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Encyclopedia > Article Two of the United States Constitution
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United States Constitution Image File history File links Wikisource-logo. ... The original Wikisource logo. ... Image File history File links US-GreatSeal-Obverse. ... Wikisource has original text related to this article: The United States Constitution The United States Constitution is the supreme law of the United States of America. ...


Original text of the Constitution
Preamble

Articles of the Constitution
IIIIIIIVVVIVII Wikisource has original text related to this article: Preamble to the United States Constitution The Preamble to the United States Constitution is a brief introductory statement of the fundamental purposes and guiding principles which the Constitution itself was meant to serve. ... Wikisource has original text related to this article: Article One of the United States Constitution Article One of the United States Constitution describes the powers of the legislative branch of the United States government, known as Congress, which includes the House of Representatives and the Senate. ... Wikisource has original text related to this article: Article Three of the United States Constitution Article Three of the United States Constitution establishes the judicial branch of the federal government. ... Article Four of the United States Constitution relates to the states. ... Article Five of the United States Constitution describes the process whereby the Constitution may be altered. ... Article Six establishes the United States Constitution and the laws and treaties of the United States made in accordance with it as the supreme law of the land, and fulfills other purposes. ... Article Seven of the United States Constitution describes the process by which the entire document is to be ratified and take effect. ...

Amendments to the Constitution
Bill of Rights
IIIIIIIVV
VIVIIVIIIIXX

Subsequent Amendments
XI ∙ XII ∙ XIII ∙ XIV ∙ XV
XVI ∙ XVII ∙ XVIII ∙ XIX ∙ XX
XXI ∙ XXII ∙ XXIII ∙ XXIV ∙ XXV
XXVI ∙ XXVII The first ten amendments to the United States Constitution are known as the Bill of Rights. ... The United States Bill of Rights consists of the first 10 amendments to the United States Constitution. ... “First Amendment” redirects here. ... The Bill of Rights in the National Archives Amendment II (the Second Amendment) of the United States Constitution’s Bill of Rights declares a well-regulated militia as being necessary to the security of a free State and prohibits infringement of the right of the people to keep and bear... The Bill of Rights in the National Archives. ... The Bill of Rights in the National Archives. ... Amendment V (the Fifth Amendment) of the United States Constitution, which is part of the Bill of Rights, is related to legal procedure. ... Amendment VI (the Sixth Amendment) of the United States Constitution codifies rights related to criminal prosecutions in federal courts. ... “Seventh Amendment” redirects here. ... Amendment VIII (the Eighth Amendment) of the United States Constitution, which is part of the U.S. Bill of Rights, prohibits excessive bail or fines, as well as cruel and unusual punishment. ... The Bill of Rights in the National Archives Amendment IX (the Ninth Amendment) to the United States Constitution, which is part of the Bill of Rights, addresses rights of the people that are not specifically enumerated in the Constitution. ... For Ireland, see Tenth Amendment of the Constitution of Ireland. ... Amendment XI in the National Archives Amendment XI (the Eleventh Amendment) of the United States Constitution was passed by the U.S. Congress on March 4, 1794, and was ratified on February 7, 1795. ... Amendment XII in the National Archives The Twelfth Amendment to the United States Constitution alterd Article II pertaining to presidential elections. ... Amendment XIII in the National Archives The Thirteenth Amendment to the United States Constitution officially abolished, and continues to prohibit slavery and, with limited exceptions (those convicted of a crime), prohibits involuntary servitude. ... Amendment XIV in the National Archives The Fourteenth Amendment to the United States Constitution (Amendment XIV) is one of the post-Civil War amendments (known as the Reconstruction Amendments), first intended to secure rights for former slaves. ... Amendment XV in the National Archives 1870 celebration of the 15th amendment as a guarantee of African American rights 1867 drawing depicting the first vote by African Americans Amendment XV (the Fifteenth Amendment) of the United States Constitution provides that governments in the United States may not prevent a citizen... Amendment XVI in the National Archives Amendment XVI (the Sixteenth Amendment) of the United States Constitution was ratified on February 3, 1913. ... Amendment XVII in the National Archives Amendment XVII (the Seventeenth Amendment) of the United States Constitution was passed by the Senate on June 12, 1911 and by the House on May 13, 1912. ... Amendment XVIII in the National Archives Prohibition agents destroying barrels of alcohol. ... Amendment XIX in the National Archives The Nineteenth Amendment (Amendment XIX) to the United States Constitution provides that neither any individual state or the federal government may deny a citizen the right to vote because of that citizens sex. ... Page 1 of Amendment XX in the National Archives Page 2 of the amendment Amendment XX (the Twentieth Amendment) of the United States Constitution, also called The Lame Duck Amendment, or the Norris Amendment, establishes some details of presidential succession and of the beginning and ending of the terms of... Amendment XXI in the National Archives The Twenty-first Amendment (Amendment XXI) to the United States Constitution repealed the Eighteenth Amendment to the United States Constitution, which had mandated nationwide Prohibition. ... Amendment XXII in the National Archives The Twenty-second Amendment of the United States Constitution sets a term limit for the President of the United States, providing that No person shall be elected to the office of the President more than twice, and no person who has held the office... Amendment XXIII in the National Archives Amendment XXIII was the twenty-third Amendment to the United States Constitution which permits the District of Columbia to choose Electors for President and Vice President. ... Amendment XXIV in the National Archives Amendment XXIV (the Twenty-fourth Amendment) of the United States Constitution prohibits both Congress and the states from conditioning the right to vote in federal elections on payment of a poll tax or other types of tax. ... Page 1 of Amendment XXV in the National Archives Page 2 of the amendment Amendment XXV (the Twenty-fifth Amendment) of the United States Constitution clarifies an ambiguous provision of the Constitution regarding succession to the Presidency, and establishes procedures both for filling a vacancy in the office of the... Amendment XXVI (the Twenty-sixth Amendment) of the United States Constitution was ratified on July 1, 1971. ... Page 1 of the certification of Amendment XXVII in the National Archives Page 2 of the amendments certification Page 3 of the amendments certification Amendment XXVII (the Twenty-seventh Amendment) is the most recent amendment to be incorporated into the United States Constitution, having been ratified in 1992...


