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Where Does Congress Power Come From? Article I Article I The U.S. Supreme Court tells them what they are not allowed to do… The U.S. Supreme Court tells.

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Presentation on theme: "Where Does Congress Power Come From? Article I Article I The U.S. Supreme Court tells them what they are not allowed to do… The U.S. Supreme Court tells."— Presentation transcript:

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3 Where Does Congress Power Come From? Article I Article I The U.S. Supreme Court tells them what they are not allowed to do… The U.S. Supreme Court tells them what they are not allowed to do…

4 Powers of Congress Congress has 3 kinds of power: Congress has 3 kinds of power: Expressed – directly written in the Constitution Expressed – directly written in the Constitution Implied – reasonably assumed based on the expressed powers Implied – reasonably assumed based on the expressed powers Inherent – nowhere in the Constitution, but always held by national governments Inherent – nowhere in the Constitution, but always held by national governments

5 Interpreting the Constitution There are two major schools of thought on how much power Congress should have: There are two major schools of thought on how much power Congress should have: Strict vs. Loose interpretation Strict vs. Loose interpretation

6 Interpreting the Constitution Strict Constructionist – believe that Congress should only have the expressed powers and no more Strict Constructionist – believe that Congress should only have the expressed powers and no more Support very limited government Support very limited government Believe that individual liberty is most important Believe that individual liberty is most important First SC was Thomas Jefferson First SC was Thomas Jefferson

7 Interpreting the Constitution Liberal Constructionist (living constitution) – believe that we should interpret the Constitution loosely, so that Congress could have more power Liberal Constructionist (living constitution) – believe that we should interpret the Constitution loosely, so that Congress could have more power Support an active, larger government Support an active, larger government First LC was Alexander Hamilton First LC was Alexander Hamilton

8 I hate you. Get out of my face, Dawg.

9 Expressed Powers: Money and Commerce Congress is given the expressed power to lay and collect taxes Congress is given the expressed power to lay and collect taxes Tax – charge levied by government on people or property to meet public needs Tax – charge levied by government on people or property to meet public needs

10 What are the Limits to the Taxing Power? Cannot be for private benefit Cannot be for private benefit Cannot tax exports Cannot tax exports Direct taxes must be paid to states equally according to population Direct taxes must be paid to states equally according to population All indirect taxes must be the same across the country All indirect taxes must be the same across the country

11 2 Kinds of Taxes Direct Tax – paid by the person it is imposed upon Direct Tax – paid by the person it is imposed upon Income tax, Property tax Income tax, Property tax

12 2 Kinds of Taxes Indirect tax – imposed on one person, but paid by another Indirect tax – imposed on one person, but paid by another Cigarette Tax, Gas Tax Cigarette Tax, Gas Tax

13 Expressed Powers: Borrowing Congress has the power to borrow money on the credit of the United States Congress has the power to borrow money on the credit of the United States We do this A LOT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! We do this A LOT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

14 Deficit and Debt Deficit – the amount of money spent over budget that must be borrowed this year Deficit – the amount of money spent over budget that must be borrowed this year Deficit for $1.5 trillion !!!!! Nearly tripled in less than a decade Deficit for $1.5 trillion !!!!! Nearly tripled in less than a decade SUPER COMMITTEE ANSWERS?????? SUPER COMMITTEE ANSWERS??????

15 Deficit and Debt Debt – grand total of all money borrowed and still owed to this point, plus interest Debt – grand total of all money borrowed and still owed to this point, plus interest Debt in 2012 – Over $15 Trillion Debt in 2012 – Over $15 Trillion + interest…

16 Expressed Powers: Commerce Congress has the power to regulate commerce with foreign nations, and among the several states, and with the Indian tribes Congress has the power to regulate commerce with foreign nations, and among the several states, and with the Indian tribes This power gets used to do all sorts of other seemingly unrelated things This power gets used to do all sorts of other seemingly unrelated things

17 For Example: Passing the Civil Rights Act of 1964, prohibiting racial discrimination Passing the Civil Rights Act of 1964, prohibiting racial discrimination Building highways and freeways Building highways and freeways Building hydroelectric dams Building hydroelectric dams This is all a result of Gibbons v. Ogden, 1824 This is all a result of Gibbons v. Ogden, 1824

18 Gibbons v. Ogden, 1824 New York had given Robert Fulton exclusive rights to operate a steamboat on the Hudson River New York had given Robert Fulton exclusive rights to operate a steamboat on the Hudson River Fulton gave Ogden a permit to operate the steamboat for him Fulton gave Ogden a permit to operate the steamboat for him Gibbons had a license from the U.S. government to operate a steamboat in the same area Gibbons had a license from the U.S. government to operate a steamboat in the same area

19 What are the Constitutional Issues? Whose permit is supreme? Whose permit is supreme? What does commerce mean? What does commerce mean?

