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The President's Cabinet

Do you have friends that you turn to for advice? When the President wants advice he asks a group of people called the Cabinet. The purpose of the Cabinet is to advise the President. They are the President's closest and most trusted advisors. The Cabinet includes the Vice President, the heads of 15 executive branch departments, and other Government officials chosen by the President. The Cabinet meets at least once a week to discuss matters that affect the United States.

The 14 Secretaries from the executive departments and the Attorney General are nominated by the President, and they must be approved (confirmed) by a majority vote (51 votes) of the Senate. Nominees can not be a member of Congress or hold any other elected office. Executive department Secretaries and the Attorney General serve as long as the President is in office.

The following is a list of the 15 executive department agencies, when that department was created, and a brief description of the department. The list is organized by order of succession. More detailed information is available in the United States Government Manual.

Department of State Seal Secretary of State
Department of State (1789):
Works with other countries.
Department of the Treasury Seal Secretary of the Treasury
Department of the Treasury (1789):
Supervises the collection of taxes and the printing of money.
Department of Defense Seal Secretary of Defense
Department of Defense (1947):
Oversees the armed forces.
Department of Justice Seal Attorney General
Department of Justice (1870):
Enforces the U.S. Government's laws.
Department of the Interior Seal Secretary of the Interior
Department of the Interior (1849):
Protects natural resources and wildlife.
Department of Agriculture Seal Secretary of Agriculture
Department of Agriculture (1862):
Ensures a healthy food supply and provides support for farmers.
Department of Commerce Seal Secretary of Commerce
Department of Commerce (1903):
Promotes business and job opportunities for all Americans, responsible for all copyrights, patents, and trademarks; and oversees matters related to oceans, weather, and technology.
Department of Labor Seal Secretary of Labor
Department of Labor (1913):
Oversees the interests of U.S. workers.
Department of Health and Human Services Seal Secretary of Health & Human Services
Department of Health and Human Services (1953):
Looks after people's health and provides services including conducting medical research, preventing diseases, assuring the safety of food and drugs; providing financial assistance for low income families.
Department of Housing and Urban Development Seal Secretary of Housing & Development
Department of Housing and Urban Development (1965):
Oversees housing needs, and focuses on improving and developing communities.
Department of Transportation Seal Secretary of Transportation
Department of Transportation (1966):
Oversees the nation's transportation system including highways, railroads, ports, and air travel.

Department of Energy Seal

Secretary of Energy
Department of Energy (1977):
Researches and develops energy systems that are friendly to the environment, but are not too expensive.
Department of Education Seal Secretary of Education
Department of Education (1979):
Establishes guidelines and provides leadership to address American education. It helps local communities meet the needs of their students.
Department of Veterans Affairs Seal Secretary of Veterans Affairs
Department of Veterans Affairs (1988):
Operates programs for veterans and their families.
Department of Homeland Security Seal

Secretary of Homeland Security
Department of Homeland Security (2003):
Works to prevent terrorist attacks within the United States, reduce America's vulnerability to terrorism, and minimize the damage from potential attacks and natural disasters.

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