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7 Principles of the Constitution

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Presentation on theme: "7 Principles of the Constitution"— Presentation transcript:

1 7 Principles of the Constitution

2 Article VI defines the Constitution as the “supreme law of the land”
ALL laws in the U.S. must follow the Constitution, and federal law overrides state law

3 Popular Sovereignty

4 Who gives the government its power?
popular sovereignty – government in which the people rule Preamble starts with “We the People …”

5 Republicanism

6 What do these pictures have in common?

7 Republicanism Republic – government by elected officials
Republicanism – the people elect their representatives to make laws and decisions

8 Who represents the people?
city council state legislature … and many other elected bodies and individuals U.S. Congress

9 Limited Government

10 How is abuse of power prevented?
Limited government – requires that all government leaders (even the president!) have to obey the law Keeps government from having total control of its citizens

11 Separation of Powers

12 How is power divided? the Constitution created three branches of government Each branch has separate powers

13 How is power divided? Article I
Legislative branch (Congress = House of Representatives + Senate)) function – makes the laws Serve constituents (voters)

14 How is power divided? Article II Executive branch (president)
function – enforces the laws (agencies) Serves the country

15 How is power divided? Article III Judicial branch (Supreme Court)
function – interprets the laws – decides if they are constitutional Serves the Constitution

16 Checks & Balances

17 How is power evenly distributed?
checks and balances – each branch of the government can check, or control, the other branches helps the branches work together fairly

18 Example of checks and balances:
The president (executive branch) nominates Supreme Court justices (judicial branch) BUT the Senate (legislative branch) has to confirm the nomination

19 Federalism

20 How is power shared? federalism – national, state and local levels of government Each level has different responsibilities but works together with the others

21 How is power shared? Ex. – law enforcement National Local - State -

22 Individual Rights

23 How are personal freedoms protected?
The government works to protect the rights of its citizens Bill of Rights – first 10 amendments to the Constitution list citizens’ rights

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