7 Principles of the Constitution

Created by Jacob Galle

Popular Sovereignty

The power of the government rests in the hands of the people.


Ex: people vote for representatives, presidents, and other leaders.


The Preamble to the Constitution says: "We the people ... do ordain and establish this Constitution for the United States of America."

Republicanism

People elect representatives to handle the country, state, and community by voting for them.


Ex. The people of the U.S. vote for a president to run the nation.


Article II: "He shall hold his Office during the Term of four Years"

Federalism

The powers of the state government and the national government are separated.


Ex. A state government cannot declare war, but a national government cannot decide marriage laws.


10th Amendment: "The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people."

Separation of Powers

The power of the government is split into three branches: judicial, executive, and legislative.


Ex. The legislative branch has the power to make laws, the executive has the power to enforce laws, and the judicial has the power to interpret the laws.


Article I: "All legislative Powers herein granted shall be vested in a Congress of the United States, which shall consist of a Senate and a House of Representatives."

Checks and Balances

Each branch has the power to "check up on" the other branches to keep on branch from becoming too powerful.


Ex. The executive branch can veto a law that the legislative branch tries to pass.


Article I: "Every bill which shall have passed the House of Representatives and the Senate, shall, before it becomes a Law, be presented to the President of the United States; if he approves he shall sign it, but if not he shall return it."

Limited Government

Government only has the powers and rights that the Constitution says they have. They are not all powerful beings.


Ex. The government must follow the rules of the constitution just like every other citizen.


Article 1 Section 9.7: "No Money shall be drawn from the Treasury, but in Consequence of Appropriations made by Law; and a regular Statement and Account of Receipts and Expenditures of all public Money shall be published from time to time."

Individual Rights

Freedoms, protection, and equality are all individual rights, and are guaranteed to all American citizens under the constitution.


Ex. Men and women have the the right to not be slaves under the constitution.


1st Amendment: "Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances."