The Constitution Of The United States Is Considered To

1021 WordsFeb 4, 20175 Pages
The Constitution of the United States is considered to be the supreme law of the land. While this is an accepted truth by most American citizens, the United States government employs a system of dual federalism in which individual states have their own constitutions. While both the individual state constitutions and the United States Constitution are similar in some aspects, they differ sharply other parts. Likely the most striking distinction between the two is when comparing the length of both. State constitutions are inherently longer than the United States Constitution for several reasons such as states engaging in “constitutional legislation,” the plenary power of state legislations, and the federal Constitution being considered…show more content…
Building on the example of the appointment process of a federal judge or Supreme Court Justice, there is a distinction between the state and federal levels in the constitutional provisions dealing with selecting Supreme Court Justices. While the appointment of a United States Supreme Court Justice is subject to the advice and consent of the Senate the process outlined in the Alabama Constitution of 1901 is drastically different. As is the case for federal Justices once they are confirmed they “shall hold their Offices during good Behaviour,” which has been interpreted as a lifetime appointment. However, the Justices of the Alabama Supreme Court are elected by the state electorate to terms of six years. Additionally, while federal Justices are appointed under non-partisan labels in the state of Alabama candidates for the various courts run under party labels. Being that the selection of Alabama state judges is a more complex process than that of the federal system, the articles dealing with the judicial branch are extremely lengthy. Another factor which adds to the extreme length of the Alabama Constitution of 1901 are the lengthy sections of “constitutional legislation.” This is a distinct contrast to the federal Constitution, which is purposefully general as it has no need to define the voting qualifications because it is left up to
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