At the same time, some Southern delegates threatened to abandon the convention if their demands to keep slavery and the slave trade legal and to count slaves for representation purposes were not met.
United States Declaration of Independence On June 4,a resolution was introduced in the Second Continental Congress declaring the union with Great Britain to be dissolved, proposing the formation of foreign alliances, and suggesting the drafting of a plan of confederation to be submitted to the respective states.
Independence was declared on July 4, ; the preparation of a plan of confederation was postponed. Although the Declaration was a statement of principles, it did not create a government or even a framework for how politics would be carried out.
It was the Articles of Confederation that provided the necessary structure to the new nation during and after the American Revolution. The Declaration, however, did set forth the ideas of natural rights and the social contract that would help form the foundation of constitutional government.
The era of the Declaration of Independence is sometimes called the "Continental Congress" period. John Adams famously estimated as many as one-third of those resident in the original thirteen colonies were patriots.
Scholars such as Gordon Wood describe how Americans were caught up in the Revolutionary fervor and excitement of creating governments, societies, a new nation on the face of the earth by rational choice as Thomas Paine declared in Common Sense.
Republican government and personal liberty for "the people" were to overspread the New World continents and to last forever, a gift to posterity. These goals were influenced by Enlightenment philosophy.
The adherents to this cause seized on English Whig political philosophy as described by historian Forrest McDonald as justification for most of their changes to received colonial charters and traditions. It was rooted in opposition to monarchy they saw as venal and corrupting to the "permanent interests of the people.
Elected terms for legislature were cut to one year, for Virginia's Governor, one year without re-election. Property requirements for suffrage for men were reduced to taxes on their tools in some states.
Free blacks in New York could vote if they owned enough property. New Hampshire was thinking of abolishing all voting requirements for men but residency and religion.
New Jersey let women vote. In some states, senators were now elected by the same voters as the larger electorate for the House, and even judges were elected to one-year terms.
These " radical Whigs " were called the people "out-of-doors. Crowds of men and women massed at the steps of rural Court Houses during market-militia-court days. Shays Rebellion is a famous example.
Urban riots began by the out-of-doors rallies on the steps of an oppressive government official with speakers such as members of the Sons of Liberty holding forth in the "people's "committees" until some action was decided upon, including hanging his effigy outside a bedroom window, or looting and burning down the offending tyrant's home.
Revolutionary Congress[ edit ] The government of the First and Second Continental Congress, the period from September to March 1, is referred to as the Revolutionary Congress.
Beginning inthe substantial powers assumed by Congress "made the league of states as cohesive and strong as any similar sort of republican confederation in history".More on the Subject Index | Bill of Rights | Additional Amendments | Printer friendly version [Constitution for the United States of America]We the People of the United States, in Order to form a more perfect Union, establish Justice, insure domestic Tranquility, provide for the common defence, promote the general Welfare, and secure .
Constitution of the United States of America: The Constitution of the United States of America is the fundamental law of the United States and a .
The Constitution of the United States of America is the supreme law of the United States. Empowered with the sovereign authority of the people by the framers and the consent of the legislatures of.
A Hypertext version of the United States Constitution. Oct 26, · The Constitution of the United States, written to redress the deficiencies of the country’s first constitution, the Articles of Confederation (–89), defines a federal system of government in which certain powers are delegated to the national government and others are reserved to the states.
ARTICLE I Section nationwidesecretarial.comative powers; in whom vested All legislative powers herein granted shall be vested in a Congress of the United States, which shall consist of a Senate and House of Representatives.