Free course on the presidency. One paragraph per day.
Test your knowledge against these five questions! Answers appear at the bottom of the page.
1. Regarding power to get things done, what was one of the problems the Constitution was meant to fix?
- There was no capacity to implement law and order at the national level.
- The Articles of Confederation, which the Constitution replaced, did not assign any executive authority.
- Some states wished to remain under the King of Britain.
2. What were some of the trust-related problems confronting the framers of the Constitution?
- How to grant enough power to get things done, but not enough to tempt tyrants, especially those who might favor only one faction.
- How to harness political competition for the public good, without polarization.
- Whether people are inherently good or evil.
3. How did the framers balance the need to empower presidents against the need to avoid tyranny?
- They divided power in a system of checks and balances.
- They required the president to faithfully implement the laws but not to make them. Only Congress was to make the laws.
- They created term limits.
4. Why did the framers create an Electoral College to elect presidents instead of relying on the popular vote?
- They were afraid of polarizing partisan politics.
- They expected Electors nominated by the states would act as filters who would support only the worthiest candidates.
- They thought college presidents were more trustworthy.
5. How did the framers intend to hold presidents accountable to Congress?
- A requirement to report annually on the state of the union.
- The threat of impeachment.
- “No confidence” votes.
Answers: For each question, both the first and second answers are correct.
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