Article I, Section 5

Article I, Section 5

Each House shall be the Judge of the Elections, Returns and Qualifications of its own Members, and a Majority of each shall constitute a Quorum to do Business; but a smaller number may adjourn from day to day, and may be authorized to compel the Attendance of absent Members, in such Manner, and under such Penalties as each House may provide.Each House may determine the Rules of its Proceedings, punish its Members for disorderly Behavior, and, with the Concurrence of two-thirds, expel a Member.Each House shall keep a Journal of its Proceedings, and from time to time publish the same, excepting such Parts as may in their Judgment require Secrecy; and the Yeas and Nays of the Members of either House on any question shall, at the Desire of one fifth of those Present, be entered on the Journal.Neither House, during the Session of Congress, shall, without the Consent of the other, adjourn for more than three days, nor to any other Place than that in which the two Houses shall be sitting.

About Section 5 Of The Voting Rights Act

On June 25, 2013, the United States Supreme Court held that it is unconstitutional to use the coverage formula in Section 4(b) of the Voting Rights Act to determine which jurisdictions are subject to the preclearance requirement of Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act, Shelby County v. Holder, 133 S. Ct. 2612 (2013). The Supreme Court did not rule on the constitutionality of Section 5 itself. The effect of the Shelby County decision is that the jurisdictions identified by the coverage formula in Section 4(b) no longer need to seek preclearance for the new voting changes, unless they are covered by a separate court order entered under Section 3(c) of the Voting Rights Act.

Coverage Under the Special Provisions of the Voting Rights Act

Section 5 was enacted to freeze changes in election practices or procedures in covered jurisdictions until the new procedures have been determined, either after administrative review by the Attorney General, or after a lawsuit before the United States District Court for the District of Columbia, to have neither discriminatory purpose or effect. Section 5 was designed to ensure that voting changes in covered jurisdictions could not be implemented used until a favorable determination has been obtained.

The requirement was enacted in 1965 as temporary legislation, to expire in five years, and applicable only to certain states. The specially covered jurisdictions were identified in Section 4 by a formula. The first element in the formula was that the state or political subdivision of the state maintained on November 1, 1964, a "test or device," restricting the opportunity to register and vote. The second element of the formula would be satisfied if the Director of the Census determined that less than 50 percent of persons of voting age were registered to vote on November 1, 1964, or that less than 50 percent of persons of voting age voted in the presidential election of November 1964. Application of this formula resulted in the following states becoming, in their entirety, "covered jurisdictions": Alabama, Alaska, Georgia, Louisiana, Mississippi, South Carolina, and Virginia, In addition, certain political subdivisions (usually counties) in four other states (Arizona, Hawaii, Idaho, and North Carolina were covered. It also provided a procedure to terminate this coverage.

Under Section 5, any change with respect to voting in a covered jurisdiction -- or any political subunit within it -- cannot legally be enforced unless and until the jurisdiction first obtains the requisite determination by the United States District Court for the District of Columbia or makes a submission to the Attorney General. This requires proof that the proposed voting change does not deny or abridge the right to vote on account of race, color, or membership in a language minority group. If the jurisdiction is unable to prove the absence of such discrimination, the District Court denies the requested judgment, or in the case of administrative submissions, the Attorney General objects to the change, and it remains legally unenforceable.

In 1970, Congress recognized the continuing need for the special provisions of the Voting Rights Act, which were due to expire that year, and renewed them for another five years. It also adopted an additional coverage formula, identical to the original formula except that it referenced November 1968 as the date to determine if there was a test or device, levels of voter registration, and electoral participation. This additional formula resulted in the partial coverage of ten states.

In 1975, the special provisions of the Voting Rights Act were extended for another seven years, and were broadened to address voting discrimination against members of "language minority groups." An additional coverage formula was enacted, based on the presence of tests or devices and levels of voter registration and participation as of November 1972. In addition, the 1965 definition of "test or device" was expanded to include the practice of providing election information, including ballots, only in English in states or political subdivisions where members of a single language minority constituted more than five percent of the citizens of voting age. This third formula had the effect of covering Alaska, Arizona, and Texas in their entirety, and parts of California, Florida, Michigan, New York, North Carolina, and South Dakota.

In 1982, Congress extended Section 5 for 25 years, but no new Section 5 coverage formula was adopted. Congress did, however, modify the procedure for a jurisdiction to terminate coverage under the special provisions.

In 2006, Congress extended the requirements of Section 5 for an additional 25 years.

Judicial Review of Voting Changes

Section 5 provides two methods for a covered jurisdiction to comply with Section 5. The first method mentioned in the statute is by means of a declaratory judgment action filed by the covered jurisdiction in the United States District Court for the District of Columbia. A three-judge panel is convened in such cases. The defendant in these cases is the United States or the Attorney General, represented in court by attorneys from the Voting Section of the Civil Rights Division. Appeals from decisions of the three-judge district court go directly to the United States Supreme Court.

The jurisdiction must establish that the proposed voting change "does not have the purpose and will not have the effect of denying or abridging the right to vote on account of race or color or [membership in a language minority group]." The status of a voting change that is the subject of a declaratory judgment review action is that it is unenforceable until the declaratory judgment action is obtained and the jurisdiction may not implement or use the voting change.

Administrative Review of Voting Changes

The second method of compliance with Section 5 is known as administrative review. A covered jurisdiction can avoid the potentially lengthy and expensive litigation route by submitting the voting change to the Civil Rights Division of the Department of Justice, to which the Attorney General has delegated the authority to administer the Section 5 review process. The jurisdiction can implement the change if the Attorney General affirmatively indicates no objection to the change or if, at the expiration of 60 days, no objection to the submitted change has been interposed by the Attorney General. It is the practice of the Department of Justice to respond in writing to each submission, specifically stating the determination made regarding each submitted voting change.

Well over 99 percent of the changes affecting voting are reviewed administratively, no doubt because of the relative simplicity of the process, the significant cost savings over litigation, and the presence of specific deadlines governing the Attorney General's issuance of a determination letter.