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Article Two of the United States Constitution creates the executive branch of the government, comprising the President and other executive officers. Wikisource has original text related to this article: The United States Constitution The United States Constitution is the supreme law of the United States of America. ... The executive is the branch of a government charged with implementing, or executing, the law and running the day-to-day affairs of the government or state. ... The government of the United States, established by the United States Constitution, is a federal republic of 50 states, a few territories and some protectorates. ... Federal courts Supreme Court Circuit Courts of Appeal District Courts Elections Presidential elections Midterm elections Political Parties Democratic Republican Third parties State & Local government Governors Legislatures (List) State Courts Local Government Other countries Atlas  US Government Portal      For other uses, see President of the United States (disambiguation). ...

Contents

Section 1: President and Vice President

Section One provides that the executive power is vested in the President, who may be chosen for one four-year term.


Clause 1: Executive power

The Executive Power shall be vested in a President of the United States of America. He shall hold his Office during the Term of four Years, and, together with the Vice-President chosen for the same Term, be elected, as follows:

The head of the Executive Branch is the President of the United States. The President, along with the Vice President, is elected every four years. For other uses, see President (disambiguation). ...


Clause 2: Method of choosing electors

Each State shall appoint, in such Manner as the Legislature thereof may direct, a Number of Electors, equal to the whole Number of Senators and Representatives to which the State may be entitled in the Congress: but no Senator or Representative, or Person holding an Office of Trust or Profit under the United States, shall be appointed an Elector.

The President and Vice President are chosen by Electors chosen as the state legislatures direct. The Constitution does not limit how a state may choose its electors, but in practice, all states have chosen electors by popular vote. Each state may choose as many Electors as it has Representatives and Senators representing it in Congress. (Under the Twenty-third Amendment, the District of Columbia may also choose Electors.) No Senators, Representatives or federal officers may become Electors. The Vice President of the United States[1] (sometimes referred to as VPOTUS[2] or Veep) is the first in the presidential line of succession, becoming the new President of the United States upon the death, resignation, or removal of the president. ... The United States Electoral College is the electoral college that chooses the President and Vice President of the United States at the conclusion of each Presidential election. ... Amendment XXIII in the National Archives Amendment XXIII was the twenty-third Amendment to the United States Constitution which permits the District of Columbia to choose Electors for President and Vice President. ... Aerial photo (looking NW) of the Washington Monument and the White House in Washington, DC. Washington, D.C., officially the District of Columbia (also known as D.C.; Washington; the Nations Capital; the District; and, historically, the Federal City) is the capital city and administrative district of the United...


Clause 3: Electors

The Electors shall meet in their respective States, and vote by Ballot for two persons, of whom one at least shall not lie an Inhabitant of the same State with themselves. And they shall make a List of all the Persons voted for, and of the Number of Votes for each; which List they shall sign and certify, and transmit sealed to the Seat of the Government of the United States, directed to the President of the Senate. The President of the Senate shall, in the Presence of the Senate and House of Representatives, open all the Certificates, and the Votes shall then be counted. The Person having the greatest Number of Votes shall be the President, if such Number be a Majority of the whole Number of Electors appointed; and if there be more than one who have such Majority, and have an equal Number of Votes, then the House of Representatives shall immediately chuse by Ballot one of them for President; and if no Person have a Majority, then from the five highest on the List the said House shall in like Manner chuse the President. But in chusing the President, the Votes shall be taken by States, the Representation from each State having one Vote; a quorum for this Purpose shall consist of a Member or Members from two-thirds of the States, and a Majority of all the States shall be necessary to a Choice. In every Case, after the Choice of the President, the Person having the greatest Number of Votes of the Electors shall be the Vice President. But if there should remain two or more who have equal Votes, the Senate shall choose from them by Ballot the Vice-President.

(Note: This procedure was changed by the Twelfth Amendment in 1804.) Amendment XII in the National Archives The Twelfth Amendment to the United States Constitution alterd Article II pertaining to presidential elections. ...


In modern practice, each state chooses its electors in popular elections. After they are chosen, the electors meet in their respective states to cast ballots for the President and Vice President. Originally, each elector cast two votes for President; at least one of the individuals voted for had to be from a state different from the elector's. The individual with the greatest number of votes (if such a number represented a majority of electors) became President, and the runner-up became Vice President. (The Constitution did not require that the person elected Vice President be voted for by a majority of the electors.) In case of a tie, the House of Representatives could choose one of the tied candidates; if no person received a majority, then the House could again choose one of the five with the greatest number of votes. When the House voted, each state delegation cast one vote, and the vote of a majority of states was necessary to choose a President. If second-place candidates were tied, then the Senate broke the tie. A quorum of two-thirds applied in both Houses: at least one member from each of two-thirds of the states in the House of Representatives, and at least two-thirds of the Senators in the Senate. This procedure was followed in 1801 after the electoral vote produced a tie, and nearly resulted in a deadlock in the House.


The Twelfth Amendment introduced a number of important changes to the procedure. Now, Electors do not cast two votes for President; rather, they cast one vote for President and another for Vice President. In case no Presidential candidate receives a majority, the House chooses from among the top three (not five, as was earlier the case). The Twelfth Amendment requires the Senate to choose the Vice President from those with the two highest figures if no Vice Presidential candidate receives a majority of electoral votes (rather than only if there's a tie for second for President). The Twelfth Amendment also requires that in order to be the Vice President, a person must be qualified to be the President. Amendment XII in the National Archives The Twelfth Amendment to the United States Constitution alterd Article II pertaining to presidential elections. ... Amendment XII in the National Archives The Twelfth Amendment to the United States Constitution alterd Article II pertaining to presidential elections. ... Amendment XII in the National Archives The Twelfth Amendment to the United States Constitution alterd Article II pertaining to presidential elections. ...


Clause 4: Election day

The Congress may determine the Time of choosing the Electors, and the Day on which they shall give their Votes; which Day shall be the same throughout the United States.

The Congress sets a national Election Day. Currently, Electors are chosen on the Tuesday following the first Monday in November, in the year before the President's term is to expire. The Electors cast their votes on the Monday following the second Wednesday in December of that same year. Thereafter, the votes are opened and counted by the Vice President, as President of the Senate, in a joint session of Congress. For the current (upcoming) federal elections, see United States general elections, 2007. ... The President of the Senate is the title often given to the presiding officer, or chairman, of a senate. ... Joint Sessions of the United States Congress are the gathering together of both House and Senate which occur on special occasions such as the State of the Union Address and Presidential Inauguration. ...


Clause 5: Qualifications for office

No person except a natural born Citizen, or a Citizen of the United States, at the time of the Adoption of this Constitution, shall be eligible to the Office of President; neither shall any Person be eligible to that Office who shall not have attained to the Age of thirty-five Years, and been fourteen Years a Resident within the United States.

