Educating Young People about the Constitution Of the United States 200 North Glebe Road, Suite 200, Arlington, VA 22203 Phone: 703‐894‐1776 www.BillofRightsInstitute.org
Educating Young People about the Constitution We the people Representatives and direct taxes shall be apportioned among the several states which may be included within this union, according to their respective numbers, of the United States, in order to form a more perfect union, establish justice, insure which shall be determined by adding to the domestic tranquility, provide for the whole number of free persons, including common defense, promote the general those bound to service for a term of years, welfare, and secure the blessings of liberty and excluding Indians not taxed, three fifths to ourselves and our posterity, do ordain of all other Persons. The actual Enumeration and establish this Constitution for the shall be made within three years after the United States of America. first meeting of the Congress of the United States, and within every subsequent term of ten years, in such manner as they shall by Article 1 law direct. The number of Representatives shall not exceed one for every thirty thousand, but each state shall have at least SECTION 1. All legislative powers herein one Representative; and until such granted shall be vested in a Congress of the enumeration shall be made, the state of United States, which shall consist of a New Hampshire shall be entitled to chuse Senate and House of Representatives. three, Massachusetts eight, Rhode Island and Providence Plantations one, Connecticut five, New York six, New Jersey four, Pennsylvania eight, Delaware one, SECTION 2. The House of Representatives Maryland six, Virginia ten, North Carolina shall be composed of members chosen five, South Carolina five, and Georgia three. every second year by the people of the several states, and the electors in each state When vacancies happen in the shall have the qualifications requisite for Representation from any state, the executive electors of the most numerous branch of the authority thereof shall issue writs of state legislature. election to fill such vacancies. No person shall be a Representative who The House of Representatives shall choose shall not have attained to the age of twenty their speaker and other officers; and shall five years, and been seven years a citizen of have the sole power of impeachment. the United States, and who shall not, when elected, be an inhabitant of that state in which he shall be chosen.
Educating Young People about the Constitution SECTION 3. The Senate of the United The Senate shall have the sole power to try States shall be composed of two Senators all impeachments. When sitting for that from each state, chosen by the legislature purpose, they shall be on oath or thereof, for six years; and each Senator shall affirmation. When the President of the have one vote. United States is tried, the Chief Justice shall preside: And no person shall be convicted Immediately after they shall be assembled without the concurrence of two thirds of the in consequence of the first election, they members present. shall be divided as equally as may be into three classes. The seats of the Senators of the Judgment in cases of impeachment shall not first class shall be vacated at the expiration extend further than to removal from office, of the second year, of the second class at the and disqualification to hold and enjoy any expiration of the fourth year, and the third office of honor, trust or profit under the class at the expiration of the sixth year, so United States: but the party convicted shall that one third may be chosen every second nevertheless be liable and subject to year; and if vacancies happen by indictment, trial, judgment and resignation, or otherwise, during the recess punishment, according to law. 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. SECTION 4. The times, places and manner of holding elections for Senators and No person shall be a Senator who shall not Representatives, shall be prescribed in each have attained to the age of thirty years, and state by the legislature thereof; but the been nine years a citizen of the United Congress may at any time by law make or States and who shall not, when elected, be alter such regulations, except as to the an inhabitant of that state for which he shall places of choosing Senators. be chosen. The Congress shall assemble at least once in The Vice President of the United States shall every year, and such meeting shall be on the be President of the Senate, but shall have no first Monday in December, unless they shall vote, unless they be equally divided. by law appoint a different day. The Senate shall choose their other officers, and also a President pro tempore, in the absence of the Vice President, or when he shall exercise the office of President of the United States.
