Discussions about politics can be overheard almost anywhere, but how much do you really know about the nuts and bolts of our government? Find out if you can ace this quiz on branches of the U.S. government.
The United States Federal Government has three branches.
The judicial branch is the third branch of U.S. Federal Government.
The Articles of Confederation only created the legislative branch, called the Congress of the United States. Without the executive and judicial branches, this early federal government had very little power.
In 1789, the U.S. Constitution replaced the Articles of Confederation.
The original Constitution document is housed at the National Archives in Washington.
The judicial branch is made up of three primary components: the U.S. Supreme Court, the U.S. District Courts and the U.S. Court of Appeals.
The members of the U.S. Supreme Court, which is the primary component of the judicial branch, are not elected. The executive branch appoints each member, and the legislative branch confirms each member.
There are nine members of the U.S. Supreme Court, including one chief justice and eight associate justices.
Congress determines the number of Supreme Court justices. The current number of nine has been in place since 1869. Prior to 1869, there were as few as six Supreme Court justices.
Members of the Supreme Court serve until they retire, are impeached and convicted by Congress or die.
Article III of the U.S. Constitution begins by stating that "the judicial power of the United States shall be vested in one Supreme Court."
In 1805, Associate Justice Samuel Chase became the first and only justice to be impeached by the House of Representatives. However, he was acquitted by the Senate and remained on the Supreme Court.
The presidential veto is part of the system of checks and balances.
Taft was the 27th president of the United States from 1909-13 and then became the 10th chief justice of the U.S. Supreme Court, serving from 1921-30.
Article II was signed in convention in September 1787.
The U.S. presidency, including the vice president, makes up the executive branch of the U.S. government.
Article II of the Constitution requires a person to be at least 35 years old to serve as the president.
There have been 44 people who have served as the president, with Barack Obama as the 44th.
A president may only serve two four-year terms in office, as stated by the 22nd Amendment to the Constitution. A president may, however, serve a total of 10 years in office if he or she takes over for another president in the last two years of the elected term.
In 1973, Ford was nominated to replace vice president Spiro Agnew when he resigned. Ford then became president of the United States when Richard Nixon resigned in 1974, making Ford the only person to serve both jobs without ever being elected.
The vice president is also the president of the Senate. The vice president is therefore the only person to hold power in both the executive and legislative branches.
While the vice president does have an office in the West Wing of the White House, the official residence of the vice president is the U.S. Naval Observatory in Washington.
Upon taking the oath of office, the president immediately becomes the commander in chief of the United States armed forces.
The president cannot overrule the Supreme Court. U.S. presidents can and do, however, veto congressional legislation and issue executive orders.
The Electoral College comprises 538 electors, equal to the current number of senators and representatives that serve in Congress.
Article I consists of 10 sections.
Two governing bodies make up the legislative branch: the House of Representatives and the Senate.
Regardless of size or population, each of the 50 states elects two senators for staggered six-year terms, making a total of 100 senators in the United States Senate.
Congress has the authority to override a presidential veto with a two-thirds majority vote in both the House and the Senate.
All 50 states are divided into 435 districts of approximately 710,000 people. Each of these districts elects a representative to a two-year term, making a total of 435 representatives in the U.S. House of Representatives.