British Constitutional Tradition • England had no written Constitution • Nonetheless, we can find the origins of many concepts espoused in US law in the English legal tradition. • Magna Carta
Charles I vs Parliament • Struggles over Money • Petition of Right • Eleven Years of Tyranny • English Civil War
Aftermath of the Civil War • On January 30, 1649, Charles I was executed. • Cromwell and the Protectorate • Stuart Restoration • Religious Conflict
Glorious Revolution and the Bill of Rights (1689) • De-legitimizes (and thus denies precedence) the powers recently exercised by the Crown (“pretended powers”) • Bans extra-Parliamentary taxation • Peace-time standing armies allowed only with Parliamentary approval • Right to bear arms (for Protestants) • Freedom of speech • Jury trials • Parliaments to be held often
Social Contract • Mutual contract between the government and the governed • Governed agree to be ruled only so that their rights, property and lives be protected by their rulers. • Once rulers cease to protect the ruled, the social contract is broken and the governed are free to choose another set of governors or magistrates. • Declaration of Independence as a breach of contract suit
American Colonies • Colonial Charters • Local Government • Grievances • Declaration of Independence • American Revolutionary War
After Independence • Articles of Confederation (1781) • State Governments • Shay’s Rebellion
Constitutional Convention • Purpose • Delegates Profile • Goals
Preamble We the people of the United States, in order to form a more perfect union, establish justice, insure domestic tranquility, provide for the common defense, promote the general welfare, and secure the blessings of liberty to ourselves and our posterity, do ordain and establish this Constitution for the United States of America.
Contentious Issues • Power of the central government • Representation • Slavery • Tariffs
Big states and Small states The 1790 Census:
The Result • Popular sovereignty • Republicanism (Representative Democracy) • Limited government • Written law • Separation of Power with Checks & Balances • Federalism
Ratification States would hold conventions. Once nine of the thirteen approved, the Constitution would be the law of the land. Propaganda battle over ratification produces Federalist Papers and several anti-federalist counter-arguments.
Order of Ratification 1 Delaware December 7, 1787 2 Pennsylvania December 12, 1787 3 New Jersey December 18, 1787 4 Georgia January 2, 1788 5 Connecticut January 9, 1788 6 Massachusetts February 6, 1788 7 Maryland April 28, 1788 8 South Carolina May 23, 1788 9 New Hampshire June 21, 1788(With this state's signing, the Constitution became legal) 10 Virginia June 25, 1788 11 New York July 26, 1788 12 North Carolina November 21, 1788(Initially voted against ratification) 13 Rhode Island May 29, 1790(Did not even hold a constitutional convention)