In the realm of international relations, a president has two main options when it comes to negotiating agreements with foreign governments: a treaty or an executive agreement. While treaties require Senate approval, executive agreements can be made solely by the president. So, why would a president make an executive agreement rather than a treaty? Let`s take a closer look.
First, the most obvious reason is that executive agreements do not require Senate approval. This means that negotiations can be conducted and agreements can be made much more quickly than with a treaty. This is especially important in situations where time is of the essence, such as during a crisis or when negotiating a trade deal.
Another reason a president may choose to make an executive agreement is that they may not be able to get the necessary two-thirds vote in the Senate to ratify a treaty. This is particularly challenging when the Senate is controlled by the opposing party. In this case, an executive agreement can be used as an alternative to a treaty that may be more palatable to the opposition.
Additionally, executive agreements can be used in situations where the subject matter of the agreement is not within the scope of the Senate`s authority. For example, the Senate`s power to approve treaties is limited to matters pertaining to defense, foreign affairs, and economic policies. Issues such as environmental regulations or humanitarian aid may not fall within these categories and therefore would not require Senate approval.
Another advantage of executive agreements is that they are more flexible than treaties. Treaties generally require a lengthy and complicated process for amending or terminating them. On the other hand, executive agreements can be altered or canceled at any time by the president, which allows for greater flexibility in responding to changing circumstances.
Finally, executive agreements can be used to circumvent the constitutional requirement of treaty ratification. For example, a president may enter into an executive agreement rather than a treaty in order to avoid having to share power with the Senate on a particular issue. While this practice has been controversial and is subject to legal challenges, it remains a viable option for presidents.
In conclusion, there are several reasons why a president may choose to make an executive agreement rather than a treaty. These include speed, difficulty in achieving Senate ratification, subject matter jurisdiction, flexibility, and a desire to circumvent the constitutional process. Ultimately, the decision of whether to make an executive agreement or a treaty depends on the circumstances and priorities of the president and their administration.