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The United States Constitution

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The United States Constitution. US Constitution. The Constitution is the United States’ fundamental law It is also “the supreme Law of the Land” meaning it is the highest form of law in the United States. Purpose of the Document. - PowerPoint PPT Presentation

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Page 1: The United States  Constitution

The United States Constitution

Page 2: The United States  Constitution

The Constitution is the United States’ fundamental law

It is also “the supreme Law of the Land” meaning it is the highest form of law in the United States.

US CONSTITUTION

Page 3: The United States  Constitution

It sets out the basic principles upon which government in the US was built and operates today.

Length/Size of:Relatively brief

document7000 words6 pages long

Purpose of the Document

Page 4: The United States  Constitution

Constitution is broken into (3) parts:1. The Preamble2. 7 numbered sections

called Articles3. The 27 Amendments

Breakdown of…

Page 5: The United States  Constitution

Article I Legislative Branch

Article IIExecutive Branch

Article IIIJudicial Branch

Article IVState Relationship

Articles of Constitution

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This part of the Constitution deals with:How formal amendments may be added.

Article V

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This part of the Constitution states:The Constitution is the nation’s supreme law.

Oath of office

Article VI

Page 8: The United States  Constitution

This part of the Constitution deals with:The ratification of the Constitution.

Article VII

Page 9: The United States  Constitution

In the US, all political power resides in the people and is the only source for any and all governmental power.

Where does the National Government get its power?People/States

Popular Sovereignty

Page 10: The United States  Constitution

Define Constitutionalism

Government must be conducted according to constitutional principles

Limited Government

Page 11: The United States  Constitution

Legislative, executive and judicial powers are distributed (separated) among 3 distinct and independent branches of the government.

Separation of Powers

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Framer’s purpose:Limit the powers of government

Separation of Powers

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Checks and BalancesThe (3) branches of Federal

government are tied together by a system of checks and balances

What does this mean?Each branch can “check” the power of

another

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Power divided between the legislative and executive branch between the 2 major parties.

Impact on government:NOTHING gets

done.

Divided Government

Page 17: The United States  Constitution

Power of the courts to determine whether what government does is in accord with what the Constitution provides.

Definition:Power to declare

a government action illegal, null and void.

Judicial Review

Marbury v. Madison

Page 18: The United States  Constitution

Framers wanted a stronger central government.

And also wanted to keep the concept of self-government.

Federalism

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The United States Constitution has been in force for over 200 years, making it the oldest written constitution in the world.

US Constitution

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Big difference is that the US is not the same country as it was in 1789.Population over 300 million50 StatesWorld leader

US Constitution

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1. 1st Method: Proposal by Congress, ratification by state legislatures (used 26/27)

Amendment Process

Page 22: The United States  Constitution

2nd Method: Proposal by Congress, ratification by state conventions (used once)

21st Amendment:Congress felt

conventions would reflect people’s views better than state legislatures.

Amendment Process

Page 23: The United States  Constitution

3rd Method: Proposal by convention of states, ratification by state conventions (never used)

4th Method: Proposal by convention of states, ratification by state legislatures (never used)

Amendment Process

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More than 10,000 joint resolutions have been proposed to Congress since 1789.

Only 33 have been sent to states.

Failed Resolutions: Equal Rights

Amendment Forbid abolishing

slavery

Proposed Amendments

Page 25: The United States  Constitution

12th Amendment Change in Electoral College procedure:

1 vote for President and 1 vote for Vice President

Reason: Election of 1800 ended in a tie between members of same political party.

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13th Amendment Abolish Slavery

14th AmendmentEqual citizenship

and protection under law

15th AmendmentNo denial of right

to vote based on race

Civil War Amendments

Page 27: The United States  Constitution

18th Amendment 26th AmendmentProhibition of

selling, manufacturing , transporting alcohol.

Minimum voting age no higher than 18.

Other Amendments…

Page 28: The United States  Constitution

Many changes have been made in the Constitution which have not inv0lved the Amendment process.

There are (5) ways this change can happen.

Constitutional Change

Page 29: The United States  Constitution

Congress has been a major agent of constitutional change in two important ways:1. passed laws to spell

out some of the Constitution’s brief provisions

2. added to the Constitution by the way it has used many of its powers

#1 – Basic Legislation

Page 30: The United States  Constitution

Judiciary Act of 1789

Presidential Succession

Allows for Congress to set up lower federal courts.

Constitution says Vice-President takes over for President ; but Congress decides after that.

Examples for Congress

Page 31: The United States  Constitution

The manner in which various Presidents have used their powers has also contributed to the growth of the Constitution.

Power to declare war: Congress has this

power; but every president has used military without Congressional Declaration of War.

#2 – Executive Action

Page 32: The United States  Constitution

Define: pact made by the President directly with the head of a Foreign government.

Treaty = agreement with foreign country approved by Congress.

Executive agreements are used more often: WHY? treaties are

more cumbersome.

Executive Agreements

Page 33: The United States  Constitution

The nation’s courts interpret and apply the Constitution in many cases they hear.

Marbury v. Madison

#3 – Court Decisions

Page 34: The United States  Constitution

No mention of political parties in the Constitution; yet they have been a major source of constitutional change.

Most Framers were opposed to political parties, but they have shaped the way are government operates.

#4 – Party Practices

Page 35: The United States  Constitution

Neither the Constitution nor law provided for the nomination of a candidate for president.

Electoral College Body that makes formal selection of President

What role do parties play in Congress? Much of the business is organized and

conducted based on the political parties The President makes appointments with an eye

on party politics.

Political Parties: Examples

Page 36: The United States  Constitution

Unwritten custom may be as strong as written law, and many customs have developed in our governmental system.

There are many examples of this…

#5 – Custom

Page 37: The United States  Constitution

The Cabinet (advisory body to President) is made up of the heads of the 15 executive departments

Custom established the precedent that the vice-president became president when there was a death in the office – What ended this custom? The 25th Amendment

Senatorial Courtesy President will ask senators from a state about a

presidential appointee from that state.Custom for Presidents to serve (2) terms:

22nd Amendment

Examples of Custom…

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Federalism

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A system of government in which a written constitution divides the powers of government on a territorial basis between a central, or national, government and several regional governments usually called states or provinces.

Federalism

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The Constitution provides for a division of powers between the National Government and the States .

The 10th Amendment: Gives powers to

states not given to Federal government in Constitution.

Federalism and the Constitution

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The major strength of Federalism:It allows local

actions in matters of local concern and national action in matters of wider concern.

Strength of Federalism

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The National Government is a government of delegated powers: powers granted to it

in the Constitution. There are (3)

distinct types:1. Expressed2. Implied3. Inherent

Powers of National Government

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Expressed Powers (or enumerated powers)

Powers that are spelled, expressly, out in the Constitution. Collect taxes Regulate commerce Raise armed forces Declare war Fix standards/weights

Expressed Powers

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Powers not expressly stated, but are reasonably suggested (or implied) by the expressed powers.

Article I Section of 8 of the Constitution gives Congress the power to make laws that “are necessary and proper”.

This is often called the elastic clause – WHY?

Implied Powers

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Elastic Clause Over time, the clause has been STRETCHED to cover so much.

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These are powers that national governments have historically possessed.

Few in number: regulate immigration deport undocumented

aliens acquire territories grant diplomatic

recognition protect the nation.

Inherent Powers

Page 49: The United States  Constitution

The Constitution denies the National government certain powers (3 ways):

Powers Denied

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Some powers are ‘expressly’ denied.

Examples:Levy taxes on

exportsDeny freedomsConduct illegal

searchesDeny speedy trial

(1) Expressly Denied

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Powers denied because they are not mentioned in the Constitution:Public SchoolsMarriage/divorce

lawsSet up local

governments

(2) Silence

Page 52: The United States  Constitution

Some powers are denied to the National Government because of the federal system itself

Can’t get rid of the federal system by ‘destroying’ the states.

(3) Federal System

Page 53: The United States  Constitution

Reserved to States Denied to States

Powers not given to the National Government are NOT denied to the states.

Why does this make the states so powerful? This power is vast

and can have a HUGE impact on lives of people.

Cannot: enter into any

treaty, alliance or confederation

print -coin money deprive anyone of

life, liberty or property without due process.

State Powers

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Exclusive powers can only be exercised by the National Government, not by States under any circumstances. Coin Money Make treaties with

foreign states Lay import duties

Exclusive Powers

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Concurrent powers are those powers that both the National Government and the

States.

Concurrent Powers

Lay and collect taxes

Define crime and punishment

Condemn private property for public

use

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The Framers put the Supremacy Clause (Article VI Section 2) in the Constitution.

Importance of?Clearly states the

Constitution stands above all other forms of law in the United States

Supremacy Clause

Page 58: The United States  Constitution

The Supreme Court is the umpire in the federal system.

McCulloch v Maryland: Dispute between

Federal Bank and state of Maryland.

