Constitution of the United States

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How do the six basic principles of the US Constitution relate to one another?

The six principles of the US Constitution are meant to promote individual liberty while still providing a system of governance for the nation. The principles are also meant to keep government as responsive to the people as possible.

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The six principles of the Constitution are popular sovereignty, limited government, checks and balances, separation of powers, republicanism, and federalism. These six aspects of the Constitution are meant to provide the people with an efficient method of governance that will allow them the greatest amount of personal freedom.

The structure of the Constitution creates a system of checks and balances between the three branches of government by assigning each branch duties. The president executes the laws, but he can have his decision overridden by a two-thirds vote of Congress. Most of Congress's representation is decided through popular sovereignty, as delegates to the House of Representatives are decided by a state's population. Through the Tenth Amendment, any powers not given to the federal government are assigned to the states—this keeps as much political power in the hands of local officials as possible. Most of the powers assigned to the federal government are responsibilities that affect the entire nation, such as interstate commerce and the decision to go to war. There have also been constitutional amendments which have redefined who is a voting citizen of the United States—the definition of republicanism has expanded since 1787 to let more groups take part in the governing process of the United States.

The greatest of the six principles is limited government. The Bill of Rights states what the government cannot take away. The Supreme Court exists as a non-elected body that rules on cases in order that laws and rulings of the lower courts are constitutional. Limited government is also related to the separation of powers in that no one branch can be more powerful than another, though the United States has had forceful presidents who sought to expand the role of the Executive Branch. Even when presidents assume more responsibility for pushing through legislation, passing bills still remains within the authority of Congress. The Constitution is designed to give the citizens as much power as possible while still maintaining a federal system of government that allows for the survival of the nation.

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