30 September 2011

Leaders

I read a tweet today that associated being President with being the leader of the American people. I realize I'm in the extreme minority taking the Constitution literally, but I really don't see the President (whoever it may be) as our leader.

According to Article II of the Constitution, the President is the Chief Executive of the General Government (Sec. 1.1). That means he ("he", referring to the President as an Officer, regardless of whether the office-holder is a man or a woman) is responsible for ensuring that the laws of the United States General (Federal) Government are executed as passed by Congress. He has a few powers enumerated in Sec. 2:
  1. Commander in chief of the Army and Navy, and by extension the entire military.
  2. Demanding reports from the Department Secretaries, as any chief officer may do.
  3. Granting pardons, as part of his enforcement responsibility.
  4. Making treaties, with 2/3 Senate approval.
  5. Appointing Federal officers, with Senate approval.
  6. Appointing Federal officers while the Senate is in recess (with certain restrictions).
None of these indicate that the Office of President is to be that of a leader of all the people. Rather, the people, through their representatives in Congress, should be leading the policies of the General Government. (See my earlier post on my argument that our Representatives, once in office, should not spend too much time listening to their constituents.)