Educating Young People about the Constitution SECTION 5. Each House shall be the judge returning from the same; and for any of the elections, returns and qualifications of speech or debate in either House, they shall its own members, and a majority of each not be questioned in any other place. shall constitute a quorum to do business; but a smaller number may adjourn from No Senator or Representative shall, during day to day, and may be authorized to the time for which he was elected, be compel the attendance of absent members, appointed to any civil office under the in such manner, and under such penalties authority of the United States, which shall as each House may provide. have been created, or the emoluments whereof shall have been increased during Each House may determine the rules of its such time: and no person holding any office proceedings, punish its members for under the United States, shall be a member disorderly behavior, and, with the of either House during his continuance in concurrence of two thirds, expel a member. office. Each House shall keep a journal of its proceedings, and from time to time publish the same, excepting such parts as may in SECTION 7. All bills for raising revenue their judgment require secrecy; and the yeas shall originate in the House of and nays of the members of either House on Representatives; but the Senate may any question shall, at the desire of one fifth propose or concur with amendments as on of those present, be entered on the journal. other Bills. Neither House, during the session of Every bill which shall have passed the Congress, shall, without the consent of the House of Representatives and the Senate, other, adjourn for more than three days, nor shall, before it become a law, be presented to any other place than that in which the to the President of the United States; if he two Houses shall be sitting. 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, SECTION 6. The Senators and and proceed to reconsider it. If after such Representatives shall receive a reconsideration two thirds of that House compensation for their services, to be shall agree to pass the bill, it shall be sent, ascertained by law, and paid out of the together with the objections, to the other treasury of the United States. They shall in House, by which it shall likewise be all cases, except treason, felony and breach reconsidered, and if approved by two thirds of the peace, be privileged from arrest of that House, it shall become a law. But in during their attendance at the session of all such cases the votes of both Houses shall their respective Houses, and in going to and be determined by yeas and nays, and the
Educating Young People about the Constitution names of the persons voting for and against To establish a uniform rule of the bill shall be entered on the journal of naturalization, and uniform laws on the each House respectively. If any bill shall not subject of bankruptcies throughout the be returned by the President within ten United States; days (Sundays excepted) after it shall have been presented to him, the same shall be a To coin money, regulate the value thereof, law, in like manner as if he had signed it, and of foreign coin, and fix the standard of unless the Congress by their adjournment weights and measures; prevent its return, in which case it shall not be a law. To provide for the punishment of counterfeiting the securities and current Every order, resolution, or vote to which the coin of the United States; concurrence of the Senate and House of Representatives may be necessary (except To establish post offices and post roads; on a question of adjournment) shall be presented to the President of the United To promote the progress of science and States; and before the same shall take effect, useful arts, by securing for limited times to shall be approved by him, or being authors and inventors the exclusive right to disapproved by him, shall be repassed by their respective writings and discoveries; two thirds of the Senate and House of Representatives, according to the rules and To constitute tribunals inferior to the limitations prescribed in the case of a bill. Supreme Court; To define and punish piracies and felonies committed on the high seas, and offenses SECTION 8. The Congress shall have against the law of nations; power to lay and collect taxes, duties, imposts and excises, to pay the debts and To declare war, grant letters of marque and provide for the common defense and reprisal, and make rules concerning general welfare of the United States; but all captures on land and water; duties, imposts and excises shall be uniform throughout the United States; To raise and support armies, but no appropriation of money to that use shall be To borrow money on the credit of the for a longer term than two years; United States; To provide and maintain a navy; To regulate commerce with foreign nations, and among the several states, and with the To make rules for the government and Indian tribes; regulation of the land and naval forces;
Educating Young People about the Constitution To provide for calling forth the militia to SECTION 9. The migration or importation execute the laws of the union, suppress of such persons as any of the states now insurrections and repel invasions; existing shall think proper to admit, shall not be prohibited by the Congress prior to To provide for organizing, arming, and the year one thousand eight hundred and disciplining, the militia, and for governing eight, but a tax or duty may be imposed on such part of them as may be employed in such importation, not exceeding ten dollars the service of the United States, reserving to for each person. the states respectively, the appointment of the officers, and the authority of training the The privilege of the writ of habeas corpus militia according to the discipline shall not be suspended, unless when in prescribed by Congress; cases of rebellion or invasion the public safety may require it. To exercise exclusive legislation in all cases whatsoever, over such District (not No bill of attainder or ex post facto Law exceeding ten miles square) as may, by shall be passed. cession of particular states, and the acceptance of Congress, become the seat of No capitation, or other direct, tax shall be the government of the United States, and to laid, unless in proportion to the census or exercise like authority over all places enumeration herein before directed to be purchased by the consent of the legislature taken. of the state in which the same shall be, for the erection of forts, magazines, arsenals, No tax or duty shall be laid on articles dockyards, and other needful buildings;‐‐ exported from any state. And No preference shall be given by any To make all laws which shall be necessary regulation of commerce or revenue to the and proper for carrying into execution the ports of one state over those of another: nor foregoing powers, and all other powers shall vessels bound to, or from, one state, be vested by this Constitution in the obliged to enter, clear or pay duties in government of the United States, or in any another. department or officer thereof. No money shall be drawn from the treasury, but in consequence of appropriations made by law; and a regular statement and account of receipts and expenditures of all public money shall be published from time to time.
