FACTOID # 21: 15% of Army recruits from South Dakota are Native American, which is roughly the same percentage for female Army recruits in the state.
 
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Encyclopedia > Constitutional law
The French Declaration of the Rights of the Man and of the Citizen, whose principles still have constitutional value
The French Declaration of the Rights of the Man and of the Citizen, whose principles still have constitutional value

Constitutional law is the study of foundational or basic laws of nation states and other political organizations. Constitutions are the framework for government and may limit or define the authority and procedure of political bodies to execute new laws and regulations. Download high resolution version (476x604, 46 KB) Wikipedia does not have an article with this exact name. ... Download high resolution version (476x604, 46 KB) Wikipedia does not have an article with this exact name. ... Declaration of the Rights of Man and of the Citizen: Revolutionary patriotism borrows familiar iconography of the Ten Commandments The Declaration of the Rights of Man and of the Citizen (French: La Déclaration des droits de lHomme et du citoyen) is one of the fundamental documents of the... Lady Justice or Justitia is a personification of the moral force that underlies the legal system (particularly in Western art). ...

Contents

Types of constitution

Not all nation states have codified constitutions, though all such states have a jus commune, or law of the land, that may consist of a variety of imperative and consensual rules. These may include customary law, conventions, statutory law, judge made law or international rules and norms. A common error is to refer to countries, for instance, the United Kingdom, as having an "unwritten constitution". In fact, the "constitution" is written in a vast body of books, statutes and law reports. Just, it may not be codified into a single document, such as the Grundgesetz or the U.S. Constitution. On the other hand, some communities may lack any constitution at all, because of the complete absence of law and order. These are referred to as failed nation states or anarchies. A nation-state is a specific form of state, which exists to provide a sovereign territory for a particular nation, and which derives its legitimacy from that function. ... Jus commune or ius commune is Latin for common law. ... In law, custom, or customary law consists of established patterns of behaviour that can be objectively verified within a particular social setting. ... This article or section does not adequately cite its references or sources. ... Statutory law is written law (as opposed to oral or customary law) set down by a legislature or other governing authority such as the executive branch of government in response to a perceived need to clarify the functioning of government, improve civil order, answer a public need, to codify existing... Case law (also known as precedential law or decisional law) is the body of judge-made law and legal decisions that interprets prior case law, statutes and other legal authority -- including doctrinal writings by legal scholars such as the Corpus Juris Secundum, Halsburys Laws of England or the doctrinal... This article or section is in need of attention from an expert on the subject. ... The Basic Law for the Federal Republic of Germany (German: Grundgesetz für die Bundesrepublik Deutschland) is the constitution of modern Germany. ... Page I of the Constitution of the United States of America Page II of the United States Constitution Page III of the United States Constitution Page IV of the United States Constitution The Syng inkstand, with which the Constitution was signed The Constitution of the United States is the supreme... Failed States according to the Failed States Index 2007 of Foreign Policy  Alert  Warning  Moderate  Sustainable  Not rated A failed state is a state whose central government is so weak or ineffective that it has little practical control over much of its territory. ...


Functions of constitutions

Constitutional laws may often be considered second order rulemaking or rules about making rules of exercise power. It governs the relationships between the judiciary, the legislature and the executive with the bodies under its authority. One of the key tasks of constitutions within this context is to indicate hierarchies and relationships of power. For example, in a unitary state, the constitution will vest ultimate authority in one central administration and legislature, and judiciary, though there is often a delegation of power or authority to local or municipal authorities. When a constitution establishes a federal state, it will identify the several levels of government coexisting with exclusive or shared areas of jurisdiction over lawmaking, application and enforcement. A map showing the unitary states. ... A legislature is a type of representative deliberative assembly with the power to adopt laws. ... The Politics series Politics Portal This box:      In law, the judiciary or judicial is the system of courts which administer justice in the name of the sovereign or state, a mechanism for the resolution of disputes. ... A federal state is one that brings together a number of different political communities with a common government for common purposes, and separate state or provincial or cantonal governments for the particular purposes of each community. ...


Human rights

Main articles: Human rights and Human rights law

Human rights or civil liberties form a crucial part of a country's constitution and govern the rights of the individual against the state. Most jurisdictions, like the United States and France, have a single codified constitution, with a Bill of Rights. A recent example is the Charter of Fundamental Rights of the European Union which was intended to be included in the Treaty establishing a Constitution for Europe, that failed to be ratified. Perhaps the most important example is the Universal Declaration of Human Rights under the UN Charter. These are intended to ensure basic political, social and economic standards that a nation state, or intergovernmental body is obliged to provide its citizens with. Human rights are rights which some hold to be inalienable and belonging to all humans. ... Human rights law is a system of laws, both domestic and international which is intended to promote human rights. ... Civil liberties is the name given to freedoms that protect the individual from government. ... Bill of Rights refers to documents important to the history and constitution of several countries. ... The Charter of Fundamental Rights of the European Union is a document containing human rights provisions, solemnly proclaimed by the European Parliament, the Council of the European Union, and the European Commission in December 2000. ... The constitutional treaty as signed in Rome on 29 October 2004 by representatives of the EU member states The Treaty establishing a Constitution for Europe (TECE), commonly referred to as the European Constitution, was an international treaty intended to create a new constitution for the European Union. ... Eleanor Roosevelt with the Spanish version of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. ... The United Nations Charter is the constitution of the United Nations. ...


