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  1. Rosalin posted the following on February 22, 2009 at 5:14 pm.

    I need statistics for my History essay, the paper I am writing about is the Presidents Cabinet, how would I give statistics in my paper?
    Here is my paper so far, it has to be in MLA format. I am still gathering information, this is my rough draft
    Should one person make decisions to control this great country? Had you been born in the late 1700’s would you have agreed upon or found it necessary to have other peoples opinion make one man look so great at running this country? As you read this paper I want you to see how the Presidential Cabinet was established, and how it is greatly needed in order for the President to maintain such a powerful position. We started with four members in a presidential cabinet and now we have fifteen.
    What could have possibly urged former President Washington to form a Cabinet? Because of general dissatisfaction with the Articles of Confederation, Washington became President of the United States in 1789 and established many of the customs and usages of the new government’s executive department. They believed that he would use his powers wisely. They decided the executive branch would be headed by a single person, a President. To keep that person from becoming too powerful, Congress would have the power to impeach ( to bring an official to trial for breaking the laws of the constitution) the President.
    George Washington held the first recorded meeting of a “Cabinet” in 1791. The term “Cabinet” comes from the Italian word Cabinneto, meaning “A body of people appointed by a head of state to act as official advisers and be in charge of the various government departments”. Washington only had four Cabinet members, Thomas Jefferson was Secretary of State, Alexander Hamilton was Secretary of Treasury, Henry Knox was Secretary of War, and Edmund Randolph was the Attorney General. These four men were highly respected for their knowledge, and dedication to the idea of a free and independent country. Putting together a new government was a difficult task. Since, there were no other countries that had a democratic government for us to follow, George Washington needed the advice and opinions of men who were experienced in their fields.
    Usually, the presidents cabinet serve as long as the president who appointed them remains in office. Executive department secretaries answer only to the president and only the president can fire them. They are expected to resign when a new president takes office.
    According to the United States Constitution, Article II Section 2 that has been in existence since September 17, 1787 it states that:
    “The President shall be Commander in Chief of the Army and Navy of the United States, and of the Militia of the several States, when called into the actual Service of the United States; he may require the Opinion, in writing, of the principal Officer in each of the executive Departments, upon any subject relating to the Duties of their respective Offices, and he shall have power to Grant Reprieves and Pardons for Offenses against the United States, except in Cases of Impeachment.
    He shall have Power, by and with the Advice and Consent of the Senate, to make Treaties, provided two thirds of the Senators present concur; and he shall nominate, and by and with the Advice and Consent of the Senate, shall appoint Ambassadors, other public Ministers and Consuls, Judges of the supreme Court, and all other Officers of the United States, whose Appointments are not herein otherwise provided for, and which shall be established by Law: but the Congress may by Law vest the Appointment of such inferior Officers, as they think proper, in the President alone, in the Courts of Law, or in the Heads of Departments.
    The President shall have power to fill up all Vacancies that may happen during the Recess of the Senate, by granting Commissions which shall expire at the End of their next Session”.

    The Cabinet, which has no basis in the constitution, is an informal institution based on practice and precedent whose membership is determined by tradition and presidential discretion. As a body the Cabinet’s major function is to help the president execute the laws and assist him in making decisions. Since George Washington first established his Cabinet members, the Cabinet has grown over the years as new departments have accommodated for new pressures on the president to act in areas that initially were not considered within the national government.
    The United States Cabinet and responsibilities of each executive department are as follow: “Secretary of State was created in 1789 and it is responsible for the making of foreign policy, including treaty negotiation, Secretary of the Treasury created also in 1789 is responsible for government funds and and regulation of alcohol, firearms, and tobacco, Secretary of Defense also established 1n 1789 responsible for national defense; current department created by consolidating the former departments of war, the Army, the Navy, and the Air Force in 1947, Attorney General (Department of Justice) established in 1870 represents the U.S. government in all federal courts, investigates and prosecutes violations of federal law, Secretary of the Interior (Department of the Interior) established in 1849 manages the nation’s natural resources, including wildlife and public lands, Secretary of Commerce (Department of Commerce) established in 1903 aids businesses and conducts the U.S. Census (originally the Department of Commerce and labor), Secretary of Labor (Department of labor) established in 1913 runs labor programs, keeps labor statistics, aids labor through enforcement of laws, Secretary of Health and Human Services, Secretary of Housing and Urban Development (Department of Housing and Urban Development) established in 1965 is responsible for urban and housing programs, Secretary of Transportation (Department of Transportation) established in 1966 is responsible for mass transportation and highway programs, Secretary of Energy (Department of Energy) established in 1977 is responsible for energy policy and research, including atomic energy, Secretary of Education (Department of Education) established in 1979 is responsible for the federal government’s education programs, Secretary of Veterans Affairs (Department of Veteran Affairs) established in 1989 is responsible for programs aiding veterans, Secretary of Homeland Security (Department of Homeland Security) established in 2002 is responsible for all issues pertaining to homeland security“.(

    In January 2009, the Cabinet secretaries’ annual salary was set at $193,400 per year.

    Reply to Rosalin
    1. Matthew Urdan posted the following on February 23, 2009 at 1:01 pm.


      Thank you for your question. While Inside Government would be more than happy to answer any question about how our government works, we are not in a position to advise you as to how present statistics in an essay or paper you are writing for school, and we recommend that you contact your teacher or professor for advice. That being said, there are many resources available for you to find this information. And we refer you to the resources section in the left sidebar, including President Obama’s Blog: The Oval, and the White House website at

      Good luck!

      Reply to Matthew Urdan
  2. JImmy posted the following on October 20, 2009 at 1:16 am.

    Puerto Rico decides to join te union..
    WHich Branch of Government is responsible??

    Reply to JImmy
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