Sonia Maria Sotomayor is an Associate Justice of the Supreme Court of the United States, appointed by President Barack Obama in May 2009 and confirmed that August. She has the distinction of being Latina Justice. Sotomayor was born in New York City, to Puerto Rican-born parents, her father died when she was nine, she was subsequently raised by her mother. Sotomayor graduated summa cum laude from Princeton University in 1976 and received her J. D. from Yale Law School in 1979, where she was an editor at the Yale Law Journal. She worked as an assistant district attorney in New York for four-and-a-half years before entering private practice in 1984, she played an active role on the boards of directors for the Puerto Rican Legal Defense and Education Fund, the State of New York Mortgage Agency, the New York City Campaign Finance Board. Sotomayor was nominated to the U. S. District Court for the Southern District of New York by President George H. W. Bush in 1991. In 1997, she was nominated by President Bill Clinton to the U.
S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit, her nomination was slowed by the Republican majority in the United States Senate, but she was confirmed in 1998. On the Second Circuit, Sotomayor heard appeals in more than 3,000 cases and wrote about 380 opinions. Sotomayor has taught at the New York University School of Columbia Law School. In May 2009, President Barack Obama nominated Sotomayor to the Supreme Court following the retirement of Justice David Souter, her nomination was confirmed by the Senate in August 2009 by a vote of 68–31. While on the court, Sotomayor has supported the informal liberal bloc of justices when they divide along the perceived ideological lines. During her tenure on the Supreme Court, Sotomayor has been identified with concern for the rights of defendants, calls for reform of the criminal justice system, making impassioned dissents on issues of race and ethnic identity, including Schuette v. BAMN, Utah v. Strieff, Trump v. Hawaii. Sonia Maria Sotomayor was born in the New York City borough of The Bronx.
Her father was Juan Sotomayor, from the area of Santurce, San Juan, Puerto Rico, her mother was Celina Báez, an orphan from the neighborhood of Santa Rosa in Lajas, a still rural area on Puerto Rico's southwest coast. The two left Puerto Rico separately and married during World War II after Celina served in the Women's Army Corps. Juan Sotomayor had a third-grade education, did not speak English, worked as a tool and die worker. Sonia's younger brother, Juan Sotomayor became a physician and university professor in the Syracuse, New York, area. Sotomayor was raised a Catholic and grew up in Puerto Rican communities in the South Bronx and East Bronx; the family lived in a South Bronx tenement before moving in 1957 to the well-maintained and ethnically mixed, working-class Bronxdale Houses housing project in Soundview. Her relative proximity to Yankee Stadium led to her becoming a lifelong fan of the New York Yankees; the extended family got together and visited Puerto Rico during summers. Sonia grew up with an alcoholic father and a mother, distant.
Sonia was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes at age seven, began taking daily insulin injections. Her father died of heart problems at age 42. After this, she became fluent in English. Sotomayor has said that she was first inspired by the strong-willed Nancy Drew book character, after her diabetes diagnosis led doctors to suggest a different career from detective, she was inspired to go into a legal career and become a judge by watching the Perry Mason television series, she reflected in 1998: "I was going to college and I was going to become an attorney, I knew that when I was ten. Ten. That's no jest."Celina Sotomayor put great stress on the value of education. Despite the distance between the two, which became greater after her father's death and, not reconciled until decades Sotomayor has credited her mother with being her "life inspiration". For grammar school, Sotomayor attended Blessed Sacrament School in Soundview, where she was valedictorian and had a near-perfect attendance record. Although underage, Sotomayor worked at a hospital.
