Original Intent and the Framers Constitution

Author: Leonard W. Levy
Publisher: Ivan R. Dee
ISBN: 1461730287
Format: PDF, Kindle
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For more than two hundred years a debate has raged between those who believe that jurists should follow the original intentions of the Founding Fathers and those who argue that the Constitution is a living document subject to interpretation by each succeeding generation. The controversy has flared anew in our own time as a facet of the battle between conservatives and liberals. In Original Intent and the Framers' Constitution, the distinguished constitutional scholar Leonard Levy cuts through the Gordian Knot of claim and counterclaim with an argument that is clear, logical, and compelling. Rejecting the views of both left and right, he evaluates the doctrine of "original intent" by examining the sources of constitutional law and landmark cases. Finally, he finds no evidence for grounding the law in original intent. Judicial activism—the constant reinterpretation of the Constitution—he sees as inevitable.

Original Intent and the Framers Constitution

Author: Leonard Williams Levy
Publisher: Rowman & Littlefield
ISBN: 1566633125
Format: PDF, Docs
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An examination of constitutional law and its landmark cases argues that the basis of constitutional jurisprudence lies in judicial activism, or continual reinterpretation of the Constitution, not in "original intent."

Original Intent and the Framers Constitution

Author: Leonard Williams Levy
Publisher: Ivan R Dee
ISBN:
Format: PDF, ePub
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An examination of constitutional law and its landmark cases argues that the basis of constitutional jurisprudence lies in judicial activism, or continual reinterpretation of the Constitution, not in "original intent."

Negotiating the Constitution

Author: Joseph M. Lynch
Publisher: Cornell University Press
ISBN: 1501728334
Format: PDF
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No concept sparks more controversy in constitutional debate than "original intent." Offering a legal historian's approach to the subject, this book demonstrates that the framers deliberately obscured one of their more important decisions. Joseph M. Lynch argues that the Constitution was a product of political struggles involving regional interests, economic concerns, and ideology. The framers, he maintains, settled on enigmatic wording of the Necessary and Proper Clause and of the General Welfare provision in the Spending Clause as a compromise, leaving the extent of federal power to be determined by the political process. During ratification, however, attempts by dissident framers to undo the compromise were repelled in The Federalist: charges of overly broad congressional powers were met with protestations that in fact these powers were limited. Lynch describes how early lawmakers applied the Constitution to such issues as executive power and privilege, the deportation of aliens, and the prohibition of seditious speech. He follows the disputes over the interpretation of this document—focusing on James Madison's changing views—as the new government took shape and political parties were formed. Lynch points out that the first six Congresses and President George Washington disregarded the framers' intentions when they were deemed impractical to follow. In contrast, he warns that the version of original intent put forth in recent Supreme Court opinions regarding congressional power could hinder Congress in serving the nation.

The Founding Fathers Guide to the Constitution

Author: Brion McClanahan
Publisher: Simon and Schuster
ISBN: 162157072X
Format: PDF, Kindle
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Are liberals right when they cite the “elastic” clauses of the Constitution to justify big government? Or are conservatives right when they cite the Constitution’s explicit limits on federal power? The answer lies in a more basic question: How did the founding generation intend for us to interpret and apply the Constitution? Professor Brion McClanahan, popular author of The Politically Incorrect Guide™ to the Founding Fathers, finds the answers by going directly to the source—to the Founding Fathers themselves, who debated all the relevant issues in their state constitutional conventions. In The Founding Fathers’ Guide to the Constitution, you’ll discover: How the Constitution was designed to protect rather than undermine the rights of States Why Congress, not the executive branch, was meant to be the dominant branch of government—and why the Founders would have argued for impeaching many modern presidents for violating the Constitution Why an expansive central government was the Founders’ biggest fear, and how the Constitution—and the Bill of Rights—was designed to guard against it Why the founding generation would regard most of the current federal budget—including “stimulus packages”—as unconstitutional Why the Founding Fathers would oppose attempts to “reform” the Electoral College Why the Founding Fathers would be horrified at the enormous authority of the Supreme Court, and why the Founders intended Congress, not the Court, to interpret federal law Authoritative, fascinating, and timely, The Founding Fathers’ Guide to the Constitution is the definitive layman’s guide to America’s most important—and often willfully misunderstood—historical document

Unruly Americans and the Origins of the Constitution

Author: Woody Holton
Publisher: Hill and Wang
ISBN: 9781429923668
Format: PDF, Docs
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Average Americans Were the True Framers of the Constitution Woody Holton upends what we think we know of the Constitution's origins by telling the history of the average Americans who challenged the framers of the Constitution and forced on them the revisions that produced the document we now venerate. The framers who gathered in Philadelphia in 1787 were determined to reverse America's post–Revolutionary War slide into democracy. They believed too many middling Americans exercised too much influence over state and national policies. That the framers were only partially successful in curtailing citizen rights is due to the reaction, sometimes violent, of unruly average Americans. If not to protect civil liberties and the freedom of the people, what motivated the framers? In Unruly Americans and the Origins of the Constitution, Holton provides the startling discovery that the primary purpose of the Constitution was, simply put, to make America more attractive to investment. And the linchpin to that endeavor was taking power away from the states and ultimately away from the people. In an eye-opening interpretation of the Constitution, Holton captures how the same class of Americans that produced Shays's Rebellion in Massachusetts (and rebellions in damn near every other state) produced the Constitution we now revere. Unruly Americans and the Origins of the Constitution is a 2007 National Book Award Finalist for Nonfiction.

Original Meanings

Author: Jack N. Rakove
Publisher: Vintage
ISBN: 0307434516
Format: PDF, ePub, Docs
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From abortion to same-sex marriage, today's most urgent political debates will hinge on this two-part question: What did the United States Constitution originally mean and who now understands its meaning best? Rakove chronicles the Constitution from inception to ratification and, in doing so, traces its complex weave of ideology and interest, showing how this document has meant different things at different times to different groups of Americans. From the Trade Paperback edition.

Plain Honest Men

Author: Richard Beeman
Publisher: Random House
ISBN: 9781588367266
Format: PDF, Docs
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In May 1787, in an atmosphere of crisis, delegates met in Philadelphia to design a radically new form of government. Distinguished historian Richard Beeman captures as never before the dynamic of the debate and the characters of the men who labored that historic summer. Virtually all of the issues in dispute—the extent of presidential power, the nature of federalism, and, most explosive of all, the role of slavery—have continued to provoke conflict throughout our nation's history. This unprecedented book takes readers behind the scenes to show how the world's most enduring constitution was forged through conflict, compromise, and fragile consensus. As Gouverneur Morris, delegate of Pennsylvania, noted: "While some have boasted it as a work from Heaven, others have given it a less righteous origin. I have many reasons to believe that it is the work of plain, honest men."