January 13, 2011
Let's Read the Constitution Day! - verse 7
This is the biggie, at least as far as Article I goeth: the section wherein is enumerated the powers, the only powers, the Congress is allowed to exercise. This limitation is a major reason our government is a democratic republic -- not a parliamentary democracy, in which the ruling party or coalition can generally rewrite the procedural rules to favor itself and its own agenda...
Section 7 - Revenue Bills, Legislative Process, Presidential Veto
All bills for raising Revenue shall originate in the House of Representatives; but the Senate may propose or concur with Amendments as on other Bills.
Every Bill which shall have passed the House of Representatives and the Senate, shall, before it become a Law, be presented to the President of the United States; If he approve he shall sign it, but if not he shall return it, with his Objections to that House in which it shall have originated, who shall enter the Objections at large on their Journal, and proceed to reconsider it. If after such Reconsideration two thirds of that House shall agree to pass the Bill, it shall be sent, together with the Objections, to the other House, by which it shall likewise be reconsidered, and if approved by two thirds of that House, it shall become a Law. But in all such Cases the Votes of both Houses shall be determined by Yeas and Nays, and the Names of the Persons voting for and against the Bill shall be entered on the Journal of each House respectively. If any Bill shall not be returned by the President within ten Days (Sundays excepted) after it shall have been presented to him, the Same shall be a Law, in like Manner as if he had signed it, unless the Congress by their Adjournment prevent its Return, in which Case it shall not be a Law.
Every Order, Resolution, or Vote to which the Concurrence of the Senate and House of Representatives may be necessary (except on a question of Adjournment) shall be presented to the President of the United States; and before the Same shall take Effect, shall be approved by him, or being disapproved by him, shall be repassed by two thirds of the Senate and House of Representatives, according to the Rules and Limitations prescribed in the Case of a Bill.
Section 8 - Powers of Congress
- The Congress shall have Power To lay and collect Taxes, Duties, Imposts and Excises, to pay the Debts and provide for the common Defence and general Welfare of the United States; but all Duties, Imposts and Excises shall be uniform throughout the United States;
- To borrow money on the credit of the United States;
- To regulate Commerce with foreign Nations, and among the several States, and with the Indian Tribes;
- To establish an uniform Rule of Naturalization, and uniform Laws on the subject of Bankruptcies throughout the United States;
- To coin Money, regulate the Value thereof, and of foreign Coin, and fix the Standard of Weights and Measures;
- To provide for the Punishment of counterfeiting the Securities and current Coin of the United States;
- To establish Post Offices and Post Roads;
- 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;
- To constitute Tribunals inferior to the supreme Court;
- To define and punish Piracies and Felonies committed on the high Seas, and Offenses against the Law of Nations;
- To declare War, grant Letters of Marque and Reprisal, and make Rules concerning Captures on Land and Water;
- To raise and support Armies, but no Appropriation of Money to that Use shall be for a longer Term than two Years;
- To provide and maintain a Navy;
- To make Rules for the Government and Regulation of the land and naval Forces;
- To provide for calling forth the Militia to execute the Laws of the Union, suppress Insurrections and repel Invasions;
- To provide for organizing, arming, and disciplining, the Militia, and for governing such Part of them as may be employed in the Service of the United States, reserving to the States respectively, the Appointment of the Officers, and the Authority of training the Militia according to the discipline prescribed by Congress;
- To exercise exclusive Legislation in all Cases whatsoever, over such District (not exceeding ten Miles square) as may, by Cession of particular States, and the acceptance of Congress, become the Seat of the Government of the United States, and to exercise like Authority over all Places purchased by the Consent of the Legislature of the State in which the Same shall be, for the Erection of Forts, Magazines, Arsenals, dock-Yards, and other needful Buildings; And
- To make all Laws which shall be necessary and proper for carrying into Execution the foregoing Powers, and all other Powers vested by this Constitution in the Government of the United States, or in any Department or Officer thereof.
I have always found it amazing how many things Congress is authorized to legislate upon... but I'm even more amazed by how many other things it's not authorized to touch with the proverbial ten-foot poll (Gallup or Rasmussen) -- but does anyway.