Some countries like the United Kingdom, have no entrenched document setting out fundamental rights; in those jurisdictions the constitution is composed of statute, case law and convention. A case named Entick v. Carrington[1] illustrates a constitutional principle deriving from the common law. Mr Entick's house was searched and ransacked by Sherriff Carrington. Carrington argued that a warrant from a Government minister, the Earl of Halifax was valid authority, even though there was no statutory provision or court order for it. The court, led by Lord Camden stated that, The Statute of Grand Duchy of Lithuania A statute is a formal, written law of a country or state, written and enacted by its legislative authority, perhaps to then be ratified by the highest executive in the government, and finally published. ... Case law (precedential law) is the body of judge-made law and legal decisions that interprets prior case law, statutes and other legal authority -- including doctrinal writings by legal scholars such as the Corpus Juris Secundum, Halsburys Laws of England or the doctinal writings found in the Recueil Dalloz... Alternative meaning: Constitutional Convention A Constitutional convention is an informal and uncodified procedural agreement that is followed by the institutions of a state. ... Entick v. ... George Montague-Dunk, 2nd Earl of Halifax (6 October 1716 - 8 June 1771) was a British statesman of the Georgian era. ... Charles Pratt, 1st Earl Camden (1714 – 18 April 1794), Lord Chancellor of Great Britain, was a leading proponent of civil liberties in eighteenth century England. ...

"The great end, for which men entered into society, was to secure their property. That right is preserved sacred and incommunicable in all instances, where it has not been taken away or abridged by some public law for the good of the whole. By the laws of England, every invasion of private property, be it ever so minute, is a trespass... If no excuse can be found or produced, the silence of the books is an authority against the defendant, and the plaintiff must have judgment."

Inspired by John Locke,[2] the fundamental constitutional principle is that the individual can do anything but that which is forbidden by law, while the state may do nothing but that which is authorised by law. The Two Treatises of Government (or Two Treatises of Government: In the Former, The False Principles and Foundation of Sir Robert Filmer, And His Followers, are Detected and Overthrown. ...


Legislative procedure

Another main function of constitutions may be to describe the procedure by which parliaments may legislate. For instance, special majorities may be required to alter the constitution. In bi-cameral legislatures, there may be a process laid out for second or third readings of bills before a new law can enter into force. Alternatively, there may further be requirements for maximum terms that a government can keep power before holding an election. Parliamentary procedure is the name given to the set of rules governing the decision-making process used by a deliberative assembly. ... This article is about the political process. ...


Constitutions by region

Click on the "show" button to bring up different countries. Those links in red have no pages written yet and are still waiting to be filled in.

Australasia Australasia is a term variably used to describe a region of Oceania: Australia, New Zealand, and neighbouring islands in the Pacific Ocean. ... Image File history File links Australia. ... The constitution of New Zealand consists of a collection of statutes (Acts of Parliament), Treaties, Orders-in-Council, Letters patent, decisions of the Courts and unwritten constitutional conventions. ... Map showing Melanesia. ... Copyright 2004 Affordable Solutions Pty Ltd Aust. ... Image File history File links Micronesia. ... The Constitution of the Northern Marianas Islands is the governing document of that United States territory, and was drafted and approved between 1976 and 1978. ... Carving from the ridgepole of a Māori house, ca 1840 Polynesia (from Greek: πολύς many, νῆσος island) is a large grouping of over 1,000 islands scattered over the central and southern Pacific Ocean. ... Image File history File links Polynesia. ... Politics of American Samoa takes place in a framework of a presidential representative democratic dependency, whereby the Governor is the head of government, and of a pluriform multi-party system. ... A transcontinental country is a country belonging to more than one continent. ...

See also

  • Basic Laws
  • University of Pennsylvania Journal of Constitutional Law

  Results from FactBites:
 
Constitutional Law of Canada (158 words)
Constitutional law is the law that establishes, allocates and limits public power.
In modern times, most major constitutions are written, although this is not invariably so, and some major constitutions - that of the United Kingdom, for example - remain unwritten.
It is partly written, although the writings are in several rather than one statute; partly unwritten, consisting of usages, practices, customs and conventions; and partly rules of the common law developed by the courts.
Constitutional law - Wex (1011 words)
The broad topic of constitutional law deals with the interpretation and implementation of the United States Constitution (http://www.law.cornell.edu/constitution/constitution.overview.html).
Article VI of The United States Constitution states that the "Constitution, and the Laws of the United States which shall be made in Pursuance thereof; and all treaties made or shall be made, under the Authority of the United States, shall be the Supreme Law of the Land." See The Supremacy Clause: U.S. Constitution, art.
The Constitution was interpreted, in 1819, as giving the Supreme Court the power to invalidate any state actions that interfere with the Constitution and the laws and treaties passed pursuant to it.
  More results at FactBites »

 
 

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