Describe one strength of one of the three branches of government.

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In the United States, there are three branches of government. Each branch of government has certain strengths. The strength of Congress is that it makes laws. Many of these laws also deal with spending money. This gives Congress a great deal of power and influence.

One of the strengths of...

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In the United States, there are three branches of government. Each branch of government has certain strengths. The strength of Congress is that it makes laws. Many of these laws also deal with spending money. This gives Congress a great deal of power and influence.

One of the strengths of the executive branch is that the president has many opportunities to get his message to the American people. The president can have news conferences to explain his thinking or his actions. The president’s press secretary holds daily meetings with the press to answer questions about decisions the president has made or actions the president has taken. The president gives a yearly State of the Union speech where he can lay out his plans for the country. This speech is televised nationally and is held with all members of Congress present. The president can also go on national television during times of crisis or emergencies to talk to the American people. No other government official has the number of options and opportunities to get his or her message to the American people. Any comment that the president makes usually gets coverage by the press.

One of the strengths of the judicial branch is the power of judicial review. The Supreme Court has the power to review laws and actions to determine whether they are constitutional. This power forces Congress to consider how the Supreme Court might view a proposed law. The same is true for an executive order that the president might issue. If it was thought that a law or executive action might be declared unconstitutional, it might influence what the final version of the law or executive action would be.

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The great strength of having three branches of government, the executive, legislative, and judicial, is that, when they work correctly, they provide checks on each other, preventing one person or small group of people from amassing too much power. The president must defer to Congress and the courts, Congress to the courts and the president, the courts to Congress and the president.

But this question asks for one strength of one branch of government. One strength of the legislative branch is its ability to pass laws. Because the legislators –– members of Congress and Senators –– are elected democratically by the citizens of the country, the laws they make, ideally, represent the will of the governed.  Also, because Congress crafts these laws, it has the power to shape how the government spends its tax dollars. Through its policies, Congress can redistribute wealth upward or downward for the larger good. It can pass legislation that will help the country to prosper and can create laws that protect the weaker from the stronger. However, it does all this knowing that the judicial branch can review its laws to ensure that they fall within the confines of the Constitution. The president also has the power to veto any bill, though Congress can override the veto. 

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In this answer, I will provide one strength for each of the branches of the United States government.  Those three branches are the legislative branch (Congress), the executive branch (headed by the president), and the judicial branch (headed by the Supreme Court).

The major strength of Congress is its ability to make laws.  No law can be proposed, let alone passed, without the consent of Congress.  This means that Congress has the sole authority, for example, to impose taxes and to allocate money for spending.  Presidents may have big plans and important proposals, but only Congress has the power to make these plans into actual laws.

A major power of the president (and, therefore, of the executive branch) is what Theodore Roosevelt called the “bully pulpit.”  The president is the most famous political figure in the nation. He (or someday she) can command the attention of the public.  The public does not really pay much attention when, for example, Paul Ryan gives a speech about proposed policies, but it does pay more attention when the president speaks.  This gives the president more power to persuade the people than anyone else in our system.

The major power of the Supreme Court is the power of judicial review.  This means that the judicial branch gets to decide what laws are and are not constitutional.  For example, the Supreme Court changed the way our political campaigns are financed when it struck down campaign finance laws in the Citizens United case that was decided in 2010.  The Court also has done things like making segregated schools illegal (Brown, 1954) and declaring that states cannot ban all abortions (Roe, 1973).  The ability to say what the Constitution means gives the judicial branch a great deal of power.

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