Bill of attainder clause article I, 9, clause 3
Translation: Congress cannot pass a law that singles out a person for punishment with out trial.
Commerce Clause Article I, section 8 clause 3
Congress can regulate trade between nations, between state, and among Indian tribes.
Contracts Clause Article I, section 10, clause 1
No state can interfere with the execution of contracts. For example, a state could not pass a law that declares all debts to be null and void.
Due Process Clause 5th Amendment
National government must observe fair procedures when it denies a person life, liberty, or property.
Due Process Clause 14th Amendment
state government must observe fair procedures when they deny a person life, liberty, or property.
Elastic Clause Article I section 8 clause 18
congress can exercise powers not specifically stated in the constitution if those powers are "necessary and proper" for carrying out its expressed powers that are specifically stated.
Equal Protection Clause 14th Amendment
States cannot unreasonably discriminate against individuals. They must treat people "equally."
Establishment Clause ist Amendment
Congress cannot establish an "official" religion. This, in effect, provides for separation of church and state.
Ex Post Facto Clause Article I, section 9, clause 3
Congress cannot pass a law that punishes a person retroactively, i.e., after the fact. In other words, a person cannot be punished for something he/she did that was not a crime when committed.
Extradition Clause Article IV section 2 clause 2
An accused person who flees to another state must be returned to the state in which he/she allegedly committed the crime.
Free Exercise Clause 1st Amendment
Congress cannot pass laws that ban freedom of worship.
Full Faith and Credit clause Article IV section 1
A state must recognize the validity of the public acts, records, and court decisions of other states. For example, a state must recognize as valid the birth certificate issued by another state.
This introduction to the Constitution identifies its broad purposes.
Privileges and immunities Clause Article IV, section 2, clause 1
A state cannot unreasonably discriminate against citizens of the other states.
Reserved Power Clause 10th Amendment
Any power that is not granted to the national government, or denied to the states, automatically reverts to the states.
Search and Seizure Clause 4th Amendment
This is a protection against unreasonable search and seizure. The authorities do not have a general power to search and arrest individuals at any time, at any place,and in any manner; rather, they can only do so according to specified procedures that must be "reasonable."
Supremacy Clause Article VI, clause 2
Federal law is supreme over state law
Taking Clause 5th Amendment
Government can take private property for a public purpose, but it must provide fair compensation to the owners of that property.