Constitution of The United States

The Constitution Of The United States

President John Adams said “Our Constitution Is Made Only For A Moral and Religious People”.

 

The Constitution is composed of a Preamble, 6 articles and 27 amendments. It is really a very simple and small document. However it is a document that has allowed one and only one nation to be the greatest and wealthiest nation on the face of the earth. No other people have ever been able to achieve what we have achieved. No other country has been able to do more good, feed more people and help more people around the world. It is all do to this little document.

 

The constitution of the United States of America is the most profound piece of prose ever written for governing a group of people or a nation. You may visit it at the link below.

http://www.archives.gov/exhibits/charters/constitution_transcript.htmlArticle I Describes the Legislature.It is composed of 10 sections; it sets up the legislature. It provides the make-up of the House of Representatives and the Senate. It states how they are elected. It describes their length of tenure their duties and it describes how to impeach them. And most importantly section 8 states the only powers allowed to the federal governement, and section 9 enumerates what the states are NOT allowed to do.

Barack Obama has said in a 2001 interview with a Chicago radio station, “the constitution has always been viewed as a negative, which is that it states what government must not do. It has never been viewed as a document of what the government must do for the people.”

I disagree with his interpretation; it does say what the government must do. The government must provide for the defense of the country; Article IV Section 4 “The United States shall guarantee to every State in this Union a Republican Form of Government, and shall protect each of them against Invasion”. The government must provide the roads. The government must provide the postal system, to name a few.

No where does the Constitution give the Federal Government the power to buy banks, auto companies, to set wages, or prices. Nowhere, does it allow the president to fire a CEO of any company, or to arbitrarily take away a contractual bonus from any company employee.

Article II Describes the presidency.

It states how the president and vice president are elected. It also states how they can be removed from office, Treason, bribery or other high crimes and misdemeanors. This has been changed by the 12th amendment (president and VP on one ticket) which was changed by the 20th (fix Jan 20th for inauguration) 22nd (2 terms) amendment and the 25th (removal in sickness) amendment. It is also very clear on the presidential oath of office. When George Washington took his oath of office he added “SO HELP ME GOD”.

Article III Describes the Judiciary.

The judicial power of the United States, shall be vested in one Supreme Court, and in such inferior courts as the Congress may from time to time ordain and establish.

  • The longest serving Chief Justice in Supreme Court history, John Marshall dominated the Court for over three decades (a term outliving his own Federalist Party) and played a significant role in the development of the American legal system. Most notably, he established that the courts are entitled to exercise judicial review, the power to strike down laws that violate the Constitution.
  • 1819 Thomas Jefferson complained that Marshall had made the constitution a “thing of wax” which it shaped as it pleased. In 1824 he declared that the danger he most feared was the courts “consolidation of our government”.  The court for Marshall was a judicial pulpit and political platform from which to address the notion to compete with the Executive and  legislature in shaping public opinion (equal and independent). It expanded the commerce clause with breadth thus providing for a basis for the regulation that we enjoy today.

 

Marshall established that Judicial review is the doctrine in democratic theory under which legislative and executive action is subject to invalidation by the judiciary. Specific courts with judicial review power must annul the acts of the state when it finds them incompatible with a higher authority, such as the terms of a written constitution. Judicial review is an example of the functioning of separation of powers in a modern governmental system (where the judiciary is one of three branches of government). This principle is interpreted differently in different jurisdictions, which also have differing views on the different hierarchy of governmental norms. As a result, the procedure and scope of judicial review differs from country to country and state to state.

Article IV Describes the Power of the states.

“Full faith and credit shall be given in each state to the public acts, records, and judicial proceedings of every other state.” While the states were still under the articles of confederation, a person could move from one state say New York with his slaves where he purchased them on credit to say Virginia and Virginia would have a law that would make null any and all debts from New York. Therefore he now owned his slave free and clear. The creditor in New York was left without.  Because this type of action was quite common as well as many other things the separate states realized the articles of confederation were not adequate to govern a new nation, therefore the 1st constitutional convention was convened May 25 to September 17, 1787. The convention was not made to create a new constitution for the United States, it was created to upgrade the existing Articles of Confederation.  “No person held to service or labor in one state, under the laws thereof, escaping into another, shall, in consequence of any law or regulation therein, be discharged from such service or labor, but shall be delivered up on claim of the party to whom such service or labor may be due.”  13th amendment “Neither slavery nor involuntary servitude, except as a punishment for crime whereof the party shall have been duly convicted, shall exist within the United States, or any place subject to their jurisdiction”

The citizens of each state shall be entitled to all privileges and immunities of citizens in the several states.

The most important part of this article is  Section 4 which defines perfectly that “The United States shall guarantee to every State in this Union a Republican Form of Government, and shall protect each of them against Invasion”.

Article V Describes the Amendment process.

The Congress, whenever two thirds of both houses shall deem it necessary, shall propose amendments to this Constitution, or, on the application of the legislatures of two thirds of the several states, shall call a convention for proposing amendmentsArticle VI Describes the supreme law of the land.

This Constitution, and the laws of the United States which shall be made in pursuance thereof; and all treaties made, or which shall be made, under the authority of the United States, shall be the supreme law of the land;

The Senators and Representatives before mentioned, and the members of the several state legislatures, and all executive and judicial officers, both of the United States and of the several states, shall be bound by oath or affirmation, to support this Constitution; but no religious test shall ever be required as a qualification to any office or public trust under the United States.

Article VII Describes ratification.

The ratification of the conventions of nine states, shall be sufficient for the establishment of this Constitution between the states so ratifying the same.

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