Educating Young People about the Constitution No title of nobility shall be granted by the United States: and no person holding any office of profit or trust under them, shall, Article 11without the consent of the Congress, accept of any present, emolument, office, or title, of SECTION 1. The executive power shall be any kind whatever, from any king, prince, vested in a President of the United States of or foreign state. 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: SECTION 10. No state shall enter into any treaty, alliance, or confederation; grant Each state shall appoint, in such manner as letters of marque and reprisal; coin money; the Legislature thereof may direct, a emit bills of credit; make anything but gold number of electors, equal to the whole and silver coin a tender in payment of number of Senators and Representatives to debts; pass any bill of attainder, ex post which the State may be entitled in the facto law, or law impairing the obligation of Congress: but no Senator or Representative, contracts, or grant any title of nobility. or person holding an office of trust or profit under the United States, shall be appointed No state shall, without the consent of the an elector. Congress, lay any imposts or duties on imports or exports, except what may be The electors shall meet in their respective absolutely necessary for executing its states, and vote by ballot for two persons, of inspection laws: and the net produce of all whom one at least shall not be an inhabitant duties and imposts, laid by any state on of the same state with themselves. And they imports or exports, shall be for the use of shall make a list of all the persons voted for, the treasury of the United States; and all and of the number of votes for each; which such laws shall be subject to the revision list they shall sign and certify, and transmit and control of the Congress. sealed to the seat of the government of the United States, directed to the President of No state shall, without the consent of the Senate. The President of the Senate Congress, lay any duty of tonnage, keep shall, in the presence of the Senate and troops, or ships of war in time of peace, House of Representatives, open all the enter into any agreement or compact with certificates, and the votes shall then be another state, or with a foreign power, or counted. The person having the greatest engage in war, unless actually invaded, or number of votes shall be the President, if in such imminent danger as will not admit such number be a majority of the whole of delay. number of electors appointed; and if there be more than one who have such majority, and have an equal number of votes, then
Educating Young People about the Constitution the House of Representatives shall death, resignation or inability, both of the immediately choose by ballot one of them President and Vice President, declaring for President; and if no person have a what officer shall then act as President, and majority, then from the five highest on the such officer shall act accordingly, until the list the said House shall in like manner disability be removed, or a President shall choose the President. But in choosing the be elected. President, the votes shall be taken by States, the representation from each state having The President shall, at stated times, receive one vote; A quorum for this purpose shall for his services, a compensation, which shall consist of a member or members from two neither be increased nor diminished during thirds of the states, and a majority of all the the period for which he shall have been states shall be necessary to a choice. In elected, and he shall not receive within that every case, after the choice of the President, period any other emolument from the the person having the greatest number of United States, or any of them. votes of the electors shall be the Vice President. But if there should remain two or Before he enter on the execution of his more who have equal votes, the Senate shall office, he shall take the following oath or choose from them by ballot the Vice affirmation:‐‐ʺI do solemnly swear (or President. affirm) that I will faithfully execute the office of President of the United States, and The Congress may determine the time of will to the best of my ability, preserve, choosing the electors, and the day on which protect and defend the Constitution of the they shall give their votes; which day shall United States.ʺ be the same throughout the United States. No person except a natural born citizen, or a citizen of the United States, at the time of SECTION 2. The President shall be the adoption of this Constitution, shall be commander in chief of the Army and Navy eligible to the office of President; neither of the United States, and of the militia of the shall any person be eligible to that office several states, when called into the actual who shall not have attained to the age of service of the United States; he may require thirty five years, and been fourteen Years a the opinion, in writing, of the principal resident within the United States. officer in each of the executive departments, upon any subject relating to the duties of In case of the removal of the President from their respective offices, and he shall have office, or of his death, resignation, or power to grant reprieves and pardons for inability to discharge the powers and duties offenses against the United States, except in of the said office, the same shall devolve on cases of impeachment. the Vice President, and the Congress may by law provide for the case of removal,
Educating Young People about the Constitution He shall have power, by and with the SECTION 4. The President, Vice President advice and consent of the Senate, to make and all civil officers of the United States, treaties, provided two thirds of the Senators shall be removed from office on present concur; and he shall nominate, and impeachment for, and conviction of, by and with the advice and consent of the treason, bribery, or other high crimes and Senate, shall appoint ambassadors, other misdemeanors. 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 Article 111shall be established by law: but the Congress may by law vest the appointment SECTION 1. The judicial power of the of such inferior officers, as they think United States, shall be vested in one proper, in the President alone, in the courts Supreme Court, and in such inferior courts of law, or in the heads of departments. as the Congress may from time to time ordain and establish. The judges, both of the The President shall have power to fill up all supreme and inferior courts, shall hold their vacancies that may happen during the offices during good behaviour, and shall, at recess of the Senate, by granting stated times, receive for their services, a commissions which shall expire at the end compensation, which shall not be of their next session. diminished during their continuance in office. SECTION 3. 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.
