Constitution. American politics has been dominated by two parties, the Democratic Party and the Republican Party, since the American Civil War, although other parties have also existed.

Major differences between the political system of the United States and that of most other developed democracies are the power of the Senate as the upper house of the legislature, the wide scope of power of the Supreme Court, the separation of powers between the legislature and the executive government, and the dominance of the two main parties – the United States being one of the world's developed democracies in which third parties have the least political influence.
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Re: American Politics Information.

Post by RobodeValera on Wed Jan 13, 2010 6:26 pm

I studied the topic of American politics last year, it's certainly more interesting than Irish politics, but I've always taken issue with the division of the house and the power of the Supreme Court (speaking as a legal student)

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Re: American Politics Information.

Post by Justinian on Thu Jan 14, 2010 1:55 am

I just think there is something very, very wrong if a country has population over 150 million people and yet has only two very similar parties. There is no political diversity.
Also Robo, any chance you could expand on what you said.

Be honest, was the second part of your username added to annoy me? lol lol!
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Re: American Politics Information.

Post by RobodeValera on Thu Jan 14, 2010 3:13 pm

Well, it's no secret that the division in the House slows down bills, and there's regularly crossing of party lines. It's less like over here, where politicians generally side with their own party, it depends on level of loyalty said member has to his party

The main issue over the Supreme Court is that of "judical activism". Basically, the court having a say in political matters where under the idea of seperation of powers, they should have no power. Look at how they made the final decision on the whole Bush v Gore debacle, essentially picking Bush in the end, which says a lot about their percieved "impartiallity". I suppose it's because most Supreme Court appointments are political appointments so the Chief Justice can be an extremist Republican or Liberal half the time.

I'll expand more if needs be. I'm basically just a stickler for the Seperation of Powers. And I was hardly going to call myself RoboEnda, now was I? Shocked

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Re: American Politics Information.

Post by ronws on Fri Jan 15, 2010 6:46 pm

I wish to offer a refinement to the original post, as this was a concern to me, concerning Copenhagen. If president Obama were to sign the Copenhagen Treaty, which did call for the UN to organize a world government to enforce it, would he be signing away our sovereignty as the USA?

Short answer, no. After reading the US Constitution a few times, there is no establishment in language of a federal or central sovereignty. There is, however, specific language protecting the sovereignty of the states of the Union. The president may make treaties (or sign them) but it requires a 2/3 Senate Majority vote to honor the treaty, something Obama can't get right now. I heard it said that he could make an end-run around it by getting a simple majority (greater than 50 percent) in both the Senate and the House but I doubt it, since it is not in the Constitution and would require an amendment (which would have to pass both House and Senate, and that definitely won't pass) to even contemplate that.

The Constitution does specfically forbid the federal government from removing or giving away a state's sovereignty and requires the president to protect the sovereignty of the states. The reason America does not have a federal sovereignty is because we are a union or collection of independent states, with some of them, such as Texas, having previousl been it's own country (The Lone Star Republic of Texas). Any state that was annexed had to first pass a majority vote in that territory before a representative could then claim the territory's desire to become a state in the union.

What this means is that even if Obama signed the treaty and even if the Senate passed it, it would still violate the Constitution because it would be surrendering the sovereignty of member states to this soi-disant world government. Also, it would be hard to enforce because our banks are privately owned, though federally insured, primarily as a way to attract investors and achieve some protection from the federal government. So, just because Obama could have signed the treaty doesn't mean that American Bank of Texas has to submit to the UN, by means of protection of the states and the citizens therein.

Such an action would be a violation of the rule that the fed and the president must protect the rights of states. This could lead to an impeachment of the president, for failure to fulfill the duties of office. And if he tried to force it, it could lead to a second civil war and the balkanization of America, into independent countries, like the former USSR. In fact, the first civil war was largely about state's rights. What is often overlooked in history is that Lincoln freed the slaves in the south before he did so in the north. And many southerners weren't that keen on keeping slavery as it decimated the labor market for whites. If a plantation owner could get away with owning slaves, how could a free man get a job. There were many southerners who wished for an end to slavery for that reason as well as the violation of humans that is slavery. Lincoln and his crew were not lilly white.

On the other hand, with Obama being a statist or centralist, he may assume he possesses a sovereignty.
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