Page images

Majsachnsetls-Bay. Samuel Adams, John Adams, Robert Treat Paine, Elbridge Gerry.

Rhode-lstand, E^ft. Stephen Hopkins, William Ellery.

Connecticut. Roger Sherman, Samuel Huntington, William Williams, Oliver Wolcott.

William Floyd,
Philip Livingston,
Francis Lewis,
Lewis Morris.

Richard Stockton,
John Witherspoon,
Francis Hopkinson,
John Hart,
Abraham Clark.

Robert Morris,
Benjamin Rum,
Benjamin Franklin,
John Morton,.
George Clymer,
James Smith,
George Taylor,

James Wilson,
George Ross.

Cæsar Rodney,
George Read.

Maryland. Samuel Chase, William Paca, Thomas Stone,

Charles Carroll, of Carrolltoiu

Virginia, George Wythe, Richard Henry Lee, Thomas Jefferson, Benjamin Harrison, Thomas Nelson, j un. Francis Lightfoot Lee, Carter Braxton.

North.Carolina. William Hooper, Joseph Hewes, ohn Peen.

South-Carolina. Edward Rutledge, Thomas Heyward, jun. Thomas Lynch, jun. Arthur Middleton..

Georgia, Button Gwinnett, Lyman Hall, George Walton.

[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]


The CONSTITUTION framed for the United States of America, by a Convention of Deputies from the Jiates of New-Hampshire, Massachusetts, Connecticut, New-Tort, Neva-Jersey, Pennsylvania, Delaware, Maryland, Virginia, North-Carolina, South-Carolina, and Georgia, at a session begun May 25, and ended September i7, i787.

WE, the people of the United States, in order to form a more perfect union, establish justice, insure domestic tranquillity, provide for the common desence, promote the general welfare, and secure the blessings of liberty to ourielves and our posterity, do ordain and establish this constitution for the United States of America.

ARTICLE I. Section I. 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.

Section II.

I. The House of Representatives shall consist 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.

II. No person shall be a Representative, who shall not have attained to the age of twenty-five years, and been seven 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.

III. 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 th» 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 man

ner 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 fuch 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.

IV. When vacancies happen in the representation from any state, the executive authority thereof shall issue writs of elections to fill such vacancies.

V. The House of Representatives shall choose their Speaker and other officers; and shall have the sole power of impeachment.

Section III,

I. The Senate of the United States shall be composed of two Senators from each state, chosen by the Legislature thereof, for fix years : and each Senator shall have one vote.

II. Immediately after they shall be assembled, in consequence of the first election, they shall be divided, as equally as may be, into three classes. The seats of the Senators of the first class shall be vacated at the expiration of the second year; of the second class, at the expiration of the fourth year; and of the third class, at the expiration of the sixth year: so that one third may be chosen every second year. And if vacancies happen, by resignation or otherwise, during the recess of the Legislature of any state, the executive thereof may make temporary appointments until the next meeting of the Legislature, which shall then fill such vacancies.

III. No person shall be a Senator, who shall not have attained to the age of thirty years, and been nine years a citizen of the United States; and who shall not, when elected be an inhabitant of that state for which he shall be chosen.

. IV. The Vice-President of the United States shall be President of the Senate; but shall have no vote unless they be equally divided.

V. The Senate shall choose their other officers, and also a President pro-temporc, in the absence of the Viee-Piesidcnt, or when he shall exercise the office of President of the United States.

VI. The Senate shall have the sole power to try all impeachments. When fitting for that purpose, they shall be on oath or affirmation. When the President of the United States is tried, the Chief Justice shall preside: and no person shall, be convicted without the concurrence of two-thirds of the members present.

VII. Judgment, in cases of impeachment, shall not extend further than to removal from office, and disqualification to hold and enjoy any office of honour, trust, or profit, under the United States. But the party convicted shall, nevertheless,, be liable and subject to indictment, trial, judgment, and punishment according to law.

Section IV.

I. The times, places, and manner of holding elections for Senators and Representatives, shall be prescribed in each state by the Legislature thereof: but the Congress may, at anytime, by law, make or alter such regulations, except as to the places of choosing Senators.

II. The Congress shall assemble at least once in every year; and such meeting shall be on the first Monday in, December, unless they shall by law appoint a different day.

Section V.

I. Each House shall be the judge of the elections, returns and qualifications of its own members; and a majority of each shall constitute a quorum to do business: but a smaller number may adjourn from day to day, and may be authorized to compel the attendance of absent members, in such manner, and under such penalties as each House may provide.

II. Each House may determine the rules of its proceedings; punish its members for disorderly behaviour j and, with the concurrence of two-thirds, expel a member.

III. Each House shall keep a journal of its proceedings j and, from time to time, publish the same, excepting such parts as may in their judgment require secrecy: and the yeas and nays, of the members of either House, on any question, shall^ at the desire of one.fifth of those present, be entered on the journal.

IV. Neither House, during the session of Congress, shall, without the consent of the other, adjourn for more than three days, nor to any other place than that in which the two Houses shall be sitting.

Section VI.

T. The Senators and Representatives shall receive a compensation for their services, to be ascertained by law, and paid out of the treasury of the United States. They shall, in all cases, except treason, felony, and breach of the peace, be privileged from arrest, during their attendance at the session of their respective Houses, and in going to, and returning from the same: and for any speech or debate in either House, they shall not be questioned in any other place.

II. No Senator or Representative shall, during the time for which he was elected, be appointed to any civil office, under the authority of the United States, which shall have been created, or the emoluments of which shall have been increased, during such time: and no person, holding any office under the United States, shall be a member of either House, during his continuance in office.

Section VII.

I. All bills, for raising revenue, shall originate in the House of Representatives: but the Senate shall propose or concur with amendments, as on other bills.

II. Every bill, which shall have passed the House of Representatives and the Senate, shall, before it become a law, be presented to the President of the United States. If he approve, he shall sign it: but if not, he shall return it, with his objections, to that House, in which it shall have originated, who shall enter the objections at large on their journal, and proceed to reconsider it. If, after su.h reconsideration, twothirds of that House shall agree to pass the bill, it shall be sent, together with the objections, to the other House, by which it shall likewise be reconsidered: and, if approved by two-thirds of that House, it shall become a law. But, in all such cases, the votes of both Houses shall be determined by yeas and nays: and the names of the persons voting for and against the bill, shall be entered on the journal of each House respectively. If any bill shall not be returned by

« PreviousContinue »