Over the last decade, the Attorney General received between 4,500 and 5,500 Section 5 submissions, and reviewed between 14,000 and 20,000 voting changes, per year.

The Attorney General may interpose an objection by informing the jurisdiction of the decision within 60 days after a completed submission of a voting change is received. Most voting changes submitted to the Attorney General are determined to have met the Section 5 standard. Since Section 5 was enacted, the Attorney General has objected to about one percent of the voting changes that have been submitted.

The Attorney General has published detailed guidelines that explain Section 5. Additional information about the submission process is available here. The Attorney General has posted notices of Section 5 submissions.

In conducting administrative review, the Attorney General acts as the surrogate for the district court, applying the same standards that would be applied by the court. The burden of establishing that a proposed voting change is nondiscriminatory falls on the jurisdiction, just as it would on the jurisdiction as plaintiff in a Section 5 declaratory judgment action.

There are occasions when a jurisdiction may need to complete the Section 5 review process on an accelerated basis due to anticipated implementation before the end of the 60-day review period. In such cases, the jurisdiction should formally request "Expedited Consideration" in its submission letter, explicitly describing the basis for the request in light of conditions in the jurisdiction and specifying the date by which the determination must be received. Although the Attorney General will attempt to accommodate all reasonable requests, the nature of the review required for particular submissions will necessarily vary and an expedited determination may not be possible in certain cases.

A determination by the Attorney General not to object removes the prohibition on enforcement imposed by Section 5. This decision not to object to a submitted change cannot be challenged in court. Morris v. Gressette, 432 U.S. 491 (1977). Although the jurisdiction may then implement that change, the change remains subject to a challenge on any other grounds. For example, a redistricting plan may still be challenged in court by the Attorney General as violating Section 2 of the Voting Rights Act, or any other applicable provision of federal law which the Attorney General is authorized to enforce. Similarly, private individuals with standing may challenge that practice under any applicable provision of state or federal law.

The declaratory judgment route remains available to jurisdictions even after the Attorney General interposes an objection. The proceeding before the three-judge D.C. District Court, is de novo and does not constitute an appeal of the Attorney General's determination.

Lawsuits to Prevent the Use of Voting Changes Not Reviewed under Section 5

Voting changes that have not been reviewed under Section 5 are legally unenforceable. Section 12(d) of the Act authorizes the Attorney General to file suit to enjoin violations of Section 5. A private right of action to seek injunctive relief against a Section 5 violation was recognized by the Supreme Court in Allen v. State Board of Elections, 393 U.S. 544, 554-57 (1969). Any person or organization with standing to sue can challenge a Section 5 violation in the United States District Court in the judicial district where the violation is alleged to have occurred. Whether brought by the Attorney General or by private parties, these cases are commonly known as Section 5 enforcement actions.

Section 5 enforcement cases are heard by three-judge district court panels, whose role is to consider three things only:

  1. whether a covered voting change has occurred
  2. if so, whether the requirements of Section 5 have been met preclearance has been obtained and
  3. if not, what relief by the court is appropriate.

Lopez v. Monterey County, 519 U.S. 9, 23 (1996). The only court that can make the determination that change is not discriminatory is purpose or effect is the United States District Court for the District of Columbia.

Upon finding non-compliance with Section 5, the local federal court will consider an appropriate equitable remedy. The general objective of such remedies is to restore the situation that existed before the implementation of the change. Thus, the typical remedy includes issuance of an injunction against further use of the change. In certain circumstances, other remedies have included voiding illegally-conducted elections, enjoining upcoming elections unless and until the jurisdiction complies with Section 5, or ordering a special election in some cases courts have also issued orders directing the jurisdiction to seek Section 5 review of the change from the Attorney General or the United States District Court for the District of Columbia.

What Is NATO’s Article 5?

Article 5 is the cornerstone of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) ਊnd states that an attack on one member of NATO is an attack on all of its members. But despite its importance, NATO has only invoked Article 5 once in its history—in response to the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001.  

NATO and Article 5 were established in 1949 in the aftermath of World War II when communist movements supported by the Soviet Union posed a serious threat to democratically elected governments all over a devastated Europe. In 1948, the Communist Party of Czechoslovakia overthrew that nation’s democratic government, while in Germany, Soviet authorities blockaded the Allied-controlled section of Berlin in an attempt to strengthen their position there.

The Berlin Airlift, when U.S. and British planes carried food, fuel and other vital supplies to the isolated citizens of West Berlin, marked an early victory for the West in the Cold War. And with the launch of the Marshall Plan, which provided economic aid to the war-ravaged countries of Europe, the United States had decisively abandoned its earlier policy of isolationism.

But at such a vulnerable time, it seemed clear that Europe required not just economic aid, but also military support, in order to counterbalance the power of the Soviet Union, prevent the revival of nationalist military movements (such as Nazism) and allow for political development along democratic lines.

VIDEO: The Formation of NATO

Tensions between the United States and the Soviet Union resulted in the formation of key alliances that would endure throughout the Cold War.

In April 1949, representatives from 12 nations—the United States, Canada, Great Britain, France, Belgium, the Netherlands, Norway, Denmark, Luxembourg, Iceland, Italy and Portugal—gathered in Washington, D.C. to sign the North Atlantic Treaty.

“Men with courage and vision can still determine their own destiny,” President Harry S. Truman declared at the signing ceremony. “They can choose slavery or freedom—war or peace…If there is anything certain today, if there is anything inevitable in the future, it is the will of the people of the world for freedom and for peace.”

The treaty’s key provision was Article 5, which began: “The Parties agree that an armed attack against one or more of them in Europe or North America shall be considered an attack against them all…” While this commitment to collective defense lay at the heart of NATO, it was left to the judgment of each member state to decide how exactly it would contribute.

