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The clause " three-fifths of all other persons, at the head of this article, refers to slaves.
$ 14. At that day it was generally supposed, that counting threefifths of the slaves for purposes of direct taxation would be a matter of considerable advantage to the Northern States ; for it was not then presumed that the expenses for the support of government would be chiefly paid through the custom-house revenue, as afterwards proved to be the case.
$ 15. But the advantage proved to be nearly all on the side of the Southern States : for, in the first place, only three-fifths of their slave population were to be counted for purposes of direct taxation; while all the Northern population was to be reckoned for this object,
few slaves held there. In the second place (and this was a matter which the Convention did not foresee), direct taxation has never been a matter of much importance until since the abolition of slavery. The only instances of this kind of taxation were in 1798, 1813, and 1815.
§ 16. By the XIIIth amendment to the Constitution slavery was finally abolished. The XIVth amendment made an important change in the basis of representation. It practically repealed the provision for the three-fifths representation of "all other persons," and required that the negro, unless enfranchised, should be excluded from the count altogether. The XVth amendment, adopted in 1870, definitely enfranchised the negro and thus, in effect, fixed the basis of representation as “the whole number of persons in each State, excluding Indians not taxed.” (See appendix to Analysis C and F.)
§ 17. It will be observed that the Constitution nowhere mentions the word servitude, slave or slavery. Whenever it is necessary to allude to that class of persons, a definition is adopted instead of the word itself, except in the last three Amendments before alluded to. This was studiously intended by the authors of that instrument, feeling that it would be a stain on their work.
ART. III. - - ELIGIBILITY.
1. A representative must have attained to the age of twenty
2. Must have been seven years a citizen of the United States. 3. When elected, must be an inhabitant of the State in which
chosen. 4. 4. No United States officer shall be a member of either house
of Congress. 22. (See appendix to Analysis D.) § 1. That a member of the House of Representatives should be at least twenty-five years old was adopted in the Convention without debate. Few men before that age have had sufficient experience to fit them for so important a trust; and as it seemed necessary to specify some age before which a person should be held ineligible to this position, perhaps twenty-five may be regarded as the most suitable.
§ 2. In order to be a representative, it is not necessary that he shall be a natural-born citizen. By the Constitution, however, he must have been a citizen of the United States seven years. If born under another government, he may become a citizen of this country by a process called naturalization. By a law of Congress, it requires five years' residence before this can be accomplished ; which, added to seven years' citizenship, requires twelve years actual residence before an alien can become a representative in Congress. A much longer period than this, however, was strenuously insisted on by many of the members of the Convention.
$ 3. The Constitution requires that the member, when elected, shall be an inhabitant of the State in which he is chosen.
This is a provision so reasonable as to admit of neither debate in the Convention, nor of difference of opinion among the people. The inhabitancy of the State in which chosen is limited to the particular time when chosen, not requiring the representative to continue it there. He may hold his seat in the House, therefore, even should he change his residence to another State during his continuance as a representative.
Nor is it necessary that he shall reside in the particular Congressional district in which, or by which, he is chosen.
§ 4. No person holding any office under the United States is eligible to a seat in either house of Congress. On this provision, there was no difference of opinion among the members of the Con
'ional Convention ; although many were in favor of carrying the
restriction much further. The Constitution limits the ineligibility to the period of continuance in office under the United States. Several of the members were in favor of extending this incompetency to hold a federal office for from one to three or four years beyond the expiration of the term of service for which a senator or representative should be elected.
§ 5. But their deliberations resulted in prohibiting any officer under the General Government from being a member of either house of Congress during his continuance in office. This provision originated in a deference to State jealousy, and fear that the General Government would obtain an undue influence in the national councils. If a Federal officer were allowed to be a member of either house, he might wield an undue influence over those with whom he would be associated in legislative deliberations.
ART. IV. TERM.
Members of the House of Representatives are chosen every second year. 3.
§ 1. There was much difference of opinion in the Convention as to what length of time ought to constitute a representative term. One class was in favor of limiting it to one year; urging that the people were, and would continue to be, in favor of frequent elections; that such was the only defense of the people against tyranny; and that this plan, bringing representative and constituency more frequently face to face, would be likely to give a stronger sense of official responsibility.
§ 2. Another class urged that a term of three years was preferable to one; that instability is one of the great vices of a republic ; that time should be given for members to acquire a competent knowledge of the various interests of States to which they did not belong. It was claimed that one year would be almost consumed in preparing for official duty, and traveling to and from the seat of national business.
§ 3. It was also urged against the annual plan, that frequency of elections tended to make the people regardless of them, and to facilitate the success of little cabals.
It had been found necessary
ART. IV. - TERM.
He shall hold bis office during the term of four years.
1 He shall be President of the Senate, but have no vote unless
they be equally divided. 11. 2. In case of the removal of the President from office, or of his
death, resignation, or inability to discharge the powers and duties of said office, the same shall devolve on the Vice-Pres
ident. 57. 3. If the House of Representatives shall not choose a President
whenever the right of choice shall devolve on them, before the fourth day of March next following, the Vice-President shall act as President. 94.
ART I.- WHERE VESTED,
The judicial power of the United States shall be vested,
1. In one Supreme Court; and 2. In such inferior courts as Congress may from time to time
ordain and establish. 65.
ART. II.- JUDGES.
1. How appointed. - By the President of the United States, by
and with the advice and consent of the Senate. 61. 2. Oath of Office. — The judges shall swear or affirm that they
will support the Constitution of the United States. 81. 3. Tenure of Office. — The judges of the Supreme and Inferior
Courts shall hold their offices during good behavior. 65. 4. How removable. — They shall be removed on impeachment for,
and conviction of, treason, bribery, and other high crimes and misdemeanors. 64.
5. Salary. — The judges shall, at stated times, receive for their ser
vices a compensation, which shall not be diminished during their continuance in office. 65.
ART. III.- JURISDICTION. 1. Limitation. — The judicial power of the United States shall
extend to all cases in law and equity arising,
1st. Under the Constitution of the United States;
their authority. 66. 2. Original. — The Supreme Court shall have original jurisdiction,
1st. In all cases affecting ambassadors ;
citizens, or subjects. 66, 67.
construed to extend to any suit in law or equity commenced
another State ; or,
2d. By citizens or subjects of a foreign state. 93. 3. Appellate. — The Supreme Court shall have appellate jurisdio
tion, both as to law and fact, with such exceptions and under
1st. In all cases of admiralty and maritime jurisdiction ;
under grants of different States. 66, 67.