United States Government: Vice President

The Vice President is the next in line in terms of executive power in the executive branch. According to the constitution, the Vice President automatically becomes the head or President of the Senate. 

In the capacity of the head of the Senate, the Vice President can vote in the Senate. However, this is a power that the Vice President is allowed to execute only when there is a situation of a tie among the 100 senators.

Based on the twelfth amendment, it is the Vice President of the country that presides over the joint sessions of the House of Representatives and the Senate. This is especially the case when a joint session is convened to count the vote of the Electoral College. 

The other focal responsibility of the Vice President is to take over the reins of running the country in the absence of the President. This is something that can occur in case of death, removal or resignation of the President of the United States.  

In specific cases if the President cannot be contacted and specific decisions need to be taken that involve the President, it is the Vice President that can take charge. However, there are specific rules as to the circumstances under which the Vice President can take over.


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