Comparing the Us and French Presidency

Topics: President of the United States, Prime minister, Head of state Pages: 4 (1480 words) Published: April 15, 2013
When one thinks of presidents residing over a country, the most coveted powers come to mind, especially for United States citizens, where its chief has centralized command over important facets of the government. However, not all presidential systems are the same. For some, the title only bears a symbolic representation for head of state and nothing more. Other presidents find themselves sharing powers with additional officials. The most interesting comparison between presidential systems that have different processes of election and distributions of authority is the United States and France. The examination of the nomination process, voting measures, campaign spending, the media and debates will distinguish the election process. Only then is it fitting to compare and contrasts constitutional powers that each president holds and the shaping of these powers by the governmental system.

The most basic difference is the terms and years for the two presidents. In the United States, a president can only hold two consecutive terms of four years each. The limit on terms is alike for the France president, except that a term consists of five years, which was brought down from seven since the referendum on the reduction of the mandate in the year 2000. For the nomination process of both countries, a president is elected from a pool of contenders, though the procedure in determining what candidates participate in the presidential election are quite different. In order to get nominated for the general election in the United States, most contenders compete in primary elections and electoral caucuses that “determine the composition of pledged delegates that the states send to the party’s national convention. Once they arrive at the convention, these delegates are expected to vote for the nominee they are pledged to represent”. While this process takes place in the years and months before the presidential election, France’s way usually takes less than six months. It is much...
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