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the states.

ventions of the people, and not by the Legislatures of On the other hand, the convention? which formed the Constitution was composed of delegates chosen by the state Legislatures. The necessary inference is, that the states, in their official capacity, proposed the Constitution, and the people, by ratifying it, gave it authority: it is therefore a government founded by separate states, but receiving its sanction and validity from the whole people.

§ 32. 2d. The objects proposed are exactly consistent with this idea. A perfect union, and a government legislating for the general welfare, are incompatible with separate and independent sovereignties. The terms independence and sovereignty, used in relation to matters of government and politics, must of course be understood in a political sense, and according to our definition. There are some common acceptations of these terms in which a much lower importance is attached to sovereignty. Thus, a man may be perfectly sovereign in his own house, and yet be subject to the laws of society. An animal may be utterly independent of another animal, and yet a member of, and subject to the laws of, the animal kingdom. In this sense the states, considered as composing a society, are sovereign and independent in their domestic and municipal relations. These terms, in their political sense, have a higher meaning as applied to nations, independence does not admit of a close union, nor sovereignty of another government legislating for the general welfare.

THE CONSTITUTION.

33. The Constitution of the United States contains seven articles, to which were added several miscellaneous amendments.

Article 1st. Relates to the Legislative Power.

12 Pitkin's Civil Hist. p. 264.

2 Idem, 219.

Article 2d. To the Executive Power.
Article 3d. To the Judicial Power.

Article 4th. To the validity of Public Acts and Records, the rights of Citizenship,-the admission of new States, and the forms of State Governments.

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Article 5th. Relates to the mode of amending the Constitution.

Article 6th. To the national faith and the binding force of the Constitution.

Article 7th. To the mode of its ratification.

34. That we may have an accurate view of the Constitution, not merely as it is written, but as it has been construed, and acted upon by the various departments of the government, we shall take these Articles up by sections, and consider them in connexion with judicial and other decisions upon them.

ARTICLE I.

§ 35. SECTION 1st. All legislative powers herein granted shall be vested in a Congress of the United States, which shall consist of a Senate and House of Representatives.

§36. Whenever power is vested in a representative body, it is usually divided between a body of direct representatives and one more remote and differently constituted. Thus, in Great Britain, the legislative power is vested in the Commons and the House of Peers; so also in France, the House of Deputies and the Peers; so also the legislative power of the several states is similarly vested in two houses. The provision is a wise one, in rendering measures less precipitate, and in removing one portion of the Legislature from the immediate action of popular passion, while it retains it within the ultimate influence of the people.

37. SECTION 2d. First Clause. The House of Representatives shall be composed of members chosen every second year by the people of the several states; and the

electors in each state shall have the qualifications requisite for electors of the most numerous branch of the state Legislature.

38. About the frequency of elections there has been much dispute. In England, the period for which a representative is chosen is seven years; in some of the states it is two, and in some only six months. In the Constitution it is fixed at two years, as being a period sufficiently long to give the people some time for reflection, and yet sufficiently short to secure the responsibility of the representative.

As the electors of the different state Legislatures varied materially, it was thought proper that the representatives from each state should be chosen by the people, in the manner they had appointed for the choice of their own Legislature.

§ 39. 2d clause. No person shall be a representative who shall not have attained to the age of 25 years, and been 7 years a citizen of the United States, AND who shall not, when elected, be an inhabitant of that state in which he shall be chosen.

§ 40. The propriety of requiring a seven years' citizenship cannot be doubted; aliens cannot be regarded as a part of the nation; and length of time, as well as naturalization, is required to make them acquainted with the interests of the country.

§ 41. A representative must be an inhabitant of the state from which he is chosen. In respect to this provision, a question has arisen, whether a man residing at the seat of government in his official capacity ceases to be a legal inhabitant of the state of which he was a citizen? It was decided in the case of Mr. John Bailey,1 a representative from Norfolk district, Massachusetts, who had for several years been a clerk in the department of State, that an official residence in the District of Colum

1 See Journals of Congress.

bia did not take away any of his qualifications as a citizen of the state whence he came. This decision will probably be adhered to, as a contrary one would at once destroy all the political privileges of those who become members of the government, and therefore would not have been within the spirit of the Constitution.

§ 42. 3d clause. Representatives and direct taxes shall be apportioned among the several states which may be included within this Union, according to their respective numbers, which shall be determined by adding to the whole number of free persons, including those bound to service for a term of years, and excluding Indians not taxed, three-fifths of all other persons. The actual enumeration shall be made within three years after the first meeting of the Congress of the United States, and within every subsequent term of ten years, in such a manner as they shall by law direct. The number of representatives shall not exceed one for every thirty thousand, but each state shall have at least one representative; and until such enumeration shall be made, the state of New-Hampshire shall be entitled to choose three; Massachusetts eight; Rhode Island and Providence Plantations one; Connecticut five; New-York six; New-Jersey four; Pennsylvania eight; Delaware one; Maryland six; Virginia ten; North Carolina five; South Carolina five; and Georgia three.

$43. It is to be observed, that the representative popu lation is not the whole population of the United States; after including "all free persons," "excluding Indians not taxed," it includes "three-fifths of all other persons." The other persons here mentioned are slaves, and consequently the states holding slaves have a representation for three-fifths of the whole number: thus, in some of the states, the slaves exceed the whites in number, and as these slaves exercise no political privileges themselves, it follows that their masters hold double the political power held by the citizens of the non

slave-holding states. Of this, however, they do not, and ought not, to complain, as it was the necessary result of the compromise, without which it is probable the Union never could have been formed.

§ 44. It is said that the electors must be the same as those for "the most numerous branch of the state Legislature." Some of these electors, as in New-Jersey, North and South Carolinas, must have a property qualification, and others again come in under universal suffrage; hence the qualifications for electors are not uniform.

§ 45. The mode of electing representatives to Congress is not the same in the several states. Thus, in some, it is by general ticket, as in, Connecticut and New-Jersey in others, by the district system, as in New-York and Pennsylvania.

§ 46. Under this section has arisen a question in respect to the mode of apportioning representatives. Congress passed a law,1 giving a number of representatives equal to the whole population of the United States divided by 30,000. This gave a larger number than would arise by dividing the population of the respective states by the same number, and adding together the quotients. The additional members were given to the states having the largest fractions. This principle was objected to by General Washington, who was then President, and the bill returned with his reasons. The objection was, that the Constitution required that the representation should be apportioned among the several states, and not according to the whole population of the Union. The bill was returned to Congress, the matter again discussed, and the objectionable feature struck out. The same principle came up under the census of 1830.2 The House of Representatives passed the apportionment bill in the usual form, and the Senate inserted a provision, making the number for a single representative a divisor of

1 Pitkin's Civil Hist. 351.

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2 Journals of Congress, 1832.

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