State Constitutions (United States)

In a State Constitution document, each US State at length and in more detail than the US Constitution describes its governmental structure, legal processes, and powers of the State over its citizens. A State's Constitution cannot violate and must generally conform to the US Constitution, and its amendments. Citizens can vote to amend State Constitutions.

1,642 Questions

Who wrote the constitution for Maine?

== == The major writers of the constitution were William King (the president of the convention, who later became first governor of Maine), Thomas Jefferson, John Chandler, Albion K. Parris, William Pitt Preble, and John Holmes. William King may have written the largest part of the Maine Contitution but it was approved by all 210 delegates to the October 1819 convention in Portland. Thomas Jefferson wrote the educational sections of the Maine Constitution. It was approved by Congress in 1820.
William King, Thomas Jefferson, John Chandler, Albion K. Parris, William Pitt Preble, and John Holmes

How can states amend their constitutions to ban same-sex marriage when Article IV of the US Constitution states that public acts such as marriages from one state are legal in all states?

== == The "full faith and credit" clause of Article IV of the US constitution forces states to recognize the public acts and records of other states. However, there is a phrase in Article IV that allows congress to regulate this. In 1996 congress exercised this power by passing the Defense of Marriage Act, which allows states to ignore gay marriages. The constitutionality of DOMA has yet to be tested in federal courts. A ruling against DOMA could potentially require all 50 states to recognize gay marriages from Massachusetts, Connecticut, or California regardless of their own of laws or constitutions against them.

What year was the California Constitution written?


The original California Constitution was written in 1849. The current constitution was drafted in 1879.

Strengths and weaknesses of the Georgia Constitution of 1777?


It separated the state into two different sections and placed too much importance on the checks and balances system.


Guaranteed individual freedoms of religion, press, and trial by jury.

What constitutes an unreasonable search and seizure if a person has a fourth amendment waiver in California?

If the police conduct an search of a home after being met at the door and denied access, and the police do not at that time know you are on probation, the fourth amendment waiver does not apply. Police have specific procedures they must follow in a fourth amendment waiver search, and if they do not know you are on probation then by definition they cannot comply with those procedural requirements, part of which entail verifying that the location they are searching isn't under the control of a third party (e.g. another person's home).

Police have tried to justify an illegal search of a location by simply later noting that one person on the premises was subject to fourth amendment waiver. Judges have uniformly rejected this argument when it defendants challenge such searches, but often probationers are bamboozled by the D.A. into believing the police were authorized and thus don't challenge the search. If left unchallenged, judges typically let it slide.

What constitutes grand larceny in Florida?

In Florida, grand larceny is defined as larceny of property, goods, or services of $300 value or more.

What is the difference between the Texas constitution and the unites states constitution?

There are a number of major differences between the Federal Constitution and the Constitution of the State of Texas of 1876. The first is in each document's history. The US has had only two "Constitutions", as it were. The first being the Articles of Confederation, followed by the current Constitution. Texas, on the other hand, has had no less than seven: the Constitution of Coahuila y Tejas, the 1836 Constitution of the Republic, the and the State Constitution of 1845(annexation by the US), 1861 (secession into the CSA & Civil War), 1866 (Rejoining the Union & Presidential Reconstruction), 1869 (Congressional Reconstruction), and the current Constitution of 1876 (Post-Reconstruction).

The next is formal. The US Constitution is what's known as a "Case-law" Constitution, where the document is meant only to provide a basic structure to the government, and all decisions on meaning are to be interpreted by the Judiciary; in other words, the Federal Constitution is purposely vague, allowing the Federal government to respond to sudden crises more effectively (excepting the influence of party). The Texas Constitution, by contrast, is a "Napoleonic" Constitution, where the document is meant to provide a rigid structure for government, leaving no room for interpretation. Granted, it is nearly impossible to close all loopholes, but the Texas Constitution seeks to do so by placing the exactpowers of the government in the document. In theory, this should preserve the liberal ideals of the people and keep government out of things in which it ought not meddle.

As far as concrete differences are concerned, the two are similar in the institution of checks and balances on each of the three branches, but vastly different in the distribution of powers.

The US Constitution provides the President with the powers of being the Chief Executive (power to approve or deny legislation and make appointments), Ambassador- (primary representative to foreign powers) and Commander-in-Chief (leader of military and militia), and also the Head of State (formal representation of the government) and Government (director of the Government itself). In other words, although he doesn't have any power to legislate, he essentially runs the show. In Texas, the Governor has all the same powers as the President, except the key powers of the Head of Government, which are instead vested in the Lieutenant Governor (same as Vice President). So, in Texas, it looks like the Governor is in charge, but he really isn't. Excepting for the Lt. Governor's position as Head of Government, there is no difference between the two legislatures.

The judiciary is different, however. Under the US Constitution, there is one Supreme Court of the United States, with several lower courts, all of which are charged with settling disputes between the states and interpreting the Constitution. The Texas Constitution sets up two different court systems: the Supreme Court of the State of Texas, which handles civil disputes and the juvenile criminal code, and the Court of Criminal Appeals, both are equal in prominence and decision-making capability. To further clarify: if a county is being sued, that goes to the Supreme Court of Texas, but if a sentence in a criminal case is being appealed, that would go to the Court of Criminal Appeals.

On a final note, most positions in the US Government outside of the President and Congress are appointed by the President, confirmed by the Senate. In Texas, only the Governor's and Lt. Governor's aides and some cabinet positions are appointed, all other positions are elected, including that of the State Attorney General, Comptroller of Public Accounts (basically, the State Accountant and Tax Assessor), and Railroad Commissioner (who controls and regulates the state's land and mineral resources).

Who were the two signers of the constitution from Georgia? lists 2 signers:

Abraham Baldwin (1754-1807)-He served in the House of Representatives (1789-1799), and was appointed for two terms to the United States Senate (1799-1807). He died before completing his second term.

William Few (1748-1828)-He was appointed as a United States Senator from Georgia (1789), and was defeated for his seat in 1795. He moved to New York in 1799 and was elected to the state legislature in 1801. From 1804-1814 he was the director of the Manhattan Bank and the president of City Bank.

A role of the Texas governor not based on the constitution is that of?

The Governor chooses each year if Texas will renew the treaty to remain a part of the United States of America.

When was the Texas Constitution signed?

The Texas Constitution was signed on march 17 1836 a few days after the battle of the Alamo but before the runaway scrape. (: