26 Oct 2022


The Relationship between Congress and Agencies

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A country’s political system is built based on a set of separating the power in political governance in a country. The power is divided such that there is a balance of responsibility and independent such that there is no conflict in responsibilities. The establishment entails three core branches of the federal government that is the Executive, the Legislature or Congress and the Judicial Branch. As the Constitution establishes the federal government, there is clear oversight and interrelationship between these arms of the government. By limiting and exercising the core functions of the other, there meant to help establish some form of checks and balance between these important branches and prevent any concentrating power to a particular branch of the government (Barnett, 2017). The separation of power has created a myriad of the political relationship between the two branches of power, the Executive, and the Congress. The relationship is built based on the political responsibilities of the two arms of government. In this analysis, will give an overview of the foundations between Congress and all federal government agencies that relate to the foundation of oversight and legislative functions and give a current issue that is relevant to the establish the views on the form of governance.

The legislature and the executive branch is equal under the constitutional law. The law provides that the functions of the two branches of government are a constant shifting regarding political power and neither can act alone at any given policy making process. There are times which Congress has absolute power over the executive, especially during the periods of economic prosperity, while during the war, the political power shifts to the executive. The change happened during the War on Terror after the 9/11 attack with activism in the executive power. Some analyst not that with the closeness in authority over the administration of the U.S government, have expressed a much institutional capability that has shifted the capacity of both branches having trouble, contributing form of negative national governance performance. The area of concern is the foundation of the relationship between Congress and the state agencies. Other than the constitutional mandate to legislate the laws of the land, Congress has the task to form federal agencies that will run the administration of the government. The term of office of federal agencies is to develop, enforce and oversee the rules and the regulations that are imposed in the country. There are two main types of agencies, congressional agencies, and the executive agencies. Both have same administrative functions, but the difference lies on the appointing body. Congress created agencies are under the jurisdiction of the Congress and has a complete oversight of the Congress (Justia, n.d). Executive organizations such as the executive cabinet which mean that the executive has absolute power. Congress has an oversight and checks both forms of administrative agencies through monitoring of their leadership and the budget control through legislation. Example Congress will always approve the appointees of the Cabinet Secretaries, heads of state departments and agencies created by the act of Congress (Justia, n.d).

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Politicians and the citizens do believe that Congress has the responsibility to make sure that the legislative and the executive function according to the constitution. Congress has impossible legislative and oversight task. The executive, under the leadership of the president, has the responsibility to enforce the laws and administer all federal budget (Postell, 2012). Congress is deemed powerful because of the leadership is vested upon a representation from the voters. They are perceived to have the mandate of the people. Sometimes the relationship between Congress and the federal agencies are subject to critics and particular concerns about the establishment and the mandate of these organizations. When most people believe that the Congress passes all the laws under the representation of the citizens, many have indirectly consented to the laws passed by Congress and are followed. Again Congress establishes these federal agencies, which also have both administrative and legislative power and can enact the law and regulations that must also be supported by the general public. For example, Environmental Protection Agency regulation on the environmental pollution under the Clean Air Act, which caused a considerable amount of losses to companies (Postell, 2012). The point is how comes these bureaucratic agencies make massive laws without the congressional approval based on the belief that it should be fair across the board. These federal agencies can undermine the rule of law, since they have the same power to execute the law, and possibly exempt politically influential citizens and small group pf people from the laws, making it a law violation (Quirk, 2014). The power is always transferred to the agencies and state department that is also controlled and influenced by the three arms of the government, yet there is no accountability to any of the branches, undermining the effects of balance of checks and balance of these agencies (Postell, 2012).

A problem arises because of the accountability of the agencies. The fact that state agencies have enacted regulations based on their roles vested by Congress and the executive. The most critical recommendation is building the foundation of the relationship between the agencies and other branches of the government. With the political competition in Washington, it is important that all the branches of the federal government restore the constitutionality of the government through legislative mandates. Congress can take steps to restore their constitutional responsibility in making the laws and mechanism to place checks on the administration of the agencies (Moffit, 2011). The President can also take own measures by having the sole responsibility to ensure the executive functions of the federal agencies have restored the constitutional power of the executive arm or creating an incentive to Congress to stop delegating the power to the agencies. The steps will contribute towards having an accountability in federal government that is right in law as well as to the citizen of the country (Moffit, 2011).


Barnett, H. (2017). Constitutional and administrative law. Taylor & Francis.

Justia (n.d). Executive Agencies. Author. Retrieved from https://www.justia.com/administrative-law/executive-agencies/

Moffit, E. (2011). How to Roll Back the Administrative State. Heritage Foundation Center for Policy Innovation Retrieved from http://www.heritage.org/research/reports/2011/02/how-to-roll-back-the-administrative-state.

Postell, J. (2012). From Administrative State to Constitutional Government. The Heritage Foundation. Retrieved from http://report.heritage.org/sr116

Quirk, P. J. (2014). Industry influence in federal regulatory agencies . Princeton University Press.

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