Checks and Balances and Separation of Powers

Checks and Balances and Separation of Powers

Storyboard Text

  • Checks on the other branches Judicial: Federal courts may declare executive branch actions unconstitutional. Federal courts can declare laws passed by congress unconstitutional.
  • Historic example of Separation of Powers - Judicial Power: Biden v Texas: 5-4 decision, The Biden administration has the authority to reverse a Trump-era policy that requires asylum seekers to remain in Mexico while their cases are reviewed in U.S. courts, the majority said.
  • The watergate scandal: Watergate was a plot by president Nixon to spy on Democratic opponents for the next Presidential election. Nixon’s aides broke into the Watergate hotel and were caught by police.
  • Historic example of Checks and Balances - Judicial Branch: The release of the tapes was a question for the Constitution, so the SCOTUS decided that Nixon must release the tapes based on the Constitution.
  • The Checks made by the Executive: The President can veto bills passed by congress. The president also can appoint supreme court justices and other federal judges.
  • The definition of Separation of Powers and Checks and Balances is each Branch can limit the power of the other two. This helps create a balance of power among the 3 or otherwise known as Checks and Balances.
  • Historic example of Checks and Balances - Executive Branch: When it was discovered that Nixon had tapes of his conversations, he used executive privilege to block the release.
  • Historic example of Separation of Powers - Executive Power:Executive Order:Topic: Labor Order: Raising the minimum wage for Federal contract workers from $10.95 to $15/hr.
  • Legislative: Congress can impeach a president for crimes and misconduct. Congress may impeach and remove federal judges from office. Congress can override a veto by a two thirds vote of each chamber
  • Historical example of Checks and Balances - Legislative Branch: When the scandal news was broken by the Washington post, Congress used it’s power to set up an investigation.
  • Legislative Power: Clean Air Amendments (1970): Played a key role in the Government’s authority over the environment. Signaled that environmental protection and economic growth could happen at the same time.
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