Tuesday, September 02, 2008

So, What Does the Vice President Do Anyway?

A friend recently suggested that I give an overview of Executive responsibilities asking, what does the Vice President do, anyway? It wasn’t Gov. Sarah Palin, but she recently asked this question too.

Here’s a rundown of the Top Ten responsibilities of the Vice President

1. Takes over as President in case of death, resignation, or medical impairment

2. Serves as the Presiding Officer of the U.S. Senate

3. Decides the vote in case of a Senate deadlock on a proposed law. Vice President Cheney’s tie-breaking vote gave the Republicans the Senate majority in 2001, so not only did he break the tie on votes, Republicans also chaired powerful committees.

4. Presides over and certifies the official vote count of the U.S. Electoral College

5. May be called upon by President to act as policy drafter and spokesperson

6. May be called as a Presidential advisor

7. Usually chairs the Board of the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) and serves as member of the board of the Smithsonian Institution

8. Serves as a as a symbol of American concern or support

9. Can serve as a buffer to the President by taking hard-line stands on issues to ensure the support of the party's base while deflecting partisan criticism away from the President

10. Meets with other heads of state and attends state funerals in other countries

If this country were hiring a Vice President, the next step in the process would be to compare and contrast the skills, abilities, and qualifications of the applicants to see who could best perform the essential functions of the job. To find resumes for Sen. Biden and Gov. Palin, see Project Vote Smart at
www.votesmart.org. Don’t worry, I’ll also do it to help you along. Watch for a posting in the near future!

In this case, since the Vice President also could become the President in a heartbeat, we also need to consider the job duties of the President. Stay tuned, I’ll post on that soon too. So now that we know the Top 10 duties of the Vice President, what do you think about the VP picks?

Thanks to Martha Thayer for the blog idea! Visit her website at www.endoflifeinsights.com
Source: Politico: Sara Palin: What Exactly Does the VP Do Everyday? : http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2008/08/29/sarah-palin-what-exactly_n_122514.html