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The government of the United States of America is the federal government of the constitutional republic of fifty states that constitute the United States of America, as well as one capitol district, and several other territories. It is composed of three distinct branches: legislative, executive and judicial, which powers are vested by the U.S. Constitution in the Congress, the President, and the federal courts, including the Supreme Court, respectively; the powers and duties of these branches are further defined by acts of Congress, including the creation of executive departments and courts inferior to the Supreme Court.
The full name of the republic is "The United States of America". No other name appears in the Constitution, and this is the name that appears on money, in treaties, and in legal cases to which it is a party (e.g., Charles T. Schenck v. United States). The terms "Government of the United States of America" or "United States Government" are often used in official documents to represent the federal government as distinct from the states collectively. In casual conversation or writing, the term "Federal Government" is often used, and the term "National Government" is sometimes used.
The outline of the government of the United States is laid out in the Constitution. The government was formed in 1789, making the United States one of the world's first, if not the first, modern national constitutional republic.
The Constitution grants numerous powers to Congress. Enumerated in Article I, Section 8, these include the powers to levy and collect taxes; to coin money and regulate its value; provide for punishment for counterfeiting; establish post offices and roads, promote progress of science by issuing patents, create federal courts inferior to the Supreme Court, combat piracies and felonies, declare war, raise and support armies, provide and maintain a navy, make rules for the regulation of land and naval forces, provide for, arm and discipline the militia, exercise exclusive legislation in the District of Columbia, and to make laws necessary to properly execute powers. Over the two centuries since the United States was formed, many disputes have arisen over the limits on the powers of the federal government. These disputes have often been the subject of lawsuits that have ultimately been decided by the United States Supreme Court.
The executive branch consists of the President and those to whom the President's powers are delegated. The President is both the head of state and government, as well as the military commander-in-chief and chief diplomat. The President, according to the Constitution, must "take care that the laws be faithfully executed", and "preserve, protect and defend the Constitution. The forty-fourth and current president is Barack Obama.
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