The Constitution aimed to encourage collaboration and negotiation among the various branches, such as Congress and the president, as well as the Senate and the House. By mandating mutual agreement, such as the approval of all laws by both congressional chambers, the objective was to foster cooperation. Additionally, it was envisioned that the Senate would temper the fervor and populism of the House, serving as a calming influence on legislation originating from the House, as purportedly mentioned by Washington in a conversation with Thomas Jefferson. However, in reality, there has been frequent contention and impasse among the branches. For instance, the president proposes the budget and seeks approval from Congress, often resulting in stalemate. In recent years, this has led to prolonged standoffs and gridlock, including a 35-day government shutdown in late 2018 to early 2019 due to heightened tensions over funding for a border wall. Instances of presidential veto threats and Congress's refusal to pass requested legislation have hindered progress in areas like immigration reform. Instead of fostering unity, the Constitution has at times inadvertently fueled division and deadlock among Americans.