Quote of the Day


U.S. Constitution -- Article 1: Section 2

Today we continue to look at Article 1: The Legislative Branch
  • Section 2 - The House
The House of Representatives shall be composed of Members chosen every second Year by the People of the several States, and the Electors in each State shall have the Qualifications requisite for Electors of the most numerous Branch of the State Legislature.

No Person shall be a Representative who shall not have attained to the Age of twenty five Years, and been seven Years a Citizen of the United States, and who shall not, when elected, be an Inhabitant of that State in which he shall be chosen.

Representatives and direct Taxes shall be apportioned among the several States which may be included within this Union, according to their respective Numbers, which shall be determined by adding to the whole Number of free Persons, including those bound to Service for a Term of Years, and excluding Indians not taxed, three fifths of all other Persons. [The bit in italics was modified by section 2 of the 14th Amendment Passed by Congress June 13, 1866. Ratified July 9, 1868.] The actual Enumeration shall be made within three Years after the first Meeting of the Congress of the United States, and within every subsequent Term of ten Years, in such Manner as they shall by Law direct. The Number of Representatives shall not exceed one for every thirty Thousand, but each State shall have at Least one Representative; and until such enumeration shall be made, the State of New Hampshire shall be entitled to chuse three, Massachusetts eight, Rhode-Island and Providence Plantations one, Connecticut five, New-York six, New Jersey four, Pennsylvania eight, Delaware one, Maryland six, Virginia ten, North Carolina five, South Carolina five, and Georgia three.

When vacancies happen in the Representation from any State, the Executive Authority thereof shall issue Writs of Election to fill such Vacancies.

The House of Representatives shall chuse their Speaker and other Officers; and shall have the sole Power of Impeachment.

What I learned/relearned here: (please don't laugh. I last looked at this in high school civics class in 1979.)
Paragraph 1
:: House of Reps is every two years.
:: This bit "the Electors in each State shall have the Qualifications requisite for Electors of the most numerous Branch of the State Legislature." means (I think) that whoever is qualified to vote for the biggest part of State government (as states set up their own governments a bit differently from one another) is also qualified to vote for the Federal Representatives. That is, a state can't say that Joe Citizen can vote for the State folks but not for the Feds.
Paragraph 2
:: A Rep must be 25, a citizen for 7 years, and must live in the state they are representing. This all seems reasonable to me.
Paragraph 3
:: An archaic -- but clear -- formula is set out to determine how many representatives each state gets to send. This formula also impacts taxation.
Paragraph 4
:: If there is a vacancy, the boss of the state (usually governor) gets to pick the new reps.
Paragraph 5
:: The House Reps can pick their Speaker and so forth, and only they can impeach (one another? the Prez?) I don't know - do you?

A road map, so you know where we are in this tour:
  • Preamble
  • Article 1 - The Legislative Branch
  • ~ Section 1 - Legislative Power
  • ~ Section 2 - House of Representatives
  • ~ Section 3 - Senate
  • ~ Section 4 - Elections of Senators and Representatives
  • ~ Section 5 - Rules of House and Senate
  • ~ Section 6 - Compensation and Privileges of Members
  • ~ Section 7 - Passage of Bills
  • ~ Section 8 - Powers of Congress
  • ~ Section 9 - Limits on Congress
  • ~ Section 10 -Limits on States
  • Article 2 - The Executive Branch
  • Article 3 - The Judicial Branch
  • Article 4 - The States
  • Article 5 - Amendment
  • Article 6 - Debts, Supremacy, Oaths
  • Article 7 - Ratification
  • Signatures
  • Amendments

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