By the time of their inauguration, the President and Vice President must be: Inauguration Day 2005 of President George W. Bush on the west steps of the U.S. Capitol. ...

  • natural born citizens (or citizens at the time of the Constitution's adoption)
  • at least thirty-five years old
  • inhabitants for at least fourteen years of the United States.

The Twenty-second Amendment also prevents a President from being elected more than twice. Amendment XXII in the National Archives The Twenty-second Amendment of the United States Constitution sets a term limit for the President of the United States, providing that No person shall be elected to the office of the President more than twice, and no person who has held the office...


Clause 6: Vacancy and Disability

In Case of the Removal of the President from Office, or of his Death, Resignation, or Inability to discharge the Powers and Duties of the said Office, the same shall devolve on the Vice President, and the Congress may by Law provide for the Case of Removal, Death, Resignation or Inability, both of the President and Vice President, declaring what Officer shall then act as President, and such Officer shall act accordingly, until the Disability be removed, or a President shall be elected.

The wording of this clause caused much controversy at the time it was first used. When William Henry Harrison died in office, a debate arose as to whether or not the Vice President actually becomes President, or if he would just inherit the powers, thus becoming an Acting President. Harrison's Vice President, John Tyler, believed that he had the right to become President. However, many Senators argued that he only had the right to assume the powers of the presidency long enough to call for a new election. Because the wording of the clause is so vague, it was impossible for either side to prove their point. Tyler ended up taking the Oath of Office and became President, setting a precedent that would be followed until the ratification of the Twenty-fifth Amendment. Tyler's precedent made it possible for Vice Presidents Millard Fillmore, Andrew Johnson, Chester Arthur, Teddy Roosevelt, Calvin Coolidge, Harry Truman, and Lyndon B. Johnson to ascend to the presidency. William Henry Harrison (February 9, 1773 – April 4, 1841) was an American military leader, politician, and the ninth President of the United States. ... John Tyler, Jr. ... Page 1 of Amendment XXV in the National Archives Page 2 of the amendment Amendment XXV (the Twenty-fifth Amendment) of the United States Constitution clarifies an ambiguous provision of the Constitution regarding succession to the Presidency, and establishes procedures both for filling a vacancy in the office of the... Not to be confused with Mallard Fillmore. ... For other persons of the same name, see Andrew Johnson (disambiguation). ... Chester Alan Arthur (October 5, 1829—November 18, 1886) was an American politician who served as 21st President of the United States. ... Theodore Roosevelt (October 27, 1858–January 6, 1919) was the twenty-fifth (1901) Vice President and the twenty-sixth (1901-1909) President of the United States, succeeding to the office upon the assassination of William McKinley. ... John Calvin Coolidge, Jr. ... For the victim of Mt. ... LBJ redirects here. ...


Tyler's precedent established that if the President's office becomes vacant due to death, resignation or disqualification, the Vice President becomes President. The Congress may provide for a line of succession beyond the Vice President; currently, it includes the Speaker of the House of Representatives, the President pro tempore of the Senate and then the fifteen Cabinet Secretaries in order of that Department's establishment. The presidential line of succession defines who may become or act as President of the United States upon the incapacity, death, resignation, or removal from office (by impeachment and subsequent conviction) of a sitting President or a President-elect. ...


The Twenty-fifth Amendment explicitly states that when the Presidency is vacant, then the Vice President becomes President. This provision applied at the time Gerald Ford succeeded to the Presidency. In case of a Vice Presidential vacancy, the Amendment permits the President to appoint, with the approval of both Houses of Congress a new Vice President. Furthermore, the Amendment provides that when the Vice President and Cabinet declare the President unable to discharge his duties, the Vice President becomes Acting President. The Amendment permits the President to take control back unless two-thirds of both Houses vote to sustain the findings of the Vice President and Cabinet. Page 1 of Amendment XXV in the National Archives Page 2 of the amendment Amendment XXV (the Twenty-fifth Amendment) of the United States Constitution clarifies an ambiguous provision of the Constitution regarding succession to the Presidency, and establishes procedures both for filling a vacancy in the office of the... For other persons named Gerald Ford, see Gerald Ford (disambiguation). ...


Congress has invoked its power to legislate for "the Case of Removal, Death, Resignation or Inability, both of the President and Vice President"; the current line of succession is found in the Presidential Succession Act. The presidential line of succession defines who may become or act as President of the United States upon the incapacity, death, resignation, or removal from office (by impeachment and subsequent conviction) of a sitting president or a president-elect. ... The Presidential Succession Act of 1947 (codified as Title 3, Chapter 1, Section 19 of the United States Code) establishes the order of succession to the office of President of the United States in the event neither a President nor Vice President is able to discharge the powers and duties...


Clause 7: Salary

The President shall, at stated Times, receive for his Services, a Compensation, which shall neither be increased nor diminished during the Period for which he shall have been elected, and he shall not receive within that Period any other Emolument from the United States, or any of them.

The President's salary, currently $400,000 a year, must remain constant throughout the President's term. The President may not receive other compensation from either the federal or any state government.


Clause 8: Oath or Affirmation

Further information: Oath of office of the President of the United States
"Before he enter on the Execution of his Office, he shall take the following Oath or Affirmation:
"I do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will faithfully execute the Office of President of the United States, and will to the best of my Ability preserve, protect and defend the Constitution of the United States."

According to the Joint Congressional Committee on Presidential Inaugurations, George Washington added the words "So help me God" during his first inaugural,[1] though this has been disputed. [2][3] There are no contemporaneous sources for this fact, and no eyewitness sources to Washington's first inaugural mention the phrase at all--including those that transcribed what he said for his oath. The oath or affirmation of office of the President of the United States was established in the United States Constitution and is mandatory for a President upon beginning a term of office. ... George Washington (February 22, 1732 – December 14, 1799)[1] led Americas Continental Army to victory over Britain in the American Revolutionary War (1775–1783), and in 1789 was elected the first President of the United States of America. ...


