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Foundation of Government and the Constitution. What is Government? Political scientist Harold Laswell defined government as “who gets what, when, and.

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Presentation on theme: "Foundation of Government and the Constitution. What is Government? Political scientist Harold Laswell defined government as “who gets what, when, and."— Presentation transcript:

1 Foundation of Government and the Constitution

2 What is Government? Political scientist Harold Laswell defined government as “who gets what, when, and how.” In any nation a government is composed of the formal and informal institutions, people, and processes used to create and conduct public policy. Public Policy is the exercise of government power in doing those necessary to maintain legitimate authority and control over society.

3 Purpose of Government Every nation must decide for itself what goals will be translated into public policy and the methods by which those goals will be translated.

4 Purpose of Government The Preamble of the US Constitution addresses the goals of public policy for the United States: –Forming a more perfect union –Establishing justice –Insuring domestic tranquility –Providing for the common defense –Promoting general welfare –Securing the blessing of liberty

5 Forms of Government Anarchy: lack of government Autocracy: rule by one –Absolute monarchy: ruler gains power through inheritance; there are no restrictions on the ruler’s power –Constitutional monarchy: ruler gains power through inheritance; formal restrictions limit power, often restricting the monarch to ceremonial status –Dictatorship: ruler gains power through seizure, keeps power by force and restricts opposition to regime: no restrictions on dictator’s power

6 Forms of Government Oligarchy: rule by a few –Aristocracy: rule by the elite, usually determined by social status or wealth –Theocracy: rule by religious leaders Democracy: rule by the people –Direct democracy: citizens meet and make decisions about public policy issues –Representative democracy: citizens choose officials (representatives) who make decisions about public policy

7 Origins of American Government Influences on American Government –Ancient Greeks and Romans –Enlightenment philosophers –Magna Carta –Parliament –Petition of Right –English Bill of Rights

8 Colonial Experiences From 1607 to 1776, the American colonies were in a continuous state of political self- development. –Colonial charters –House of Burgesses –Mayflower Compact –Difficulties with Britian –Continental Congress

9 Declaration of Independence The Declaration of Independence is mainly the work of Thomas Jefferson. The principles are based on the works of the Enlightenment philosopher John Locke.

10 Declaration of Independence The Declaration of Independence can be divided into three parts: –A theory of government based on social contract and natural rights –A list of grievances against the king and “others” (Parliament) –A statement of colonial unity and separation from Britain

11 Articles of Confederation The Articles of Confederation ( 1781 – 1789) –Written by the Second Continental Congress in November of 1777 –Became the first national constitution for governing the American states.

12 Articles of Confederation The confederation composed of a relatively weak national government with a unicameral legislature Congress would have limited powers such as borrowing money, creating a national army and navy, declaring war, creating post offices, and signing treaties with foreign governments.

13 Articles of Confederation Congress was not given the power to tax, draft soldiers for military service, or regulate commerce. There was no executive or judicial branch Took nine of the 13 states votes to pass legislation It took all 13 states to amend the Articles

14 Constitutional Convention The Constitutional Convention was convened in Philadelphia in May of 1787, for the purpose of revising the Articles of Confederation. –All states were present except Rhode Island Very early the delegates decided that they would write a new constitution The delegates agreed that the new government would be a republic, a federal system, and would be composed of three branches.

15 Constitutional Convention Participants – 55 delegates from 12 states –Young (average age 42), professional (1/2 were lawyers), men of economic substance –Revolutionary War veterans –Absent: Thomas Jefferson, John Adams Patrick Henry (refused to attend)

16 Constitutional Convention Key participants –Washington – president of the convention –Madison – researched every previous republic Large public is not only possible but preferred Popularly elected officials with sovereignty in the hands of the people, not the governments.

17 Compromises Debate over the various plans at the Constitutional Convention resulted in the Connecticut (Great) Compromise. This compromise settled disputes between the states over the structure of the legislative branch. Congress would be a bicameral legislature, with representation in the lower house based on the population of the state and equal representation of the states in the upper house.

18 Compromises Virginia Plan –Bicameral Legislation Lower house elected by people Upper house chosen by lower house from nominees submitted by state legislatures –Representation in each house based on population and/or monetary contribution to national government by state –Single executive chosen by legislative branch, limited to one term, could veto legislative acts, removal by congress –Judges chosen by legislative branch New Jersey Plan –Unicameral legislature Representatives chosen by state legislatures Each state receives one vote –Representatives in house would be equal among states –Plural executive chosen by legislative branch, no veto powers, removal by states –Judges appointed for life by the executive

19 Compromises A second compromise concerned the counting of slaves for the purpose of determining population for representation in Congress and for taxation. The Three-fifths Compromise resolved this issue: each state would count three-fifths of its slave population for purposes of determining both representation and taxation.

