32 American Government Facts For You To Learn How Your Country Works | Kidadl


32 American Government Facts For You To Learn How Your Country Works

Arts & Crafts
Learn more
Reading & Writing
Learn more
Math & Logic
Learn more
Sports & Active
Learn more
Music & Dance
Learn more
Social & Community
Learn more
Mindful & Reflective
Learn more
Outdoor & Nature
Learn more
Read these Tokyo facts to learn all about the Japanese capital.

A government is a group of people or a system in charge of a state or an organized community.

A government should display authority, be accountable and provide services to the public. It's an entity having considerable administrative and fiscal independence. 

The founding fathers of the United States Government are Benjamin Franklin, George Washington, Alexander Hamilton, James Madison, and Thomas Jefferson.

The United States became the Federal Republic on Sept 17, 1787. Legislative, executive, and judicial branches are Federal Government's branches.

American Government Facts

The U.S. government is governed by the supreme legal document, the United States Constitution, established in 1789, that stipulates the government of the United States as the Federal Republic. Let's explore some more U.S. federal government facts:

  • The U.S. government is one of the biggest governments in the world, with more than two million people working for it.
  • According to the Constitution, the U.S. government works through three levels of government. These include local, state, and federal. The powers which do not come under the federal government are divided between local and state governments. Most citizens have more direct contact with the state and local governments than with the federal.
  • Each state has its own elaborate written constitution and has three branches, the executive, judicial and legislative.
  • Federal power is divided into the legislature, the executive, and the judiciary. The legislative branch changes the old laws and enforces new laws. It is made up of several government agencies and Congress. The legislative branch comprises the two houses of Congress; the Senate and the House of Representatives.
  • The executive branch enforces and carries-out laws. The Constitution allows the president to be the head of the executive branch.
  • The executive branch consists of the president, vice president, department heads, the president's cabinet, and heads of independent agencies, commissions, committees, and other boards. The executive branch deals with other countries and negotiates foreign treaties.
  • The judicial branch works with the legislative and executive branches as per the Constitution. The judicial branch is the country's court and consists of district courts, appellate courts, the United States Supreme Court, and other federal courts. The justices of the judicial branch are confirmed by the Senate and appointed by the president. The judicial branch monitors whether the federal law is under the Constitution and resolves disputes.
  • The Supreme Court is deemed to be the highest court in the United States and is situated in Washington, D.C. In the federal court system, 13 appellate courts and 94 district-level trial courts are there. Chief Justice and eight Associate Justices make up the nine members of the Supreme Court. The Supreme Court clarifies and interprets laws. The Supreme Court also exercises the judicial review power.
  • The separation of powers gives rise to the shared powers that check any one branch having an absolute say over the other branches, and one branch can change acts of other branches.


Legislative Branch Of The Government

Article 1 of the Constitution grants the Congress of the United States all the legislative powers which make all laws. Let's find out more:

  • Congress constitutes the Senate and the House of Representatives. Congress holds the sessions in the Capitol building in Washington D.C.
  • The Capitol rotunda is the symbolic center of Congress.
  • The Senate and the House of Representatives are equal partners, and laws cannot be enacted without the consent of both chambers.
  • In the United States Congress, the Senate is the smaller upper chamber, and the House of Representatives is the larger lower chamber.
  • Two members from each state get selected to represent their respective state in the Senate and they account for the 100 members in total.
  • Senators are representatives of the people; elected every six years by direct election and headed by the vice president. They consider matters put forward by senators to create the law.
  • The legislative branch controls interstate and foreign commerce, regulates taxes, declares war, makes all laws, and approves articles of impeachment. The legislative branch is naturally a part of the checks and balances laid in the federal system.
  • The Senate is in charge of approving the Cabinet members nominated by the president, appointing U.S. Supreme Court Justices, and important appointments like flag officers, ambassadors, federal judges, cabinet secretaries, and regulatory officials.
  • To become a Senator, one should be a U.S. citizen for nine years, a state resident, and at least 30 years of age.
  • The House of Representatives represents the congressional districts; divisions for electing members with one representative from each district.
  • Depending on the population, the number of representatives will be fixed. For example, California has more representatives with a large population, while Alaska has only one representative because of the lesser population.
  • The members of the House are fixed at 435 by law, and with six non-voting members, the numbers can go up to 441. The House has the power to impeach federal officers, initiate revenue bills, and elect the president in case of no majority.
  • To become the representative of the House, one must be a citizen of the United States Government for seven years, a resident of the state, and should be at least 25 years of age. While a Senate can amend a bill on taxes, it is the prerogative of the House to initiate a bill on imposing taxes.


The Election Process Of The Government

Elections for the United States are conducted at local, state, and federal levels, and the states administer all elections. Each state has its own Senate, different from the Federal Senate, which deals only with federal issues. Let's take a closer look:

  • At the federal level, the president is elected through Electoral College, indirectly by the people of each state. Electoral College is the 538 official presidential electors who vote for the president and vice president every four years.
  • The election for the United States President by the Electoral College is conducted in one single day in all the states. While the intervening Congressional elections are held every two years, presidential elections are held every four years.
  • The Congress, which constitutes the federal legislature, is elected by the people in each state directly.
  • Since the United States follows a presidential system, elections are held separately for the legislature and executive branches.
  • There are officials like the governor and legislature for each state. At the local level also officials are elected in villages, cities, boroughs, towns, and townships. The candidate who gets 270 or more votes is the winner.
The US Government is ruled by the US constitution.

Facts About The President's Powers

The president has vast powers to manage the priorities and national affairs of the government, and the president can issue instructions, rules, and regulations unilaterally. Let's take a look at some of the president's powers:

  • As the head of the executive branch, the president is the commander-in-chief of the armed forces of the United States and the leader of the Federal Government.
  • The Constitution authorizes the president to veto, adjourn or convene Congress, receive ambassadors, and grant pardons and reprieve. After the bill's approval in both the houses and if the president signs the bill, it becomes federal law.
  • The president nominates the Cabinet members, also called the Federal Agencies, with the approval of the Senate.
  • The foreign functions not allotted to the Senate and Congress are granted to the president. The president is also authorized to nominate Supreme Court judges, who can overturn unconstitutional laws. The president is also authorized to prepare the United States federal budget.
  • A president can be elected only for two terms and serve a four-year term each time. In case the president is unable to serve, the vice president becomes the president.
Written By
Sridevi Tolety

<p>With a Master's degree in clinical research from Manipal University and a PG Diploma in journalism from Bharatiya Vidya Bhavan, Sridevi has cultivated her passion for writing across various domains. She has authored a wide range of articles, blogs, travelogues, creative content, and short stories that have been published in leading magazines, newspapers, and websites. Sridevi is fluent in four languages and enjoys spending her spare time with loved ones. Her hobbies include reading, traveling, cooking, painting, and listening to music.</p>

Read The Disclaimer

Was this article helpful?