Also, the President-elect's name is typically added after the "I", for example, "I, George Washington, do...." Normally, the Chief Justice of the United States administers the oath. It is sometimes asserted that the oath bestows upon the President the power to do whatever is necessary to "preserve, protect and defend the Constitution." Andrew Jackson, while vetoing an Act for the renewal of the charter of the national bank, implied that the President could refuse to execute statutes that he felt were unconstitutional. In suspending the privilege of the writ of habeas corpus, President Abraham Lincoln claimed that he acted in accordance with the oath. His action was challenged in court and overturned by the U.S. Circuit Court in Maryland (led by Supreme Court Chief Justice Roger B. Taney) in Ex Parte Merryman, 17 F. Cas. 144 (C.C.D. Md. 1861). Lincoln ignored Taney's order. Finally, Andrew Johnson's counsel referred to the theory during his impeachment trial. Otherwise, few have seriously asserted that the oath augments the President's powers. Federal courts Supreme Court Circuit Courts of Appeal District Courts Elections Presidential elections Midterm elections Political Parties Democratic Republican Third parties State & Local government Governors Legislatures (List) State Courts Local Government Other countries Atlas  US Government Portal      The Chief Justice of the United States is the head of the judicial... For other uses, see Andrew Jackson (disambiguation). ... For other uses, see Habeas corpus (disambiguation). ... For other uses, see Abraham Lincoln (disambiguation). ... Official language(s) None (English, de facto) Capital Annapolis Largest city Baltimore Largest metro area Baltimore-Washington Metropolitan Area Area  Ranked 42nd  - Total 12,407 sq mi (32,133 km²)  - Width 101 miles (145 km)  - Length 249 miles (400 km)  - % water 21  - Latitude 37° 53′ N to 39° 43′ N... Roger Brooke Taney (March 17, 1777 – October 12, 1864) was the fifth Chief Justice of the United States, from 1836 until his death in 1864, and the first Roman Catholic to hold that office. ... Ex parte Merryman, (1861), is a well-known U.S. federal court case which arose out of the American Civil War. ... // The United States Reports, the official reporter of the Supreme Court of the United States Case citation is the system used in many countries to identify the decisions in past court cases, either in special series of books called reporters or law reports, or in a neutral form which will... For other persons of the same name, see Andrew Johnson (disambiguation). ...


The Vice President also has an oath of office, but it is not mandated by the Constitution and is prescribed by statute. Currently, the Vice Presidential oath is the same as that for Members of Congress.


Section 2: Presidential Powers

Clause 1: Command of military; Opinions of cabinet secretaries; Pardons

The President shall be Commander in Chief of the Army and Navy of the United States, and of the Militia of the several States, when called into the actual Service of the United States; he may require the Opinion, in writing, of the principal Officer in each of the executive Departments, upon any subject relating to the Duties of their respective Offices, and he shall have power to Grant Reprieves and Pardons for Offenses against the United States, except in Cases of Impeachment.

The President is the military's Commander-in-Chief. The President is the highest ranking officer in the military. Article One, however, provides that Congress, not the President, may declare war. Often, the President has deployed troops with Congressional authorization, but in the absence of an explicit declaration of war. (Since WW II, every single so-called "war" was technically a U.S. military operation and/or U.N. "police action", which are deemed legally legitimate because of decisions such as the Gulf of Tonkin Resolution, Authorization for of Use of Force by Congress, and various U.N. Resolutions. This is also true in the case of the Korean War, which was only retroactively deemed a war -- 50 years to the day, after the fact -- by a ceremonial Act of Congress.) Wikisource has original text related to this article: Article One of the United States Constitution Article One of the United States Constitution describes the powers of the legislative branch of the United States government, known as Congress, which includes the House of Representatives and the Senate. ... Sometimes referred to as the War Powers Clause, the United States Constitution, Article One, Section 8, Clause 1, vests in the Congress the exclusive power to declare war. ... Combatants Allied powers: China France Great Britain Soviet Union United States and others Axis powers: Germany Italy Japan and others Commanders Chiang Kai-shek Charles de Gaulle Winston Churchill Joseph Stalin Franklin Roosevelt Adolf Hitler Benito Mussolini Hideki Tōjō Casualties Military dead: 17,000,000 Civilian dead: 33,000... It has been suggested that Authorized use of force be merged into this article or section. ... The Gulf of Tonkin Resolution was a joint resolution of the U.S. Congress passed in August 1964 in direct response to a minor naval engagement known as the Gulf of Tonkin Incident. ... Iraq Resolution and Iraq War Resolution are popular names for the Authorization for Use of Military Force Against Iraq Resolution of 2002 (Public law 107-243, 116 Stat. ... A United Nations resolution (or UN resolution) is a formal text adopted by a United Nations (UN) body. ... Belligerents United Nations: Republic of Korea Australia Belgium Canada Colombia Ethiopia France Greece Luxembourg Netherlands New Zealand Philippines South Africa Thailand Turkey United Kingdom United States Naval Support and Military Servicing/Repairs: Japan Medical staff: Denmark Italy Norway India Sweden DPR Korea PR China Soviet Union Commanders Syngman Rhee Chung...


The President may require the "principal officer" of any executive department to tender his advice in writing. Thus, implicitly, the Constitution creates a Cabinet that includes the principal officers of the various departments. The Cabinet meets in the Cabinet Room on May 16, 2001. ...


The President, furthermore, may grant pardons or reprieves. Pardons may not be granted in cases of impeachment. Originally, the pardon could be rejected by the convict. In Biddle v. Perovich, however, the Supreme Court reversed the doctrine, ruling that "a pardon in our days is not a private act of grace from an individual happening to possess power. It is a part of the Constitutional scheme. When granted it is the determination of the ultimate authority that the public welfare will be better served by inflicting less than what the judgment fixed." Depiction of the impeachment trial of Andrew Johnson, then President of the United States, in 1868. ...


Clause 2: Treaties; Senior-level and Judicial nominations

The President may exercise several powers with the advice and consent of the Senate.

He shall have Power, by and with the Advice and Consent of the Senate, to make Treaties, provided two thirds of the Senators present concur; and he shall nominate, and by and with the Advice and Consent of the Senate, shall appoint Ambassadors, other public Ministers and Consuls, Judges of the supreme Court, and all other Officers of the United States, whose Appointments are not herein otherwise provided for, and which shall be established by Law: but the Congress may by Law vest the Appointment of such inferior Officers, as they think proper, in the President alone, in the Courts of Law, or in the Heads of Departments.

Treaties

Main article: Treaty Clause

If two-thirds of Senators concur, the President may ratify treaties.