Educating Young People about the Constitution SECTION 2. The judicial power shall SECTION 3. Treason against the United extend to all cases, in law and equity, States, shall consist only in levying war arising under this Constitution, the laws of against them, or in adhering to their the United States, and treaties made, or enemies, giving them aid and comfort. No which shall be made, under their authority;‐ person shall be convicted of treason unless ‐to all cases affecting ambassadors, other on the testimony of two witnesses to the public ministers and consuls;‐‐to all cases of same overt act, or on confession in open admiralty and maritime jurisdiction;‐‐to court. controversies to which the United States shall be a party;‐‐to controversies between The Congress shall have power to declare two or more states;‐‐between a state and the punishment of treason, but no attainder citizens of another state;‐‐ between citizens of treason shall work corruption of blood, of different states;‐‐between citizens of the or forfeiture except during the life of the same state claiming lands under grants of person attainted. different states, and between a state, or the citizens thereof, and foreign states, citizens or subjects. Article 1VIn all cases affecting ambassadors, other public ministers and consuls, and those in SECTION 1. Full faith and credit shall be which a state shall be party, the Supreme given in each state to the public acts, Court shall have original jurisdiction. In all records, and judicial proceedings of every the other cases before mentioned, the other state. And the Congress may by Supreme Court shall have appellate general laws prescribe the manner in which jurisdiction, both as to law and fact, with such acts, records, and proceedings shall be such exceptions, and under such proved, and the effect thereof. regulations as the Congress shall make. The trial of all crimes, except in cases of impeachment, shall be by jury; and such SECTION 2. The citizens of each state shall trial shall be held in the state where the said be entitled to all privileges and immunities crimes shall have been committed; but of citizens in the several states. when not committed within any state, the trial shall be at such place or places as the A person charged in any state with treason, Congress may by law have directed. felony, or other crime, who shall flee from justice, and be found in another state, shall on demand of the executive authority of the state from which he fled, be delivered up, to be removed to the state having jurisdiction of the crime.
Educating Young People about the Constitution No person held to service or labor in one state, under the laws thereof, escaping into another, shall, in consequence of any law or Article Vregulation therein, be discharged from such The Congress, whenever two thirds of both service or labor, but shall be delivered up houses shall deem it necessary, shall on claim of the party to whom such service propose amendments to this Constitution, or labor may be due. or, on the application of the legislatures of two thirds of the several states, shall call a convention for proposing amendments, which, in either case, shall be valid to all SECTION 3. New states may be admitted intents and purposes, as part of this by the Congress into this union; but no new Constitution, when ratified by the states shall be formed or erected within the legislatures of three fourths of the several jurisdiction of any other state; nor any state states, or by conventions in three fourths be formed by the junction of two or more thereof, as the one or the other mode of states, or parts of states, without the consent ratification may be proposed by the of the legislatures of the states concerned as Congress; provided that no amendment well as of the Congress. which may be made prior to the year one thousand eight hundred and eight shall in The Congress shall have power to dispose any manner affect the first and fourth of and make all needful rules and clauses in the ninth section of the first regulations respecting the territory or other article; and that no state, without its property belonging to the United States; consent, shall be deprived of its equal and nothing in this Constitution shall be so suffrage in the Senate. construed as to prejudice any claims of the United States, or of any particular state. SECTION 4. The United States shall guarantee to every state in this union a republican form of government, and shall protect each of them against invasion; and on application of the legislature, or of the executive (when the legislature cannot be convened) against domestic violence.
