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Chapter 9 The Constitution: A More Perfect Union

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1 Chapter 9 The Constitution: A More Perfect Union
I can explain how the Constitution created “a more perfect Union”.

2 Three Branches of Government Rap
School House Rock- Preamble School House Rock- 3 Branches of Government-

3 9.1 Introduction Framers wanted to create a central government that would be strong and lasting but not so strong that it endangered citizens freedoms.

4 9.1 Introduction They wanted it to be simple and organized…
IT is divided into sections or articles. Article I- Legislative Branch Article II- Executive Branch Article III- Judicial Branch Article IV- Relations Among the States Article V- Amending the Constitution Article VI- National Supremacy Article VII- Ratification of the Constitution Bill of Rights (Amendments)

5 9.1 Introduction The Constitution is flexible and includes procedures for changing. The Constitutions flexablity is its strength.


7 9.2 The Preamble Explains the reasons for the new government.
Begins with famous words… “We the People…” Popular Sovereignty- government's authority comes for the people.

8 9.2 The Preamble 1. Establish Justice- rule by laws not by kings.
2. Domestic Tranquility- peace & order w/in the country. 3. Provide for the Common Defense- protect against foreign enemies. Promote General Welfare- support economy & society. Secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and out Posterity.”- Protect the freedoms of generations of the future.

9 9.2 The Preamble The framers want a strong central government…but are afraid b/c of their experience with kings. But if the central government is to weak they are afraid b/c of their experience with Shays’ Rebellion & problems with the Articles of Confederation. Must create a “balance”

10 How are they going to create this “balance”?


12 School House Rock- I’m Just a Bill

13 Capitol Building, Washington D.C.
9.3 Legislative Branch Article I of the the Constitution gives the power to make laws to the legislative branch. 2 part Congress- House of Rep Senate Capitol Building, Washington D.C.

14 9.3 Legislative Branch Senate House of Representative
2 from each state- balance the large & small states. 6 year terms 30 years old Citizen for 9 years Elected by the people Based on population- based on census taken every 10 years. (set at 435) 2 year terms 25 years old Citizen for 7 years Elected by the people.

15 House of Rep. (435)

16 9.3 Legislative Branch Congress makes the Laws/Taxes.
House of Rep Senate New Taxes can only come from the house…if a majority approves goes to senate Senate debates new taxes…if both approve the tax it goes to the pres. The Pres. Can approve or veto. The congress can over-ride the pres. …but must have 2/3 majority (super majority.)

17 9.3 Legislative Branch Congress makes the Laws/Taxes.
House of Rep Senate Any member can propose new law (called a bill.) Must be approved in both House & Senate. Any member can propose new law (called a bill.) Must be approved in both House & Senate. The Pres. Can approve or veto. The congress can over-ride the pres. …but must have 2/3 majority (super majority.)

18 9.3 Legislative Branch Other Powers
Make the LAWS Propose taxes & amendments to the Constitution. Decide how to spend tax money. Approve funds for laws and programs Approve treaties Declare war Raise army or navy. Approves Presidential Appointments Pay government debts Grant citizenship. Est. Federal courts Elastic clause- can make any laws that seem necessary to carry out powers. Impeachment

19 School House Rock- Electoral College-

20 9.4 Executive Branch Article II gives the power to enforce or execute the laws to the chief executive… the Pres.

21 9.4 Executive Branch % % The Pres is elected by the elector college.
The elector college is based on population. House of Rep + Senators = number of Elector college. Pres must win a majority of the elector college. (magic no. 270 Electoral Votes) % % Simple Majority

22 House of Rep + Senator = # of Elector college. Kentucky
6 Reps & 2 senators = 8 elector college members Electoral College Map 2012

23 Qualifications To Be Pres.
4 year term Can only serve 2 terms At 35 years old Must be nature born citizen Nature born citizen- born in the U.S. or born out the U.S. but one or both parents are U.S. Citizens that have lived in the U.S.

24 Title 8, Section 1401, of the U.S. Code provides the current definition for a natural-born citizen. • Anyone born inside the United States and subject to the jurisdiction of the United States, which exempts the child of a diplomat from this provision • Any Indian or Eskimo born in the United States, provided being a citizen of the U.S. does not impair the person's status as a citizen of the tribe • Any one born outside the United States, both of whose parents are citizens of the U.S., as long as one parent has lived in the U.S. • Any one born outside the United States, if one parent is a citizen and lived in the U.S. for at least one year and the other parent is a U.S. national • Any one born in a U.S. possession, if one parent is a citizen and lived in the U.S. for at least one year • Any one found in the U.S. under the age of five, whose parentage cannot be determined, as long as proof of non-citizenship is not provided by age 21 • Any one born outside the United States, if one parent is an alien and as long as the other parent is a citizen of the U.S. who lived in the U.S. for at least five years (with military and diplomatic service included in this time)