In Article II however, the Constitution is not very explicit about the termination of treaties. The first abrogation of a treaty occurred in 1798, when Congress passed a law terminating a 1788 treaty with France. In the nineteenth century, several Presidents terminated treaties after Congress passed resolutions requesting the same. In 1854, however, President Franklin Pierce terminated a treaty with Denmark with the consent of the Senate alone. A Senate committee ruled that it was correct procedure for the President to terminate treaties after being authorized by the Senate alone, and not the entire Congress. President Pierce's successors, however, returned to the former procedure of obtaining authorization from both Houses. Some Presidents have claimed to themselves the exclusive power of terminating treaties. Abraham Lincoln, for instance, terminated a treaty without prior Congressional authorization, but Congress retroactively approved his decision at a later point. The first unambiguous case of a President terminating a treaty without authorization, granted prior to or after the termination, occurred when Jimmy Carter terminated a treaty with the Republic of China (Goldwater v. Carter). For the first time, judicial determination was sought, but the effort proved futile: the Supreme Court could not find a majority agreeing on any particular principle, and therefore instructed the trial court to dismiss the case. Franklin Pierce (November 23, 1804 – October 8, 1869) was an American politician and the fourteenth President of the United States, serving from 1853 to 1857. ... For other uses, see Abraham Lincoln (disambiguation). ... For other persons named Jimmy Carter, see Jimmy Carter (disambiguation). ... For the Chinese civilization, see China. ... Holding The issue at hand, whether President Carter could unilaterally break a defense treaty with the Republic of China without Senate approval, was essentially a political question and could not be reviewed by the court, as Congress had not issued a formal opposition. ...


Appointments

Main article: Appointments Clause

The President may also appoint judges, ambassadors, consuls, ministers and other officers with the advice and consent of the Senate. By law, however, Congress may allow the President, heads of executive departments, or the courts to appoint inferior officials. Article II, Section 2, Clause 2 of the United States Constitution, known as the Appointments Clause, empowers the President of the United States to appoint Ambassadors, other public Ministers and Consuls, Judges of the supreme Court, and all other Officers of the United States, while granting the United States Congress...


The Senate has a long-standing practice of permitting motions to reconsider previous decisions. In 1931, the Senate granted advice and consent to the President on the appointment of a member of the Federal Power Commission. The officer in question was sworn in, but the Senate, under the guise of a motion to reconsider, rescinded the advice and consent. In the writ of quo warranto proceedings that followed, the Supreme Court ruled that the Senate was not permitted to thus rescind advice and consent after the officer had been installed. Quo warranto (Medieval Latin for by what warrant?) is one of the prerogative writs, the one that requires the person to whom it is directed to show what authority he has for exercising some right or power (or franchise) he claims to hold. ...


After the Senate grants advice and consent, however, the President is under no compulsion to commission the officer. It has not settled in the courts if the President has the prerogative to withhold a commission after having signed it. This issue played a large part in the famous court case Marbury v. Madison Holding Section 13 of the Judiciary Act of 1789 is unconstitutional to the extent it purports to enlarge the original jurisdiction of the Supreme Court beyond that permitted by the Constitution. ...


The President also has the power to remove individuals from office. Congress has often sought to limit the President's power; during the Reconstruction Era, Congress passed the Tenure of Office Act, purportedly preventing Andrew Johnson from removing, without the advice and consent of the Senate, anyone appointed with the advice and consent of the Senate. President Johnson ignored the Act, and was later impeached and acquitted. The constitutionality of the Act was not immediately settled. In Myers v. United States (1926), however, the Supreme Court held that Congress could not thus limit the President's power to remove executive officers. Congress, however, may remove an officer "who occupies no place in the executive department and who exercises no part of the executive power." On the basis of this principle, the Supreme Court permitted Congress to remove officers of the Federal Trade Commission, which was adjudged to be an "administrative body [that] cannot in any proper sense be characterized as an arm or eye of the executive." But if Congress by statute retains for itself the power to remove an officer, it may not clothe him with executive powers, for if it does so the individual in question becomes a part of the executive branch removable at the whim of the President. For other uses, see Reconstruction (disambiguation). ... The Tenure of Office Act, passed in 1867 over the veto of President Andrew Johnson, denied the President of the United States the power to remove from office anyone who had been appointed or approved by Congress, unless the removal was also approved by Congress. ... Myers v. ...


Clause 3: Recess appointments

The President shall have power to fill up all Vacancies that may happen during the Recess of the Senate, by granting Commissions which shall expire at the End of their next Session.

During recesses of the Senate, the President may appoint officers, but their commissions expire at the conclusion of the Senate's next session. For example, see George W. Bush's 2005 appointment of John Bolton as U.N. Ambassador. John Robert Bolton (born November 20, 1948), is an jewish American diplomat in several Republican administrations, who served as the Permanent US Representative to the UN from August 2005 until December 2006, on a recess appointment. ...


Section 3: Presidential responsibilities

  • He shall from time to time give to the Congress Information of the State of the Union, and recommend to their Consideration such Measures as he shall judge necessary and expedient;
  • he may, on extraordinary Occasions, convene both Houses, or either of them, and in Case of Disagreement between them, with Respect to the Time of Adjournment, he may adjourn them to such Time as he shall think proper;
  • he shall receive Ambassadors and other public Ministers;
  • he shall take Care that the Laws be faithfully executed, and
  • shall Commission all the Officers of the United States.

Clause 1: State of the Union

The President must make regular addresses on the "State of the Union" to Congress. Originally, Presidents personally delivered annual addresses to Congress. Thomas Jefferson, who felt that the procedure resembled the Speech from the Throne delivered by British monarchs, chose instead to send written messages to Congress for reading by clerks. Jefferson's procedure was followed by future Presidents until Woodrow Wilson reverted to the former procedure of personally addressing Congress, which has continued to this day. State of the Union redirects here. ... Thomas Jefferson (13 April 1743 N.S.–4 July 1826) was the third President of the United States (1801–09), the principal author of the Declaration of Independence (1776), and one of the most influential Founding Fathers for his promotion of the ideals of Republicanism in the United States. ... Queen Elizabeth II reads Canadas Speech from the Throne in 1977 The Speech from the Throne (or Throne Speech) is an event in certain monarchies in which the monarch (or a representative) reads a prepared speech to a complete session of parliament, outlining the governments agenda for the... Thomas Woodrow Wilson (December 28, 1856—February 3, 1924), was the twenty-eighth President of the United States. ...


Clause 2: Calling Congress into extraordinary session; adjourning them

The President may call extraordinary sessions of one or both Houses of Congress. If the two Houses cannot agree on a date for adjournment, the President may adjourn both Houses to such a time as he or she thinks fit. The last time this power was exercised was in 1948, when President Harry Truman called a special session of Congress. That was the twenty-seventh time in American history when a president convened such a session.[4] For the victim of Mt. ...


