The Presidency 3

5.          The framers wanted to avoid the tyranny that absolute power brings.  They had suffered from the British system where the King, his ministers, and his colonial governors could do more or less whatever they wished to the colonies. (See their list of complaints in the 1776 Declaration of Independence.)  Second, in trying to avoid that abuse, they had reshaped their new state governments in a way that gave most power to the people, through their elected legislators. In contrast, state executive offices were made weak by assigning executive powers to multiple leaders or committees.  The Articles of Confederation (1781-1789), which the Constitution replaced, went further: they did not assign any executive authority.
Image: Thomas Jefferson. By Rembrandt Peale.

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