On September 12, 2001, the day after the terrorist attacks at the World Trade Center and Pentagon, NATO invoked Article 5 for the first time in its history, committing its members to stand by the United States in its response to the attacks. In a four-paragraph resolution that passed unanimously, the organization reflected its understanding that the threats to global security had changed radically in the 52 years since the alliance was founded.

AUDIO: NATO Offers Aid to United States Following 9/11 Attacks

On October 2, 2001, NATO Secretary-General Lord Robertson holds a press conference to discuss the events of September 11, and pledges support of the 18 NATO allies in the campaign against international terrorism.

”The commitment to collective self-defence embodied in the Washington Treaty was entered into in circumstances very different from those that exist now,” the statement read. 𠇋ut it remains no less valid and no less essential today, in a world subject to the scourge of international terrorism.”

In addition to participation in the war in Afghanistan, NATO’s response to the 9/11 attacks under Article 5 included Operation Eagle Assist, in which NATO aircraft helped patrol the skies over the United States for seven months between 2001 and 2002, and Operation Active Endeavour, in which NATO naval forces were sent to perform counterterrorism activities in the Eastern Mediterranean. Operation Active Endeavour, which began in October 2001 and later expanded to the entire Mediterranean region, didn’t conclude until 2016.  

Though Article 5 has only been officially invoked once, NATO has taken collective defensive measures in other situations, including deploying missiles on the border of Turkey and Syria in 2012. Russia’s annexation of Crimea in 2014 and the rise of ISIS in recent years led the organization to implement a huge increase in its collective defenses, including tripling the size of the NATO Response Force. In 2014, NATO member states agreed to try and spend 2 percent of their GDPs on defense, although most member states fail to meet this non-binding goal.

The Conference that Started it All

Five years later, the proof of concept was initialized through Allen Newell, Cliff Shaw, and Herbert Simon’s, Logic Theorist. The Logic Theorist was a program designed to mimic the problem solving skills of a human and was funded by Research and Development (RAND) Corporation. It’s considered by many to be the first artificial intelligence program and was presented at the Dartmouth Summer Research Project on Artificial Intelligence (DSRPAI) hosted by John McCarthy and Marvin Minsky in 1956. In this historic conference, McCarthy, imagining a great collaborative effort, brought together top researchers from various fields for an open ended discussion on artificial intelligence, the term which he coined at the very event. Sadly, the conference fell short of McCarthy’s expectations people came and went as they pleased, and there was failure to agree on standard methods for the field. Despite this, everyone whole-heartedly aligned with the sentiment that AI was achievable. The significance of this event cannot be undermined as it catalyzed the next twenty years of AI research.

The Constitution of the United States

We the People of the United States, in Order to form a more perfect Union, establish Justice, insure domestic Tranquility, provide for the common defense, promote the general Welfare, and secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity, do ordain and establish this Constitution for the United States of America.

Article I.

Section 1. All legislative Powers herein granted shall be vested in a Congress of the United States, which shall consist of a Senate and House of Representatives.


Section 2. [1] The House of Representatives shall be composed of Members chosen every second Year by the People of the several States, and the Electors in each State shall have the Qualifications requisite for Electors of the most numerous Branch of the State Legislature.

[2] No Person shall be a Representative who shall not have attained to the Age of twenty-five Years, and been seven Years a Citizen of the United States, and who shall not, when elected, be an Inhabitant of that State in which he shall be chosen.

[3] [Representatives and direct Taxes shall be apportioned among the several States which may be included within this Union, according to their respective Numbers, which shall be determined by adding to the whole Number of free Persons, including those bound to Service for a Term of Years, and excluding Indians not taxed, three fifths of all other Persons.] (Note: Changed by section 2 of the Fourteenth Amendment.) The actual Enumeration shall be made within three Years after the first Meeting of the Congress of the United States, and within every subsequent Term of ten Years, in such Manner as they shall by Law direct. The Number of Representatives shall not exceed one for every thirty Thousand, but each State shall have at Least one Representative and until such enumeration shall be made, the State of New Hampshire shall be entitled to chuse three, Massachusetts eight, Rhode-Island and Providence Plantations one, Connecticut five, New-York six, New Jersey four, Pennsylvania eight, Delaware one, Maryland six, Virginia ten, North Carolina five, South Carolina five, and Georgia three.

[4] When vacancies happen in the Representation from any state, the Executive Authority thereof shall issue Writs of Election to fill such Vacancies.

[5] The House of Representatives shall chuse their Speaker and other Officers and shall have the sole Power of Impeachment.


Section 3. [1] The Senate of the United States shall be composed of two Senators from each State, [chosen by the Legislature thereof,] (Note: Changed by section 1 of the Seventeenth Amendment.) for six Years and each Senator shall have one Vote.

[2] Immediately after they shall be assembled in Consequence of the first Election, they shall be divided as equally as may be into three Classes. The Seats of the Senators of the first Class shall be vacated at the Expiration of the second Year, of the second Class at the Expiration of the fourth Year, and of the third Class at the Expiration of the sixth Year, so that one-third may be chosen every second Year [and if Vacancies happen by Resignation, or otherwise, during the Recess of the Legislature of any State, the Executive thereof may make temporary Appointments until the next Meeting of the Legislature, which shall then fill such Vacancies.] (Note: Changed by clause 2 of the Seventeenth Amendment.)

[3] No Person shall be a Senator who shall not have attained to the Age of thirty Years, and been nine Years a Citizen of the United States, and who shall not, when elected, be an Inhabitant of that State for which he shall be chosen.

[4] The Vice President of the United States shall be President of the Senate, but shall have no Vote, unless they be equally divided.

[5] The Senate shall chuse their other Officers, and also a President pro tempore, in the Absence of the Vice President, or when he shall exercise the Office of President of the United States.

[6] The Senate shall have the sole Power to try all Impeachments. When sitting for that Purpose, they shall be on Oath or Affirmation. When the President of the United States is tried, the Chief Justice shall preside: And no Person shall be convicted without the Concurrence of two thirds of the Members present.

