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The US Constitution. Definitions A set of rights, powers and procedures which underpin the workings of a political system The rules of the political game.

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Presentation on theme: "The US Constitution. Definitions A set of rights, powers and procedures which underpin the workings of a political system The rules of the political game."— Presentation transcript:

1 The US Constitution

2 Definitions A set of rights, powers and procedures which underpin the workings of a political system The rules of the political game Establishes the formal distribution of power for each political institution And where the limits are – checks and balances

3 Purpose Determines two key relationships: 1. Between different political institutions Eg who has more power – Congress or the President? 2. Between political institutions and the people Eg the Bill of Rights

4 So we know … Who makes law? Who passes law? Who enforces law?

5 History May 1787: the Philadelphia Convention 55 male delegates from the original 13 states: The Founding Fathers (or the Framers)

6 Key principles Separation of powers Baron de Montesquieu

7 Key principles Checks and balances Example: The confirmation process: President nominates, Senate confirms

8 Key principles Provision of rights Bill of Rights First ten amendments to the Constitution, 1791 Thomas Paine, The Rights of Man

9 Influence of Thomas Jefferson Drafted the Declaration of Independence, 1776 Behind the Bill of Rights, 1791 President

10 Key principles Responsible Government Contract Theory John Locke

11 Key principles Federalism Original federal state Remember: the states came together to create the centre in 1787


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