20 Compromises The Commerce and Slave Trade Compromise resolved other differences between southern and northern states. Congress was prohibited from taxing exports from the states and from banning the slave trade for a period of 20 years. Numerous other compromises were made at the Constitutional Convention concerning the executive and judicial branches as well as the electoral process for choosing a chief executive.

21 Articles created a “league of friendship” between states Congress could not tax: it could only request contributions from the states Congress could not regulate interstate trade or foreign commerce No separate executive to enforce the acts of Congress No national judiciary to handle state disputes States and the national government had the authority to coin money Each state had one vote, regardless of size or population Nine of 13 states required to pass legislation Unanimous consent required to amend the Articles of Confederation Constitution created a federal system of government between the national and state levels National government was given the power to tax Congress was given the power to regulate commerce between the states and with foreign nations Article II created a separate executive department whose job is to enforce the laws of Congress Article III created a national judiciary with a Supreme Court and lower courts as established by Congress Only the national government has authority to Coin Money States are represented based on population in the H of R and equality in the Senate Bills need a simple majority in both houses of Congress Two-thirds of Congress and three- fourths of the states are necessary to amend the Constitution Weakness of the Articles of Confederation How the Constitution Remedied Weakness

22 Ratification of the Constitution Although the delegates at the convention signed the Constitution on Sept. 17, 1787, it still had to be ratified by nine of the 13 states before it could go into effect. Debate over ratification divided citizens into Federalists and Anti-federalists.

23 Ratification of the Constitution Federalists stressed the weakness of the Articles of Confederation and the government it created. –They supported a stronger central government with expanded legislative powers. –Lead by Alexander Hamilton, James Madison, and John Jay. –Cause helped by a collection of 85 essays known as the The Federalists Papers

24 Ratification of the Constitution The Anti-Federalists believed that the new Constitution gave too much power to the national government at the expense of the state governments. Another objection was the lack of a Bill of Rights, ensuring fundamental liberties.

25 Goals of the Framers To establish a government strong enough to meet the nations needs – an objective sought through substantial grants of power to the federal government in areas such as defense and commerce To establish a government that would not threaten liberty – an objective sought through an elaborate system of checks and balances

26 Goals of the Framers To establish a government based on popular sovereignty – an objective sought through provisions for the direct and indirect election of public officials.

27 The United States Constitution A constitution is a plan of government. The Constitution of the United States is the oldest national constitution in use today. Although the Constitution is relatively short, it describes the structure and powers of the national government as well as the relationship between the national and state governments.

28 Basic Principles Within the Constitution Embodied within the Constitution are the basic principles of: –Limited Government –Popular sovereignty –Separation of powers –Checks and balances –federalism

29 The parts of the Constitution The Constitution can be divided into three major parts: –the Preamble –Articles (7) –Amendments (27)

30 The parts of the Constitution Preamble –The opening paragraphs of the Constitution is called the Preamble. It lists the six goals for American government and explains why the Constitution was written.

31 “We the People of the United States in Order to form a more perfect Union, establish Justice, insure domestic Tranquility, provide for the common defense, promote the general Welfare, and secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity, do ordain and establish the CONSTITUTION for the United States of America.”

32 Article I Legislative Branch Section 1 All legislative powers vested in a Congress, which shall include a House and Senate Section 2 Membership of House Election Cycle: Every 2 years by the people Age: 25 years Citizenship: 7 years, Allocation: based by population

33 Article I Section 3: Senate Membership: 2 from each state Election cycle: 6 years, 1/3 up for election every 2 years. Age: 30 years Citizenship: 9 years Provide for senate leadership Try all impeachments 2/3 majority for convictions

34 Article I Section 4 Time, place, manner for elections left up to states Section 5 Sets up procedures for meetings, attendance of members, adjournment

35 Article I Section 7 Bills of Revenue originate in the House Process for Bills to become law Section 8: Specific Powers of Congress Lay and collect taxes Provide for common Defense, General Welfare Borrow money

36 Article I Regulate commerce with Foreign Nations Coin money Confirm Presidential appointments (Senate) Establish Post Offices Declare War Raise and Support Armies Maintain Navy All laws necessary and proper

37 Article I Section 9 Limits on Congress’s taxing power Section 10 Prevents states from entering into powers vested to the Congress like treaties, or impose duties on imports.

38 Article I Powers proscribed Congress: –No ex -post facto laws: –No Bills of Attainder: –Cannot suspend right of habeus corpus, except in time of national emergency

39 Article II Section 1: Executive power vested in a President. Establishes electoral college Establishes 4 Year term for President Age: 35 Citizenship: Natural Born Succession: Vice President

40 Article II Section 2 Establishes President as Commander in Chief of Army and Navy Power to make treaties with consent of the Senate Power to fill vacancies during recess of the Senate.

