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  1.  “Independent”


    What is “Independent” and who is in charge?


Subject Law and governance Pages 3 Style APA


Balance and Separation of Powers in the US Constitution

Limits on Executive Powers

            One of the most contradictory elements of the United States governance structure is the behemoth power assumed by the presidency regardless of the initial intention of its framers, which deemed the congress superior in terms of authority. Given the express language used in Article I, particularly in Section 3 and 7, the US President controls a significant portion of Congress actions. However, this power is limited by the “Necessary and Proper Clause” (Article 1.Section 8.C18). Clause 18 offers Congress the legislative power to impose limits on the presidency based on the implementation of actions that might seem “necessary and proper” in safeguarding the constitution. The scope of this clause is not worth underestimation given the fact that it has given Congress the power to implement impeachment motions against leaders in the judicial and executive arms of the government (Rossum, Tarr, & Munoz, n.d). So far, the Congress has impeached at least 4 federal judges, and it has executed similar actions against the presidency during Bill Clinton’s, Andrew Johnson’s, and Donald Trump’s tenures. Clearly, this clause offers the only significant constitutional limit on the President’s immense powers.


What is “Independent”, and who is in Charge?

The United States executive has a significant power over the Congress inasmuch as the Constitution attempts to dilute it through checks and balances. When taken into perspective, independent regulatory commissions can be rightly categorized among the Constitutional bodies installed for this purpose. However, the President’s prerogative powers under the fourth clause of Section 3 in Article II overrides every potential power of the so-called ‘independent-committees’. Since the chief executive is expected to “… take care that the laws are faithfully executed, he is justified to appoint or remove members of such committees if he/she deems it right for the United States as far as the Constitution and the people are concerned. This prerogative power also allows the president to exercise discretion when making such a move, if he/she deems it crucial in upholding the separation of powers, promotion of security (diplomatic, national, or military), or safeguarding executive functions. It is important to note that Article II, Section 2 requires the president to seek advice and consent from the Congress in matters relating to the appointment and dismissal of public officials. Even so, the President’s veto powers can allow him/her to overrule any decision by the Congress, thus, implying that the executive is the ultimate power in charge.


Executive Power

            Surely, when the Articles of Confederation were being framed, the executive branch of the federal government was inexistent. First and foremost, it should be understood that Presidential powers increased significantly following the enhanced value of the United States Foreign Policy, and the augmentation of federal operations at large. Second, the Constitution offers the Presidency more power than Governors given their position as the nation’s chief executives. One of these powers include the capacity to operate in office for longer periods compared to governors (Rossum, Tarr, & Munoz, n.d). Other powers include the appointment and dismissal of federal officials in the executive and judiciary. Such powers are necessary since the President is in charge of the entire nation while governors are only accountable to their respective states. This level of separation is necessary in the spirit of accountability, consistency, and efficacy. Logic holds that a supreme executive authority is highly likely to yield positive governance outcomes compared to a scenario where conflicting interests and powers characterize the relationship between the state and federal governments. When viewed from such a lens, the President’s superior position is not only constitutional but also sound in matters pertaining to leadership.



Rossum, Ralph, Tarr, A.G., & Munoz, V. (n.d). American Constitutional Law: The Structure of Government. Vol. I, 11th ed. New York: Routledge. ISBN 978- 0367233334.

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