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Key Principles Of Us Constitution Notes

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Key principles of US constitution Thomas Jefferson's limited government:

Every function has an equal check or balance "That government is best which governs least" Some government functions are crucial o E.g. national security and defence Power is dispersed o Centralised government would lead to tyranny Rights of individuals are protected


Power is vested in the people Government of the people, by the people, for the people Liberty Indirect democracy favoured by federalists Originally o Only House of Reps was elected
 Election method favoured by anti-federalists o Senate was appointed by state legislators Fear of monarchy, tyranny and tyranny of the majority o Electoral College was created due to fear of mob rule, as well as electing the Senate instead of appointments (amended by 6 year terms and staggered elections so the mob cannot take control of Congress at one time) o Amendment process protects the government from mob rule

Separation of powers:

The accumulation of all power in the same hand "may justly be pronounced the very definition of tyranny" o Monarchy has no separation Division of powers into executive, legislature and judiciary Full separation of personnel o No individual can be in more than one branch at any one time, which protects against tyranny - Obama resigned from Senate o Each function is administered by a separate institution and different individuals o Obama and cabinet are not in Congress

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