PHM 2204 Lecture 4

PHM 2204 Lecture 4 - PHM 2204 David Copp Fall, 2007 THE...

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PHM 2204 Fall, 2007 David Copp THE FEDERALIST PAPERS – II: MAJORITY RULE AND A LIMITED CONSTITUTION Hamilton, Federalist 78 (p. 465), says, “By a limited Constitution, I understand one which contains certain specified exceptions to the legislative authority; such, for instance, as that it shall pass no bills of attainder, no ex post facto laws, and the like.” The U.S. Constitution is a limited Constitution. There is the Bill of Rights (the first 10 amendments) and the limits stated in I.9.ii-iii (FP pp. 548) 1. How can we reconcile popular government with a limited constitution? * “popular government” or at least “republican government” is “a government which derives all its powers directly or indirectly from the great body of the people, and is administered by people holding their offices during pleasure for a limited period, or during good behavior.” (p. 237) * a limited constitution blocks majority rule. The answer is that in the U.S. Constitution all the key offices are held by people “during pleasure for a limited period, or during good behavior” – crucially Supreme Court judges that rule that a piece of legislation invalid hold their offices on good behavior and are appointed by elected officials – and the Constitution was ratified by a process of voting. * all powers are derived at least indirectly
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This note was uploaded on 05/31/2008 for the course PHM 2204 taught by Professor Copp during the Spring '07 term at University of Florida.

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PHM 2204 Lecture 4 - PHM 2204 David Copp Fall, 2007 THE...

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