What Are the Five Non-Legislative Powers of Congress?

Congress’ non-legislative powers include the ability to alter the constitution, approve presidential appointments, examine problems that interfere with or impede its legislative duties, impeach officials, and select a president if there is no majority winner in an election. The Senate must also approve vice presidential nominees because the vice president is also the Senate president.

Article 1 of the Constitution of the United States assigns Congress its authority. It is primarily designed to be the legislative branch of a three-branch system in which each branch holds equal authority. Congress is the only arm of government with the authority to create or alter laws. The President presides over the executive branch of government, while the Supreme Court presides over the judicial branch.

To establish a system of checks and balances, Congress must possess non-legislative powers. In the case that one branch attempts to exert undue influence over the others, these abilities assist the government in organising. Some non-legislative congressional functions, such as approving presidential appointments, only a simple majority vote, while others, such as impeachment, require a two-thirds majority. Two-thirds majority votes ensure that legislation is not passed as a result of a single party controlling Congress.

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