Clause 3: Receiving foreign representatives

The President receives all foreign Ambassadors. This clause of the Constitution, among others, has been interpreted to imply that the President has broad power over all matters of foreign policy.[5]


Clause 4: Caring for the faithful execution of the law

The President must "take care that the laws be faithfully executed." Some Presidents have claimed the authority under this provision to impound money appropriated by Congress. President Jefferson, for example, delayed the expenditure of money appropriated for the purchase of gunboats for over a year. President Franklin D. Roosevelt and his successors sometimes refused outright to expend appropriated money. The Supreme Court, however, has held impoundments without Congressional authorization unconstitutional. FDR redirects here. ...


It has also been asserted that the President's responsibility in the "faithful" execution of the laws entitles him to suspend the privilege of the writ of habeas corpus. Article One provides that the privilege may not be suspended save during times of rebellion or invasion, but it does not specify who may suspend the privilege. Congress, the Supreme Court has ruled, may suspend the privilege if it deems it necessary. During the Civil War, President Abraham Lincoln suspended the privilege, but, due to the vehement opposition he faced, obtained congressional authorization for the same.[citation needed] Since then, the privilege of the writ has only been suspended upon the express authorization of Congress. For other uses, see Habeas corpus (disambiguation). ... For other uses, see Abraham Lincoln (disambiguation). ...


In Mississippi v. Johnson (1867), the Supreme Court ruled that the judiciary may not restrain the President in the execution of laws. In the case, the Supreme Court refused to entertain a request for an injunction preventing President Andrew Johnson from executing the Reconstruction Acts, which were claimed to be unconstitutional. The Court found that "the Congress is the legislative department of the government; the President is the executive department. Neither can be restrained in its action by the judicial department; though the acts of both, when performed, are, in proper cases, subject to its cognizance." Thus, the courts cannot bar the passage of a law by Congress, though it may strike down such a law as unconstitutional. A similar construction applies to the executive branch. Mississippi v. ...


Clause 5: Officers' Commission

The President is obligated to commission "Ambassadors, other public Ministers and Consuls, Judges of the supreme Court, and all other Officers of the United States." These include officers in both military and foreign service.


This obligation would have a large impact on the 1803 Case Marbury v. Madison, where outgoing Federalist President John Adams feverishly signed many commissions to the judiciary on his final day in office, hoping to, as incoming Democratic-Republican President Thomas Jefferson put it, "[retire] into the judiciary as a stronghold." However, in his haste, Adams neglected to have all of the commissions delivered. Incoming President Thomas Jefferson was enraged with Adams, and ordered his Secretary of States, James Madison, not to deliver the remaining commissions. William Marbury took the matter to the Supreme Court, where the famous case Marbury v. Madison was decided. Holding Section 13 of the Judiciary Act of 1789 is unconstitutional to the extent it purports to enlarge the original jurisdiction of the Supreme Court beyond that permitted by the Constitution. ... For other persons named John Adams, see John Adams (disambiguation). ... Thomas Jefferson (13 April 1743 N.S.–4 July 1826) was the third President of the United States (1801–09), the principal author of the Declaration of Independence (1776), and one of the most influential Founding Fathers for his promotion of the ideals of Republicanism in the United States. ...


Executive Privilege: A missing clause?

Main article: Executive privilege

Presidents have claimed the power to withhold information from the courts and Congress, but no clause of the Constitution speaks of such a power, and questions regarding this are contentious and undetermined. The Supreme Court has ruled that presidential communications are protected by a privilege that is "fundamental to the operation of government and inextricably rooted in the separation of powers under the Constitution."[citation needed] Executive privilege, however, is not absolute. In criminal cases, for example, the defendant can demand the revelation of exculpatory information in the possession of the government, but the government may choose to dismiss the charges instead of revealing the information. This article does not cite any references or sources. ...


Section 4: Impeachment

The President, Vice President and all civil Officers of the United States, shall be removed from Office on Impeachment for, and Conviction of, Treason, Bribery, or other High crimes and misdemeanors.

The Constitution also allows for involuntary removal from office. The President, Vice-President, Cabinet Secretaries, and other executive officers, as well as judges, may be impeached by the House of Representatives and tried in the Senate. The Congress may determine what exactly constitutes a high crime or misdemeanor.[citation needed] The impeachment trial of President Bill Clinton in 1999, Chief Justice William H. Rehnquist presiding. ... High crimes and misdemeanors is a phrase from the United States Constitution, Article II, Section 4: The President, Vice President and all civil officers of the United States, shall be removed from office on impeachment for, and conviction of, treason, bribery, or other high crimes and misdemeanors. ...


If any officer is convicted after being impeached, he or she is immediately removed from office. Along with removal from office, the Senate may choose to bar the removed official from holding any federal office in the future.[6] No other punishments may be inflicted pursuant to the impeachment proceeding, but the impeached party remains liable to trial and punishment in the courts for civil and criminal charges.[7]


References

  1. ^ Joint Congressional Committee on Presidential Inaugurations. Retrieved on 2006-11-10.
  2. ^ Goldstein, Matthew. "Myths of the Oath of Office". Retrieved on 2006-11-10.
  3. ^ "So help me God in Presidential Oaths". Retrieved on 2006-11-10.
  4. ^ C-Span’s Capitol Questions (2000-05-03).
  5. ^ United States v. Curtiss-Wright Export Corp., 299 U.S. 304 (1936), characterized the President as the "sole organ of the nation in its external relations," an interpretation criticized by Louis Fisher of the Library of Congress.
  6. ^ An example of this is Alcee Hastings who was removed from a federal judgeship, but was not barred from serving in another federal office. He was later elected to, and currently serves in, the House of Representatives.
  7. ^ Cf. Ritter v. United States, 84 Ct. Cl. 293, 300 (Ct. Cl. 1936) ("While the Senate in one sense acts as a court on the trial of an impeachment, it is essentially a political body and in its actions is influenced by the views of its members on the public welfare."); STAFF OF H. COMM. ON THE JUDICIARY, 93D CONG., CONSTITUTIONAL GROUNDS FOR PRESIDENTIAL IMPEACHMENT 24 (Comm. Print 1974) ("The purpose of impeachment is not personal punishment; its function is primarily to maintain constitutional government.") (citation omitted), reprinted in 3 LEWIS DESCHLER, DESCHLER'S PRECEDENTS OF THE UNITED STATES HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES, H.R. DOC. NO. 94‒661 ch. 14, app. at 2269 (1977).

