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Identify some key characteristics of the U.S. Constitution.

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bertyfitz | Student, College Freshman | (Level 1) Valedictorian

Posted October 16, 2012 at 1:05 AM via web

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Identify some key characteristics of the U.S. Constitution.

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pohnpei397 | College Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

Posted October 16, 2012 at 3:41 AM (Answer #1)

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When we talk about key characteristics of the Constitution, we are really talking about the characteristics of the government that it sets up.  Some of the key characteristics of this government are:

Separation of powers.  The Constitution creates a government with three separate branches.

Checks and balances.  These separate branches also have the ability to exert some power over the other branches.

Federalism.  The Constitution sets up a system in which power is divided between the national government and the state governments.  Neither can really take power from the other.

Limited government.  The Constitution sets limits on what the government can do.

All of this is meant to protect the people by making the government less able to oppress them.  This could be seen as a fifth characteristic. 

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