Questions tagged [us-constitution]

The United States Constitution is the primary legal document for the United States of America.

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1answer
41 views

If HR51 (admitting DC as a state excluding a “Capital” area for federal buildings) were passed, would the “Capital” be entitled to 3 electoral votes?

The House of Representatives passed H.R.51, the Washington, D.C. Admission Act. Under the current text, it would admit Washington, DC as a state, excluding a small area around the federal buildings ...
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If our nation takes on debt now that will have to be paid by gen z later isn't that taxation without representation? [closed]

We have representatives but gen z does not. How is it fair to spend their money before they are even old enough to have a say? Was the idea of pushing debt onto future generations so unthinkable that ...
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1answer
107 views

How does the swearing on the Bible fit in to the secular nature of the USA government?

I was told that this may be an interesting premise for a new question. I had the following interaction in the comments of this question. It always striked me as odd that a secular state like the US ...
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Is It Legal to Mention “The Creator” in U.S. Public Schools?

I give lots of guest presentations to K-18 schools/universities all over the world. Since the subject is Space exploration, I frequently feel the need to invoke (using one of these very "generic&...
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Can Members of Congress be Charged with Incitement (and etc.)

Following the recent Capitol Riot I started to wonder about incitement. I ended up wondering about members of Congress, who are protected against arrest and questioning for what they say when Congress ...
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4answers
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In the US are jurors actually judging guilt?

Is it true that in US law jurors are not actually judging guilt, but rather whether the case against a person has been made in accordance with the concepts of all reasonable doubt? This meaning that ...
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4answers
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What are the limits of the Commerce Clause?

In Gonzalez v. Raich, the Supreme Court held that the Controlled Substances Act could apply to home-grown marijuana that started in and never left California because it could still affect the ...
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2answers
140 views

Were the Nuremberg trials legal with respect to the US constitution?

I'm very much a layman, and an Englishman rather than American, with an interest in political philosophy. I was reading through the US constitution the other day, and one sentence in Article I, ...
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1answer
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What does it mean in the US Constitution when they say “according to their respective Numbers…”

I've been studying the Constitution, but I don't understand what it means when, in Article I Section 2, they say " Taxes shall be apportioned among the several states which may be included ...
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What is the US constitutional basis for impeaching, trying and barring from future presidency a former US president?

What is the US constitutional basis for the following actions? Impeaching and trying a former US president? Barring a former US president from elected a president in the future?
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Is the individual right to bear arms disproven by the deleted conscientious objector clause of the 2nd amendment?

As an individual, is the notion that an American has the right to a firearm per the 2nd amendment disproven based on the deleted clause of conscientious objectors? Proposed by James Madison upon the ...
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Could Senators convene congress by objecting to the closing of a pro-forma session?

Here's the hypothetical: Congress is adjourned, but the Example Caucus wants it to convene again as soon as possible. Congress plans to take recess for more than three days, so they've scheduled ...
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25th amendment: what happens in the period between the VP's two declarations?

Section 4 of the 25th amendment provides: Whenever the Vice President [transmits a declaration] the Vice President shall immediately assume the powers and duties of the office as Acting President. ...
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Is a presidential self pardon more likely to be valid if issued to a group instead of the president as an individual [closed]

My understanding is, the presidential pardon power is based on this passage of the US constitution: The President ... shall have Power to grant Reprieves and Pardons for Offenses against the United ...
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1answer
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When the VP is Acting President

When the Vice-President is serving as Acting President on account of a temporary disability of the President, do they retain their Vice-Presidential powers, including the power to preside over the ...
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Do I have the right to let Twitter deactivate/hide a public account I had, but no longer use?

So a number of years ago, I created a Twitter account which I forgot the password and email to. More than 3 years ago, almost 4. I did not post anything, almost nothing. Just liked a couple of posts. ...
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What is the precise legal meaning of “electors” being “appointed”?

