They opposed the ratification of the Constitution because it gave more power to the federal government and less to the states, and because it did not ensure individual rights. Many wanted to keep the Articles of Confederation. The Antifederalists were instrumental in obtaining passage of the Bill of Rights as a prerequisite to ratification of the Constitution in several states. After the ratification of the Constitution, the Antifederalists regrouped as the Democratic-Republican (or simply Republican) party.
Articles of Confederation
This document, the nation's first constitution, was adopted by the Second Continental Congress in 1781 during the Revolution. The document was limited because states held most of the power, and Congress lacked the power to tax, regulate trade, or control coinage.
Bill of Rights
The first 10 amendments to the Constitution, a statement of fundamental rights and privledges
Grants that provide funds for broader purposes within broader guidelines. Example: A lump sum given for "education" that a state can spend as it sees fit.
Grants that provide money for very specific purposes. Example: For special education or for technology in schools.
Checks and balances
A system that allows each branch of government to limit the powers of the other branches in order to prevent abuse of power
freedoms to think and act without government interference or fear of unfair legal treatment
right or rights belonging to a person by reason of citizenship including especially the fundamental freedoms and privileges guaranteed by the 13th and 14th amendments and subsequent acts of Congress including the right to legal and social and economic equ
the union of diverse things into one body or form or group
The clause in the Constitution (Article I, Section 8, Clause 1) that gives Congress the power to regulate all business activities that cross state lines or affect more than one state or other nations.
powers shared by the state and federal governments
also known as the Connecticut Compromise, the compromise made by Constitutional Convention in which states would have equal representation in one house of the legislature and representation based on population in the other house
the body of fundamental laws setting out the principles, structures, and processes of a government
A change or addition to the Constitution
A government that enforces recognized limits on those who govern and allows the voice of the people to be heard through free, fair, and relatively frequent elections.
Cruel and unusual punishment
punishment prohibited by the 8th amendment to the U.S. constitution
Declaration of Independence
the document recording the proclamation of the second Continental Congress (4 July 1776) asserting the independence of the colonies from Great Britain
the transfer of powers and responsibilities from the federal government to the states
the prosecution of a defendant for a criminal offense for which he has already been tried
the part of the Constitution that permits Congress to make any laws "necessary and proper" to carrying out its powers
a group selected by the states to elect the President and the Vice President, in which each state's number of electors is equal to the number of its senators and representatives in Congress
The powers explicitly given to Congress in the Constitution.
Equal protection clause
14th amendment clause that prohibits states from denying equal protection under the law, and has been used to combat discrimination
the First Amendment guarantee that the government will not create or support an official state church
the rule that evidence, no matter how incriminating, cannot be introduced into a trial if it was not constitutionally obtained. The rule prohibits use of evidence obtained through unreasonable search and seizure.
a group or clique within a larger group, party, or government
a form of government in which power is divided between the federal, or national, government and the states
Federalist No. 10
An essay composed by James Madison which argues that liberty is safest in a large republic because many interests (factions) exist. Such diversity makes tyranny by the majority more difficult since ruling coalitions will always be unstable.
a series of 85 essays written by Hamilton, Madison, and Jay (using the name "publius") published in NY newspapers and used to convice readers to adopt the new constitution
Supporters of the Constitution that were led by Alexander Hamilton and John Adams. They firmly believed the national government should be strong. They didn't want the Bill of Rights because they felt citizens' rights were already well protected by the Constitution.
Free exercise clause
the First Amendment guarantee that citizens may freely engage in the religious activities of their choice
charges against a president approved by a majority of the house of representatives
powers not specifically mentioned in the constitution
powers the constitution is presumed to have delegated to the national government because it is the government of a sovereign state within the world community
the power of the Supreme Court to declare laws and actions of local, state, or national governments unconstitutional
basic principle of American government which states that government is restricted in what it may do, and each individual has rights that government cannot take away
English empiricist philosopher who believed that all knowledge is derived from sensory experience (1632-1704)
the commission that is given to a government and its policies through an electoral victory
Marble cake federalism
all levels of government are involved in a variety of issues and programs rather than with fixed divisions between levels of government
"Necessary and proper" clause
Clause of the Constitution (Article I, Section 8, Clause 3) setting forth the implied powers of Congress. It states that Congress, in addition to its express powers, has the right to make all laws necessary and proper to carry out all powers the Constitution vests in the national government
government censorship of information before it is published or broadcast
Procedural due process
Constitutional requirement that governments proceed by proper methods; limits how government may exercise power.
a political system in which the supreme power lies in a body of citizens who can elect people to represent them
Separation of church and state
idea that the government and religion should be separate, and not interfere in each other's affairs. In the United States, this idea is based on the First Amendment to the US Constitution, which states that the government cannot make any laws to establish a state religion or prohibit the free exercise of religion.
Separation of powers
the division of power among the legislative, executive, and judicial branches of government
powers granted to the national government by the Constitution, but not denied to the states. One example is the right to lay and collect taxes.
Substantive due process
Constitutional requirement that governments act reasonably and that the substance of the laws themselves be fair and reasonable; limits what a government may do.
constitutional declaration (Article VI) that the Constitution and laws made under its provisions are the greatest law of the land
The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the states, are reserved to the states respectively, or to the people.
the agreement by which the number of each state's representatives in Congress would be based on a count of all the free people plus three-fifths of the slaves
actions imposed by the federal or state government on lower levels of government which are not accompanied by the money needed to fund the action required.
writ of habeas corpus
a court order that requires police to bring a prisoner to court to explain why they are holding the person