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Drafting and Ratifying the Constitution. Constitutional Convention Meeting to build unity among the 13 former colonies. Main objective was to strengthen.

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Presentation on theme: "Drafting and Ratifying the Constitution. Constitutional Convention Meeting to build unity among the 13 former colonies. Main objective was to strengthen."— Presentation transcript:

1 Drafting and Ratifying the Constitution

2 Constitutional Convention Meeting to build unity among the 13 former colonies. Main objective was to strengthen the government. The convention meet in Philadelphia in 1847. George Washington and 54 delegates other delegates and James Madison discussed the founding of the Constitution and the States Constitutions.

3 Virginia Plan Drafted by James Madison Shifted power away from the states and toward the federal government. Central government would coordinate the states activity for the benefit of the entire nation. Federalism: was proposed “ the division of powers between a strong federal government and the state governments”.

4 The Virginia Plan Called for Three Branches Executive Legislative Judicial Under this plan the legislative would be bicameral: “ made up of two houses “

5 The Great Compromise Too balance the interests of the large and small interests. Two house legislative that would allow for both equal representation based on population. Each state would have equal representation in the upper house regardless of population. The lower house representation would be based on population.

6 Three Fifths Compromise Debate to decide whether slaves should be counted as part of the population. Southern states wanted to count them Northern states strongly objected to this demand. Agreed to establish that only three fifths of a states population would count in deterring it’s representation.

7 Congress Powers Southerners worried that congress would impose tariffs “taxes” on exports such as rice, tobacco and other products that the southern states sold to Europe.

8 Federalist vs. Antifederalist Federalist favored ratification of the constitution. They were typically wealthy merchants, planters and lawyers. Antifedearlist feared a strong powerful national government. It would destroy “states rights” It resembled a monarchy because of its concentration of power.

9 The Federalist Collection of 85 essays Written by John Jay, Alexander Hamilton and James Madison. The differences between the Federalist and the Antifederalist laid the foundation for the later emergence of opposing political parties.

10 Executive and legislative Branch Delegated Powers: gave the authority to the federal government in most matters of concern to all people.( coin money, foreign trade, army and navy ) Reserved Powers: Powers not specifically granted to the federal government or denied to the states are kept or reserved. ( local government and schools. Concurrent Powers: powers shared by both. levying and collecting taxes, courts, pubic welfare

11 Supremacy Clause Having two levels of government “state and national” exercising power at the same time would lead to some conflicts. Which laws would have ultimate authority. Supremacy Clause: “ This constitution, and the laws and all treaties of the United States, shall be supreme law of the land” Article VI

12 Separation of Powers To prevent the federal government from abusing its powers the framers of the Constitution separated the government into three branches. Executive Legislative Judicial

13 Checks and Balances Each branch has the means to restrain the powers of the other two. Congress has the power to check the presidential power. The President has the power to make treaties, but 2/3 vote of the Senate is necessary to ratify them. President can appoint ambassadors, federal judges and other important officials.

14 Cont. Checks and Balances Congress can check the President through the “power of the purse” appropriate government monies and approve the federal budget. Impeachment: the House of Representatives may impeach, or charge, a President who is thought to be guilty of “ treason, bribery, or other high crimes and misdemeanors”

15 Cont. Checks and Balances The President can check the powers of congress by veto “ reject bills passed by congress “ Congress possesses the power to override “ overrule a presidential veto with 2/3 majority vote necessary is often difficult to obtain.

16 Judicial Branch Can check legislative power. Supreme Court has the power to judge laws unconstitutional. This power helps ensure the Constitution’s continued effectiveness. The framers did not include this power in the Constitution. Many scholars however, believe that the framers intended the supreme court to exercise such power

17 Elastic Clause The Constitution has remained effective for over 215 years because it is a living document that can adapt to changes in society. Flexibility to consider “the changes which ages will produce” was argued by James Madison. Through passing amendments the Constitution can be changed.

18 Passing a new amendment is difficult by requiring ¾ of states approval to ratify a new amendment. The elastic clause has increased the documents flexibility. This clause adds the power to make all laws which shall be necessary and proper for carrying into Execution the foregoing powers

19 This elastic clause allows congress to exert its powers in ways not specifically outlined in the Constitution. For example the framers of the Constitution could have not anticipated the development of computers and the internet. Congress has the power to pass laws that regulate commerce that may effect items such as new technology that are not covered in the Constitution

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