If you’re wondering what on earth is going on with USA politics, you’re not alone. Many people are confused and concerned about the current state of affairs. This blog will attempt to explain some of the recent events and help you make sense of it all.
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Political parties in the United States
Politics in the United States happens mainly through two political parties: the Democratic Party and the Republican Party. The Constitution does not give a definition of political parties, and at the time it was written, there were no parties. The first parties began to form in the 1790s.
The Democratic Party
The Democratic Party is one of the two major contemporary political parties in the United States, along with the Republican Party. Tracing its heritage back to Thomas Jefferson and James Madison’s Democratic-Republican Party, the modern-day Democratic Party was founded around 1828 by supporters of Andrew Jackson, making it the world’s oldest active political party.
The Democrats’ dominant worldview was once social conservatism and economic liberalism, while populism was its leading characteristic. In recent decades, however, the party has moved to center-left social liberalism. The first American official party organs were introduced in 1796 by Alexander Hamilton (a Federalist) and James Madison (a Democrat-Republican), for respectively the Federalist Party and the Democratic-Republican Party. Since the division between these two parties in 1860, 19 Republicans and 15 Democrats have occupied the presidency.
The Republican Party
The Republican Party is one of the two major political parties in the United States, along with the Democratic Party. Founded by anti-slavery activists and modernizers in 1854, it dominated politics nationally for most of the period 1860–1932. The Republican Party originally advocated classical liberalism, opposing slavery and supporting economic modernization. The party came to power in 1896 with the election of William McKinley.
Over the next few decades, the Republican Party presided over an era of significant prosperity and rapidly changing demographics. The GOP supported business interests, high tariffs, Suburbanization, and laissez-faire capitalism, while calling for limited government and social conservatism. In 1912, Theodore Roosevelt ran as a third-party candidate in the Progressive (“Bull Moose”) Party affirming Republicans’ commitment to progressive causes like trust busting and environmentalism.
Since Franklin D. Roosevelt and his New Deal coalition in 1933, the Democratic Party have controlled the presidency (with the exception of 1952–1960 and 1980–1992), while the Republicans have held a majority in Congress (excepting 1955–1959) only four times: 1946–1948 during Truman’s presidency; 1952–1954 during Eisenhower’s; 1980–1982 during Reagan’s; and 1994–1996 during Clinton’s. Currently, there are 11 states with a Republican governor (Arkansas, Florida, Georgia, Indiana, Maine, Michigan North Carolina Ohio South Carolina Texas Vermont Wisconsin)and 26 states with a majority of Republicans controlling both chambers of their state legislature (Alaska Arizona Idaho Kansas Mississippi Missouri Montana Nebraska North Dakota Oklahoma South Dakota Tennessee Utah West Virginia Wyoming).
The United States Congress
This is a brief history of the USA Congress. The first Continental Congress was held in 1774. The Second Continental Congress was held in 1775-1781. The Third Continental Congress was held in 1781-1789. The Fourth Continental Congress was held in 1789-1789. The Fifth Continental Congress was held in 1789-1789. The Sixth Continental Congress was held in 1789-1789. The Seventh Continental Congress was held in 1789-1789.
The House of Representatives
The House of Representatives is one of the two houses of the United States Congress, the bicameral legislature which also includes the Senate. The House is composed of 435 representatives, each serving a two-year term representing a single congressional district. Each state is represented in the House in proportion to its population but every state is guaranteed at least one representative.
The most recent census, conducted in 2010, produced an apportionment of 435 representatives. The total number of voting representatives is fixed by law at 435. There are currently five delegate districts and one resident commissioner district, for a total of seven nonelected voting members. Puerto Rico and American Samoa each have one delegate but these delegates are not voting members and cannot vote in the Committee of the Whole House on the House floor. The resident commissioner from Puerto Rico represents the island but cannot participate in floor votes and cannot vote in committee. American Samoa has two nonvoting delegates: mark our words, that will change soon enough!
The elections for House seats occur every two years on Election Day, which falls on the first Tuesday after November 1. All 435 seats are up for election every two years; although vacancies occasionally occur mid-term due to resignations or deaths, such vacancies are filled through special elections. Unlike Senate elections, there are no term limits for representatives or delegates; they may serve an unlimited number of terms as long as they win re-election campaigns every two years.
The United States Congress is the legislative branch of the federal government and consists of two houses: the Senate and the House of Representatives. Each state elects two senators, regardless of population, to serve staggered six-year terms. Senators represent the entire state. In contrast, members of the House of Representatives are elected by districts. There are 435 congressional districts, which are determined by state population every ten years through the U.S. Census. Every district elects one representative to serve a two-year term.
The vice president presides over the Senate but does not vote except to break a tie. The Senate has several exclusive powers, including confirming presidential appointments and trying impeachments. The Senate also ratifies treaties by a two-thirds supermajority vote before they can take effect. Since there are 100 senators, 67 votes are needed for treaty ratification.
The House of Representatives has several Tools and Resources Available including a Congressional Record, Amendment Text, Bill Text, and more Capitol Visitor Services to assist in creating lasting memories while in Washington D.C
The President of the United States
The President of the United States is the head of state and head of government of the United States of America. The president directs the executive branch of the federal government and is the commander-in-chief of the United States Armed Forces. In contemporary times, the president is looked upon as one of the world’s most powerful political figures and as the leader of the only remaining superpower.
The current president
Donald Trump is the current president of the United States. He was elected in 2016, and his term will end in January of 2021. Trump is a member of the Republican Party, and he has been married to Melania Trump since 2005.
The election process
In the United States, the president is elected by the electoral college, which is made up of 538 electors. The number of electors is equal to the number of senators and representatives in Congress. Each state gets a certain number of electors based on its population. The candidate who gets more than half of the electoral votes (270) wins the election.
The United States Supreme Court
The United States Supreme Court is the highest court in the land and the only court specifically mentioned in the Constitution. It is made up of nine justices who serve for life. The court hears cases of national importance, including cases involving the interpretation of the Constitution.
The current justices
The nine justices of the United States Supreme Court are the final word on some of the most pressing issues in American society. They occupy a special place in our system of government, and their decisions can have a profound impact on our lives.
The current justices are:
Chief Justice John Roberts, who was nominated by President George W. Bush in 2005.
Associate Justice Clarence Thomas, who was nominated by President George H. W. Bush in 1991.
Associate Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, who was nominated by President Bill Clinton in 1993.
Associate Justice Stephen Breyer, who was nominated by President Bill Clinton in 1994.
Associate Justice Samuel Alito, who was nominated by President George W. Bush in 2006.
Associate Justice Sonia Sotomayor, who was nominated by President Barack Obama in 2009.
Associate Justice Elena Kagan, who was nominated by President Barack Obama in 2010.
Associate Justice Neil Gorsuch, who was nominated by President Donald Trump in 2017.
Associate Justice Brett Kavanaugh, who was nominated by President Donald Trump in 2018.”
The nomination process
The president nominates someone to fill a vacancy on the Court, and the Senate must hold a hearing and vote on whether or not to confirm the nominee. Historically, the Senate has almost always confirmed the nominee, regardless of party affiliation. If the Senate does not confirm the nominee, he or she is not seated on the Court.
The process by which a Supreme Court justice is nominated has changed over time. Today, presidents typically nominate someone who shares their political beliefs, and they consult with senators from their party before making a decision.
The Constitution does not set any requirements for Supreme Court nominees, but in recent years, most nominees have been white men between the ages of 50 and 70.