Educating Young People about the Constitution Article V 1 Article V 11All debts contracted and engagements The ratification of the conventions of nine entered into, before the adoption of this states, shall be sufficient for the Constitution, shall be as valid against the establishment of this Constitution between United States under this Constitution, as the states so ratifying the same. under the Confederation. Done in convention by the unanimous This Constitution, and the laws of the consent of the states present the seventeenth United States which shall be made in day of September in the year of our Lord pursuance thereof; and all treaties made, or one thousand seven hundred and eighty which shall be made, under the authority of seven and of the independence of the the United States, shall be the supreme law United States of America the twelfth. In of the land; and the judges in every state witness whereof We have hereunto shall be bound thereby, anything in the subscribed our Names, Constitution or laws of any State to the contrary notwithstanding. G. Washington‐Presidt. and deputy from Virginia The Senators and Representatives before mentioned, and the members of the several NEW HAMPSHIRE state legislatures, and all executive and John Langdon judicial officers, both of the United States Nicholas Gilman and of the several states, shall be bound by oath or affirmation, to support this MASSACHUSETTS Constitution; but no religious test shall ever Nathaniel Gorham be required as a qualification to any office Rufus King or public trust under the United States. CONNECTICUT Wm: Saml. Johnson Roger Sherman NEW YORK Alexander Hamilton
Educating Young People about the Constitution NEW JERSEY SOUTH CAROLINA Wil: Livingston J. Rutledge David Brearly Charles Cotesworth Pinckney Wm. Paterson Charles Pinckney Jona: Dayton Pierce Butler PENNSYLVANIA GEORGIA B. Franklin William Few Thomas Mifflin Abr Baldwin Robt. Morris Geo. Clymer Thos. FitzSimons The Conventions of a number of the States Jared Ingersoll having, at the time of adopting the James Wilson Constitution, expressed a desire, in order to Gouv Morris prevent misconstruction or abuse of its powers, that further declaratory and DELAWARE restrictive clauses should be added, and as Geo: Read extending the ground of public confidence Gunning Bedford jun in the Government will best insure the John Dickinson beneficent ends of its institution; Richard Bassett Jaco: Broom Resolved, by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of MARYLAND America, in Congress assembled, two‐thirds James McHenry of both Houses concurring, that the Dan of St Thos. Jenifer following articles be proposed to the Danl Carroll Legislatures of the several States, as amendments to the Constitution of the VIRGINIA United States; all or any of which articles, John Blair— when ratified by three‐fourths of the said James Madison Jr. Legislatures, to be valid to all intents and purposes as part of the said Constitution, NORTH CAROLINA namely: Wm. Blount Richd. Dobbs Spaight Hu Williamson
Educating Young People about the Constitution Amendment 1 Amendment 1V Congress shall make no law respecting an The right of the people to be secure in their establishment of religion, or prohibiting the persons, houses, papers, and effects, against free exercise thereof; or abridging the unreasonable searches and seizures, shall freedom of speech, or of the press; or the not be violated, and no warrants shall issue, right of the people peaceably to assemble, but upon probable cause, supported by oath and to petition the government for a redress or affirmation, and particularly describing of grievances. the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.Amendment 11 Amendment VA well regulated militia, being necessary to No person shall be held to answer for a the security of a free state, the right of the capital, or otherwise infamous crime, unless people to keep and bear arms, shall not be on a presentment or indictment of a grand infringed. jury, except in cases arising in the land or naval forces, or in the militia, when in actual service in time of war or public Amendment 111 danger; nor shall any person be subject for the same offense to be twice put in jeopardy of life or limb; nor shall be compelled in any No soldier shall, in time of peace be criminal case to be a witness against quartered in any house, without the consent himself, nor be deprived of life, liberty, or of the owner, nor in time of war, but in a property, without due process of law; nor manner to be prescribed by law. shall private property be taken for public use, without just compensation.
