Presentation on theme: "Essential Documents of the American Government"— Presentation transcript:
1 Essential Documents of the American Government Government – Libertyville HS
2 Structure of Constitution Seven Articles1st article = powers of Legislative branch2nd article = powers of Executive branch3rd article = powers of Judicial branch4th article = Relations among the states5th article = How to amend the Constitution6th article = Supremacy of National Law; Oaths7th article = Ratification (approval) of Constitution
3 US ConstitutionIn 1787, after months of debate & compromise, the Constitution was approvedDocument of CompromisesLegislature: how composed?Executive: direct or indirect election?Judicial: power + life appointments?!Slavery: how to avoid disunion with South?At the Constitutional Congress, 1787
4 Compromise: The Legislature Virginia PlanBase representation on populationFavored big statesNew Jersey PlanBase representation equally, by stateFavored small statesConnecticut CompromiseBicameral (two chamber) legislature
5 Compromise: Direct Election or Indirect Selection of President? Why didn’t the Founders want direct election of the president?Difficulty of nationwide voteDistance,Difficulty of travelCorruption“Favorite Son” concernFear of direct democracy
6 Executive (s)election Benefits of Electoral CollegeRequires President to have support across the country, not just one regionContributes to political stability of country by favoring two party systemWe ARE a federal system…!!!50 state elections plus one election by Electoral College = President
7 Compromise: The Judiciary United States Supreme Court (USSC) the supreme law in country, but…Congress creates all other courts and establishes which courts get jurisdictionAnd the Executive appoints all justices / judgesIdea = checks / balances
8 Compromise: SlaveryNew England states wanted to outlaw slavery completelySouthern states wanted to count every slave a person for representation in national legislature
9 Compromise: Slavery1) Slaves would count as 3/5 a person for purposes of counting population to determine how many House of Representatives a state received (who benefited?)2) Congress could not pass a law outlawing slavery until after 1808 (who benefited?)3) Fugitive slaves escaping to a non-slave state had to be returned to their home state, if captured (who benefited?)
10 Constitutional Principles +Popular SovereigntySeparation of PowersLimited GovernmentChecks and Balances+FederalismJudicial Review
11 Popular Sovereignty (PS) National government gets its power from… the PEOPLE!“We the People” – preamble to the ConstitutionDeclaration of Independence = failure of Brits to consider rights of colonistsPeople are the ONLY source of governmental power
12 Limited Government (LG) Government may exercise ONLY those powers given to it by the peopleGovernment must obey the law (b/c the law comes from the people)“Rule of Law”Government officials are subject to same laws / rules as ordinary citizens“Government of laws” vs. “Government of man” (i.e. laws don’t apply to dictator)
13 PS + LG Why do these two principles go together? If government gets its power from the people, and the people are its only source of power, then the government is one of LIMITED powers.The government is not above the law because the PEOPLE are the source of laws. Thus, the government must follow the rules, just like everybody else.
14 Separation of Powers (SOP) The Constitution separates powers of government (derived from who?) among three co-equal branches of governmentArticle I, section I = “All legislative powers herein granted shall be vested in Congress…”Article II, Section I = “The Executive power shall be vested in a President of the USA”Article III, Section I = “The judicial power of the US shall be vested in one supreme court . . .”
15 Separation of PowersImagine that a bucket held all the power the people had, due to popular sovereignty….…and from that bucket of the People’s Poweryou were to create a government…
16 Separation of Powers Bucket One: Legislative Power You would pour that power into three additional buckets:Bucket One: Legislative PowerBucket Two: Executive PowerBucket Three: Judicial Power
17 Checks and Balances (C&B) Further limits on each branch’s powers are explicit restraints, held by other branchesIdea of framers was to balance the operations of government by dividing power up among branches, to check each other (no one branch had too much power)
18 Examples of C&B Congress makes law ... President declares war... President enters into treaty…President names a federal judge.... . . But president can veto!. . . But Congress must approve AND fund!. . . But Senate ratifies!. . . But Senate “advises and consents” to choice!
19 Why do these two go together? SOP + L&GWhy do these two go together?Two sides of the same coin; idea of both is to limit the power that each branch has, so no one branch can dominate the government and become dictators.
20 SOP + C&B Bucket One: Legislative Power Bucket Two: Executive Power Or, in terms of our bucket analogy….Bucket One: Legislative PowerBucket Two: Executive PowerBucket Three: Judicial Power…a spoonful of each bucket is shared with the other buckets!
21 Federalism Distribution of power of government on a territorial basis National government has some powers, states have other powersFramers wanted to assure that local control over local matters remained with the statesBUT they wanted a central government that was strong enough to act for the entire country
22 Federalism: National Government’s Powers Express Powers = contained in ConstitutionExample: Congress’ power to tax (I, VIII)Implied Powers = reasonably suggested within ConstitutionExample: Congress’ power to create the Internal Revenue Service (I, VIII, xviii)Inherent Powers = belong to national government because it is a sovereign nationExample: Central government’s power to enter into treaties, control bordersWhat are Reserved Powers? Powers of the States – all power that doesn’t go to central government as express, implied, or inherent power
23 Federalism: Floor and Ceiling?! Federalism as a ceilingLaws of the national legislature can also EXCLUDE states from regulating somethingEx” private sector labor unions, health insurance and pension regulations are areas of NATIONAL regulationFederalism as a floorLaws of the national legislature establish a floor under which states cannot goEx: with min. wage, drunk driving laws, states can adopt MORE STRICT laws than the national standard
24 Principle of Judicial Review OriginsNot in ConstitutionMarbury v. Madison summaryMade judicial branch equal to other branches by giving it the power to decide whether a law, regulation or decision of the other 2 branches is constitutional
25 Federalist Papers ( )With Constitution complete, persuasion began“Federalist Papers” were essays published in NYC newspapers during debate to ratify ConstitutionAuthorsHamilton (wrote 52)Madison (wrote 28)John Jay (wrote 5 – pneumonia)Why were FP important?One of the most imp. sources for interpreting and understanding the original intent of the ConstitutionConvinced a lot of people to support Const. despite legit concerns (big one = lack of protection of individual from government, in Constitution)
26 Civil Liberties contained in Constitution Prohibited ex post facto lawsLaws that punish actions that, when committed, weren’t against the lawProhibited bills of attainderA law that singles out an individual or group for punishment without a trialGuaranteed habeus corpusProtect against illegal detentionPerson must be told why they are being held
27 Bill of RightsFederalists did not include a list of rights of citizensThis was best argument against ratificationSeveral states demanded a bill of rights as a condition of ratification (Mass., NH, VA, NY, NC)Signing the Constitution, 1787
28 Bill of Rights First Congress met in 1789 James Madison, a Federalist, wrote the Bill of RightsMadison wrote 12 amendments; 11 were ratified (first 10 amendments ratified by 1791; 27th Amendment, limiting congressional pay raises, ratified in 1992) (not adopted dealt w/ 1780s apportionment)James MadisonCopy of Bill of Rights
29 Bill of RightsThe Bill of Rights was intended to PROTECT THE PEOPLE FROM THEIR OWN GOVERNMENT!!!