[7] Judgment in Cases of Impeachment shall not extend further than to removal from Office, and disqualification to hold and enjoy any Office of honor, Trust or Profit under the United States: but the Party convicted shall nevertheless be liable and subject to Indictment, Trial, Judgment and Punishment, according to Law.


Section 4. [1] The Times, Places and Manner of holding Elections for Senators and Representatives, shall be prescribed in each State by the Legislature thereof but the Congress may at any time by Law make or alter such Regulations, except as to the Place of Chusing Senators.

[2] The Congress shall assemble at least once in every Year, and such Meeting shall be [on the first Monday in December,] (Note: Changed by section 2 of the Twentieth Amendment.) unless they shall by Law appoint a different Day.

Section 5. [1] Each House shall be the Judge of the Elections, Returns and Qualifications of its own Members, and a Majority of each shall constitute a Quorum to do Business but a smaller number may adjourn from day to day, and may be authorized to compel the Attendance of absent Members, in such Manner, and under such Penalties as each House may provide.

[2] Each House may determine the Rules of its Proceedings, punish its Members for disorderly Behavior, and, with the Concurrence of two thirds, expel a Member.

[3] Each House shall keep a Journal of its Proceedings, and from time to time publish the same, excepting such Parts as may in their Judgment require Secrecy and the Yeas and Nays of the Members of either House on any question shall, at the Desire of one fifth of those Present, be entered on the Journal.

[4] Neither House, during the Session of Congress, shall, without the Consent of the other, adjourn for more than three days, nor to any other Place than that in which the two Houses shall be sitting.

Section 6. [1] The Senators and Representatives shall receive a Compensation for their Services, to be ascertained by Law, and paid out of the Treasury of the United States. They shall in all Cases, except Treason, Felony and Breach of the Peace, be privileged from Arrest during their Attendance at the Session of their respective Houses, and in going to and returning from the same and for any Speech or Debate in either House, they shall not be questioned in any other Place.

[2] No Senator or Representative shall, during the Time for which he was elected, be appointed to any civil Office under the Authority of the United States, which shall have been created, or the Emoluments whereof shall have been encreased during such time and no Person holding any Office under the United States, shall be a Member of either House during his Continuance in Office.

Section 7. [1] All Bills for raising Revenue shall originate in the House of Representatives but the Senate may propose or concur with Amendments as on other Bills.

[2] Every Bill which shall have passed the House of Representatives and the Senate, shall, before it become a Law, be presented to the President of the United States If he approve he shall sign it, but if not he shall return it, with his Objections to that House in which it shall have originated, who shall enter the Objections at large on their Journal, and proceed to reconsider it. If after such Reconsideration two thirds of that House shall agree to pass the Bill, it shall be sent, together with the Objections, to the other House, by which it shall likewise be reconsidered, and if approved by two thirds of that House, it shall become a Law. But in all such Cases the Votes of both Houses shall be determined by Yeas and Nays, and the Names of the Persons voting for and against the Bill shall be entered on the Journal of each House respectively. If any Bill shall not be returned by the President within ten Days (Sundays excepted) after it shall have been presented to him, the Same shall be a Law, in like Manner as if he had signed it, unless the Congress by their Adjournment prevent its Return, in which Case it shall not be a Law.

[3] Every Order, Resolution, or Vote to which the Concurrence of the Senate and House of Representatives may be necessary (except on a question of Adjournment) shall be presented to the President of the United States and before the Same shall take Effect, shall be approved by him, or being disapproved by him, shall be repassed by two thirds of the Senate and House of Representatives, according to the Rules and Limitations prescribed in the Case of a Bill.


Section 8. [1] The Congress shall have Power To lay and collect Taxes, Duties, Imposts and Excises, to pay the Debts and provide for the common Defence and general Welfare of the United States but all Duties, Imposts and Excises shall be uniform throughout the United States

[2] To borrow money on the credit of the United States

[3] To regulate Commerce with foreign Nations, and among the several States, and with the Indian Tribes

[4] To establish an uniform Rule of Naturalization, and uniform Laws on the subject of Bankruptcies throughout the United States

[5] To coin Money, regulate the Value thereof, and of foreign Coin, and fix the Standard of Weights and Measures

[6] To provide for the Punishment of counterfeiting the Securities and current Coin of the United States

[7] To establish Post Offices and post Roads

[8] To promote the Progress of Science and useful Arts, by securing for limited Times to Authors and Inventors the exclusive Right to their respective Writings and Discoveries

[9] To constitute Tribunals inferior to the supreme Court

[10] To define and punish Piracies and Felonies committed on the high Seas, and Offenses against the Law of Nations

[11] To declare War, grant Letters of Marque and Reprisal, and make Rules concerning Captures on Land and Water

[12] To raise and support Armies, but no Appropriation of Money to that Use shall be for a longer Term than two Years

[13] To provide and maintain a Navy

[14] To make Rules for the Government and Regulation of the land and naval Forces

[15] To provide for calling forth the Militia to execute the Laws of the Union, suppress Insurrections and repel Invasions

[16] To provide for organizing, arming, and disciplining the Militia, and for governing such Part of them as may be employed in the Service of the United States, reserving to the States respectively, the Appointment of the Officers, and the Authority of training the Militia according to the discipline prescribed by Congress

[17] To exercise exclusive Legislation in all Cases whatsoever, over such District (not exceeding ten Miles square) as may, by Cession of particular States, and the acceptance of Congress, become the Seat of the Government of the United States, and to exercise like Authority over all Places purchased by the Consent of the Legislature of the State in which the Same shall be, for the Erection of Forts, Magazines, Arsenals, dock-Yards, and other needful Buildings &mdashAnd

[18] To make all Laws which shall be necessary and proper for carrying into Execution the foregoing Powers, and all other Powers vested by this Constitution in the Government of the United States, or in any Department or Officer thereof.


Section 9. [1] The Migration or Importation of such Persons as any of the States now existing shall think proper to admit, shall not be prohibited by the Congress prior to the Year one thousand eight hundred and eight, but a tax or duty may be imposed on such Importation, not exceeding ten dollars for each Person.