Educating Young People about the Constitution Amendment V 1 Amendment 1X In all criminal prosecutions, the accused The enumeration in the Constitution, of shall enjoy the right to a speedy and public certain rights, shall not be construed to trial, by an impartial jury of the state and deny or disparage others retained by the district wherein the crime shall have been people. committed, which district shall have been previously ascertained by law, and to be informed of the nature and cause of the accusation; to be confronted with the Amendment X witnesses against him; to have compulsory The powers not delegated to the United process for obtaining witnesses in his favor, States by the Constitution, nor prohibited and to have the assistance of counsel for his by it to the states, are reserved to the states defense. respectively, or to the people. Amendment V 11 Amendment X1 Passed by Congress March 4, 1794. Ratified February 7, 1795. In suits at common law, where the value in controversy shall exceed twenty dollars, the The judicial power of the United States right of trial by jury shall be preserved, and shall not be construed to extend to any no fact tried by a jury, shall be otherwise suit in law or equity, commenced or reexamined in any court of the United prosecuted against one of the United States, than according to the rules of the States by citizens of another state, or by common law. citizens or subjects of any foreign state. Amendment V 111 Excessive bail shall not be required, nor excessive fines imposed, nor cruel and unusual punishments inflicted.
Educating Young People about the Constitution the votes shall be taken by states, the Amendment X11 representation from each state having one vote; a quorum for this purpose Passed by Congress December 9, 1803. Ratified June 15, 1804. shall consist of a member or members from two‐thirds of the states, and a The electors shall meet in their majority of all the states shall be respective states and vote by ballot for necessary to a choice. And if the House President and Vice‐President, one of of Representatives shall not choose a whom, at least, shall not be an President whenever the right of choice inhabitant of the same state with shall devolve upon them, before the themselves; they shall name in their fourth day of March next following, ballots the person voted for as then the Vice‐President shall act as President, and in distinct ballots the President, as in the case of the death or person voted for as Vice‐President, and other constitutional disability of the they shall make distinct lists of all President. The person having the persons voted for as President, and of greatest number of votes as Vice‐all persons voted for as Vice‐President, President, shall be the Vice‐President, if and of the number of votes for each, such number be a majority of the whole which lists they shall sign and certify, number of electors appointed, and if no and transmit sealed to the seat of the person have a majority, then from the government of the United States, two highest numbers on the list, the directed to the President of the Senate;‐‐ Senate shall choose the Vice‐President; a The President of the Senate shall, in the quorum for the purpose shall consist of presence of the Senate and House of two‐thirds of the whole number of Representatives, open all the certificates Senators, and a majority of the whole and the votes shall then be counted;‐‐the number shall be necessary to a choice. person having the greatest number of But no person constitutionally ineligible votes for President, shall be the to the office of President shall be eligible President, if such number be a majority to that of Vice‐President of the United of the whole number of electors States. appointed; and if no person have such majority, then from the persons having the highest numbers not exceeding three on the list of those voted for as President, the House of Representatives shall choose immediately, by ballot, the President. But in choosing the President,
Educating Young People about the Constitution Section 2. Representatives shall be Amendment X111 apportioned among the several states according to their respective numbers, Passed by Congress January 31, 1865. counting the whole number of persons Ratified December 6,1865. in each state, excluding Indians not Section 1. Neither slavery nor taxed. But when the right to vote at any involuntary servitude, except as a election for the choice of electors for punishment for crime whereof the party President and Vice President of the shall have been duly convicted, shall United States, Representatives in exist within the United States, or any Congress, the executive and judicial place subject to their jurisdiction. officers of a state, or the members of the legislature thereof, is denied to any of Section 2. Congress shall have power to the male inhabitants of such state, being enforce this article by appropriate twenty‐one years of age, and citizens of legislation. the United States, or in any way abridged, except for participation in rebellion, or other crime, the basis of Amendment X1V representation therein shall be reduced in the proportion which the number of Passed by Congress June 13, 1866. Ratified July 9, 1868. such male citizens shall bear to the whole number of male citizens twenty‐Section 1. All persons born or one years of age in such state. naturalized in the United States, and subject to the jurisdiction thereof, are citizens of the United States and of the state wherein they reside. No state shall make or enforce any law which shall abridge the privileges or immunities of citizens of the United States; nor shall any state deprive any person of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws.
