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The One, Two, Threes of Understanding and Becoming a United States Citizen

Updated: Apr 20


There are hundreds of people who dream of becoming a United States citizen. However, there is a long and tedious process that they have to go through to become a citizen. One of the biggest portions of the process is the citizenship test. During this test they will be quizzed on several different aspects of the United States history. In this blog post we are going to share some of the most common areas that are covered in the citizenship test.

The United States first began with only thirteen colonies. These colonies included the following: Virginia, Massachusetts, Rhode Island, Connecticut, New Hampshire, New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Delaware, Maryland, North Carolina, South Carolina, and Georgia. The United States is now made up of fifty states and The District of Columbia (the capital), the Territories of Guam, American Samoa, and the United State Virgin Island, and the Commonwealths of the Northern Mariana Islands and Puerto Rico.

At the beginning of creation of the United States they were focused on a more perfect union. In 1787 representatives from each of the states gathered in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania to the develop a strong central government on September 17, 1787. This is where the Constitution was created, and the final draft was signed. Within four years of the Constitution the first ten amendments had been added to the Constitution in 1791. This is known as the Bill of Rights. The 10 amendments that are included in the Bill of Rights are: freedom of religion, speech, press, assembly and petition, right to keep and bear arms, no quartering of soldiers, freedom from unreasonable searches and seizures, right to due process of law, freedom from self-incrimination, double jeopardy, rights of accused persons right to a speedy and public trial, right of trial by jury in civil cases, freedom from excessive bail, cruel, unusual punishments, other rights of the people, powers reserved to the states.

Throughout the years the United States has adapted and developed. The United States now has three different branches of government: Legislative, Executive, and Judicial.

First looking at the Legislative Branch. This area is made up of the House of Representatives and the Senate. The House of Representatives has 435 voting members that are often called “The House”. The number of representatives from each state depends on how many people live in that state. Then there are five additional delegates in the house that representatives of the District of Columbia, The commonwealth of the Mariana Island, the Territories of Guam, American Samoa, US Virgin Island and Puerto Rico. Each one of the representatives’ servers for two years. The representatives within the House of Representatives propose laws about taxes and decides if the government official accused of committing a crime against the country should be put on trial in the Senate.

Then there is the United States Senate. There are 100 senators in the senate, and they are voted in by the people from the state they represent. Each state has two representatives. The senators serve for six years and have another chance to re-elect those senators or to vote for a different person to represent them. Senators can serve in the congress for an unlimited period of time as long as they are re-elected. The senate itself as a whole can do the following: say yes or no to any agreements the president makes with other countries or organization of countries (called Treaties), approve, or disapprove individuals the president choose for high level jobs, such as supreme court justices or officials to run deferral departments, hold trial for a government official who has been impeached by the House of Representatives.

The next branch to discuss is the Executive Branch. This is made up of the President, Vice President, and the Departments of the Federal Government. The President is the leader of the executive branch and is responsible for upholding and enforcing the laws of the country. They are in charge of setting national policies, proposing new laws to the Congress, choosing high level officials and members of the Supreme Court, the President is the leader of the United State Military and is called the Commander in Chief. Lastly, the president serves for four years and can serve two terms if re-elected.

The last branch to be discussed in the Judicial Branch. This is where the Supreme Court is. The Supreme Court is the highest court in the Untied States. There are nine judges that make up the Supreme Court and they are called Justices. The president is the one that chooses the justices of the Supreme Court. Once they are selected, they serve as long as they are able to.

To review the United States has three main branches of government and they are Legislative, Executive and Judicial Branch. Each branch is in charge of something different however they are all interconnected. It can be overwhelming however when broken down it is easier to understand. Don’t forget that USCIS does offer studying material for citizenship tests at the following link: https://www.uscis.gov/citizenship/find-study-materials-and-resources/study-for-the-test

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