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The Principles of the United States Constitution.

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Presentation on theme: "The Principles of the United States Constitution."— Presentation transcript:


2 The Principles of the United States Constitution

3 What is the Constitution? Why did we need one?  Constitution: a written plan that provides the basic framework of a government  After witnessing Shay’s Rebellion, the delegates recognized the need for change. –A nation made up of many groups needs a strong central government

4 How did they create it?  The framers used seven principles (main ideas) to guide them. –Popular Sovereignty –Republicanism –Limited Government –Federalism –Separation of Powers –Checks and Balances –Individual Rights

5 Jump Start- 2012!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!  Welcome Back! I hope you had a restful and FUN break.  Write down: –Person you were most excited to see over break –Best present you GAVE someone –Favorite present you received

6 Popular Sovereignty  Ultimate power and final authority is held by the citizens –“ We the people…”  A representative democracy lets the people elect leaders to make decisions for them.

7 Republicanism  People EXERCISE their power by voting for their political representatives  Representatives then have the power to make laws that govern the people

8 Limited Government  Government’s power is limited by the Constitution.  Government is NOT all powerful –The Constitution tells how leaders who overstep their power can be removed

9 Federalism  Power is divided between the national and state governments –Some powers are shared  The National Government has the “supreme power”

10 Separation of Powers  Power is divided between 3 branches –Legislative branch makes the laws –Executive branch carries out the laws –Judicial branch interprets the laws

11 Individual Rights  Personal liberties or privileges guaranteed to the citizens  The Framers wanted to create a national government that was effective and powerful, but which did not take away rights of people

12 Checks and Balances  Each branch has certain controls (checks) over the other 2 –Prevents the abuse of power in government

13 Can we change it? How do we change it? PROPOSING CHANGESAPPROVING CHANGES  Option 1: –Congress proposes an amendment –Needs a 2/3 vote in each house  Option 2: –2/3 of the state legislatures request a national convention –Congress calls the convention  Option 1: –Approved by ¾ of the state legislatures  Option 2: –Approved by ¾ of state conventions

14 Not everyone was happy…  After 9 states ratified the Constitution, it was official.  Some states believed that the Constitution did not do enough to protect the rights of the people.  They refused to ratify it until it contained a Bill of Rights.

15 Two Groups Emerged FEDERALISTS  James Madison, Alexander Hamilton, and John Jay –The Federalist Papers- written to answer criticisms of the Anti- Federalists  Supported the Constitution  Thought some powers should be taken from the states and given to the national government  Favored dividing power among 3 branches  Favored only one executive ANTI-FEDERALISTS  Opposed the Constitution  Thought the Constitution took too much power away from the states  Did not think it guaranteed rights for the people  Wanted to legislative to have more power than the executive  Feared that the executive might become a tyrant  Wanted a Bill of Rights added to the Constitution

16 Example of Popular Sovereignty  “We the people of the United States […] do ordain and establish this Constitution for the United States of America.” – Preamble  Amendment 14 expands the definition of citizenship  Amendments 19 and 26 expand suffrage to women and those 18 or older

17 Example of Republicanism  Bicameral (2 house) Congress where both houses are directly elected (Article I)  President and Vice President elected every 4 years (Article II)  National government guarantees each state “a republican form of government” (Article IV)

18 Example of Limited Government  Bill of Rights  Powers denied to Congress and the States (Article I Sections 9 and 10) –List of things they CANNOT do

19 Example of Federalism  Powers delegated to the national government (Article I Section 8)  Powers not delegated to the national government and not denied to the states are reserved to the states (10 th Amendment)

20 Example of Separation of Powers  Articles I, II, and III create the legislative, executive, and judicial branches and outline their duties and powers

21 Example of Checks and Balances  Congress can impeach officers from the other two branches (Article I)  Presidential veto (Article I)  President appoints judges to federal and Supreme Court (Article II)  Judicial Review (Marbury vs. Madison 1803)

22 Example of Individual Rights  Bill of Rights  Due process and equal protection from all laws (14 th Amendment)

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