25 Powers Enforce laws & defend constitution Commander of armed forces.
Make treaties & formal agreements w/consent from senate Nominates ambassadors, supreme court judges Veto Grant pardons

26 Departments Pres. has special departments to help him manage all his responsibilities. For Example- State Department Justice Department Department of Health The Head of Each Department makes up the Cabinet. How many cabinet members? 15

27 Impeachment/Removing the Pres.
The Pres. is not above the law. The House of Rep. can vote to impeach. The Senate puts the President on trial..the Senators serve as the jury. 2/3 majority of the Senate to remove 2/3 (Supermajority)

28 Removing the Pres. Can be removed for “bribery, treason, or other ‘high crimes’”. Andrew Johnson 1868-Tenure of Office Act. Bill Clinton Lying to Grand Jury. (Nixon ‘73 & ‘74)- Watergate 2/3 (Supermajority)


30 Supreme Court, Washington D.C.
9.5 Judicial Branch Article III- gives the power to judge the laws to the judicial branch They have to judge/interpret wither laws & actions of the government are in conflict with the Constitution. Supreme Court, Washington D.C.

31 Powers Judge & Interpret Laws Review Lower-court decisions
Judges whether laws and executive actions are constitutional Rules on cases between states.

32 Lower or Inferior Federal Courts
There are 2 lower courts. District Appellate (appeal) District Courts cover several states. If you want a decision appealed you go to appellate court…you want to go higher after that you go to Supreme Court.

33 The Last Stop The Supreme Court is the last stop…all decisions are final. Congress has set the size at 9. Justices usually serve for life…but can be removed

34 The Last Stop Lawyers ask the Supreme Court to review thousands of cases, but they usually on consider about 100. And only if they think a lower court decision conflicts with the Constitution or a federal law.

35 Famous Supreme Court Decisions
Roe vs. Wade Miranda vs. Arizona Brown vs. Board of Education of Topeka Dred Scott vs. John F.A. Sandford Engel v. Vitale (1962) Roe vs. Wade

36 Keeps Congress & the Pres. In Check
Judicial Review- the power of the Supreme Court to decide whether laws and acts made by the legislative & executive branches are unconstitutional.


38 9.6 Checks & Balances Between the Branches
The Framers were concerned about the balance between strong national government and individual freedoms. They developed a system of Checks & Balances.

39 9.6 Checks & Balances Between the Branches
This system allows one branch to check or block the actions of another branch. These checks and balances keep any one branch of the federal government form being to strong. It is one of the most important features of the U.S. government system.


41 9.7 The Amendment Process The framers knew that the Constitution would need changing over time… The made it changeable but very difficult. Article V- describes changes can be made

42 9.7 The Amendment Process 1. Congress may propose a change (2/3 vote from both houses)… or 2. Congress can call a National Convention if 2/3 of states legislatures want a change.

43 But wait…there’s more! Must be ratified (approved)
1. may be approved by the legislatures in ¾ of the states… Or 2. by special conventions in ¾ of the states.


45 But wait…there’s more! No Just Kidding.. that’s it.
Then it can become a part of the Constitution. More that 10,000 amendments to the Constitution have been proposed over the years. Only 27 have been approved. The first 10 (Bill of Rights) Plus 17 one-at-a-time

46 Amendments that have been added that you need to have memorized…
13th- Slavery is illegal. 19th- Women’s Suffrage (Vote) 26th- all citizens over 18 have the right to vote.


48 9.8 The Federal System

49 9.9 Popular Participation in Government

50 Review- The Preamble “We the People..”
Popular Sovereignty- authority comes directly form the people.

51 Review- The legislative Branch
Article I of the Constitution creates a bicameral Congress with a House of Representatives and a Senate. Every state is represented by two senators. Representation in the House is based on a state’s population. Congress’s primary ob is to make laws.

52 Review- Executive Branch
Article II creates a the executive branch. The head of the executive branch is the president. The presidents serves a four-year term and may be reelected once. The president carries out laws passed by Congress. Other powers of the president include making treaties and appointing Supreme Court justices.

53 Review- Judicial Branch
Article III establishes the Supreme Court and gives Congress the power to create lower courts. Supreme Court decisions are binding on all lower courts. The power of judicial review allows the Supreme Court to decide whether laws and actions by the legislative and executive branches are unconstitutional.

54 Review- Checks and Balances
The framers developed a system of checks and balances that enables each branch of government to limit, or check, the power of the other two branches. The Constitution provides checks and balances in the powers of each branch.

55 Review- The Amendment Process
Article V outlines the process by which amendments can be made to the Constitution. Twenty-seven amendments have been added. The first ten amendments form the Bill of Rights.

56 Review- The Federal System
The Constitution creates a federal system of government in which power is shared between the national government and the states.

57 Review- Popular Participation in Government
Elections serve the vital function of expressing the will of the people. People also participate in government by joining political parties and taking part in interest groups.





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