20 In to Save the Day…

21 Gibbons v. Ogden, 1824 The court interpret commerce very broadly The court interpret commerce very broadly Virtually all commercial interactions Virtually all commercial interactions Thus, Congress can regulate just about anything…Obamacare? Thus, Congress can regulate just about anything…Obamacare?

22 Expressed Powers: Currency Currency – coins and paper bills used as money Currency – coins and paper bills used as money U.S. Currency is now legal tender – the government requires all people to accept it as payment U.S. Currency is now legal tender – the government requires all people to accept it as payment

23 Expressed Powers: Bankruptcy Congress has the power to establish uniform Laws on the subject of Bankruptcies Congress has the power to establish uniform Laws on the subject of Bankruptcies

24 Expressed Powers: Bankruptcy Bankruptcy – person is declared incapable of repaying debts, so all their assets are distributed to the people they owe, and then they are free of debt Bankruptcy – person is declared incapable of repaying debts, so all their assets are distributed to the people they owe, and then they are free of debt Ive lost everything!

25 Expressed Powers: Foreign Relations Declare war Declare war However, they have abdicated the power to wage war to the president However, they have abdicated the power to wage war to the president

26 How Congress Lost This Power Congress passed the Gulf of Tonkin Resolution, allowing the Pres. to use troops without Congress permission Congress passed the Gulf of Tonkin Resolution, allowing the Pres. to use troops without Congress permission Tried to take power back with War Powers Resolution (1973) Tried to take power back with War Powers Resolution (1973)

27 Why Would Congress Do This? Congress doesnt want to accept responsibility for mistakes Congress doesnt want to accept responsibility for mistakes

28 Other Expressed Powers Naturalization – setting the rules to become a citizen Naturalization – setting the rules to become a citizen Postal Power Postal Power Copyrights and Patents Copyrights and Patents Weights and Measures – making sure theyre uniform nationally Weights and Measures – making sure theyre uniform nationally

29 Other Expressed Powers Power over territories – Congress decides whether territories become states or not Power over territories – Congress decides whether territories become states or not Eminent Domain – Congress can take private property for public use Eminent Domain – Congress can take private property for public use Judicial Power – Congress sets up the court system Judicial Power – Congress sets up the court system

30 Implied Powers Where do implied powers come from? – The Necessary and Proper Clause Where do implied powers come from? – The Necessary and Proper Clause Tells Congress they can make any laws for carrying out their expressed powers Tells Congress they can make any laws for carrying out their expressed powers

31 McCulloch v. Maryland (1819) First case that tested the Necessary and Proper Clause First case that tested the Necessary and Proper Clause Congress created a national bank, and Maryland hated it Congress created a national bank, and Maryland hated it Maryland placed a tax on all national bank transactions to try and put it out of business Maryland placed a tax on all national bank transactions to try and put it out of business

32 In to Save the Day…

33 John Marshall and the Court Say: So long as Congress hold to the spirit of the Constitution, are okay So long as Congress hold to the spirit of the Constitution, are okay This is a liberal constructionist position This is a liberal constructionist position Since McCulloch, Congress has used many implied powers Since McCulloch, Congress has used many implied powers

34 Non-legislative Powers Propose Constitutional Amendments with 2/3 vote in both houses Propose Constitutional Amendments with 2/3 vote in both houses House of Reps. chooses the president if no candidate gets a majority in the electoral college House of Reps. chooses the president if no candidate gets a majority in the electoral college Senate chooses vice-president Senate chooses vice-president

35 Non-legislative Powers Impeachment – means to bring criminal charges against Impeachment – means to bring criminal charges against Impeachment requires majority vote in the House Impeachment requires majority vote in the House

36 Non-legislative Powers After House votes, trial in Senate begins… After House votes, trial in Senate begins… Chief Justice acts as judge, Senate acts as jury Chief Justice acts as judge, Senate acts as jury

37 Non-legislative Powers A conviction, which would remove the pres. from office, requires a 2/3 vote in the Senate A conviction, which would remove the pres. from office, requires a 2/3 vote in the Senate

38 Executive Powers Appointment – President appoints officials with majority approval of Senate Appointment – President appoints officials with majority approval of Senate

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40 Executive Powers Treaties – President makes treaties, but Senate must approve with 2/3 vote Treaties – President makes treaties, but Senate must approve with 2/3 vote


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