10/18 Monday Powers of Congress

House of Reps. Vs. Senate Venn
Create a Venn Diagram. The “U.S. House of
Representatives” should be on one side, the “U.S.
Senate” should be on the other side, and the
overlapping section in the middle should be labeled
To which House of Congress
does it belong?
 As you view each of the following slides, decide if you
believe that each power or description is a power or
description that only the House has, only the Senate
has, or that both have.
 Place each topic in the appropriate section on your
Venn Diagram.
 Use the word at the top of each slide for your
Makes Laws
Has 100 members
25 years
Must be at least
25 years old
Must live in the state
they represent
2 Year Terms
Serves 2 year terms in
Representation is based
on population
Approves (or denies)
Franking Privilege
(free postage)
Can remove their own
members due to
misconduct (Censure)
Has the person second
in line to the
presidency. (i.e.
President and VicePresident can’t fulfill
their office)
Incumbents usually win
Accepts or denies
Can introduce bills
Can perform a filibuster, meaning that a person or
group of representatives can keep talking until the
bill is abandoned or a majority agree to modify the
most controversial parts of the bill. A person needs to
simply stay on their feet and keep talking about ANY
topic. They can read a book or phone book. Threats
of filibuster can result in refusal to consider many bills
at all.
Interest Groups
Consider interest
groups when voting
on certain issues.
Declares War
Tries impeachments
Chamber President
The Vice-President is
President of this
chamber of Congress
Can override a
presidential veto
Venn Answers
 View the next slides to see where you should have
listed the powers from the presentation.
 Correct your answers
The U.S. House of Representatives
 At least 25 years old
 Serves 2 year terms
 Representation based on population
 Succession: has person 2nd in line to presidency
(Speaker of the House)
 Tries impeachments
 100 members
 Approves treaties
 Approves or denies Appointments of the President
 The U.S. Vice-President is President of the Senate, but
can’t vote except in the case of a tie
 Tries Impeachments
 Make Laws
 Must live in the state they represent
 Franking Privilege
 Censure
 Incumbents
 Bills
 Interest Groups
 Declares War
 Can Override a Presidential Veto
Powers of Congress (review)
Expressed Powers
 Taxing
 Borrowing
 Regulation of Commerce (trade)
 Naturalization (becoming a citizen) and Bankruptcy Laws
 Money and Standard Weights and Measurements
 Punishing Counterfeiters
 Establishes Roads and Post Offices
 Issues Patents and Copyrights
 Lower Courts: Tribunals inferior to the Supreme Court
 Punishes Pirates (yes, they still exist!)
 Declares War
 Raises and Supports Armies
 Creates a Navy
 Regulates the Armed Forces (Military Justice)
 Calls on the Militia, or National Guard
 Organizes the Militia
 Creation of the District of Columbia
Implied Power
 The Elastic Clause “Necessary and Proper” Clause
Powers Denied to Congress
 On the other side of your paper, list the following 8
powers that are denied to Congress based on the U.S.
 As a class you will read through each power.
 Discuss the review questions as a class at the bottom
of each slide
I. Slavery
 “The Migration or Importation of such Persons as any
of the States now existing shall think proper to admit,
shall not be prohibited by the Congress prior to the Year
one thousand eight hundred and eight, but a Tax or
duty may be imposed on such Importation, not
exceeding ten dollars for each person.”
 (Notice the term “slave” is not used, although that is
who this is referring to. The slave trade, not slavery,
was outlawed in 1808.)
 Why do you think this was an important power denied
to Congress at the time the Constitution was created?
 “The privilege of the Writ of Habeas Corpus shall not be
suspended, unless when in Cases of Rebellion or
Invasion the public Safety may require it”
 A writ of habeas corpus is a court order directing a
sheriff or other public officer who is detaining another
person to “produce the body” of the detainee (with
reasons for holding them) so the court can assess the
legality of the detention.
 Can you think of any examples from recent history
when the writ was suspended?
III. Special Bills
 “No Bill of Attainder or Ex Post Facto Law shall be
 A bill of attainder is a law that inflicts punishment
without a trial.
 An ex post facto law is a law that inflicts punishment
for an act that was not illegal when it was committed.
 Why do you believe the Founding Fathers were
concerned with the two laws listed above?
IV. Direct Taxes
 “No Capitation, or other direct, Tax shall be laid, unless
in Proportion to the Census or Enumeration herein
before directed to be taken.”