Year 2006 (MMVI) was a common year starting on Sunday of the Gregorian calendar. ... is the 314th day of the year (315th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 2006 (MMVI) was a common year starting on Sunday of the Gregorian calendar. ... is the 314th day of the year (315th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 2006 (MMVI) was a common year starting on Sunday of the Gregorian calendar. ... is the 314th day of the year (315th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 2000 (MM) was a leap year starting on Saturday. ... is the 123rd day of the year (124th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Alcee Lamar Hastings (born September 5, 1936) is a U.S. politician, who was an impeached and removed federal judge and is currently a member of the House of Representatives representing Floridas 23rd congressional district (map). ...

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Wikisource has original text related to this article: The United States Constitution The United States Constitution is the supreme law of the United States of America. ... The United States Constitution was written in 1787, adopted in 1788, and took effect in 1789, replacing the Articles of Confederation. ... The Articles of Confederation and Perpetual Union, commonly known as the Articles of Confederation, was the first governing document, or constitution, of the United States of America. ... The Mount Vernon Conference was a meeting of delegates from Virginia and Maryland at George Washingtons home at Mount Vernon, Virginia in March 1785. ... The Annapolis Convention was a meeting at Annapolis, Maryland of 12 delegates from five states (New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, Delaware, and Virginia) that called for a constitutional convention. ... Scene at the Signing of the Constitution of the United States, by Howard Chandler Christy. ... The Virginia Plan (also known as the Randolph Plan, after its sponsor, or Large-State Plan) was a proposal by Virginia delegates, drafted by James Madison while he waited for a quorum to assemble at the Philadelphia Convention of 1787. ... The New Jersey Plan was a proposal for the structure of the United States Government proposed by William Paterson on June 15, 1787. ... The Connecticut Compromise, also known as the Great Compromise, was an essential agreement between large and small states reached during the Philadelphia Convention of 1787 that in part defined the legislative structure and representation that each state would have under the United States Constitution. ... The three-fifths compromise was a compromise between Southern and Northern states reached during the Philadelphia Convention of 1787 in which three-fifths of the population of slaves would be counted for enumeration purposes regarding both the distribution of taxes and the apportionment of the members of the United States... Scene at the Signing of the Constitution of the United States, by Howard Chandler Christy. ... An advertisement for The Federalist The Federalist Papers are a series of 85 articles arguing for the ratification of the United States Constitution. ... This is a listing of the Federalist Papers. ... This article is being considered for deletion in accordance with Wikipedias deletion policy. ... Wikisource has original text related to this article: Preamble to the United States Constitution The Preamble to the United States Constitution is a brief introductory statement of the fundamental purposes and guiding principles which the Constitution itself was meant to serve. ... Wikisource has original text related to this article: Article One of the United States Constitution Article One of the United States Constitution describes the powers of the legislative branch of the United States government, known as Congress, which includes the House of Representatives and the Senate. ... Wikisource has original text related to this article: Article Three of the United States Constitution Article Three of the United States Constitution establishes the judicial branch of the federal government. ... Article Four of the United States Constitution relates to the states. ... Article Five of the United States Constitution describes the process whereby the Constitution may be altered. ... Article Six establishes the United States Constitution and the laws and treaties of the United States made in accordance with it as the supreme law of the land, and fulfills other purposes. ... Article Seven of the United States Constitution describes the process by which the entire document is to be ratified and take effect. ... The United States Bill of Rights consists of the first 10 amendments to the United States Constitution. ... The first ten amendments to the United States Constitution are known as the Bill of Rights. ... This is an incomplete list of proposed amendments to the United States Constitution, in reverse chronological order. ... The United States Constitution has been amended on 18 occasions—with a total of 27 individual successful amendments—since the Constitution was completed in 1787. ... The history of the Convention as a means of altering the fundamental law of a nation is documented in Prelude to the Grand Convention, the first chapter of a well researched book published in 1988 by Oxford University Press. ... Besides the more common method, Article V establishes the possibility of conventions within the individual states to ratify an amendment to the United States Constitution. ... Article II, Section 2, Clause 2 of the United States Constitution, known as the Appointments Clause, empowers the President of the United States to appoint Ambassadors, other public Ministers and Consuls, Judges of the supreme Court, and all other Officers of the United States, while granting the United States Congress... The Appropriations Clause[1] or Statement and Account Clause refers to a provision of Article I, Section 9, Clause 7, that provides Congress with the power to control the spending of the federal government and requires that records of expenditures be made. ... The case or controversy clause of Article III of the United States Constitution has been deemed to impose a requirement that United States federal courts are not permitted to hear cases that do not pose an actual controversy - that is, an actual dispute between adverse parties which is capable of... The citizenship clause (also known as the naturalization clause[1]) refers to a provision, in the Fourteenth Amendment to the United States Constitution at section one, clause 1. ... Article I, Section 8, Clause 3 of the United States Constitution, known as the Commerce Clause, states that Congress has the exclusive authority to manage trade activities between the states and with foreign nations and Indian tribes. ... The compact clause refers to a provision, in Article One of the United States Constitution at section ten, clause 3, that forbids states from entering into alliances with other states or with foreign governments. ... The Confrontation Clause of Sixth Amendment to the United States Constitution provides in relevant part: In all criminal prosecutions, the accused shall enjoy the right to . ... This article or section is in need of attention from an expert on the subject. ... Article I, Section 8, Clause 8 of the United States Constitution, known as the Copyright Clause empowers the United States Congress: To promote the progress of science and useful arts, by securing for limited times to authors and inventors the exclusive right to their respective writings and discoveries. ... In United States law, adopted from English Law, due process (more fully due process of law) is the principle that the government must respect all of a persons legal rights instead of just some or most of those legal rights when the government deprives a person of life, liberty... The Emolument clause refers to a provision in Article One of the United States Constitution at section nine, clause 8, that forbids the United States from granting titles of Nobility and restricts members of the government from receiving gifts from foreign states without the consent of Congress. ... Congressman John Bingham of Ohio was the principal framer of the Equal Protection Clause. ... The Establishment Clause of the First Amendment to the United States Constitution states that: Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion Together with the Free Exercise Clause, (or prohibiting the free exercise thereof), these two clauses make up what are commonly known as the religion clauses. ... Article III Section 2 Clause 2 of the United