Lesson 15 British And American Governments


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Lesson 15 British And American Governments

  1. 1. British and American Governments A Brief Introduction
  2. 2. Comparison <ul><li>United States </li></ul><ul><li>The United States is a federal government . </li></ul><ul><ul><li>a government where power is divided between different branches (divisions) </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Rules of government stated in the Constitution </li></ul><ul><li>The United Kingdom </li></ul><ul><li>The British government is a constitutional monarchy . </li></ul><ul><ul><li>a government where the power of the king (or queen) is restrained by the parliament </li></ul></ul>
  3. 3. American Government Basic Terms and Vocabulary
  4. 4. The Three Branches of the U.S. Federal Government (p. 241) <ul><li>Executive Branch – President </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Vice-President </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Cabinet </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Legislative Branch – Congress </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Senate and the House of Representatives </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Judicial Branch – Supreme Court </li></ul>
  5. 5. Why 3 Branches? <ul><li>This system is designed to “ balance the powers ” of the government </li></ul><ul><ul><li>“ System of Checks and Balances” </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Intends to prevent a branch from becoming too powerful </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Example: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Congress can pass a law </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>The President can agree with it </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>However, the Supreme Court can declare the law unconstitutional </li></ul></ul>
  6. 6. Executive Branch (p. 242) <ul><li>The President </li></ul><ul><li>Powers: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Head of government (chief of state) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Commands the armed forces (military) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Foreign policy </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Power to veto (reject) laws created by Congress </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Unless Congress is able to receive a 2/3rds majority vote </li></ul></ul></ul>
  7. 7. Legislative Branch (Congress) (p. 245) <ul><li>Senate </li></ul><ul><li>100 voting members </li></ul><ul><ul><li>2 from each state </li></ul></ul><ul><li>6 year terms in office </li></ul><ul><li>House of Representatives </li></ul><ul><li>435 voting members </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Different number of representatives from each state </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>This number depends on the population </li></ul></ul><ul><li>2 year terms in office </li></ul>
  8. 8. Legislative Branch <ul><li>Congress (Senate and House of Representatives) </li></ul><ul><li>Powers: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Make laws </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Defense </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Declare war </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Raise and support armies </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Levy (impose) and collect taxes </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Coin money </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Power to impeach President </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>To challenge President (when trying to remove President) </li></ul></ul></ul>
  9. 9. Judicial Branch (p. 250) <ul><li>The highest court in the United States </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Led by the Chief Justice (highest judge) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>8 other Justices (or judges) form the court </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><li>Interpret laws in the Constitution </li></ul><ul><li>Can overturn (change) old laws that are unconstitutional </li></ul>
  10. 10. Famous Supreme Court Cases <ul><li>Brown vs. Board of Education (1954) </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Ended segregation in U.S. schools </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Roe vs. Wade (1973) </li></ul><ul><ul><li>The right to abortion </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Engel vs. Vitale (1962) </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Banned school prayer </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Right to freedom of religion </li></ul></ul></ul>
  11. 11. State and Local Governments (p. 261) <ul><li>According to the Constitution , any powers not held by the federal government are held by the state </li></ul><ul><li>Each state has its own constitution and branches </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Executive Branch – Governor </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Legislative – Each state has representatives that can create laws (State Congress) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Judicial – Each state has their own “Supreme Court” </li></ul></ul>
  12. 12. British Government Basic Terms and Vocabulary
  13. 13. Constitutional Monarchy <ul><li>The King or Queen is limited in power </li></ul><ul><li>In Britain, the Prime Minister and his cabinet holds most of the power </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Similar to the President </li></ul></ul><ul><li>The Parliament holds most of the power </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Similar to the U.S. Congress which we discussed </li></ul></ul>
  14. 14. Parliament <ul><li>Like the U.S. Congress, the Parliament has the power to create laws </li></ul><ul><li>House of Lords </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Was once more powerful than the Commons </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Began after the “Magna Carta” </li></ul></ul><ul><li>House of Commons </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Most powerful “House” </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Representatives are voted for by British citizens </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Holds powers very similar to the U.S. Congress </li></ul></ul>