 A capitation is a tax on a person. A direct tax is a tax
paid directly to the government, such as a property tax.
This clause was intended to prevent Congress from
levying a tax on slaves per person and thereby taxing
slavery out of existence.
 Why were the Founding Fathers concerned about this
issue when slavery was already such an established part
of society?
V. Export Taxes
 “No Tax or Duty shall be laid on Articles exported from
any State.”
 Congress may not tax any goods sold from one state to
another or from one state to a foreign country.
(Congress does have the power to tax goods that are
bought from other countries, however.)
 Why do you think Congress was given the power to tax
imports, but not exports?
VI. Interstate Commerce
 “No Preference shall be given by any Regulation of
Commerce or Revenue to the Ports of one State over those of
another: nor shall Vessels bound to, or from, one State, be
obliged to enter, clear, or pay Duties in another.”
 Congress may not treat different ports within the United
States differently in terms of taxing and commerce (trade)
powers. Congress may not tax goods sent from one state to
another. Finally, Congress may not give one state’s ports a
legal advantage over those of another state.
 Analyze why this was put into effect.
VII. Treasury Withdrawals
 “No Money shall be drawn from the Treasury, but in
consequence of Appropriations made by Law; and a
regular Statement and Account of the Receipts and
Expenditures of all public Money shall be published
from time to time.”
 Federal funds can be spent only as Congress
authorizes. This is a significant check on the
President’s power.
 Can you think of a situation in which this would
severely impact the President’s ability to perform?
VIII. Titles of Nobility
 “No Title of Nobility shall be granted by the United States;
And no Person holding any Office of Profit or Trust under
them, shall, without the Consent of the Congress, accept of
any present, Emolument, Office, or Title, of any kind
whatever, from any King, Prince, or foreign State.”
 No person in the United States may be bestowed a title of
nobility such as duke or duchess. This clause also
discourages bribery of American officials by foreign
 Explain why you believe the Founding Fathers addressed this
Division of Powers
Powers are divided in the U.S. Constitution in more
than one way, included between the federal
government and state governments.
Powers are divided between a national, or federal,
government and the states.
Later we will see which ones you know!
Delegated, Expressed, or
Enumerated Powers
Those powers directly granted to the federal
government by the Constitution as stated in Article I,
Section 8 of the U.S. Constitution.
Reserved Powers
Powers that are neither granted to the federal
government nor expressly forbidden to the states and
are therefore retained by the states or by the people
Which Powers Are Denied to
Before we review exactly which powers the states DO
have, let’s first look at the few they are specifically
I. Treaties and Coinage
 “No State shall enter into any Treaty, Alliance, or
Confederation; grant Letters of Marque and Reprisal;
coin Money; emit Bills of Credit; make any Thing but
gold and silver Coin a Tender in payment of Debts; pass
any Bill of Attainder, ex post facto Law, or Law
impairing the Obligation of contracts, or grant any
Title of Nobility.”
 Prohibiting state laws “impairing the Obligation of
contracts” was intended to protect creditors.
II. Duties and Imports
 “No State shall, without the Consent of the Congress, lay
any Imports or Duties on Imports or Exports, except what
may be absolutely necessary for executing its inspection
Laws; and the net Produce of all Duties and Imposts, laid by
any State on Imports or Exports, shall be for the Use of the
Treasury of the United States; and all such Laws shall be
subject to the revision and Controul of the Congress.”
 Only Congress can tax imports. Further, the states cannot
tax exports.
 Why would the Founding Fathers only allow Congress to tax
imports and NOT allow the states to tax exports?
III. War
 “No State shall, without the consent of congress, lay any Duty of
Tonnage, keep Troops, or Ships of War in time of Peace, enter into
any Agreement or Compact with another State, or with a foreign
power or engage in War, unless actually invaded, or in such
imminent Danger as will not admit delay.”
 A duty of tonnage is a tax on ships according to their cargo. No
states may effectively tax ships according to their cargo unless
Congress agrees. Additionally, this clause forbids any state to
keep troops or warships during peacetime or to make a compact
with another state or foreign nation unless Congress agrees.
States can, in contrast, maintain a militia, but its use has to be
limited to internal disorders, that occur within a state- unless, of
course, the militia is called into federal service.
 Explain why you believe this power was specifically denied to the
Wednesday you will examine how powers are divided
between the federal government and the states.