United States History


U.S. Government

Capitol Hill in Washington D.C.
The United States government operates using a system of checks and balances.  It also has two main political parties, which you can read more about here.  Headquarted in Washington D.C., the American government is comprised of three branches: Judicial, Executive, and Legislative.  One way to remember these three "branches" of government is by using an acronym such as JEL or LEJ.  (EJL is not recommended since it is difficult to pronounce phonetically)  Let's take a closer look at each branch of government.

The Judicial branch takes care of most situations involving courts, cases, and legal matters.  Judge John Marshall was one of the most influential players in the judicial system.  Marshall, an American statesman and jurist, established judicial review.  According to judicial review, judges and some other people were able to deem whether a law was constitutional or unconstitutional.  Marshall helped make the Supreme Court a center of power and he died in 1835 after suffering severe contusions from a stagecoach accident. 

The Executive branch refers a lot to the president.  While some people are unsure of the exact powers of the president, such as his ability to pass and veto laws and his ability to declare war, many people do know what the exact powers are. 

The Legislative branch of government is in charge of passing laws.  Many politicians attempt to filibuster, or obstruct, the passing of laws.  Without a legislative system, it is said that the U.S. would not have much order because there would be no laws.  This is true.  Therefore, a legislative branch is vital, or necessary, or even essential, for the country to function with some sense of social order. 

If you're interested in learning about the political parties, click here.

U.S. Political Parties

Although there are two links to this page already in the above paragraphs, it is important to insert another link to the U.S. Political Parties page here so as to increase the likelihood that viewers and scholars will visit it.