Both Article 2 of the US Constitution and 3 USC Chapter 1 talk about "appointing electors". However, 3 USC Chapter 1 clearly refers to the election day (this is when "appointing ...
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2answers
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Does Texas have standing to litigate against other States' election results?

https://abcnews.go.com/Politics/states-blast-texas-bid-overturn-election-seditious-abuse/story?id=74656637 What standing is required (if any) for an entity (person, corporation, state, etc.) to ...
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3answers
130 views

Do governors have veto power over the appointment of the electors by state legislature?

I believe governors in all 50 states have veto power when normal laws are passed in their states. However, if a state legislature chose (or was directed to by the courts) to appoint the electors in a ...
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Ramifications of Texas' election lawsuit

It's a generally accepted principle that each state is responsible for running its own elections. This leads to a lot of variation between different states - some states let felons vote, some don't; ...
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186 views

What triggers a contingent election?

I have read many opinion articles which discuss the possibility that some states fail to appoint any presidential electors (as actually happened with the state of New York in our first federal ...
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1answer
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Is recent diplomatic service abroad an impediment to becoming president of the United States?

Here is Article II, Section 1, Clause 5 of the Constitution of the United States: No Person except a natural born Citizen, or a Citizen of the United States, at the time of the Adoption of this ...
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3answers
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What happens if two people claim the same (personalized) pardon?

What would happen if the identity of an individual named in a presidential pardon could not be ascertained with certainty, but several people have a strong claim to being the named individual? For ...
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1answer
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What does this sentence about Trump's lawsuits in Pennsylvania mean?

Source A turning point for the Trump campaign’s legal efforts came on Nov. 13, when its core team of professional lawyers saw the writing on the wall. The U.S. Court of Appeals for the 3rd Circuit in ...
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Can Congress provide a binding interpretation of the USA Constitution by statute?

The Eight Amendment of the USA Constitution forbids the imposition of "cruel and unusual punishment". Can Congress enact a statute which says "The death penalty is cruel and unusual&...
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How would an originalist interpret a change in the implementation of a broad language?

The following question is inspired by a point made by Justice Breyer in the following link, but Justice Scalia did not specifically address this point, so I wondered how an originalist would address ...
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How would originalists vs living-constitutionalists assess the constitutionality of electing a female President of the United States?

This question regards the USA and its federal constitution. Article II, Section I of the US Federal Constitution says that: The executive Power shall be vested in a President of the United States of ...
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106 views

What would prevent a US judge to condemn someone to slavery according to 13th amendment?

Let us assume that a particularly pervert judge (or a subversive one seeking to make a public case) condemns a convicted criminal to slavery, according to the 13th amendment that seems to allow for ...
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Does torture violate the US Federal Constitution, and if so under which theory?

We all know about the tortures that took place at Abu Ghraib prison. However, Justice Scalia explains to us that torture does not offend the US Federal Constitution. As Justice Scalia explained to us, ...
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Is there an implied consent to a frisk in a stop in the US?

This question regards US law, and the Fourth Amendment to the US Federal Constitution. Suppose I am walking on the sidewalk, when a police officer stops me. He then says the following: "I will ...
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1answer
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Has the fugitive slave clause of the US constitution been used since passage of the 13th Amendment?

The Wikipedia article on the 'Fugitive Slave Clause' of the US constitution (Art. IV § 2(3)) says (emphasis added): The passage of the Thirteenth Amendment to the United States Constitution, which ...
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Is the United States federal income tax an indirect tax under the 5th amendment?

I'm no American citizen, so I don't know that much about all the ins and outs of the Constitution. I've been watching a movie where one of the characters called the federal income tax "...
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2answers
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Can Congress restrict which individuals are eligible to serve as federal judges?

