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  • The United States Constitution is the supreme law of the United States of America. It was adopted by the Constitutional Convention in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, September 17, 1787, and later ratified by conventions in each state in the name of "the People." The Constitution has a central place in American law and political culture. The U.S. Constitution is the oldest written national constitution except possibly for San Marino's Statutes of 1600, whose status as a true constitution is disputed by scholars. An engrossed copy of the document is on display at the National Archives in Washington, D.C. In September 1786, commissioners from five states met in the Annapolis Convention to discuss adjustments to the Articles of Confederation that would improve commerce. They invited state representatives to convene in Philadelphia to discuss improvements to the federal government. After debate, the Congress of the Confederation endorsed the plan to revise the... ...
  • The Constitution of the United States is the supreme law of the United States of America. The Constitution, originally comprising seven articles, delineates the national frame of government. Its first three articles entrench the doctrine of the separation of powers, whereby the federal government is divided into three branches: the legislative, consisting of the bicameral Congress; the executive, consisting of the President; and the judicial, consisting of the Supreme Court and other federal courts. Articles Four, Five and Six entrench concepts of federalism, describing the rights and responsibilities of state governments and of the states in relationship to the federal government. Article Seven establishes the procedure subsequently used by the thirteen States to ratify it. Since the Constitution came into force in 1789, it has been amended twenty-seven times. In general, the first ten amendments, known collectively as the Bill of Rights, offer specific protections of individual liberty and justice and place restrictions on the powers of government. The majority of the seventeen later amendments expand individual civil rights.

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