The Constitution of the United States of America is the highest law of the entire country. The Constitution, initially consisting of only seven essential articles, protects the federal structure of government at the national level. It was adopted by the legislature through the exercise of delegated powers granted to the US representatives by the Constitution. In order for a constitution to be considered binding on the states, it must be passed by both houses of Congress and the state legislatures. ratified by the president, it is then sent to the states for their consideration.
Each state constitution is unique and is primarily intended to describe the nature of its political structure and provide its own view of how the powers of government are to be exercised. On the whole, all state constitutions reflect a commitment to the supremacy of federal law. Moreover, each state constitution also limits the powers of the national government and preserves the right of citizens to peacefully settle their grievances with the federal government. Moreover, each state constitution also restricts the powers of the state government over its citizens and over its territory. Moreover, each state constitution reserves the right to appoint all its judges and also regulates the way in which judicial cases are to be handled. The federal constitution and the state constitution guarantee the right to vote for members of the legislature and also have exclusive control over the impeachments of their members.
In terms of the relationship between the states and the national government, the constitution has two important characteristics. First, the constitution assures the consent of the states ratifying the constitution. Secondly, the constitution provides for a separation of powers between the federal government and the states. Separation of powers ensures that the states do not become puppets of one political party in the national government and prevent the other political party from exercising its right to lead the country.
The US constitution safeguards the rights and liberties of all American citizens. It is a document that has governed the administrative policies and decisions of the national government since 1776. Each provision of the constitution has certain implicit guarantees. For instance, the constitution declares that the US Supreme Court is the supreme court of the United States and all cases arising out of state law shall be heard by the Supreme Court.
The federal government has numerous organs administering the constitution. The Department of Justice is headed by a single attorney general. The Attorney General is responsible for deciding which cases will be heard by the Supreme Court. The United States Marshals Service and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms are the two agencies of the federal government that indirectly administer the constitution. The courts of appeal constitute the third layer of bureaucracy. Federal judges are usually appointed by the Supreme Court.
The Constitution does not specify how the powers of the states and the national government will be separated but it implies that if a state refuses to comply with some of the decisions of the national government then the state may refuse to participate in any of its decisions. The same situation can arise in case the national government insists on a particular interpretation of the constitution. All these situations have led to the expansion of the role of the constitution in American life. A fundamental change has occurred in the American social structure, although most Americans have not noticed it.
The expansion of jurisdiction is a concept of the constitution that directly affects the constituents of American society. In the first years of the republic, the federal government did not interfere much with the workings of state governments. Thus, the state legislatures felt free to pursue their agendas as far as they were within their capacity. But later on, the federal government started interfering heavily in the internal affairs of the states. This was done mainly through the enforcement of what is called federal mandates.
The federal government has consistently over time managed to overrule the decisions of state governments. Many people feel that this was a result of the attitude of the federal government towards the constitution of the states. However, some others believe that the reluctance of the federal government to interfere with the workings of state governments was a result of the general demobilization of American society. The people, it was felt, were no longer interested in following the decisions of state assemblies. Whatever be the reason behind the attitude of the federal government towards the constitution of the states, the result has been a dramatic increase in federal government power in the United States.
Table of Contents
Learn more about The Constitution of the United States of America
USA Government and The Constitution of the United States of America explained! | Government & Politics A Level Revision
THE CONSTITUTION OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA
THE CONSTITUTION OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA, 1787.