[2] The privilege of the Writ of Habeas Corpus shall not be suspended, unless when in Cases of Rebellion or Invasion the public Safety may require it.

[3] No Bill of Attainder or ex post facto Law shall be passed.

[4] No Capitation, or other direct, Tax shall be laid, unless in Proportion to the Census or Enumeration herein before directed to be taken. (Note: See the Sixteenth Amendment.)

[5] No Tax or Duty shall be laid on Articles exported from any State.

[6] No Preference shall be given by any Regulation of Commerce or Revenue to the Ports of one State over those of another: nor shall Vessels bound to, or from, one State, be obliged to enter, clear, or pay Duties in another.

[7] No Money shall be drawn from the Treasury, but in Consequence of Appropriations made by Law and a regular Statement and Account of the Receipts and Expenditures of all public Money shall be published from time to time.

[8] No Title of Nobility shall be granted by the United States: And no Person holding any Office of Profit or Trust under them, shall, without the Consent of the Congress, accept of any present, Emolument, Office, or Title, of any kind whatever, from any King, Prince, or foreign State.

Section 10. [1] No State shall enter into any Treaty, Alliance, or Confederation grant Letters of Marque and Reprisal coin Money emit Bills of Credit make any Thing but gold and silver Coin a Tender in Payment of Debts pass any Bill of Attainder, ex post facto Law, or Law impairing the Obligation of Contracts, or grant any Title of Nobility.

[2] No State shall, without the Consent of the Congress, lay any Imposts or Duties on Imports or Exports, except what may be absolutely necessary for executing its inspection Laws: and the net Produce of all Duties and Imposts, laid by any State on Imports or Exports, shall be for the Use of the Treasury of the United States and all such Laws shall be subject to the Revision and Controul of the Congress.

[3] No State shall, without the Consent of Congress, lay any duty of Tonnage, keep Troops, or Ships of War in time of Peace, enter into any Agreement or Compact with another State, or with a foreign Power, or engage in War, unless actually invaded, or in such imminent Danger as will not admit of delay.

Article II.

Section 1. [1] The executive Power shall be vested in a President of the United States of America. He shall hold his Office during the Term of four Years, and, together with the Vice-President, chosen for the same Term, be elected, as follows.

[2] Each State shall appoint, in such Manner as the Legislature thereof may direct, a Number of Electors, equal to the whole Number of Senators and Representatives to which the State may be entitled in the Congress: but no Senator or Representative, or Person holding an Office of Trust or Profit under the United States, shall be appointed an Elector.

[3] [The Electors shall meet in their respective States, and vote by Ballot for two persons, of whom one at least shall not be an Inhabitant of the same State with themselves. And they shall make a List of all the Persons voted for, and of the Number of Votes for each which List they shall sign and certify, and transmit sealed to the Seat of the Government of the United States, directed to the President of the Senate. The President of the Senate shall, in the Presence of the Senate and House of Representatives, open all the Certificates, and the Votes shall then be counted. The Person having the greatest Number of Votes shall be the President, if such Number be a Majority of the whole Number of Electors appointed and if there be more than one who have such Majority, and have an equal Number of Votes, then the House of Representatives shall immediately chuse by Ballot one of them for President and if no Person have a Majority, then from the five highest on the List the said House shall in like Manner chuse the President. But in chusing the President, the Votes shall be taken by States, the Representation from each State have one Vote a quorum for this Purpose shall consist of a Member or Members from two thirds of the States, and a Majority of all the States shall be necessary to a Choice. In every Case, after the Choice of the President, the Person having the greatest Number of Votes of the Electors shall be the Vice President. But if there should remain two or more who have equal Votes, the Senate shall chuse from them by Ballot the Vice-President.] (Note: Superseded by the Twelfth Amendment.)

[4] The Congress may determine the Time of chusing the Electors, and the Day on which they shall give their Votes which Day shall be the same throughout the United States.

[5] No person except a natural born Citizen, or a Citizen of the United States, at the time of the Adoption of this Constitution, shall be eligible to the Office of President neither shall any person be eligible to that Office who shall not have attained to the Age of thirty-five Years, and been fourteen Years a Resident within the United States.

[6] [In Case of the Removal of the President from Office, or of his Death, Resignation, or Inability to discharge the Powers and Duties of the said Office, the same shall devolve on the Vice President, and the Congress may by Law, provide for the Case of Removal, Death, Resignation or Inability, both of the President and Vice President, declaring what Officer shall then act as President, and such Officer shall act accordingly, until the Disability be removed, or a President shall be elected.] (Note: Changed by the Twenty-Fifth Amendment.)

[7] The President shall, at stated Times, receive for his Services, a Compensation, which shall neither be encreased nor diminished during the Period for which he shall have been elected, and he shall not receive within that Period any other Emolument from the United States, or any of them.

[8] Before he enter on the Execution of his Office, he shall take the following Oath or Affirmation: &mdash&ldquoI do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will faithfully execute the Office of President of the United States, and will to the best of my Ability, preserve, protect and defend the Constitution of the United States.&rdquo

Section 2. [1] The President shall be Commander in Chief of the Army and Navy of the United States, and of the Militia of the several States, when called into the actual Service of the United States he may require the Opinion in writing, of the principal Officer in each of the executive Departments, upon any subject relating to the Duties of their respective Offices, and he shall have Power to Grant Reprieves and Pardons for Offenses against the United States, except in Cases of Impeachment.

[2] He shall have Power, by and with the Advice and Consent of the Senate, to make Treaties, provided two-thirds of the Senators present concur and he shall nominate, and by and with the Advice and Consent of the Senate, shall appoint Ambassadors, other public Ministers and Consuls, Judges of the supreme Court, and all other Officers of the United States, whose Appointments are not herein otherwise provided for, and which shall be established by Law: but the Congress may by Law vest the Appointment of such inferior Officers, as they think proper, in the President alone, in the Courts of Law, or in the Heads of Departments.

