2 The Federal Government has 3 main branches LegislativeExecutiveJudicialThe Law-making groupMakes sure laws are enforcedJudges whether laws follow the ConstitutionHeaded by Congress(Senate and House of Representatives)Headed by the PresidentHeaded by the Supreme Court
3 Legislative Branch (Two branches of Congress) The SenateThe House of RepresentativesEach state has 2 Senators(2 each times 50 states = 100 total)Each state has a different amount(based on the population of each state: states with more people have more representatives)435 in the whole country19 from Illinois
4 The 2 Senators from Illinois: Dick Durbin Roland Burris Duties of the Legislative Branch (The Senate and the House of Representatives)Get, think up, and organize ideas for laws.Discuss how to make these ideas into useful bills (potential laws) – or – decide they weren’t good ideas.The Senate approves or disapproves treaties (agreements) with other countries – the president does this, but the Senate has to agree that his treaties are okay.The Senate approves or disapproves Presidential appointments (for: new Supreme Court justices, ambassadors, cabinet members, federal judges, etc…).Suggest amendments to the Constitution.Hold other special “hearings” – like: baseball and steroids, impeachments, etc…)The 2 Senators from Illinois:Dick Durbin Roland BurrisRepresentative from the 8th District of Illinois: Melissa Bean
6 Illinois Congressional Districts Around this area6th – Henry Hyde th – Melissa Bean th – Janice Schakowski10th – Mark Kirk th – Dennis Hastert th – Don Manzullo
7 Duties of the Executive Branch (President, Vice-President, the President’s cabinet) Approves or disapproves of Congressional bills (law ideas).Sees that laws are enforced.Makes treaties (approved by the Senate)Appoints people to government positions (approved by the Senate).Work with Congress on new ideas for lawsAnd… other things that come up.To see the President’s cabinet members – click belowCabinet members
8 Duties of the Judicial Branch (The Supreme Court and the court system) Headed by the Supreme Court, with 9 “justices” including a “chief justice.”Applies the laws to cases that come before it to see if they follow the Constitution.Decide if actions taken by the president and/or Congress are constitutional or not.Also, the Courts of Appeals, District Courts, Bankruptcy Courts, Court of International Trade, Court of Federal Claims, etc…To see a history of Supreme Court Justices, click below
9 Sonia Sotomayor(Summer, 2009)Seated left to right:Anthony M. Kennedy, John Paul Stevens, Chief Justice John G. Roberts, Jr., Antonin Scalia, David H. Souter (Retired: Summer, 2009)Standing left to right:Stephen G. Breyer, Clarence Thomas, Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Samuel Anthony Alito, Jr.