Educating Young People about the Constitution Section 3. No person shall be a Senator or Representative in Congress, or elector Amendment XVof President and Vice President, or hold Passed by Congress February 26, 1869. Ratified February 3, 1870. any office, civil or military, under the United States, or under any state, who, Section 1. The right of citizens of the having previously taken an oath, as a United States to vote shall not be denied member of Congress, or as an officer of or abridged by the United States or by the United States, or as a member of any any state on account of race, color, or state legislature, or as an executive or previous condition of servitude. judicial officer of any state, to support the Constitution of the United States, Section 2. The Congress shall have shall have engaged in insurrection or power to enforce this article by rebellion against the same, or given aid appropriate legislation. or comfort to the enemies thereof. But Congress may by a vote of two‐thirds of each House, remove such disability. Amendment XV 1Section 4. The validity of the public Passed by Congress July 2, 1909. Ratified February 3, 1913. debt of the United States, authorized by law, including debts incurred for The Congress shall have power to lay payment of pensions and bounties for and collect taxes on incomes, from services in suppressing insurrection or whatever source derived, without rebellion, shall not be questioned. But apportionment among the several states, neither the United States nor any state and without regard to any census of shall assume or pay any debt or enumeration. obligation incurred in aid of insurrection or rebellion against the United States, or any claim for the loss or emancipation of any slave; but all such debts, obligations and claims shall be held illegal and void. Section 5. The Congress shall have power to enforce, by appropriate legislation, the provisions of this article.
Educating Young People about the Constitution Amendment XV 11 Amendment XV 111Passed by Congress May 13, 1912. Ratified April 8, 1913. Passed by Congress December 18, 1917. Ratified January 16,1919. Repealed by the 21st Amendment, December 5, 1933. The Senate of the United States shall be composed of two Senators from each Section 1. After one year from the state, elected by the people thereof, for ratification of this article the six years; and each Senator shall have manufacture, sale, or transportation of one vote. The electors in each state shall intoxicating liquors within, the have the qualifications requisite for importation thereof into, or the electors of the most numerous branch of exportation thereof from the United the state legislatures. States and all territory subject to the jurisdiction thereof for beverage When vacancies happen in the purposes is hereby prohibited. representation of any state in the Senate, the executive authority of such state Section 2. The Congress and the several shall issue writs of election to fill such states shall have concurrent power to vacancies: Provided, that the legislature enforce this article by appropriate of any state may empower the executive legislation. thereof to make temporary Section 3. This article shall be appointments until the people fill the inoperative unless it shall have been vacancies by election as the legislature ratified as an amendment to the may direct. Constitution by the legislatures of the This amendment shall not be so several states, as provided in the construed as to affect the election or Constitution, within seven years from term of any Senator chosen before it the date of the submission hereof to the becomes valid as part of the states by the Congress. Constitution.
Educating Young People about the Constitution Section 3. If, at the time fixed for the Amendment X1X beginning of the term of the President, the President elect shall have died, the Passed by Congress June 4, 1919. Ratified August 18, 1920. Vice President elect shall become President. If a President shall not have The right of citizens of the United States been chosen before the time fixed for the to vote shall not be denied or abridged beginning of his term, or if the President by the United States or by any state on elect shall have failed to qualify, then account of sex. the Vice President elect shall act as President until a President shall have Congress shall have power to enforce qualified; and the Congress may by law this article by appropriate legislation. provide for the case wherein neither a President elect nor a Vice President elect Amendment XX shall have qualified, declaring who shall then act as President, or the manner in Passed by Congress March 2, 1932. Ratified January 23, 1933. which one who is to act shall be Section 1. The terms of the President selected, and such person shall act and Vice President shall end at noon on accordingly until a President or Vice the 20th day of January, and the terms President shall have qualified. of Senators and Representatives at noon on the 3rd day of January, of the years Section 4. The Congress may by law in which such terms would have ended provide for the case of the death of any if this article had not been ratified; and of the persons from whom the House of the terms of their successors shall then Representatives may choose a President begin. whenever the right of choice shall have devolved upon them, and for the case of Section 2. The Congress shall assemble the death of any of the persons from at least once in every year, and such whom the Senate may choose a Vice meeting shall begin at noon on the 3d President whenever the right of choice day of January, unless they shall by law shall have devolved upon them. appoint a different day. Section 5. Sections 1 and 2 shall take effect on the 15th day of October following the ratification of this article.