Sotomayor passed the entrance tests for and attended Cardinal Spellman High School in the Bronx. At Cardinal Spellman, Sotomayor was elected to the student government, she graduated as valedictorian in 1972. Meanwhile, the Bronxdale Houses had fallen victim to increasing heroin use and the emergence of the Black Spades gang. In 1970, the family found refuge by moving to Co-op City in the Northeast Bronx. Sotomayor entered Princeton University on a full scholarship, by her own description gaining admission in part due to her achievements in high school and in part because affirmative action made up for her standardized test scores not being comparable to those of other applicants, she would say that there are cultural biases built into such testing and praise affirmative action for fulfilling "its purpose: to create the conditions whereby students from disadvantaged backgrounds could be brought to the starting line of a race many were unaware was ev
Supreme Court of the United States
The Supreme Court of the United States is the highest court in the federal judiciary of the United States. Established pursuant to Article III of the U. S. Constitution in 1789, it has original jurisdiction over a narrow range of cases, including suits between two or more states and those involving ambassadors, it has ultimate appellate jurisdiction over all federal court and state court cases that involve a point of federal constitutional or statutory law. The Court has the power of judicial review, the ability to invalidate a statute for violating a provision of the Constitution or an executive act for being unlawful. However, it may act only within the context of a case in an area of law over which it has jurisdiction; the court may decide cases having political overtones, but it has ruled that it does not have power to decide nonjusticiable political questions. Each year it agrees to hear about one hundred to one hundred fifty of the more than seven thousand cases that it is asked to review.
According to federal statute, the court consists of the Chief Justice of the United States and eight associate justices, all of whom are nominated by the President and confirmed by the Senate. Once appointed, justices have lifetime tenure unless they resign, retire, or are removed from office; each justice has a single vote in deciding. When the chief justice is in the majority, he decides. In modern discourse, justices are categorized as having conservative, moderate, or liberal philosophies of law and of judicial interpretation. While a far greater number of cases in recent history have been decided unanimously, decisions in cases of the highest profile have come down to just one single vote, exemplifying the justices' alignment according to these categories; the Court meets in the Supreme Court Building in Washington, D. C, its law enforcement arm is the Supreme Court of the United States Police. It was while debating the division of powers between the legislative and executive departments that delegates to the 1787 Constitutional Convention established the parameters for the national judiciary.
Creating a "third branch" of government was a novel idea. Early on, some delegates argued that national laws could be enforced by state courts, while others, including James Madison, advocated for a national judicial authority consisting of various tribunals chosen by the national legislature, it was proposed that the judiciary should have a role in checking the executive power to veto or revise laws. In the end, the Framers compromised by sketching only a general outline of the judiciary, vesting federal judicial power in "one supreme Court, in such inferior Courts as the Congress may from time to time ordain and establish", they delineated neither the exact powers and prerogatives of the Supreme Court nor the organization of the Template:Judicial branch as a whole. The 1st United States Congress provided the detailed organization of a federal judiciary through the Judiciary Act of 1789; the Supreme Court, the country's highest judicial tribunal, was to sit in the nation's Capital and would be composed of a chief justice and five associate justices.
The act divided the country into judicial districts, which were in turn organized into circuits. Justices were required to "ride circuit" and hold circuit court twice a year in their assigned judicial district. After signing the act into law, President George Washington nominated the following people to serve on the court: John Jay for chief justice and John Rutledge, William Cushing, Robert H. Harrison, James Wilson, John Blair Jr. as associate justices. All six were confirmed by the Senate on September 26, 1789. Harrison, declined to serve. In his place, Washington nominated James Iredell; the Supreme Court held its inaugural session from February 2 through February 10, 1790, at the Royal Exchange in New York City the U. S. capital. A second session was held there in August 1790; the earliest sessions of the court were devoted to organizational proceedings, as the first cases did not reach it until 1791. When the national capital moved to Philadelphia in 1790, the Supreme Court did so as well.
