The government of the USA is of the Republican type. This implies that the head of State is a President. He is not only the head of State but also the Chief Executive. The constitution clearly lays down that all executive authority belongs to him. He is the head of the executive in name as well as in fact.
Presidential Election (in Theory)
U.S President is elected for a 4 years term. The constitution of USA says that the President will be elected indirectly by an Electoral College consisting of the representatives of the States. The people of each state elect presidential electors equal to the number of the Congressmen each state has in Congress. The electors meet, in each state on fix dates and vote for the President and Vice-President: All the votes are sealed and send to Washington D.C. The President of the Senate counts the votes in the presence of the Congressmen. A candidate who secures a majority of the electoral votes cast for the. President is declared elected. To win the election a candidate must obtain 270 electoral votes. No candidate secure a clear majority of votes for the President, the member, of the House of Representatives chooses the President from among the first three candidates who have received the highest number of electoral votes.
Election in Practice
So according to the American constitution the President is elected indirectly but actually he is the direct choice of the people. The framers of the constitution wanted the President to he elected indirectly hut the development of party system has defeated their intention. The candidates for Presidency, Vice-Presidency and electors are nominated by political parties. The electors are pledged to vote for their party nominee for the presidential office. They do not have a free hand in the choice of the President. As it is known before hand for which candidate each elector will vote, the result the presidential election is known when the results of the electors are declared.
The election of the electors takes place on Tuesday followed by first Monday of November of each Leap Year. While the electors vote for the President on 6 January, following the Leap Year and the new President takes oath of his office on 20th January. Thus the election of the President has become direct.
Qualifications, Tenure and Removal of the U.S President
- A candidate for the office of the President including Vice President must be a citizen Of the U.S.A. by birth.
- The President must have resided in the U.S.A. for at least 14 years and
- He must be at least 35 years of age. The President is elected for 4 years.
Originally, the constitution was silent about presidential re-election. During his term, of office the President cannot be removed except by an impeachment. He can be impeached for treason, bribery or high crimes. The charges are framed by the House of Representatives by a majority vote and the Senate presided over by Chief Justice of the Supreme Court sits as a Judicial Court to try him. A 2/3rd majority vote of the Senate is necessary for conviction. No President has ever been so removed. In case of his removal from office, or of his death or resignation, or inability to discharge his duties, the Vice-President acts as the President of the U.S.A. The White House is the official residence of U.S President and his personal staff