While it's certainly true that the judicial branch of government has seized far more power than originally intended, or even imagined for many years -- Marbury v. Madison, the case wherein the Supreme Court declared it had the power to find laws unconstitutional and thereby nullify them, dates from 1803, fourteen years after the drafting of the Constitution -- it's equally true that both the legislative and the executive branches have also relegated to themselves far more power, authority, and intrusiveness than anybody in 1789 ever imagined. It's a conspiracy! The Constitution is unconstitutional.
No comments on the powers themselves; attack and defend them at will!
All verses in the Lizardian Constitutional Collection:
- Let's Read the Constitution Day! - verse 1 (Preamble)
- Let's Read the Constitution Day! - verse 2 (Congress; House, part I)
- Let's Read the Constitution Day! - verse 3 (House, part II)
- Let's Read the Constitution Day! - verse 4 (Senate, part I)
- Let's Read the Constitution Day! - verse 5 (Senate, part II)
- Let's Read the Constitution Day! - verse 6 (General congressional admin stuff)
- Let's Read the Constitution Day! - verse 7 (Legislative process and enumerated powers)
- Let's Read the Constitution Day! - verse 8 (Limitations)
- Let's Read the Constitution Day! - verse 9 (The prez -- who does he think he is?)
- Let's Read the Constitution Day! - verse 10 (What would a president do?)
- Let's Read the Constitution Day! - verse 11 (Judiciary)
- Let's Read the Constitution Day! - verse 12 (States, part I)
- Let's Read the Constitution Day! - verse 13 (States, part 2)
- Let's Read the Constitution Day! - verse 14 (Amendment; supreme law of the land)
- Let's Read the Constitution Day! - verse 15 (Ratification rules and signers)
- Let's Read the Constitution Day! - verse 16 (Amendments: Bill of Rights, Amendments 1-4)
- Let's Read the Constitution Day! - verse 17 (Bill of Rights -- Courtroom Amendments 5-8)
- Let's Read the Constitution Day! - verse 18 (Bill of Last Rights 9 and 10)
- Let's Read the Constitution Day! - verse 19 (Amendments: Suing other states, president vs. vice president)
- Let's Read the Constitution Day! - verse 20 (Amendments: Abolition of slavery)
- Let's Read the Constitution Day! - verse 21 (Amendments: States prohibited from infringing rights)
- Let's Read the Constitution Day! - verse 22 (Amendments: Racial voting rights)
- Let's Read the Constitution Day! - verse 23 (Amendments: Wilsonian-Progressivism I)
- Let's Read the Constitution Day! - verse 24 (Amendments: Wilsonian-Progressivism II)
- Let's Read the Constitution Day! - verse 25 (Amendments: Rooseveltian amendments)
- Let's Read the Constitution Day! - verse 26 (Amendments: Camelot amendments)
- Let's Read the Constitution Day! - verse 27 (Amendments: Panacea amendments)
Hatched by Dafydd on this day, January 13, 2011, at the time of 12:00 AM
TrackBack URL for this hissing: http://biglizards.net/mt3.36/earendiltrack.cgi/4748
The following hissed in response by: GW
Don't know about you, but I am kind of wishing they hadn't put in that "borrow money" clause.
"To make rules Concerning caputres on land and water" is what the Congress did for the handling of detainees in the War on Terror. Yet the Supreme Court saw fit, in Boumediene, to strike down that law and, despite the fact that only Congress and the president are charged in the Constitution with acts pertaining to war and national security, crafted a role for Courts in those areas. It was a vast overstepping of the Court's authority.
Some people are arguing that Obamacare's Constitutionality will turn on the necessary and proper clause - but that is simply a clause of execution. It does not in any way expand any of the other enumerated powers.
The Supreme Court was the least well thought out of the three branches, unfortunately. Much of its powers now accepted without question were in fact crafted by the Court itself within the first few decades of its existence.
The above hissed in response by: GW at January 13, 2011 4:59 PM
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