The Plan For Government

A Guide to the Constitution, 1787

Why was a new government needed?

  • Taxation without Representation
  • Mistreatment by British (Boston Massacre, taxes, laws)
  • American Identity
  • The Enlightment
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Who Attended the Convention?

  • 55 Delegates
  • Representatives from each Colony
  • All White Males (Lack of Diversity)
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Issues:

1- Representation

How are states represented?

  • Virginia Plan- wanted it to be based on population
  • New Jersey Plan- wanted same power for all

The Great Compromise

  • House of Representatives (Virginia Plan)
  • Senate (NJ Plan)
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2- Slavery

Should population counts Slaves?

  • South said Yes
  • North said No

3/5 Compromise

  • 3/5 of slaves
  • slave trade protected for 20 years
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3- Power

Who has the power?

System of federalism created

  • Power is divided between State/Federal Gov.
National Powers= Delegate Powers
  • Foreign Issues, Trade between States, Defense, & Money
State Powers= Reserved Powers

  • Education, Marriage Laws, & Trade in States

4- Separation of Powers

  • How to protect against a bad Government-
Divided Gov. into 3 parts:

  • Legislative= Makes Laws
  • Executive= Enforce Laws
  • Judicial= Interprets Laws

Checks & Balances

  • Branches have some power over others

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5- Changing the Gov't

Amendments- added to change the constitution
  • 2/3 of House + Senate agree
  • 2/3 of States agree at Convention