Court ruled in Federal Government favor.

Supreme Court + Federalism

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National Government + the States

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Obligation to States The Constitution places several obligations on

the National Government for the benefit of the States:

Republican form of government

Invasion and Internal Disorder

Respect of Territorial Integrity

Page 61: The United States  Constitution

The Constitution requires that the National Government make sure that states have a ‘Republican Form of Government’.

What does this term generally mean?A Representative

Democracy

Republican Government

ONLY TIME used was after the Civil War when

Congress would not admit southern states

that did not have a true republican form of

government.

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National Government must protect the states from foreign invasion and help restore order in the States.

Federal force has rarely been used to restore order in states

EXAMPLES? Natural disasters Racial unrest

Invasion/Internal Disorder

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National Government must recognize and respect the legal existence and the physical boundaries of each State.

Territorial Integrity

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Only Congress has the power to admit new States to the Union.

What are the restrictions on this power? Cannot take land

away from existing states without consent of legislature.

Admitting New States

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The area desiring statehood asks Congress for admission…

Congress passes an enabling act - directs a territory to write a state constitution

A state convention prepares the constitution and the people of the territory vote for or against it.

Last step is an act of admission – Congress agrees to statehood and President signs

Admission Procedure

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Congress may set conditions for a state is admitted: Utah had to

outlaw polygamy before it could join.

Alaska had to promise not to take land legally held by Native Americans.

Conditions for Admission

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One big area of cooperation between the National Government and the States is the providing of funds and services.

Cooperative Federalism

Page 68: The United States  Constitution

Grants of federal money or other resources to the States and/or their cities, counties and other local units.

These grants make it possible for the federal government to have input in local matters where it has no authority.

Federal Grants-in-Aid

Page 69: The United States  Constitution

What was the reason for first land grants?

When did federal grants of money really

grow?Expand the country and set up schools

During the Great Depression/New Deal Era

Federal Grants-in-Aid

Page 70: The United States  Constitution

Congress gave an annual share of the huge federal tax revenue to the states: $83 billion from 1972-1987.

What happened to this program?Ended because

of increase of Federal deficit.

Revenue Sharing

Page 71: The United States  Constitution

Types of Federal Grants Describe the (3) types of

Federal grants that states can receive:

Categorical

Strings attached

BlockBroadly defined

purposes

ProjectFor a

specific project

Page 72: The United States  Constitution

FBI helps local law enforcement, army and navy equip and train State National Guard units, and use Census Bureau data.

Other Forms of Aid

Page 73: The United States  Constitution

With the consent of Congress, the States may enter into interstate compacts agreements among themselves and with

foreign states.What are some examples of

these compacts? Port Authorities Law Enforcement Compacts Conservation of Resources

Interstate Compacts

Page 74: The United States  Constitution

The Constitution says that states must give “Full Faith and Credit” to another states.

There are (3) major examples of this:

Full Faith and Credit

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The Laws of a State

Public Acts

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Public records such as:BirthMarriagePropertyCar Registration

Records

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Outcome of court actions such as damage awards, probating of wills, divorce decrees, etc…

This example comes into play most often.

Judicial Proceedings

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The Full Faith and Credit Clause has (2) exceptions:

1. Civil, not criminal matters

2. Certain divorces granted by another state

Exceptions

Page 79: The United States  Constitution

The matter of interstate “quickie” divorces has been troublesome for years

The case of Williams v. North Carolina focused on the issue of Full Faith and Credit between the states of Nevada and North Carolina.

Williams v North Carolina

Page 80: The United States  Constitution

Why did the Supreme Court side with North Carolina and not agree that the Williams divorce was legal in North Carolina? The couple did not

establish a ‘bona fide’ residence.

Williams v North Carolina

Page 81: The United States  Constitution

Extradition is the legal process by which a fugitive from justice in one State is returned to that State.

What is this designed for? To prevent someone

from escaping justice by fleeing a state.

Extradition

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The return of a fugitive is usually a routine matter.

What are examples of the requests being contested?1. Racial or political overtones2. Parental kidnapping of children

Extradition

Page 83: The United States  Constitution

The Privileges and Immunities Clause means that no State can draw unreasonable distinction between its own residents and those who happen to live in other States.

Privileges and Immunities

Page 84: The United States  Constitution

Anyone can travel in or become a resident of another state; also use the courts, buy, rent or sell property; or marry within its borders.

What are some legal ways that reasonable distinctions are allowed to be made? Voting requirements Public office License to practice law, medicine,

teaching

Privileges and Immunities