Comparing the Position and Powers of the US President and the UK Prime Minister

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Comparing the Position and Powers of the US President and the UK Prime Minister Political instinct alone seems to dictate to many that the American president - 'the world's most powerful man' - is the most powerful politician in any of the world's democratic nations. He is at the head of the world's most modern military force and the world's largest economy. What the president says is reported around the world and world share markets can fall or rise on any public statement by him. But is he the western world's most powerful politician? In America, the president is the best known of many politicians. This alone gives him a great deal of authority as many people within their own states cannot name their own representatives in the House, Senate or governor. The simple fact, that the president has the title of president gives him enormous authority and power in that he is the main figurehead within the whole of the massive American political structure. To take on the president is seen as almost taking on America and all that the nation stands for. When Clinton moved towards the impeachment process during the Lewinsky scandal, he was paying the price for what he had done as a person not as a politician who happened to be president. Even so, the fact that the Senate failed to go all the way down the road to impeachment was probably because they did not want to see the title of president sullied in such a manner. The same is probably true of Nixon during the Watergate crisis. Here was a man who was allowed to resign rather than face the ignominy of impeachment and possibly a full trial in the full glare of the public at both domestic and ... ... middle of paper ... ...inister has the advantages in that he as an individual can push through domestic legislation as he is not only Prime Minister but also party leader. The constitutional restraints that are on the president simply do not exist in Britain. The president can veto a bill from Congress but an overuse of this will devalue not only his position but also that of the political structure in America. In Britain, the only thing that can stop a bill becoming law under the current political set-up, is if the Queen refused to give the Royal Assent to a bill that had gone all through the democratic procedures of Parliament. Such an incident is inconceivable. If the Prime Minister has a large parliamentary majority, then he has very extensive powers at a domestic level with probably far fewer restrictions placed on him than a president.

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