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Stuff You May Not Have Known About the Constitution

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  1. Stuff You May Not Have Known About the Constitution

  2. The Constitution does not Create a Democracy • The United States shall guarantee to every State in this Union a Republican Form of Government (Art. IV Sec. 4)

  3. There is no Right to vote for President in the Constitution • Each State shall appoint, in such Manner as the Legislature thereof may direct, a Number of Electors, equal to the whole Number of Senators and Representatives to which the State may be entitled in the Congress (Art. II Sec. 1)

  4. Originally We Didn’t Elect Senators • The Senate of the United States shall be composed of two Senators from each State, chosen by the Legislature thereof (Article I Sec. 3) • Superseded by 17th Amendment, 1913

  5. But Representatives Must Be Chosen By Popular Election • The House of Representatives shall be composed of Members chosen every second Year by the People of the several States (Art. 1 Sec. 2)

  6. There is no Right of Habeas Corpus in the Constitution • The privilege of the Writ of Habeas Corpus shall not be suspended, unless when in Cases of Rebellion or Invasion the public Safety may require it. (Art. I Sec. 9)

  7. Better Late Than Never • No law, varying the compensation for the services of the Senators and Representatives, shall take effect, until an election of Representatives shall have intervened (Amendment 27: took 202 years to ratify)

  8. The Only Amendment Not Ratified by State Legislatures • The article (Amendment 21) shall be inoperative unless it shall have been ratified as an amendment to the Constitution by conventions in the several States, as provided in the Constitution, • Abolished Prohibition; it was felt that conventions were less subject to voter retaliation

  9. Is Our Children Learning? • The Congress shall have Power To lay and collect Taxes (Art. I Sec. 8) • The Congress shall have Power to dispose of and make all needful Rules and Regulations respecting the Territory or other Property belonging to the United States (Art. IV Sec. 3)

  10. “Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happiness” • That’s in the Declaration of Independence, not the Constitution