Q:

How is the text of the Constitution organized?

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Quick Answer

The University of Iowa Libraries explains that the text of the U.S. Constitution is divided into seven individual articles, each containing multiple topics. In addition to the articles, there are 27 amendments to the Constitution that were added since its ratification.

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The University of Iowa Libraries also explains that the U.S. Constitution follows a hierarchical structure: first addressing the structure of the government, next addressing various freedoms and finally addressing changes made after the ratification of the Constitution through the amendments.

The official website of the White House of the United States explains that the first three articles of the Constitution are responsible for delegating roles to each of the three separate branches of government. The legislative branch is governed by the first article, the executive branch is governed by the second and the judicial branch is governed by the third. The White House also notes that the 27 amendments include the Bill of Rights, prohibition of slavery, equal protection, voting rights and regulations on taxation and public elections. The Bill of Rights acts as the backbone of the Constitution, created due to contention between Federalists and Anti-Federalists. The Bill of Rights covers the basic human rights that the Constitution is designed to protect.

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Related Questions

  • Q:

    What is an unwritten constitution?

    A:

    An unwritten constitution encompasses ideas and processes that have come about through custom and precedent, although they are not expressly stated in the Constitution. The ideas and processes that are used in an unwritten constitution are recognized as a necessary part of the American government. These processes are typically used so often that many people fail to realize that they are not part of the Constitution.

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  • Q:

    What is the purpose of the Constitution?

    A:

    The main purpose of the U.S. Constitution is to establish the basic rights of all American citizens and provide direction on how the government should work. The Constitution also provides the framework for law and order and describes the roles of the government's federal judiciary branch, legislative branch and executive branch.

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  • Q:

    Why has the Constitution lasted so long?

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    The Constitution is interpreted and amended according to the needs of the times and because early leaders established a reverence for the Constitution that makes it an indispensable part of America's political heritage. Leaders advocate laws by imbuing passages of the Constitution with new meaning. Despite constant metamorphoses, the political norm is always to defend policy proposals by resorting to the Constitution.

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  • Q:

    Why was the Constitution created?

    A:

    The founding fathers of the United States of America wrote the Constitution because the nation's original governing document, the Articles of Confederation, proved to be relatively powerless for law enforcement. The Articles of Confederation did not give Congress the ability to protect the nation, regulate currency and enact diplomacy.

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