After meeting at Independence Hall, the Court established its chambers at City Hall. Under Chief Justices Jay and Ellsworth, the Court heard few cases; as the Court had only six members, every decision that it made by a majority was made by two-thirds. However, Congress has always allowed less than the court's full membership to make decisions, starting with a quorum of four justices in 1789; the court lacked a home of its own and had little prestige, a situation not helped by the era's highest-profile case, Chisholm v. Georgia, reversed within two years by the adoption of the Eleventh Amendment; the court's power and prestige grew during the Marshall Court. Under Marshall, the court established the power of judicial review over acts of Congress, including specifying itself as the supreme expositor of the Constitution and making several important constitutional rulings that gave shape and substance to the balance of power between the federal government and states; the Marshall Court ended the practice of each justice issuin
John Glover Roberts Jr. is the 17th and current Chief Justice of the United States, serving in this role since 2005. Roberts was born in Buffalo, New York, but grew up in northwest Indiana and was educated in a private school, he attended Harvard College and Harvard Law School, where he was a managing editor of the Harvard Law Review. After being admitted to the bar, he served as a law clerk for Judge Henry Friendly and Associate Justice William Rehnquist before taking a position in the Attorney General's office during the Reagan Administration, he went on to serve the Reagan administration and the George H. W. Bush administration in the Department of Justice and the Office of the White House Counsel, before spending 14 years in private law practice. During this time, he argued 39 cases before the Supreme Court. Notably, he represented 19 states in United States v. Microsoft Corp. In 2003, Roberts was appointed as a judge of the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit by George W. Bush.
During his two-year tenure on the D. C. Circuit, Roberts authored 49 opinions, eliciting two dissents from other judges, authoring three dissents of his own. In 2005, Roberts was nominated to be an associate justice of the Supreme Court to succeed the retiring Sandra Day O'Connor; when Rehnquist died before Roberts's confirmation hearings began, Bush instead nominated Roberts to fill the chief justice position. Roberts has authored the majority opinion in many landmark cases, including Parents Involved in Community Schools v. Seattle School District No. 1, Shelby County v. Holder, National Federation of Independent Business v. Sebelius, King v. Burwell, he has been described as having a conservative judicial philosophy in his jurisprudence. So, Roberts has shown a willingness to work with the Supreme Court's liberal bloc and since the retirement of Anthony Kennedy in 2018, has come to be regarded as a key swing vote on the Court. John Glover Roberts was born in Buffalo, New York, the son of Rosemary and John Glover "Jack" Roberts Sr..
His father was a plant manager with Bethlehem Steel. His father has Irish and Welsh ancestry and his mother is of Czech descent; when Roberts was in fourth grade, his family moved to Indiana. He grew up with three sisters: Kathy and Berbere. Roberts attended a Roman Catholic grade school in Long Beach. In 1973, he graduated from La Lumiere School, a Roman Catholic boarding school in La Porte, where he was a student and athlete, he studied five years of Latin, some French, was known for his devotion to his studies. He was captain of the football team, was a regional champion in wrestling, he participated in choir and drama, co-edited the school newspaper, served on the athletic council and the executive committee of the student council. After graduating from high school in 1973, Roberts entered Harvard University as a history major. Due to his academic excellence in high school, Roberts entered Harvard with sophomore standing. One of his first papers, "Marxism and Bolshevism: Theory and Practice," won the William Scott Ferguson Prize for most outstanding essay assignment by a sophomore history major.
He graduated in 1976 with membership in Phi Beta Kappa and a B. A. summa cum laude, having written a senior honors thesis entitled "Old and New Liberalism: The British Liberal Party's Approach to the Social Problem, 1906–1914". Roberts planned to pursue a Ph. D. in history and decided to study law instead. He attended Harvard Law School, he graduated in 1979 with a J. D. magna cum laude. After graduating from law school, Roberts clerked for Judge Henry Friendly of the U. S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit from 1979 to 1980. From 1980 to 1981, he clerked for Justice William Rehnquist of the U. S. Supreme Court. From 1981 to 1982, he served in the Reagan administration as a special assistant to U. S. Attorney General William French Smith. From 1982 to 1986, Roberts served as associate counsel to the president under White House counsel Fred Fielding. Roberts entered private law practice in Washington, D. C. as an associate at the law firm Hogan & Hartson. As part of Hogan & Hartson's pro bono work, he worked behind the scenes for gay rights advocates, reviewing filings and preparing arguments for the Supreme Court case Romer v. Evans, described in 2005 as "the movement's most important legal victory".