States Constitution. ... An ex post facto law (from the Latin for from something done afterward) or retroactive law, is a law that retroactively changes the legal consequences of acts committed or the legal status of facts and relationships that existed prior to the enactment of the law. ... The Extradition clause or Interstate renditon clause[1] refers to a provision in Article Four of the United States Constitution at section two, clause 2, provides for the extradition of a criminal back to the state where he or she has committed a crime. ... The Free Exercise Clause of the First Amendment to the United States Constitution, taken with the Establishment Clause of the First Amendment make up the Religion Clauses. ... The Fugitive slave clause refers to a provision in Article IV, Section 2, Clause 3, that requires that slaves that escaped to another state be returned back to the owner in the state from which they escaped. ... Article IV, Section 1 of the United States Constitution, commonly known as the Full Faith and Credit Clause, addresses the duties states have to respect and enforce the judicial rulings of other states. ... Article I, Section 8, Clause 1 of the United States Constitution, known as the Taxing and Spending Clause states: The Congress shall have power to lay and collect taxes, duties, imposts and excises, to pay the debts and provide for the common defense and general welfare of the United States... The Guarantee clause refers to a provision in Article IV, Section 4, Clause 1, requires the United States to provide a republican form of government for every state. ... The impeachment trial of President Bill Clinton in 1999, Chief Justice William H. Rehnquist presiding. ... The Militia clause refers to the provision in Article I, Section 8, Clause 15, that provide Congress with the power to summon a militia. ... A natural-born citizen is a special term mentioned in the United States Constitution as a requirement for eligibility to serve as President or Vice President of the United States. ... The necessary and proper clause (also known as the elastic clause, the basket clause, the coefficient clause, and the sweeping clause [1]) refers to a provision, in Article One of the United States Constitution at section eight, clause 18, which addresses implied powers of Congress. ... The no religious test clause of the United States Constitution is cited by advocates of separation of church and state as an example of original intent of the Framers of the Constitution of avoiding any entanglement between church and state, or involving the government in any way as a determiner... The Origination clause refers to a provision in Article One of the United States Constitution at section seven, clause 1, that mandates all revenue raising bills originate from the House of Representatives. ... Presentment clause The Presentment clause (Article I, Section 7) is a clause in the United States Constitution that outlines how a bill may become law. ... The Privileges and Immunities Clause (U.S. Constitution, Article IV, Section 2, Clause 1, also known as the Comity Clause) prevents states from treating citizens of other states in a discriminatory manner, with regard to basic civil rights. ... This provision of the Fourteenth Amendment to the United States Constitution is unique among constitutional provisions in that some scholars believe it was all but read out of the Constitution in a 5-4 decision of the Supreme Court (see Slaughterhouse Cases of 1873). ... The Speech or Debate Clause (found in Article I, Section 6, Clause 1) is a clause in the United States Constitution which states that members of both Houses of Congress Its intended purpose is to prevent a President or other officials of the Executive branch from having members arrested on... Article VI, Paragraph 2 of the United States Constitution is known as the Supremacy Clause: The Supremacy Clause establishes the Constitution, Federal Statutes, and U.S. treaties as the supreme law of the land. ... The Suspension Clause is clause two of section nine of Article One of the United States Constitution. ... Eminent domain (U.S.), compulsory purchase (United Kingdom, New Zealand, Ireland), resumption (Australia) or expropriation (Canada, South Africa) in common law legal systems is the inherent power of the state to expropriate private property, or rights in private property, without the owners consent, either for its own use or... Article I, Section 8, Clause 1 of the United States Constitution, known as the Taxing and Spending Clause states: The Congress shall have power to lay and collect taxes, duties, imposts and excises, to pay the debts and provide for the common defense and general welfare of the United States... The Territorial Clause refers to Article IV, Section 3, paragraph 2 of United States Constitution: The interpretation of this clause gives the United States Congress the final power over every territory of the United States. ... It has been suggested that this article or section be merged with Jury. ... The three-fifths compromise was a compromise between Southern and Northern states reached during the Philadelphia Convention of 1787 in which three-fifths of the population of slaves would be counted for enumeration purposes regarding both the distribution of taxes and the apportionment of the members of the United States... The Vesting clauses refer to a provisions in Article I, Section 1; Article II, Section 1, Clause 1; and Article III, Section 1 of the United States Constitution; which vest the legislative, executive, and judicial powers in the Congress, president, and Supreme Court, respectively. ... Sometimes referred to as the War Powers Clause, the United States Constitution, Article One, Section 8, Clause 1, vests in the Congress the exclusive power to declare war. ... Constitutional theory is an area of constitutional law that focuses on the underpinnings of constitutional government in the United States. ... In the United States and many commonwelth nations, concurrent powers are powers held by both the states and the federal government and may be exercised simultaneously within the same territory and in relation to the same body of citizens. ... A number of amendments to the United States Constitution include a Congressional power of enforcement. ... For other uses, see Double jeopardy (disambiguation). ... The Dormant Commerce Clause, also known as the Negative Commerce Clause, is a legal doctrine that courts in the United States have implied from the Commerce Clause of the United States Constitution. ... The enumerated powers are a list of specific responsibilities found in Article 1 Section 8 of the United States Constitution, which enumerate the authority granted to the United States Congress. ... This article does not cite any references or sources. ... Incorporation of the Bill of Rights is the legal doctrine by which portions of the U.S. Bill of Rights are applied to the states through the Due Process Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment. ... This article needs to be cleaned up to conform to a higher standard of quality. ... Wikisource has original text related to this article: Preamble to the United States Constitution The Preamble to the United States Constitution is a brief introductory statement of the fundamental purposes and guiding principles which the Constitution itself was meant to serve. ... This article is about the power of federal law in the United States. ... The separation of church and state is a legal and political principle derived from the First Amendment to the United States Constitution, which reads, Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof . ... theSeparation of powers is a political doctrine under which the legislative, executive and judicial branches of government are kept distinct, to prevent abuse of power. ...

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United States Constitution: Information from Answers.com (11400 words)
Article VI declares the Constitution and the laws and treaties made by the U.S. government under its authority to be "the supreme Law of the Land." This provision is called the Supremacy Clause.
Article VI also requires that all judges in every state be subject to the provisions of the Constitution, that all state and federal officeholders swear an oath supporting the Constitution, and that "no religious Test shall ever be required as a Qualification to any Office" of the United States.
The eighteenth article of amendment to the Constitution of the United States is hereby repealed.
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