Compromise and the Constitution How did compromise at the Constitutional Convention help create a more unified nation?
1. Representation: How would representatives be chosen? By population? By state? What about counting slaves? 2. Slavery: Should it be allowed to continue? 3. The President: How should he be elected? How long should he serve? 4. Government Power: How much power should the Federal govt. have? What about the states?
Representation Large States: Wanted representation in Congress based upon the state’s population. WHY? Small States: Wanted representation in Congress to be equal. Each state should have the same number of representatives. WHY?
Representation Issue: Solution/Compromise A Bi-cameral (two house) legislature The Great Compromise - also known as The Connecticut Compromise The Upper House: the Senate. All states represented equally with 2 representatives per state The Lower House: The House of Representatives. 435 representatives apportioned to each state by population. Subject to change (reapportionment) after each census.
Issue: The Counting of Slaves Solution: the 3/5 Compromise Slaves would be counted, but each slave equaled 3/5 of a person, or 5 slaves = 3people Southern states had fewer people (Agrarian - rural) but more slaves. Wanted the slaves counted as part of the population for representation purposes. Northern states: More people (manufacturing - cities) said slaves should not be counted. “South can’t have it both ways.”
Issue: Slavery - would it be allowed to exist? Southern states would not ratify the constitution if slavery was banned. Northern states wanted slavery declared illegal in the United States and wanted the slave trade banned. Solution: Slavery would still be legal, but importation of slaves would be banned after 1808
The President and the Presidency Issue: How to elect and how long to stay in office Some delegates wanted the President elected by popular vote. Others did not trust the people and thought the states should elect the President. Some delegates thought the President should serve until voted out - not a specific term Solution: Establish the Electoral College. Electors are elected by popular vote and then the Electors choose the President Term of Office: Four years, but no term limits
MAJOR ISSUE FOR THE PEOPLE, MANY OF WHOM WERE NOT YET THINKING OF THEMSELVES AS AMERICANS How strong should the central government be? How much power should the states have (States Rights)? How can we protect the people from the Central government taking away their rights?
Solution #1: FEDERALISM - A Division of Power Certain powers were delegated to the Federal Government. Certain powers were reserved to the states Certain powers were shared by the state and the federal government
Solution #2: Separation of Powers and System of Checks and Balances Government divided into THREE branches Legislative -- Executive -- Judicial Each branch has specific powers and authority and each branch has the right to “check” and review the actions of the other two branches.
Final Issue: How to Protect the Rights of the People from Abuse by the Federal Government Solution The Bill of Rights - the First Ten Amendments to the Constitution The Bill of Rights Guarantees Certain Rights to All Americans and Prohibits The Government From Taking Those Rights Away