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Magna Carta (1215)

"the great charter"....said that the King was bound by the same laws as everyone else

Virginia House of Burgesses (1619)

1st representative legislature in English colonies;set up traditon of colonists electing representatives

Mayflower Compact (1620)

Pilgrims said they would govern themselves and follow the laws

The English Bill of Rights (1689)

said that only Parliament can pass laws, freedom of speech and debate in Parliament Protection from excessive bail

Declaration of Inpendence (1776)

all men are equal, power from the people

Unalienable Rights

Rights of life, liberty, and propertythat cannot be taken away except through due process of law

Limited Government

powers are restricted by the constitution

Popular Soverignty

power comes from the people through elections


people vote for other people to go and represent them


there is a federal governement and there are state governments; they have different powers

Seperation of Powers

there are three branches of governmener and they each have their own powers.

Legislative branch (congress)

makes laws

Executive branch (president)

enforces laws

Judicial branch (courts)

determines the Constitutionality of the law

Checks and Balances

no branch should be too powerful.

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