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The United States Constitution
Transcript of The United States Constitution
while still holding on to its basic beliefs and principles.
The Constitution establishes the following:
3 Branches of government
The Legislative (Congress-bicameral)
Must be 25 years of age
7 years a citizen of the U.S.
Elected for 2 year term
435 members of the house are divided among the states based upon their population.
The House of Representatives
The leader of The House
is called the Speaker
of the House.
The party that controls
the House (Democrats
or Republicans) vote
on who will be the
Paul Ryan is the current Speaker of The House
Each state is divided into congressional districts
— 9 in Massachusetts — each with a population of about 710,000 individuals.
Must be 30 yrs old/ 9 years a US. citizen
Elected to a 6 yr term
Each state sends the
same number of Senators
to congress (2) regardless
of the states population
U.S. Representatives per State are based upon the U.S. census every 10 years
The Senate satisfied the concerns of the smaller states by granting two senators to each state.(The NJ plan)
The House satisfied the larger states by granting representatives based on population. (The VA plan)
Laws would be approved by both parts of Congress, ensuring an equal voice for all states.
The Great Compromise
The VP is the leader of the Senate and only votes when a tie-breaker is needed
The Constitution establishes how bills become law
Any bills for raising taxes or fees must originate in the House.
All bills must pass both houses of congress in the exact same form before it can be sent to the president.
Sign it into law
The bill is sent back to congress and if both houses pass it by a 2/3 majority the bill becomes law over the president's veto.
Bills that are passed by both houses are sent to the president where he can:
Establish and maintain an Army & Navy
Establish Post Offices
Regulate Commerce between States
Specific Powers of Congress
Making their own money
taxing goods from
other states. (States use a USE tax on purchases made out of state.)
Have their own navies
Constitution Prohibits States From doing the following:
Must be 35 years old and a natural born citizen.
Must have lived 14 years in the U.S. before running for president.
Is Commander-in-chief of the Armed Forces and of the Militia (National Guard of all states)
The Bill of Rights are the first 10 amendments to the United States Constitution. The idea behind the Bill of Rights was to insure certain freedoms and rights to the citizens of America. It put limits on what the government could do and control.
Freedoms protected include freedom of religion, speech, assembly, the right to bear arms, unreasonable search and seizure of your home, the right to a speedy trial, and more.
Many delegates of the states were against signing the Constitution without a Bill of Rights included. It became a major issue in ratifying the Constitution in some states.
As a result, James Madison wrote 12 amendments and presented them to the First Congress in 1789. On December 15, 1791 ten of the amendments were passed and made part of the Constitution. They would later become known as the Bill of Rights.
The Bill of Rights was based on several previous documents including the Magna Carta, the Virginia Declaration of Rights, and the English Bill of Rights.
The Electoral College
The founders who drew up the Constitution in 1787 were not willing to allow ordinary citizens to vote for their president directly. Among other things, the founders were afraid that the people would not be well informed enough to choose wisely.
What is the Electoral College?
The Electoral College is made up of 538 electors who cast votes to decide the President and Vice-President of the United States.
The candidate who receives a majority of electoral votes (270) wins the Presidency. The number 538 is the sum of the nation's 435 Representatives, 100 Senators, and 3 electors given to the District of Columbia.
Why does the Electoral College matter?
The Electoral College determines the President and Vice-President of the United States. The Electoral College system also distinguishes the United States from other systems where the highest vote-getter automatically wins.
This so-called "indirect election" process has been the subject of criticism and attempted reform, though proponents of it maintain that it ensures the rights of smaller states and stands as an important piece of American federalist democracy.
The Bill of Rights
The Electoral College
The Popular Vote
vs The Electoral College
Which One Do You Agree With?