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We, the people of the United States, in order to form a more perfect union, establish justice, insure domestic tranquillity, provide for the common defence, promote the general welfare, and secure the blessings of liberty to ourselves and our posterity, do ordain and establish this Constitution for the United States of America.
SECTION 1. 1. All legislative powers herein granted, shall be vested Legislative pow. in a Congress of the United States, which shall consist of er. a Senate and House of Representatives.
SECTION 2. 1. The House of Representatives shall be composed of House of repremembers chosen every second year by the people of the sentatives and
qualification of several states ; and the electors in each state shall have the qualification requisite for electors of the most numerous branch of the state legislature.
2. No person shall be a representative, who shall not have Electors and reattained to the age of twenty-five years, and been seven presentatives. years a citizen of the United States, and who shall not, when elected be an inhabitant of that state in which he shall be chosen. 3. Representatives and direct taxes shall be apportioned
Apportionment among the several states which may be included within this of representaUnion, according to their respective numbers, which shall be determined by adding to the whole number of free persons, including those bound to service for a term of years, and excluding Indians not taxed, three-fifths of all other persons. The actual enumeration shall be made within three
senator a vote.
years after the first meeting of the Congress of the United
States, and within every subsequent term of ten years, in Ratio of repre
such manner as they shall by law direct. The number of representatives shall not exceed one for every thirty thousand, but each state shall have at least one representative ;
and until such enumeration shall be made, the state of New First apportion. Hampshire shall be entitled to choose three; Massachusetts
eight; Rhode Island and Providence Plantations, one; Connecticut, five; New York, six; New Jersey, four; Pennsylvania, eight; Delaware, one; Maryland, six; Virginia, ten'; North Carolina, five; South Carolina, five; and Georgia, three.
4. When vacancies happen in the representation from any state, the executive authority thereof shall issue writs of
election to fill such vacancies. Speaker of the 5. The House of Representatives shall choose their
speaker and other officers, and shall have the sole power of impeachment.
SECTION 3. The senate.-each 1. The Senate of the United States shall be composed of
two senators from each state, chosen by the legislature thereof, for six years; and each senator shall have one vote.
2. Iminediately after they shall be assembled, in consequence of the first election, they shall be divided, as equally as may be, into three classes. The seats of the senators of the first class, shall be vacated at the expiration of the second year, of the second class at the expiration of the fourth year, and the third class at the expiration of the
sixth year, so that one-third may be chosen every second . Vacancies.
year; and if vacancies happen by resignation or otherwise, during the recess 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. Qualification of
3. No person shall be a senator who shall not have attained to the age of thirty years, and been nine years a citizen of the United States, and who shall not, when elected
be an inhabitant of the state for which he shall be chosen. President of tho 4. The vice president of the United States shall be
president of the Senate; but shall have no vote unless they be equally divided.
5. 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 th
United States. Impeachments.
6. The Senate shall have the sole power to try all impeachments. When sitting for that purpose, they shall be on oath or affirmation. When the president of the United States is tried, the chief justice shall preside; and no per
A third of the seats vacated every two years.
son shall be convicted without the concurrence of two-thirds of the members present.
7. Judgment, in cases of impeachment, shall not extend and extent of further than removal from office, and disqualification to agement in hold and enjoy any office of honor, trust or profit, under the United States; but the party convicted shall, nevertheless Party liable acbe liable and subject to indictment, trial, judgment and cording to law. punishment, according to law.
SECTION 4. 1. The times, places, and manner of holding elections for Elections how senators and representatives, shall be prescribed in each regulated. state, by the legislature thereof, but the Congress may at any time, by law, make or alter such regulations, except as to the places of choosing senators.
2. The Congress shall assemble at least once in every Meetings of coryear, and such meeting shall be on the first Monday in greßt. December, unless they shall by law appoint a different day.