Educating Young People about the Constitution Section 6. This article shall be inoperative unless it shall have been ratified as an amendment to the Amendment XX11Constitution by the legislatures of three‐ Passed by Congress March 21, 1947. Ratified February 27,1951. fourths of the several states within seven years from the date of its Section 1. No person shall be elected to submission. the office of the President more than twice, and no person who has held the office of President, or acted as President, Amendment XX1 for more than two years of a term to Passed by Congress February 20, 1933. which some other person was elected Ratified December 5,1933. President shall be elected to the office of the President more than once. But this Section 1. The eighteenth article of article shall not apply to any person amendment to the Constitution of the holding the office of President when this United States is hereby repealed. article was proposed by the Congress, and shall not prevent any person who Section 2. The transportation or may be holding the office of President, importation into any state, territory, or or acting as President, during the term possession of the United States for within which this article becomes delivery or use therein of intoxicating operative from holding the office of liquors, in violation of the laws thereof, President or acting as President during is hereby prohibited. the remainder of such term. Section 3. This article shall be Section 2. This article shall be inoperative unless it shall have been inoperative unless it shall have been ratified as an amendment to the ratified as an amendment to the Constitution by conventions in the Constitution by the legislatures of three‐several states, as provided in the fourths of the several states within Constitution, within seven years from seven years from the date of its the date of the submission hereof to the submission to the states by the states by the Congress. Congress.
Educating Young People about the Constitution Amendment XX111 Amendment XX1VPassed by Congress June 16, 1960. Ratified March 29, 1961. Passed by Congress August 27, 1962. Ratified January 23, 1964. Section 1. The District constituting the seat of government of the United States Section 1. The right of citizens of the shall appoint in such manner as the United States to vote in any primary or Congress may direct: other election for President or Vice President, for electors for President or A number of electors of President and Vice President, or for Senator or Vice President equal to the whole Representative in Congress, shall not be number of Senators and Representatives denied or abridged by the United States in Congress to which the District would or any state by reason of failure to pay be entitled if it were a state, but in no any poll tax or other tax. event more than the least populous state; they shall be in addition to those Section 2. The Congress shall have appointed by the states, but they shall power to enforce this article by be considered, for the purposes of the appropriate legislation. election of President and Vice President, to be electors appointed by a state; and they shall meet in the District and Amendment XXV Passed by Congress July 6, 1965. Ratified February 10, 1967. perform such duties as provided by the twelfth article of amendment. Section 1. In case of the removal of the President from office or of his death or Section 2. The Congress shall have resignation, the Vice President shall power to enforce this article by become President. appropriate legislation. Section 2. Whenever there is a vacancy in the office of the Vice President, the President shall nominate a Vice President who shall take office upon confirmation by a majority vote of both Houses of Congress.
Educating Young People about the Constitution Section 3. Whenever the President Thereafter, when the President transmits to the President pro tempore transmits to the President pro tempore of the Senate and the Speaker of the of the Senate and the Speaker of the House of Representatives his written House of Representatives his written declaration that he is unable to declaration that no inability exists, he discharge the powers and duties of his shall resume the powers and duties of office, and until he transmits to them a his office unless the Vice President and a written declaration to the contrary, such majority of either the principal officers powers and duties shall be discharged of the executive department or of such by the Vice President as Acting other body as Congress may by law President. provide, transmit within four days to the President pro tempore of the Senate Section 4. Whenever the Vice President and the Speaker of the House of and a majority of either the principal Representatives their written officers of the executive departments or declaration that the President is unable of such other body as Congress may by to discharge the powers and duties of law provide, transmit to the President his office. Thereupon Congress shall pro tempore of the Senate and the decide the issue, assembling within Speaker of the House of Representatives forty‐eight hours for that purpose if not their written declaration that the in session. If the Congress, within President is unable to discharge the twenty‐one days after receipt of the powers and duties of his office, the Vice latter written declaration, or, if Congress President shall immediately assume the is not in session, within twenty‐one powers and duties of the office as days after Congress is required to Acting President. assemble, determines by two‐thirds vote of both Houses that the President is unable to discharge the powers and duties of his office, the Vice President shall continue to discharge the same as Acting President; otherwise, the President shall resume the powers and duties of his office.
Educating Young People about the Constitution Amendment XXV 1Passed by Congress March 23, 1971. Ratified July 1, 1971. Section 1. The right of citizens of the United States, who are 18 years of age or older, to vote, shall not be denied or abridged by the United States or any state on account of age. Section 2. The Congress shall have the power to enforce this article by appropriate legislation. Amendment XXV 11Originally proposed Sept. 25, 1789. Ratified May 7, 1992. No law varying the compensation for the services of the Senators and Representatives shall take effect until an election of Representatives shall have intervened.