[3] The President shall have Power to fill up all Vacancies that may happen during the Recess of the Senate, by granting Commissions which shall expire at the End of their next Session.

Section 3.He shall from time to time give to the Congress Information of the State of the Union, and recommend to their Consideration such Measures as he shall judge necessary and expedient he may, on extraordinary Occasions, convene both Houses, or either of them, and in Case of Disagreement between them, with Respect to the Time of Adjournment, he may adjourn them to such Time as he shall think proper he shall receive Ambassadors and other public Ministers he shall take Care that the Laws be faithfully executed, and shall Commission all the Officers of the United States.

Section 4.The President, Vice President and all civil Officers of the United States, shall be removed from Office on Impeachment for, and Conviction of, Treason, Bribery, or other high Crimes and Misdemeanors.

Article III.

Section 1. The judicial Power of the United States, shall be vested in one supreme Court, and in such inferior Courts as the Congress may from time to time ordain and establish. The Judges, both of the supreme and inferior Courts, shall hold their Offices during good Behaviour, and shall, at stated Times, receive for their Services, a Compensation, which shall not be diminished during their Continuance in Office.

Section 2. [1] The judicial Power shall extend to all Cases, in Law and Equity, arising under this Constitution, the Laws of the United States, and Treaties made, or which shall be made, under their Authority &mdashto all Cases affecting Ambassadors, other public Ministers and Consuls &mdashto all Cases of admiralty and maritime Jurisdiction &mdashto Controversies to which the United States shall be a Party &mdashto Controversies between two or more States, &mdash[between a State and Citizens of another State&mdash] (Note: Changed by the Eleventh Amendment.) between Citizens of different States &mdashbetween Citizens of the same State claiming Lands under Grants of different States, [and between a State, or the Citizens thereof, and foreign States, Citizens or Subjects.] (Note: Changed by the Eleventh Amendment.)

[2] In all Cases affecting Ambassadors, other public Ministers and Consuls, and those in which a State shall be Party, the supreme Court shall have original Jurisdiction. In all the other Cases before mentioned, the supreme Court shall have appellate Jurisdiction, both as to Law and Fact, with such Exceptions, and under such Regulations as the Congress shall make.

[3] The Trial of all Crimes, except in Cases of Impeachment, shall be by Jury and such Trial shall be held in the State where the said Crimes shall have been committed but when not committed within any State, the Trial shall be at such Place or Places as the Congress may by Law have directed.

Section 3. [1] Treason against the United States, shall consist only in levying War against them, or in adhering to their Enemies, giving them Aid and Comfort. No Person shall be convicted of Treason unless on the Testimony of two Witnesses to the same overt Act, or on Confession in open Court.

[2] The Congress shall have Power to declare the Punishment of Treason, but no Attainder of Treason shall work Corruption of Blood, or Forfeiture except during the Life of the Person attainted.

Article IV.

Section 1. Full Faith and Credit shall be given in each State to the public Acts, Records, and judicial Proceedings of every other State And the Congress may by general Laws prescribe the Manner in which such Acts, Records and Proceedings shall be proved, and the Effect thereof.

Section 2. [1] The Citizens of each State shall be entitled to all Privileges and Immunities of Citizens in the several States.

[2] A Person charged in any State with Treason, Felony, or other Crime, who shall flee from Justice, and be found in another State, shall on demand of the executive Authority of the State from which he fled, be delivered up, to be removed to the State having Jurisdiction of the Crime.

[3] [No Person held to Service or Labour in one State, under the Laws thereof, escaping into another, shall, in Consequence of any Law or Regulation therein, be discharged from such Service or Labour, but shall be delivered up on Claim of the Party to whom such Service or Labour may be due.] (Note: Superseded by the Thirteenth Amendment.)

Section 3. [1] New States may be admitted by the Congress into this Union but no new State shall be formed or erected within the Jurisdiction of any other State nor any State be formed by the Junction of two or more States, or parts of States, without the Consent of the Legislatures of the States concerned as well as of the Congress.

[2] The Congress shall have Power to dispose of and make all needful Rules and Regulations respecting the Territory or other Property belonging to the United States and nothing in this Constitution shall be so construed as to Prejudice any Claims of the United States, or of any particular State.

Section 4. The United States shall guarantee to every State in this Union a Republican Form of Government, and shall protect each of them against Invasion and on Application of the Legislature, or of the Executive (when the Legislature cannot be convened) against domestic Violence.

Article V.

The Congress, whenever two thirds of both Houses shall deem it necessary, shall propose Amendments to this Constitution, or, on the Application of the Legislatures of two thirds of the several States, shall call a Convention for proposing Amendments, which, in either Case, shall be valid to all Intents and Purposes, as Part of this Constitution, when ratified by the Legislatures of three fourths of the several States, or by Conventions in three fourths thereof, as the one or the other Mode of Ratification may be proposed by the Congress Provided that no Amendment which may be made prior to the Year One thousand eight hundred and eight shall in any Manner affect the first and fourth Clauses in the Ninth Section of the first Article and that no State, without its Consent, shall be deprived of it's equal Suffrage in the Senate.

Article VI.

[1] All Debts contracted and Engagements entered into, before the Adoption of this Constitution, shall be as valid against the United States under this Constitution, as under the Confederation.


[2] This Constitution, and the Laws of the United States which shall be made in Pursuance thereof and all Treaties made, or which shall be made, under the Authority of the United States, shall be the supreme Law of the Land and the Judges in every State shall be bound thereby, any Thing in the Constitution or Laws of any State to the Contrary notwithstanding.

[3] The Senators and Representatives before mentioned, and the Members of the several State Legislatures, and all executive and judicial Officers, both of the United States and of the several States, shall be bound by Oath or Affirmation, to support this Constitution but no religious Test shall ever be required as a Qualification to any Office or public Trust under the United States.

Article VII.

The Ratification of the Conventions of nine States shall be sufficient for the Establishment of this Constitution between the States so ratifying the Same.