SECTION 5. 1. Each house shall be the judge of the election, returns to judge of the and qualifications of its own members, and a majority of members. each shall constitute a quorum to do business; but a smaller Quorum. number may adjourn from day to day, and may be authorized to compel the attendance of absent members, in such manner, and under such penalties as each house may provide.
2. Each house may determine the rules of its proceedings, punish its members for disorderly behavior, and, with the concurrence of two-thirds, expel a member.
3. Each house shall keep a journal of its proceedings, and Journals. from time to time publish the same, excepting such parts as may, in their judgment require secrecy; and the yeas and nays of the members of either house, on any question, shall, at the desire of one-fifth of those present, be entered on the journal.
4. Neither house, during the session of Congress, shall Adjournment. without the consent of the other, adjourn for more than three days, nor to other place than that in which the two houses shall be sitting.
SECTION 6. 1. The senators and representatives shall receive a com- Compensation. pensation for their services, to be ascertained by law, and paid out of the treasury of the United States. They shall, in all cases, except treason, felony and breach of the peace, be privileged from arrest, during their attendance at the Privilege. session of their respective houses, and in going to or returning from the same; and for any speech or debate in either house, they shall not be questioned in any other place.
of the President in relation to bille.
Concerning the 2. No senator or representative shall, during the time holding of office.
for which he was elected, be appointed to any civil office under the authority of the United States, which shall have been created, or the emoluments whereof shall have been increased, during such time; and no person holding any office under the United States shall be a member of either house, during his continuance in office.
SECTION 7. 1. 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. Power and duty 2. Every bill which shall have passed the House of Re
presentatives and the Senate, shall, before it becomes 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, in their Proceedings on journal, and proceed to reconsider it. If, after such reconbine preisend. by sideration, 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 vote 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, prevents its return; in which case, it shall not be a law.
3. Every order, resolution, or vote, to which the concur
rence of the Senate and House of Representatives may be journment, to receive the same necessary (except on a question of adjournment), shall be sanction as bills, presented to the president of the United States; and before
the same shall take effect, shall be approved by him, or
1. To lay and collect taxes, duties, imposts and excises; to
pay the debts, and to 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.
2. To borrow money on the credit of the United States.
3. To regulate commerce with foreign nations, and among the several states, and with the Indian tribes.
Joint resolutionis except for ad
Power of congress relative to taxes.
4. To establish a uniform rưle of naturalization, and uni- Naturalization. form laws on the subject of bankruptcies throughout the United States.
5. To coin money, regulate the value thereof, and of Money. foreign coin, and fix the standard of weights and measures.
6. To provide for the punishment of counterfeiting the Counterfeiting. securities and current coin of the United States. 7. To establish post offices and post roads.
Post-offices. 8. To promote the progress of science and useful arts, by Science. securing, for limited times, to authors and inventors, the exclusive right to their respective writings and discoveries.
9. To constitute tribunals inferior to the supreme court, To define and punish piracy and felony committed on the high seas and offenses against the law of nations.
10. To declare war, grant letters of marque and reprisal, and make rules concerning captures on land and water.
11. To raise and support armies; but no appropriation of Armies. money to that use, shall be for a longer term than two years. 12. To provide and maintain a navy.
Navy. 13. To make rules for government and regulation of the Land and naval land and naval forces.
14. To provide for calling forth the militia to execute the Militia. laws of the Union, suppress insurrections, and repel invasions.
15. 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. 16. To exercise exclusive legislation in all cases what- Legislation over
a c soever, over such district (not exceeding ten miles square) as may, by cession of particular states, and the acceptance of Congress, become the seat of 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 erections of forts, magazines, arsenals, dock-yards, and other needful buildings; and
17. To make all laws which shall be necessary and pro, for the execution per for carrying into execution the foregoing powers, and of their powers. all other powers vested by this Constitution in the government of the United States, or in any department or officer thereof.
SECTION 9. 1. The migration or importation of such persons as any tion of certain
of the importaof the states now existing shall think proper to admit, shall persons, &o not be prohibited by the Congress prior to the year one thousand eight hundred and eight, but a tax or duty may