Roberts argued on behalf of the homeless, a case which became one of Roberts' "few appellate losses." Another pro bono matter was a death penalty case in which he represented John Ferguson, convicted of killing eight people in Florida. Roberts left Hogan & Hartson to serve in the George H. W. Bush administration as principal deputy solicitor general, from 1989 to 1993 and as acting solicitor general for the purposes of at least one case when Ken Starr had a conflict. In 1992, George H. W. Bush nominated Roberts to the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit, but no Senate vote was held, Roberts's nomination expired at the end of the 102nd Congress. Roberts returned to Hogan & Hartson as a partner and became the head of the firm's appellate practice in addition to serving as an adjunct faculty member at the Georgetown University Law Center. During this time, Roberts argued 39 cases before the Supreme Court, he represented 19 states in United States v. Microsoft; those cases include: During the late 1990s, while working for Hogan & Hartson, Roberts served as a member of the steering committee of the Washington
Michael Richard Pence is an American politician and lawyer serving as the 48th and current vice president of the United States. He was the 50th governor of Indiana from 2013 to 2017 and a member of the United States House of Representatives from 2001 to 2013, he is the younger brother of U. S. Representative Greg Pence. Born and raised in Columbus, Pence graduated from Hanover College and earned a law degree from the Indiana University Robert H. McKinney School of Law before entering private practice. After losing two bids for a U. S. congressional seat in 1988 and 1990, he became a conservative radio and television talk show host from 1994 to 1999. Pence was elected to the United States Congress in 2000 and represented Indiana's 2nd congressional district and Indiana's 6th congressional district in the House of Representatives from 2001 to 2013, he served as the chairman of the House Republican Conference from 2009 to 2011. Pence described himself as a "principled conservative" and supporter of the Tea Party movement, stating that he was "a Christian, a conservative, a Republican, in that order."Upon becoming governor of Indiana in January 2013, Pence initiated the largest tax cut in Indiana's history and pushed for more funding for education initiatives.
Pence signed bills intended to restrict abortions, including one that prohibited abortions if the reason for the procedure was the fetus's race, gender, or disability. After Pence signed the Religious Freedom Restoration Act, he encountered fierce resistance from moderate members of his party, the business community, LGBT advocates; the backlash against the RFRA led Pence to amend the bill to prohibit discrimination based on sexual orientation, gender identity, other criteria. Pence was inaugurated as Vice President of the United States on January 20, 2017, he had withdrawn his gubernatorial reelection campaign in July to become the running mate of Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump, who went on to win the presidential election on November 8, 2016. Michael Richard Pence was born June 7, 1959, in Columbus, one of six children of Nancy Jane and Edward Joseph Pence Jr. who ran a group of gas stations. His father served in the U. S. Army during the Korean War and received the Bronze Star in 1953, which Pence displays in his office along with its commendation letter and a reception photograph.
His family were Irish Catholic Democrats. Pence was named after his grandfather, Richard Michael Cawley, who emigrated from County Sligo, Ireland, to the United States through Ellis Island, following an aunt and his brother James, became a bus driver in Chicago, Illinois, his maternal grandmother's parents were from County Clare. Pence graduated from Columbus North High School in 1977, he earned a BA degree in history from Hanover College in 1981, a JD degree from the Indiana University's Robert H. McKinney School of Law in Indianapolis in 1986. While at Hanover, Pence joined the Phi Gamma Delta fraternity, where he became the chapter president. Actor Woody Harrelson has said. After graduating from Hanover, Pence was an admissions counselor at the college from 1981 to 1983. In his childhood and early adulthood, Pence was a Democrat, he volunteered for the Bartholomew County Democratic Party in 1976 and voted for Jimmy Carter in the 1980 presidential election, has stated that he was inspired to get involved in politics by people such as John F. Kennedy and Martin Luther King Jr.
While in college, Pence became an evangelical, born-again Christian, to the great disappointment of his mother. His political views started shifting to the right during this time in his life, something which Pence attributes to the "common-sense conservatism of Ronald Reagan" that he began to identify with. After graduating from law school in 1986, Pence was an attorney in private practice, he ran unsuccessfully for a congressional seat in 1988 and in 1990. In 1991, he became the president of the Indiana Policy Review Foundation, a self-described free-market think tank and a member of the State Policy Network, a position he held until 1993. Shortly after his first congressional campaign in 1988, radio station WRCR-FM in Rushville, hired Pence to host a weekly half-hour radio show, Washington Update with Mike Pence. In 1992, Pence began hosting a daily talk show on WRCR, The Mike Pence Show, in addition to a Saturday show on WNDE in Indianapolis. Pence called himself "Rush Limbaugh on decaf" since he considered himself politically conservative while not as outspoken as Limbaugh.