Done in Convention by the Unanimous Consent of the States present the Seventeenth Day of September in the Year of our Lord one thousand seven hundred and Eighty seven and of the Independence of the United States of America the Twelfth.

In Witness whereof We have hereunto subscribed our Names.

George Washington-President and deputy from Virginia

New Hampshire
John Langdon
Nicholas Gilman

Nathaniel Gorham
Rufus King

Wm. Saml. Johnson
Roger Sherman

New York
Alexander Hamilton

New Jersey
Wil: Livingston
David Brearley
Wm. Paterson
Jona: Dayton

B Franklin
Thomas Mifflin
Robt Morris
Geo. Clymer
Thos. FitzSimons
Jared Ingersoll
James Wilson
Gouv Morris

Geo: Read
Gunning Bedford jun
John Dickinson
Richard Basset
Jaco: Broom

James McHenry
Dan of St Thos. Jenifer
Danl Carroll

John Blair-
James Madison Jr.

North Carolina
Wm. Blount
Richd. Dobbs Spaight
Hu Williamson

South Carolina
J. Rutledge
Charles Cotesworth Pinckney
Charles Pinckney
Pierce Butler

Goodbye to the Crown Jewel of the Civil Rights Movement

The Supreme Court struck down the crown jewel of the Civil Rights movement today. Section 5 was the most powerful tool in the movement’s arsenal. Although I’m a law professor and thus supposed to be opining on the court’s decision and Congress’ potential response, I want to spend a little time mourning Section 5’s passing before hashing out the consequences.

To understand why Section 5 was special, you have to know a bit about its history. The brutal attacks on civil rights marchers crossing the Edmund Pettus Bridge provided the push needed to pass the Voting Rights Act. When the Voting Rights Act passed in 1965, almost no African-Americans were registered to vote in the Deep South due to brutal repression and sickening legal chicanery. Civil rights litigators and the Department of Justice were doing their best to help. They filed lawsuit after lawsuit to make it possible for blacks to register. But every time a court deemed one discriminatory practice illegal, local officials would switch to another. Literacy tests, poll taxes, burdensome registration requirements—these techniques were all used to prevent African-Americans from voting. Southern voting registrars would even resign from their positions as soon as a lawsuit was on the cusp of succeeding, thereby sending the case back to square one. The Voting Rights Act aimed to change all of this.

Section 5 was the most important and imaginative provision in the law. It required certain states and jurisdictions, mostly in the South, to ask the federal government’s permission before making any change—no matter how small—in the way they run elections. Until a rule was “precleared,” it could not go into effect. This unusual provision solved the central problem of voting-rights enforcement during the civil rights era—keeping up with the increasingly creative strategies recalcitrant state and local governments used to disenfranchise voters. Section 5 shifted the burden of inertia, allowing the Department of Justice to get one step ahead of local officials.

It worked. It worked miraculously well, in fact. In a remarkably short period, African-American registration rates shot up. Section 5 mattered especially for the Deep South, where there were large concentrations of black voters. By the 1990s, these states were able to send a historic number of black representatives to Congress. But Section 5 didn’t just matter for the big-ticket races. For decades it provided strong protections for minority voters in local and state elections as well as federal ones. Based on those successes, Congress renewed Section 4’s “coverage formula”—the provision that determines which jurisdictions have to preclear changes and which don’t—again and again.

The last renewal in 2006 finally proved to be too much for the five conservative justices. Today’s opinion rebukes Congress for relying on 40-year-old data. Put more simply, the court took Congress to task for its failure to recognize that the South is no longer the South. Chief Justice John Roberts, writing for the five-justice majority, insisted that the principles of federalism forbid Congress to require some states, and not others, to get pre-approval for potentially discriminatory election changes.

Roberts left open the possibility that Congress could make a different record and start over, thereby bringing Section 5 to life again. Almost no one thinks that’s going to happen. Section 5 is dead. Congress may or may not pass something in its place, but it will look nothing like what existed at 9:59 this morning, before the Court handed down its opinion. And part of me just wants to mourn that fact.

That might seem like an odd notion given that experts have long known that Section 5 was on its last legs. The process has been so drawn out, in fact, that it feels as if everything that can be said about Section 5’s demise has already been said. Every election law professor has had cynical discussions about whether Section 5 still matters. We’ve all offered learned opinions on the likelihood of future legislation and what shape it should take.

But still. Although we all knew this was coming, it nonetheless feels like a bit of a shock. Because Section 5 was special. No one—not even the majority today—denied that fact. It feels strange to treat this like any other Supreme Court decision.

If this were the usual case, I would be telling you that Section 5 was important for this and not that, that the court has to be right that the 1960s coverage formula couldn’t last forever, that Congress should have done more to fix what everyone knew would be a sticking point with the court. I would be giving you concrete examples of where Section 5’s absence will matter going forward. (The Texas attorney general would have beaten me to the punch by announcing two hours after the ruling was handed down that its voter ID law, blocked last year by Section 5, will go into effect immediately.) If this were the usual case, it wouldn’t bother me that this issue will be pushed off the front page tomorrow by the next round of Supreme Court blockbusters.

But for now—for just one moment—a bit of simple mourning is in order. I don’t want to end this column with a punch line or a what-comes-next paragraph. It seems disrespectful, somehow. People fought and died for this one. It made a difference—a huge difference—in the lives of a lot of people. That’s reason enough to mourn its passing.

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A key provision of the Voting Rights Act has come under close scrutiny as it potentially heads to the Supreme Court this next term.

Aug. 30: This post has been updated.

A single provision of the Voting Rights Act of 1965 has been playing a key role on the election front this year. Section 5 has blocked photo voter-ID laws, prohibited reduced early-voting periods in parts of Florida and just Tuesday barred new redistricting maps in Texas.

It's the reason South Carolina is in federal court this week to try to convince a three-judge panel its photo voter-ID law will not disenfranchise minorities. It's the reason that Texas went to trial on the same issue last month — and on Thursday, lost.

