Here’s What We’ll Cover… • Main principles of government • Structure of the Constitution • Federalism • Amending the Constitution • You get to change the Constitution!
Basic Constitutional Principles • Social Contract & Popular Sovereignty • Limited Government • Representative Government • Written Constitution • Separation of Powers • Checks & Balances • Federalism • Judicial Review
Structure of the Constitution • Preamble • Articles • 1: Congress • 2: Executive • 3: Judicial • 4: Relationship among the states (same rights in each state) • 5: Supremacy clause • Amendments
Powers & Federalism • What is federalism? • Powers • Expressed (Enumerated) • Implied Powers; Necessary & proper (carry out enumerated) • Reserved (states) • Concurrent Powers • Denied Powers (tax exports)
State Guarantees in the Constitution • Denied Powers • No treaties with foreign nations • Can’t coin money • Can’t grant titles of nobility • Bill of Rights applies to states (after passing of 14th Amendment) • What do states get? • Republican government • Protection • Territorial integrity (r-e-s-p-e-c-t!)
109th Congress Proposed Amendments • To ensure reproductive rights of women • To force the Congress and President to agree to a balanced budget, with overspending allowed only in the case of a three-fifths vote of Congress • To ensure that all children who are citizens have a right to a "free and adequate education" • To specifically permit prayer at school meetings and ceremonies • To allow non-natural born citizens to become President if they have been a citizen for 20 years • To specifically allow Congress to regulate the amount of personal funds a candidate to public office can expend in a campaign
More Proposed Amendments • The "Every Vote Counts" Amendment - providing for direct election of the President and Vice President, abolishing the Electoral College • To clarify eminent domain, specifically that no takings can be transferred to a private person except for transportation projects • To allow the President to reduce any Congressional appropriation, or to disapprove of same (akin to a line-item veto)