Beginning on April 11, 1994, Network Indiana syndicated The Mike Pence Show statewide. With a 9 a.m. to noon time slot, the program reached as many as 18 radio stations in Indiana, including WIBC in Indianapolis. Pence ended his radio show in September 1999 to focus on his 2000 campaign for Congress, which he won. From 1995 to 1999, Pence hosted a weekend public affairs TV show titled The Mike Pence Show on Indianapolis TV station WNDY. In 1988, Pence lost, he ran against Sharp again in 1990, quitting his job in order to work full-time in the campaign, but once again was unsuccessful. During the race, Pence used "political donations to pay the mortgage on his house, his personal credit card bill, golf tournament fees and car payments for his wife." While the spending was not illegal at the time, it undermined his campaign. During the 1990 campaign, Pence ran a television advertisement in which an actor, dressed in a robe and headdress and speaking in a thick Middle Eastern accent, thanked his opponent, for doing nothing to wean the United States off imported oil as chairman of a House subcommitt
Party leaders of the United States House of Representatives
Party leaders and whips of the United States House of Representatives known as floor leaders, are elected by their respective parties in a closed-door caucus by secret ballot. With the Democrats holding a majority of seats and the Republicans holding a minority, the current leaders are: Majority Leader Steny Hoyer, Majority Whip James Clyburn, Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy, Minority Whip Steve Scalise. Unlike in Westminster-style legislatures or as with the Senate Majority Leader, the House Majority Leader's duties and prominence vary depending upon the style and power of the Speaker of the House; the Speaker does not participate in debate and votes on the floor. In some cases, Majority Leaders have been more influential than the Speaker. In addition, Speaker Newt Gingrich delegated to Dick Armey an unprecedented level of authority over scheduling legislation on the House floor; the current Minority Leader, Kevin McCarthy, serves as floor leader of the opposition party, is the counterpart to the Majority Leader.
Unlike the Majority Leader, the Minority Leader is on the ballot for Speaker of the House during the convening of the Congress. If the Minority Leader's party takes control of the House, the party officers are all re-elected to their seats, the Minority Leader is the party's top choice for Speaker for the next Congress, while the Minority Whip is in line to become Majority Leader; the Minority Leader meets with the Majority Leader and the Speaker to discuss agreements on controversial issues. The Speaker, Majority Leader, Minority Leader, Majority Whip and Minority Whip all receive special office suites in the United States Capitol; the floor leaders and whips of each party are elected by their respective parties in a closed-door caucus by secret ballot. The Speaker-elect is chosen in a closed-door session although they are formally installed in their position by a public vote when Congress reconvenes. Like the Speaker of the House, the Minority Leaders are experienced lawmakers when they win election to this position.
When Nancy Pelosi, D-CA, became Minority Leader in the 108th Congress, she had served in the House nearly 20 years and had served as minority whip in the 107th Congress. When her predecessor, Richard Gephardt, D-MO, became minority leader in the 104th House, he had been in the House for 20 years, had served as chairman of the Democratic Caucus for four years, had been a 1988 presidential candidate, had been majority leader from June 1989 until Republicans captured control of the House in the November 1994 elections. Gephardt's predecessor in the minority leadership position was Robert Michel, R-IL, who became GOP Leader in 1981 after spending 24 years in the House. Michel's predecessor, Republican John Rhodes of Arizona, was elected Minority Leader in 1973 after 20 years of House service. By contrast, party leaders of the United States Senate have ascended to their position despite few years of experience in that chamber, such as Lyndon B. Johnson, William F. Knowland, Bill Frist. Former House Majority Leader Eric Cantor had a comparatively quick rise to the post and was the youngest House Majority Leader in American history.
