The president must serve in a number of capacities to fulfill a number of duties. Some of these roles are specified in the Constitution, but most of them have evolved over time; the following chart summarizes some of the president’s roles.




Chief of StateActs as the symbolic leader of the country
Chief ExecutiveExecutes the laws, appoints key federal officials, grants pardons and reprieves
Commander in ChiefRuns the armed forces
Chief DiplomatNegotiates with other countries
Chief LegislatorSigns or vetoes legislation, introduces legislation, works with Congress on the budget
SuperpoliticianHelps his or her party raise money and elect candidates

Chief of State

Every nation has a chief of state, a person who serves as the symbolic leader of the country and represents the nation. In the United States, the president both leads the government and acts as the chief of state, although this is not the case in many countries. As chief of state, the president presides over commemorations of war heroes, throws out the first pitch at baseball games, and attends funerals of world leaders, among other duties.

Popular pages: The Presidency