41 Article II Section 3 Give to the Congress information on the State of the Union Section 4 Power to be impeached by Congress

42 Article III Section 1 Judicial power shall be vested in one supreme court and lower courts which Congress deems necessary Section 2 Trial by jury, sets jurisdiction for particular cases

43 Article III Section 3 Treason provision (defines) “Consist only in levying war against them, or in adhering to their enemies, giving them Aid and Comfort. No person shall be convicted unless on the testimony to the same overt act, or on confession in open court.”

44 Article IV Section 1 Full Faith and Credit Clause Section 2 Citizens of each state shall be entitled to all privileges and immunities of Citizens in another state Extradition clause

45 Article IV Admission of new states into the union Section 4 Guarantee to every state a “Republican” form of government. ** Article 4 describes relations among states

46 Article V The Congress may when necessary propose amendments to the Constitution Ratification ¾ of the states

47 Formal Amendment Process Amend Ratify NN SS 2/3 3/4 Votes by each House of Congress Of state legislatures Of special state conventions Of states call for a national convention

48 Informal Amendment Process Informal changes in the Constitution may occur in the following ways: –Legislative actions –Executive actions –Judicial review –Custom and usage

49 Article VI All debts entered into before Adoption of the Constitution are valid. All members of government shall be bound to this constitution by Oath or Affirmation. Constitution is the Supreme law of the land No religious qualifications for office- holding

50 Article VII Ratification of this constitution shall be considered by 9 of the 13 states. 12 of 13 states signed the constitution Rhode Island was the last state to ratify the constitution and only after the bill of rights had been written...making it unanimous.

51 Constitution, Amendments 1-10 Amendment 1: –Free exercise of religion, press, speech –Right to peaceably assemble –Right to Petition Government for a redress of grievances

52 Constitution, Amendments 1-10 Amendment II Right to bear Arms shall not be infringed Amendment III No soldier shall be quartered in time of peace, without consent of the owner

53 Constitution, Amendments 1-10 Amendment IV Reasonable search and seizures Warrants upon probable cause Amendment V Indictment by Grand Jury Double jeopardy Witness against himself Due process of law Just compensation for property Used in eminent domain cases

54 Constitution, Amendments 1-10 Amendment VI Right to speedy trial by an impartial jury Right to know cause and accusation Right to be confronted by witnesses and have witnesses to support Right to have Assistance of Counsel for defense

55 Constitution, Amendments 1-10 Amendment VII Civil matters right to jury trial Amendment VIII Excessive bail shall not be required Cruel and unusual punishment inflicted

56 Constitution, Amendments 1-10 Amendment IX The Constitution shall not be construed to deny or disparage other rights which are retained by the people. Amendment X Powers not delegated to the Constitution are reserved to the people.

57 Constitution, Amendments Amendment XI As now interpreted, prevent citizens of a state from bringing their own state to federal court. Amendment XII Solidifies the Electoral College Decides how to settle ties or disputes Amendment XIII Abolishes slavery

58 Constitution, Amendments Amendment XIV Prevents states from depriving citizens privileges set forth by the constitution including life, liberty, and property without due process of law, or within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws. Applies the Bill of Rights to the States (overturning Barron v Baltimore)

59 Constitution, Amendments Amendment XV Right of citizens to vote no longer based on race, color or servitude Amendment XVI Clarified the right of the government to collect taxes Amendment XVII Allowed public to vote for Senators

60 Constitution, Amendments Amendment XVIII Prohibition of liquor Only amendment to be repealed Amendment XIX (1920) Women’s voting rights Amendment XX Succession of Office Meetings for day of Congress Lame Duck Amendment

61 Constitution, Amendments Amendment XXI Repealed the 18 th Amendment Amendment XXIII: Amendment XXII Term Limit on President two elected terms in office Amendment XXIV Repealed Poll Tax

62 Constitution, Amendments Amendment XXV Succession upon death Filing a vacancy of the Vice President Incapacitation of President or VP Amendment XXVI Establishes 18 as legal voting age Amendment XXVII (1992) No pay raise can take effect until an election of Representatives has taken place.

63 Concepts, Issues based on Constitution Grants of Power Denials of Power Separation of Power Sharing of Power Checks and balances Federalism Enumerated Powers Supremacy Clause Necessary and Proper Clause (elastic clause) Implied Powers

64 The parts of the Constitution Branches of Government –Legislative Branch: Make the Laws –Executive Branch: Enforces the Laws –Judicial Branch: Interprets the Laws


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