The House Majority Leader's duties vary, depending upon the political makeup of the majority caucus. In several recent sessions of Congress, with the notable exception of the Pelosi speakership, the Majority Leader has been responsible for scheduling the House floor's legislative calendar and direct management for all House committees. One statutory duty, per 19 U. S. C. § 2191, stipulates that an implementing bill submitted by the President of the United States for a fast-track negotiating authority trade agreement must be introduced in the House by the Majority Leader of the House. Before 1899, the majority party floor leader had traditionally been the Chairman of the House Ways and Means Committee, the most powerful committee in the House, as it generates the Bills of Revenue specified in the Constitution as the House's unique power; the office of Majority Leader first occupied by Sereno Payne. Speaker David B. Henderson created the position to establish a party leader on the House floor separate from the Speaker, as the role of Speaker had become more prominent, the size of the House had grown from 105 at the beginning of the century to 356.
Starting with Republican Nicholas Longworth in 1925, continued through the Democrats' control of the House from 1931 to 1995, save for Republican majorities in 1947–49 and 1953–55, all majority leaders have directly ascended to the Speakership brought upon by the retirement of the incumbent. The only exceptions during this period were Charles A. Halleck who became Republican House leader and Minority Leader from 1959 to 1965, Hale Boggs who died in a plane crash, Dick Gephardt who became the Democrats' House leader but as Minority Leader since his party lost control in the 1994 midterm elections. Since 1995, the only Majority Leader to become Speaker is John Boehner, though indirectly as his party lost control in the 2006 midterms elections, he subsequently served as Republican House leader and Minority Leader from 2007 to 2011 and was elected Speaker when the House reconvened in 2011. In 1998, with Speaker Newt Gingrich announcing his resignation, both Majority Leader Dick Armey and Majority Whip Tom DeLay did not contest the Speakership which went to Chief Deputy Whip Dennis Hastert.
Traditionally, the Speaker is reckoned as the leader of the majority party in the House, with the Majority Leader as second-in-command. For instance, when the Republicans gained the majority in the House after the 2010 elections, Eric Canto
Party leaders of the United States Senate
The Senate Majority and Minority Leaders are two United States Senators and members of the party leadership of the United States Senate. These leaders serve as the chief Senate spokespeople for the political parties holding the majority and the minority in the United States Senate, manage and schedule the legislative and executive business of the Senate, they are elected to their positions in the Senate by the party caucuses: the Senate Democratic Caucus and the Senate Republican Conference. By rule, the Presiding Officer gives the Majority Leader priority in obtaining recognition to speak on the floor of the Senate; the Majority Leader customarily serves as the chief representative of their party in the Senate, sometimes in all of Congress if the House of Representatives and thus the office of Speaker of the House is controlled by the opposition party. The Assistant Majority and Minority Leaders of the United States Senate are the second-ranking members of each party's leadership; the main function of the Majority and Minority Whips is to gather votes on major issues.
Because they are the second ranking members of the Senate, if there is no floor leader present, the whip may become acting floor leader. Before 1969, the official titles were Minority Whip; the Senate is composed of 53 Republicans, 45 Democrats, 2 independents, both of whom caucus with the Democrats. The current leaders are Chuck Schumer from New York; the current Assistant Leaders/Whips are Senators John Thune from South Dakota and Dick Durbin from Illinois. Democrats began the practice of electing floor leaders in 1920. John W. Kern was a Democratic Senator from Indiana. While the title was not official, he is considered to be the first Senate party leader from 1913 through 1917, while serving concurrently as Chairman of the Senate Democratic Caucus. In 1925 the majority Republicans adopted this language when Charles Curtis became the first Majority Leader, although his immediate predecessor Henry Cabot Lodge is considered the first Senate Majority Leader; the Constitution designates the Vice President of the United States as President of the United States Senate.
