Charting Constitutional History

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  • I think that the Declaration of Independence based on John Locke’s ideas of equality was needed in order to become an independent country from England, but the Articles of Confederation is a preposterous idea because all states have to agree to change it and the states don’t have to pay taxes to the national government! This calls for a convention!
  • We need to decide how our government will be set up, it is such a shame Rhode Island didn’t send their delegates to come. Should it be based on population or should each state receive their own vote.
  • No, thats an awful idea! My name is James Madison and I am from Virginia. I believe that since there are more citizens in the bigger states, those states should get more votes. We should make some sort of ratio for population to the numbers of votes we get for each state and this will make everything fair. I will call this the Virginia Plan.
  • My name is William Patterson and I am from New Jersey and I have an idea to share! I think that all states are equal, even us small states and each of us should get one vote per state. I will call this the New Jersey Plan.
  • Guys, calm down. I, Roger Sherman, think that we can compromise. What if, we combined both of your ideas and make one representative for the Senate for each state and the House of Representatives based on population.
  • Why don’t we compromise. Slaves should count as three out of five people. Oo I have a creative idea name, the three-fifth’s compromise!
  • What about slaves? Should they count as part of the population? The South wants them to count for population because they would have more representation but the North just wants to use them for taxes.
  • What about the different branches of government, each one needs to have their own power? I think we need to split it into three different branches. The first one can be called the legislative branch and it can make laws with the Senate and House, the executive branch can enforce laws by the President and Vice President, and the judicial branch can interpret laws by court judges.
  • I love that idea and it looks like everyone else agrees. But what happens if one branch has more power than another? Maybe we should make sure all branches have powers in order to check and balance one another.
  • I think that the people need more power and the Articles of Confederation will support us in that. We need to give more power to the state government and to individual rights. The federal government could always be corrupt and the Constitution shouldn’t deny people their rights! I like to call myself an Anti-Federalist and you are a Federalist based on our different views.
  • Ok now onto the next subject. I have realized that there has been a dispute over whether or not the central government or the people should have more power and in my personal opinion, I think that we need a strong national government which helps us run big businesses and we need people to be in charge of us.
  • Speaking for all states, Pennsylvania would ratify the Constitution if the Bill of Rights were to be added. Aye if you agree
  • Ok what about another compromise? We should add the Bill Rights and include ten amendments that establish personal liberties and limitations of the national government. It would be an addition to the Constitution.
  • Aye!
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