The Constitution and Individual Rights Essay

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The Constitution and Individual Rights

In the 1780s, many people agreed that the Articles of Confederation were not a strong enough plan of government for a newly born nation. Even though The Articles of Confederation won the Revolutionary War, there were many problems with the plan of government. The Articles of Confederation was made to prevent a strong national government and it only gave each state one vote in the Confederation Congress. It could not raise money and it only had one branch, the Legislature. In 1786, delegates from each state went to Philadelphia to draft a new Constitution for the United States. Fifty-five delegates came to Philadelphia convinced that the defects of the Articles of Confederation were so serious
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Smaller states wanted equal representation because they feared that larger states would run the national government. The voices in the smaller states would be left out and the Constitution would not preserve equality among the states. A special committee was made to make a compromise between representation. The compromise was called the Connecticut Compromise or the Great Compromise. The deal was that the House of Representatives would be proportional and the Senate would be equal representation. The House of Representatives would develop all bills for taxing and government spending and the Senate was limited to accepting or rejecting those bills. The two houses would form the national Congress. The legislative branch had enumerated powers. Section eight includes matters such powers as 1) to lay and collect taxes, 2) to pay the debts and provide for the common defense and general welfare of the United States, 3) to regulate commerce with foreign nations and states, 4) to declare war, 5) to raise an army and navy, and 6) to coin money. Other powers were clauses such as the necessary and proper clause and the supremacy clause. The necessary and proper clause was a law given to Congress to make any laws deemed "necessary and proper" for running the nation. The supremacy clause stated that the Constitution and all laws and treaties approved by Congress in exercising its enumerated powers are the supreme law of the land.
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