The 1979 Constitution sets the American
Constitution as a model. It guarantees the protection of
the human rights and freedoms of citizens and provides
that the executive, legislative and judicial powers must
The country's relationship with the United States,
which managed the area from 1947 to 1986 (see Modern
History), is governed by the Compact of Free
Association. The agreement states that the country is
independent but that the United States is responsible
for its defense and has the right to establish military
bases on the islands. In addition, the United States
pledges to make substantial financial contributions to
the Micronesia Federation (see also Foreign Policy and
Total population and chart of Micronesia for years of 2020, 2021, 2022, 2023 and 2024. Also covers population density, birth rate, death rate and population growth rates.
At the federal level, the executive is exercised by
the president, who is both head of state and government.
The president appoints the federal government.
The Federal Legislative Congress is a one-chamber
parliament with 14 members, called senators. They are
elected by universal suffrage. One senator from each
state is elected for four years and ten senators,
distributed in proportion to the population of the
states, are elected for two years.
The president and vice president are elected by
Congress from among the four senators who have been in
office for four years. Once the President and Vice
President have been elected, filling elections are held
for the seats in Congress that the two leaders leave.
The two offices rotate between the states in the
The four states of Yap, Chuuk, Pohnpei and Kosrae all
have their constitution, their own elected parliament
and their respective governors. The federal government
has a relatively weak position compared to the state
There are no political parties in the real sense.
Political loyalties are formed instead based on kinship
and customer affiliation as well as geographical origin.
Traditional leaders have significant influence in
several of the states. Political life is characterized
by stability, but within each state there are
traditional contradictions between the residents of
the main islands and those who live on the outer
The legal system is largely based on American law and
is independent of other state powers. The Supreme Court
is the Federal Supreme Court (National Supreme Court).
Under it, state courts sort out corresponding district
and court courts. In all the states except Kosrae, the
traditional leaders have a role in the justice system.
Respect for human rights is generally good. However,
there are problems with protracted legal processes,
corruption, domestic violence and discrimination against
women. Occasional information on police abuse exists.
The death penalty was abolished in 1988.