A chief legislator most often refers to the president of the United States, who has the authority to influence members of Congress to make laws through veto power, signing a bill, speaking directly to Congress and meeting with individual members of the legislative body. Article II, Section 3 of the Constitution of the United States gives the president the authority to "recommend... such measures as... necessary and expedient."
The most prominent way the president of the United States acts as chief legislator is by submitting budget proposals to Congress. After receiving budget requests, legislators then alter the recommendations based on what senators and representatives feel is more appropriate.
Several presidents have had major influence on Congress as chief legislator. Franklin Roosevelt's New Deal programs during the Great Depression created government departments, Social Security and government spending initiatives that were designed to improve the lives of Americans by offering them government jobs. Roosevelt also convinced Congress to fund military initiatives for World War II.
President George W. Bush, in the days following the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks, asked for declarations of war on terror and for implementation of the Patriot Act. Bush also requested Congress create a new executive department, the Department of Homeland Security. John F. Kennedy, through a speech to a joint session of Congress on May 25, 1961, implored the legislative body to commit to the goal of "landing a man on the moon and returning him safely to the earth."Learn More
Once a bill is approved in Congress, the president has the option to sign it, veto it or make no action to acknowledge it. The president's signature is the final step to enact a law, but he must complete the process within 10 days, excluding Sundays. An official override, or veto, allows the president to reject a bill, sending it back to Congress for reconsideration.Full Answer >
According to the 25th Amendment of the Constitution, if the vice president of the United States dies while the president is still in office, the president has the power to appoint a new vice president subject to the approval of both houses of Congress. If both the president and the vice president die, the speaker of the house becomes president, according to the Presidential Succession Act of 1947.Full Answer >
As the chief legislator, the United States president is responsible for setting the shape of both foreign and domestic policy by recommending legislation, vetoing or encouraging their party to vote in favor of the legislation they want passed. This applies to public policies only. Traditionally, a president is seen as either strong or weak depending on how many of the bills and legislation that they supported got passed.Full Answer >
Bill Clinton served as president of the United States from 1993 to 2001. Elected to his first term on Nov. 3, 1992 by defeating incumbent president George H.W. Bush, he officially became the 42nd president on Jan. 20, 1993.Full Answer >