American Sovereigns: The People and America’s Constitutional by Christian G. Fritz

By Christian G. Fritz

American Sovereigns is a path-breaking interpretation of America's political historical past and constitutionalism that explores how americans struggled over the concept the folk may rule because the sovereign after the yankee Revolution. nationwide and nation debates approximately govt motion, legislation, and the people's political powers exhibit how americans sought to appreciate how a collective sovereign-the people-could either play the function because the ruler and but be governed by way of governments in their personal determining.

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Extra info for American Sovereigns: The People and America’s Constitutional Tradition Before the Civil War

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53 Nonetheless, for some revolutionary leaders a frequency of constitutional revision seemed more likely to undermine governmental stability than to shore up the country’s commitment to republican principles. 54 However, it was unclear whether amendments could occur without specific revision procedures in the constitution to be changed. Many Americans considered a specific procedure unnecessary. ”56 This was true for many others as well. Even if revision provisions existed, a majority of the people could bypass procedures in the constitution.

These competing views of how the people as the sovereign articulated their will appropriated the universal acknowledgment that Americans used to support their Revolution. The idea that the people collectively were the sovereign – not a monarch or people serving in government positions – gave life and authority to the governments Americans created after Independence. It also implied that the new American sovereign – the people – retained power over the governments it created, including the ability to destroy that creation.

49 Modern scholars often dismiss alter or abolish provisions as glittering generalities. However, for many Americans before the Civil War these words meant something they no longer mean today. In that earlier day, alter or abolish provisions defined the relationship between the people and their governments. They were part of the constitutional heritage of the American Revolution. Americans had a natural right of revolution, as did every other people, but as the collective sovereign, Americans also possessed the inherent right to revise their constitutions.

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