Federal judges in the United States are appointed by the president with the advice and consent of the Senate. The constitution does not impose any restrictions on who may be appointed and confirmed as ...
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1answer
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Michael Jackson trial and the constitutionality of gag orders

In this page, Wikipedia says that in the Michael Jackson 2005 trial (People v. Jackson) the judge: put a gag order on both sides Erwin Chemerinsky says (link, at the time of 1:53:37) that gag orders ...
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1answer
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Clarification on Amendment XIV

Amendment XIV says: But when the right to vote at any election for the choice of electors for President and Vice President of the United States, Representatives in Congress, the Executive and ...
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1answer
118 views

What is meant by direct Taxes in Article 1 Section 2 in the US Constitution?

I am new when it comes to understanding the US Constitution and I am not comfortable with Section 2, Paragraph 3 of Article 1! [Representatives and direct Taxes shall be apportioned among the ...
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2answers
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Would the federal decriminalization of marijuana under the MORE act supersede state-level criminal statutes?

Bill in question I haven't been able to find a clear answer to this question. I'm aware that there exists the Supremacy Clause which says that state laws cannot contradict federal laws. Another way of ...
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249 views

Can a pardon be issued clandestinely?

Say there exists some individual who is in danger of prosecution for federal crimes, though it's not yet certain what the exact charges will be, nor even whether the indictment will be made at all. ...
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1answer
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Compensation for gays charged under sodomy laws after Lawrence v Texas

I’m not an American or legally trained, but I’m wondering if there has ever been any compensation awarded to homosexuals fined under sodomy laws, after those laws were found to be unconstitutional. My ...
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Does the sixth amendment entitle me to know who called the county on me for a code violation?

Is my accuser the person who petitioned the county to investigate a code violation?
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Can the US Congress subpoena witnesses for any arbitrary reason?

This question was prompted by the headline on October 15, 2020 that the Senate Judiciary Committee will vote on whether to subpoena the CEO of Twitter for suppressing certain political content. This ...
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2answers
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Is the typo in the 25th amendment significant?

The fourth section of the 25th amendment to the US constitution provides for the president to be declared unfit involuntarily. The first of its two paragraphs describes the declaration itself, made ...
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1answer
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Could the 14th amendment, section 3, keep Trump from holding office for a second term?

It seems widely agreed upon that even if a President breaks a law, he can only be removed from office through the impeachment process. However, could an incumbent president who wins a second term be ...
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Who succeeds to a political party's presidential candidacy if the candidate withdraws before the election?

If a president and simultaneously a presidential candidate Trump would have to quit before the November vote the remainder of his presidency would of course be assumed by Pence, his VP and running ...
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1answer
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Can the Speaker of the House expel senators from the Hall of the House before all electoral votes have been counted?

A recent article in The Atlantic 1 goes through some rather dire hypothetical scenarios in which constitutional crises arise during the upcoming Presidential elections. One of their scenarios ...
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3answers
140 views

Can the US Senate be abolished without unanimous consent of the States?

Article V of the US Constitution states, in part: and that no State, without its Consent, shall be deprived of its equal Suffrage in the Senate. It has been suggested elsewhere that abolishing the ...
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The phrase "by and with the [Advice and] consent of the Senate is defined once in the U.S. Constitution

The constitution introduces the phrase "by and with the advice and consent of the Senate" and clarifies that "consent" means "provided 2/3 of the Senators present concur"...
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How can the US House of Representatives transition to be elected by proportional representation? Would editing “PL 2 USC 2c” work?

Here is context for my question: I am a student studying political science. I am researching policy that could be used to dismantle the stranglehold that the Democratic and Republican parties have on ...
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1answer
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Has there been a SCOTUS case which clarified the meaning of the phrase “to promote the progress of science and useful arts”?

The US constitution article 1 section 8 gives the Congress an enumerated power "to promote the progress of science and useful arts, by securing for limited times to authors and inventors the ...
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161 views

Who becomes President if no candidate for President or for Vice-President has been selected at noon, January 20th?

The Twentieth Amendment to the Constitution , Article 3, deals with the situation where no President or Vice President has qualified on January 20. Section 3 If, at the time fixed for the beginning ...

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