US Constitution Discussion, Part 11, Arts V, VI, & VII

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US Constitution Discussion, Part 11, Arts V, VI, & VII

Post by Martin Blank » Tue Sep 02, 2003 2:33 pm

Previous discussion part: US Constitution Discussion, Part 10, Article IV

Articles and Sections are offset by bold text; and underlined text has been modified, superseded, or repealed by Amendments, and generally are no longer in effect.

Article. V.

The Congress, whenever two thirds of both Houses shall deem it necessary, shall propose Amendments to this Constitution, or, on the Application of the Legislatures of two thirds of the several States, shall call a Convention for proposing Amendments, which, in either Case, shall be valid to all Intents and Purposes, as Part of this Constitution, when ratified by the Legislatures of three fourths of the several States, or by Conventions in three fourths thereof, as the one or the other Mode of Ratification may be proposed by the Congress; Provided that no Amendment which may be made prior to the Year One thousand eight hundred and eight shall in any Manner affect the first and fourth Clauses in the Ninth Section of the first Article; and that no State, without its Consent, shall be deprived of its equal Suffrage in the Senate.

Article. VI.

Clause 1: All Debts contracted and Engagements entered into, before the Adoption of this Constitution, shall be as valid against the United States under this Constitution, as under the Confederation.

Clause 2: This Constitution, and the Laws of the United States which shall be made in Pursuance thereof; and all Treaties made, or which shall be made, under the Authority of the United States, shall be the supreme Law of the Land; and the Judges in every State shall be bound thereby, any Thing in the Constitution or Laws of any State to the Contrary notwithstanding.

Clause 3: The Senators and Representatives before mentioned, and the Members of the several State Legislatures, and all executive and judicial Officers, both of the United States and of the several States, shall be bound by Oath or Affirmation, to support this Constitution; but no religious Test shall ever be required as a Qualification to any Office or public Trust under the United States.

Article. VII.

The Ratification of the Conventions of nine States, shall be sufficient for the Establishment of this Constitution between the States so ratifying the Same.

Done in Convention by the Unanimous Consent of the States present the Seventeenth Day of September in the Year of our Lord one thousand seven hundred and Eighty seven and of the Independence of the United States of America the Twelfth.

In witness whereof We have hereunto subscribed our Names,

GO WASHINGTON--Presidt. and deputy from Virginia

[Signed also by the deputies of twelve States.]
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Post by Martin Blank » Tue Sep 02, 2003 2:43 pm

A day late on this one, but I don't think most people will notice. Not much here except finishing up a few minor bits carrying over the previous debts and treaties.

One of the parts here that a lot of Americans miss is the process to amend the Constitution. It can (and always has) started in Congress, but it can also start in the states, balancing some of the federal and state powers. Of special note is that the Executive and Judicial Branches have nothing whatsoever to do with the process of amendments. The President does not sign them into effect, and the judges can only enforce the amendments, not rule on them because of their very nature.

Most amendments these days have a seven-year time limit to be enacted, but Amendment XXVII, which was ratified in 1992, was one of the original twelve amendments suggested, ten of which became the Bill of Rights. This is the very reason that most proposed amendments have time limits -- nobody wants to be thinking about ratifying them 200 years after proposal. :)
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Re: US Constitution Discussion, Part 11, Arts V, VI, & VII

Post by adciv » Fri Nov 07, 2008 1:06 am

and that no State, without its Consent, shall be deprived of its equal Suffrage in the Senate.
This section strikes me as interesting. There is a movement to abolish the senate and leave only the House. Effectively creating something like a parliment I suppose. It would be interesting to compare the changes that would have to be made in order to accomplish that. Especially given this clause.

By the way, in case it comes up, I am against any such change.
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Re: US Constitution Discussion, Part 11, Arts V, VI, & VII

Post by collegestudent22 » Fri Nov 07, 2008 1:41 am

adciv wrote:There is a movement to abolish the senate and leave only the House.
Where does this movement originate? I haven't heard of it..... I would like to know more about this.
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Re: US Constitution Discussion, Part 11, Arts V, VI, & VII

Post by adciv » Fri Nov 07, 2008 1:57 am

Repensum Est Canicula
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"The democracy will cease to exist when you take away from those who are willing to work and give to those who would not." - Thomas Jefferson

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Re: US Constitution Discussion, Part 11, Arts V, VI, & VII

Post by collegestudent22 » Fri Nov 07, 2008 2:05 am

Wow, I knew people were crazy, but not that crazy.
Within our House, the people of California speak with 53 very different voices. Not with one voice, 53 times louder than Wyoming.
Yes, but if it is a vote between something that is beneficial to large states like California or one that is beneficial to small states like Wyoming, which will pass the House? Duh. That is why the Senate exists. Lunatics.
Frédéric Bastiat wrote:And now that the legislators and do-gooders have so futilely inflicted so many systems upon society, may they finally end where they should have begun: May they reject all systems, and try liberty; for liberty is an acknowledgment of faith in God and His works.
Count Axel Oxenstierna wrote:Dost thou not know, my son, with how little wisdom the world is governed?

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Re: US Constitution Discussion, Part 11, Arts V, VI, & VII

Post by ampersand » Fri Nov 07, 2008 2:24 am

Just curious, how would such a Convention be set up, if it were ever used? And would a Convention type system ever be considered for an amendment?

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Re: US Constitution Discussion, Part 11, Arts V, VI, & VII

Post by Martin Blank » Fri Nov 07, 2008 4:37 am

What is most likely is that resolutions would be passed in sufficient states calling for a convention. At that point, states would send delegates, likely respected politicians and academics, to flesh out the proposal, distill it down to acceptable text, and start passing it around through the state legislatures. Upon reaching approval of at least 3/4 of the states, it would be sent to Congress for a vote. Upon concurrence, it would be ratified.

I suspect that this process would go fairly quickly once the states had all gotten on board. Getting all of the resolutions passed, though, may take a fair amount of time.
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