The Branches of U.S. Government Quiz

Estimated Completion Time
3 min
The Branches of U.S. Government Quiz
Image: EVAN VUCCI/AFP/Getty Images

About This Quiz

Discussions about politics can be overheard almost anywhere, but how much do you really know about the nuts and bolts of our government? Find out if you can ace this quiz on branches of the U.S. government.
How many branches does the U.S. federal government have?
two
three
The United States Federal Government has three branches.
four

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Along with the legislative and executive branches, what is the third branch of the U.S. federal government?
investigative
financial
judicial
The judicial branch is the third branch of U.S. Federal Government.

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The Articles of Confederation was the first document to establish a federal government in the U.S. Which branch of government did it create?
judicial
executive
legislative
The Articles of Confederation only created the legislative branch, called the Congress of the United States. Without the executive and judicial branches, this early federal government had very little power.

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Which U.S. document replaced the Articles of Confederation and created the three branches of U.S. federal government?
the Declaration of Independence
the U.S. Constitution
In 1789, the U.S. Constitution replaced the Articles of Confederation.
the Bill of Rights

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Where is the original U.S. Constitution document housed?
the National Archives
The original Constitution document is housed at the National Archives in Washington.
the Library of Congress
the U.S. Capitol

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The judicial branch of the U.S. Federal Government is made up of how many primary components?
one
two
three
The judicial branch is made up of three primary components: the U.S. Supreme Court, the U.S. District Courts and the U.S. Court of Appeals.

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True or false: Members of the U.S. Supreme Court are NOT elected.
true
The members of the U.S. Supreme Court, which is the primary component of the judicial branch, are not elected. The executive branch appoints each member, and the legislative branch confirms each member.
false

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How many justices serve on the U.S. Supreme Court?
seven
nine
There are nine members of the U.S. Supreme Court, including one chief justice and eight associate justices.
11

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Who determines the number of Supreme Court justices?
Congress
Congress determines the number of Supreme Court justices. The current number of nine has been in place since 1869. Prior to 1869, there were as few as six Supreme Court justices.
the president
the voting public

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How long is the term served by Supreme Court justices?
six years
eight years
no term limit
Members of the Supreme Court serve until they retire, are impeached and convicted by Congress or die.

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Which article of the U.S. Constitution establishes the judicial branch of the U.S. federal government?
Article I
Article II
Article III
Article III of the U.S. Constitution begins by stating that "the judicial power of the United States shall be vested in one Supreme Court."

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How many times has a Supreme Court justice been impeached?
never
once
In 1805, Associate Justice Samuel Chase became the first and only justice to be impeached by the House of Representatives. However, he was acquitted by the Senate and remained on the Supreme Court.
twice

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To keep any one branch of the U.S. government from becoming too powerful, the Constitution established a system called checks and what?
balances
The presidential veto is part of the system of checks and balances.
approvals
vetoes

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Who was the only U.S. president to also serve as a Supreme Court chief justice?
Warren G. Harding
William H. Taft
Taft was the 27th president of the United States from 1909-13 and then became the 10th chief justice of the U.S. Supreme Court, serving from 1921-30.
Woodrow Wilson

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Which article of the U.S. Constitution establishes the executive branch of the U.S. Federal Government?
Article II
Article II was signed in convention in September 1787.
Article III
Article IV

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The executive branch of the U.S. government is known as which governing body or office?
the House of Representatives
the Senate
the presidency
The U.S. presidency, including the vice president, makes up the executive branch of the U.S. government.

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True or false: To serve as the president of the United States, a person must be 45 years old.
true
false
Article II of the Constitution requires a person to be at least 35 years old to serve as the president.

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As of 2016, how many people have served as president of the United States?
44
There have been 44 people who have served as the president, with Barack Obama as the 44th.
42
40

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How many four year terms can a U.S. president serve?
one
two
A president may only serve two four-year terms in office, as stated by the 22nd Amendment to the Constitution. A president may, however, serve a total of 10 years in office if he or she takes over for another president in the last two years of the elected term.
three

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Who is the only vice president and, later, president who was never elected to either office?
Gerald Ford
In 1973, Ford was nominated to replace vice president Spiro Agnew when he resigned. Ford then became president of the United States when Richard Nixon resigned in 1974, making Ford the only person to serve both jobs without ever being elected.
William McKinley
Theodore Roosevelt

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Which position does the vice president hold in the legislative branch?
none
president of the Senate
The vice president is also the president of the Senate. The vice president is therefore the only person to hold power in both the executive and legislative branches.
speaker of the House

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The U.S. president resides in the White House, but what is the official residence of the vice president?
the West Wing of the White House
the Smithsonian Castle
the U.S. Naval Observatory
While the vice president does have an office in the West Wing of the White House, the official residence of the vice president is the U.S. Naval Observatory in Washington.

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Which office does the president hold over the United States military?
commander in chief
Upon taking the oath of office, the president immediately becomes the commander in chief of the United States armed forces.
commander in charge
general in chief

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Which of the following is NOT a power granted to the president of the United States?
veto congressional legislation
issue executive orders
overrule the Supreme Court
The president cannot overrule the Supreme Court. U.S. presidents can and do, however, veto congressional legislation and issue executive orders.

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The President is elected by the Electoral College. How many electors make up the Electoral College?
438
538
The Electoral College comprises 538 electors, equal to the current number of senators and representatives that serve in Congress.
638

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Which article of the Constitution establishes the legislative branch of the U.S. government?
Article I
Article I consists of 10 sections.
Article III
Article V

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How many governing bodies make up the legislative branch of government, which is also known as Congress?
one
two
Two governing bodies make up the legislative branch: the House of Representatives and the Senate.
three

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How many senators serve in the United States Senate?
100
Regardless of size or population, each of the 50 states elects two senators for staggered six-year terms, making a total of 100 senators in the United States Senate.
200
400

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True or false: Congress has the authority to override a presidential veto
true
Congress has the authority to override a presidential veto with a two-thirds majority vote in both the House and the Senate.
false

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How many representatives are there in the U.S. House of Representatives?
235
335
435
All 50 states are divided into 435 districts of approximately 710,000 people. Each of these districts elects a representative to a two-year term, making a total of 435 representatives in the U.S. House of Representatives.

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You Got:
/30
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