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By Bruce Peabody, Professor of American Politics, Fairleigh Dickinson University\nAdapted with permission by Actively Learn staff\n\nThe founders built a system of government with three separate branches: the executive (the president), the legislative (Congress), and the judicial (the court system). We call this the “separation of powers.” The branches are each supposed to check the actions of the others in order to prevent abuses of power. We call this a system of “checks and balances” because the branches should share power and make sure that the other branches do not get too powerful.\nBut we are currently seeing that all three branches of government are breaking down. This makes it