The Constitution calls for a President pro tempore to serve as the leader of the body when the President of the Senate is absent. In practice, neither the Vice President nor the President pro tempore—customarily the most senior Senator in the majority party—actually presides over the Senate on a daily basis. Since the Vice President may be of a different party than the majority and is not a member subject to discipline, the rules of procedure of the Senate give the presiding officer little power and none beyond the presiding role. For these reasons, it is the Majority Leader; this is in contrast to the House of Representatives where the elected Speaker of the House has a great deal of discretionary power and presides over votes on bills. The Democratic Party first selected a leader in 1920; the Republican Party first formally designated a leader in 1925. Party leaders of the United States House of Representatives President pro tempore of the United States Senate Vice President of the United States Party divisions of United States Congresses List of political parties in the United States Women in the United States Senate Majority and Minority Leaders and Party Whips, via Senate.gov Republican Majority Democratic Minority
Vice President of the United States
The Vice President of the United States is the second-highest officer in the executive branch of the U. S. federal government, after the President of the United States, ranks first in the presidential line of succession. The Vice President is an officer in the legislative branch, as President of the Senate. In this capacity, the Vice President presides over Senate deliberations, but may not vote except to cast a tie-breaking vote; the Vice President presides over joint sessions of Congress. The Vice President is indirectly elected together with the President to a four-year term of office by the people of the United States through the Electoral College. Section 2 of the Twenty-fifth Amendment, ratified in 1967, created a mechanism for intra-term vice presidential succession, establishing that vice presidential vacancies will be filled by the president and confirmed by both houses of Congress. Whenever a vice president had succeeded to the presidency or had died or resigned from office, the vice presidency remained vacant until the next presidential and vice presidential terms began.
The Vice President is a statutory member of the National Security Council, the Board of Regents of the Smithsonian Institution. The Office of the Vice President organises the vice president's official functions; the role of the vice presidency has changed since the office was created during the 1787 constitutional Convention. Over the past 100 years, the vice presidency has evolved into a position of domestic and foreign policy political power, is now seen as an integral part of a president's administration; as the Vice President's role within the executive branch has expanded, his role within the legislative branch has contracted. The Constitution does not expressly assign the vice presidency to any one branch, causing a dispute among scholars about which branch of government the office belongs to: 1) the executive branch; the modern view of the vice president as an officer of the executive branch is due in large part to the assignment of executive authority to the vice president by either the president or Congress.
Mike Pence of Indiana is the current Vice President of the United States. He assumed office on January 20, 2017. No mention of an office of vice president was made at the 1787 Constitutional Convention until near the end, when an 11-member committee on "Leftover Business" proposed a method of electing the chief executive. Delegates had considered the selection of the Senate's presiding officer, deciding that, "The Senate shall choose its own President," and had agreed that this official would be designated the executive's immediate successor, they had considered the mode of election of the executive but had not reached consensus. This all changed on September 4, when the committee recommended that the nation's chief executive be elected by an Electoral College, with each state having a number of presidential electors equal to the sum of that state's allocation of representatives and senators; the proposed presidential election process called for each state to choose members of the electoral college, who would use their discretion to select the candidates they individually viewed as best qualified.
Recognizing that loyalty to one's individual state outweighed loyalty to the new federation, the Constitution's framers assumed that individual electors would be inclined to choose a candidate from their own state over one from another. So they created the office of vice president and required that electors vote for two candidates, requiring that at least one of their votes must be for a candidate from outside the elector's state, believing that this second vote could be cast for a candidate of national character. Additionally, to guard against the possibility that some electors might strategically throw away their second vote in order to bolster their favorite son's chance of winning, it was specified that the first runner-up presidential candidate would become vice president. Creating this new office imposed a political cost on strategically discarded electoral votes, incentivizing electors to make their choices for president without resort to electoral gamesmanship and to cast their second ballot accordingly.
The resultant method of electing the president and vice president, spelled out in Article II, Section 1, Clause 3, allocated to each state a number of electors equal to the combined total of its Senate and House of Representatives membership. Each elector was allowed to vote for two people for president, but could not differentiate between their first and second choice for the presidency; the person receiving the greatest number of votes would be president, while the individual who received the next largest number of votes became vice president. If there were a tie for first or for second place, or if no one won a majority of votes, the president and vice president would be selected by means of contingent elections protocols stated in the clause; the emergence of political parties and nationally coordinated election campaigns during the 1790s soon frustrated this original plan. In the election of 1796, Federalist John Adams won the presidency, but his bitter rival, Democratic-Republican Thomas Jefferson came second and became vice president.
Thus, the president and vice president were from opposing parties.