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constitutional politics study guide - McCulloch v Maryland...

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McCulloch v. Maryland (1819) o Holding : Congress has power to incorporate a Bank and the Maryland tax is unconstitutional I. Is the bank law the supreme law of the land? 1. The government of the Union is a government of the people; it emanates from them; its powers are granted by them; and are to be exercised directly on them, and for their benefit 2. The government of the Union, though limited in its powers, is supreme within it sphere of action, and its laws, when made in pursuance of the constitution, form the supreme law of the land (Supremacy Clause) 3. 10 th A. only reserves to the states/people power that which has not been delegated to congress (& not expressly delegated) A. Implied powers exist in the constitution B. Bank law is supreme law of the land II. Is state task unconstitutional? 1. Maryland’s argument, if adopted, would totally and incorrectly change meaning of constitution A. States, for example, would be able to tax any federal action 2. The State governments have no right to tax any of the constitutional means employed by the federal government to execute its Constitutional powers A. The states have no power to burden the constitutional laws enacted by Congress i. The reason is because such state taxes act on the federal government, which they did not create, the people created it
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Scott v. Sandford (1857) I. Scott is not a citizen of Missouri (of the united states) within the meaning of the Constitution and not entitled to sue in courts 1. A free person of the African race, whose ancestors were brought to this country and sold as slaves, is not a “citizen” within the meaning of the Constitution of the United States A. When the constitution was adopted, they were not regarded in any of the States as members of the community which constituted the State, and were not numbered among “its people or citizens” i. Opinion relies on original intent of framers II. No State can by an subsequent law make a foreigner or any other description of persons citizens of the United States, not entitle them to the rights and privileges secured to citizens by that instrument 1. A state can make persons citizens of the state and thus make a person “free” III. MO compromise is invalid- what power does art 4 § 3 grant congress 1. Article IV § 3 doesn’t apply to territory acquired by the present Fed. Gov’t, by treaty or conquest, from a foreign nation A. No power is expressly given to congress to regulate people or property in new territories i. states have supreme authority within the scope of their powers (10th a) a. Thus, only states can make former slaves or their descendants free- if federal governments want to make former slaves free, it would require a constitutional amendment ii. Constitution protects slaves as property and they are beyond congressional regulation IV. The facts of the case do not entitle Scott to his freedom nor make him a citizen of MO A. Slave does not become entitled to his freedom, where the owner takes him to
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