Not surprisingly, then, Section 5 is increasingly the target of attack by those who say it is outdated, discriminatory against Southern states and unconstitutional.

Under the provision, certain states and localities with a history of anti-minority election practices must obtain federal approval or "preclearance" before making changes to voting laws. In present day, that requirement is burdensome, "needlessly aggressive" and based on outdated coverage criteria, two petitions filed in July with the U.S. Supreme Court argue.

Section 5 applies to nine states — Texas, South Carolina, Arizona, Georgia, Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama, Virginia and Alaska — and currently to parts of Florida, California, New York, North Carolina, South Dakota, Michigan and New Hampshire. The original coverage formula looked at whether states imposed unfair devices like literacy tests in November 1964, whether less than 50 percent of the voting-age population was registered to vote as of that date, or if less than 50 percent of eligible voters voted in the November 1964 presidential election. In 1975, the formula expanded to include jurisdictions that provided election materials only in English when members of a language minority made up more than 5 percent of voting-age citizens.

Momentum is building at the highest levels to narrow or even eliminate this provision. In a 2009 majority opinion to a Section 5 challenge from Northwest Austin Municipal Utility District No. 1 in Texas, U.S. Chief Justice John Roberts wrote that preclearance and the coverage formula "raise serious constitutional questions," though the justices didn't settle them at the time. In January, in a separate concurrence to the judgment in the Texas redistricting case, Justice Clarence Thomas stated that Section 5 is unconstitutional (for more on how that case reached the Supreme Court, see our previous explainer).

Shelby County in Alabama and several citizens of Kinston, N.C., have asked the Court to review the constitutionality of Section 5 during this fall's term.

Last week, six states covered under Section 5 filed an amicus brief to the Shelby County petition, citing the time and cost of seeking preclearance and a voting landscape that's shed its racist past. Several former Justice Department officials, all of whom served in past Republican administrations, cite in another amicus brief the disparate impact the provision has on the states.

So, could this Civil Rights-era provision soon be on its way out the door? As early as 2009, UC-Irvine law professor Rick Hasen laid out a scenario under which that could happen. But the prospects remain murky.

There is reason to believe the Court's conservative majority is inclined to strike down Section 5, a supposedly temporary safeguard first enacted in 1965 for a five-year stretch. (It was most recently reauthorized in 2006 for another 25 years when Congress renewed the Voting Rights Act under strong bipartisan support.)

Conditions have "unquestionably improved," Roberts wrote in his NAMUDNO opinion three years ago. "Things have changed in the South. Voter turnout and registration rates now approach parity. Blatantly discriminatory evasions of federal decrees are rare. And minority candidates hold office at unprecedented levels," he said.

Some legal experts say those comments have since encouraged states toward bolder action.

"The cases challenging Section 5 are sprouting up throughout the lower courts, partly in response to the Court's earlier decision," said Richard Pildes, a professor at NYU School of Law who co-edited the book, "The Future of the Voting Rights Act." "I think the Court will feel a responsibility to bring clarity to these momentous issues by returning to the constitutional question and resolving it."

Before making any changes to criteria for voter registration, voting eligibility, the counting of votes or redistricting, covered states and jurisdictions must get preclearance from the Justice Department or from a panel of judges at the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia.

Covered states have the burden of proving that any voting law changes lack a discriminatory purpose or effect and wouldn't "diminish a minority group's ability to elect a favored candidate."

That's the reason why on Tuesday, a panel of federal judges in D.C. refused to allow Texas's redistricting plan: It ruled that the redrawn maps would dilute the impact of black and Hispanic votes and that legislators could well have had a discriminatory purpose when they drew up these new districts. Texas has said it will appeal the ruling to the Supreme Court.

The Justice Department has objected to a substantial number of proposed voting plans over the last few decades from states seeking administrative preclearance. Between 1970 and 2000, the DOJ raised nearly 1,000 objections to proposed changes many plans were later withdrawn.

States also have the option to seek a favorable judgment from the federal court in Washington, D.C. — a costlier, longer and, therefore rarer, route to take.

Although there's been a large drop-off in the number of DOJ objections since 2000, the recent surge of voting law changes have helped bring Section 5 back into the national spotlight. After Florida passed a statewide law reducing its early-voting period from 12 to eight days, a three-judge federal panel said the rule couldn't take effect in five covered counties, unless the state submitted a revised plan in which those counties extended their voting hours to 12 hours a day during that period.

The DOJ has already opposed voter-ID laws in South Carolina and Texas, arguing they will disenfranchise minorities since that's a group more likely to lack valid photo identification. On Thursday, a three-judge panel that heard the Texas case agreed, calling the state's voter ID law "the most stringent in the country." Texas said it will appeal the decision to the U.S. Supreme Court.

Justice Department preclearance is also pending for a voter-ID law in Mississippi.

Recently, the DOJ gave the green light to Virginia's voter-ID law, which, unlike some other states, accepts non-photo IDs such as a utility bill or pay stub with a printed name and address.

Critics of Section 5 say that it's unfair to require covered jurisdictions to undergo preclearance when states like Indiana, Ohio and Pennsylvania, which are not bound by the provision, have enacted just as tough or tougher voting laws.

In non-covered states, challenges to such voter-ID laws can always be brought under Section 2 of the Voting Rights Act, but the burden to prove minority voter infringement falls onto the plaintiffs, not the state or local government as is the case for states and other jurisdictions covered under Section 5.

It's not just large-scale changes like photo voter-ID laws and redistricting to which Section 5 extends, either — it applies to even incremental changes at the local level. For instance, when the Pitt County School District in North Carolina wanted to reduce in 2011 the number of school board members from 12 to seven and shorten their terms of office, the DOJ objected on grounds the changes would decrease representation of minority-preferred candidates on the school board.

It's at these local levels where elimination or dilution of Section 5 may be most consequential.

Michael Pitts, a law professor at Indiana University, told ProPublica that it's "really speculative" to predict the long-term consequence of a narrowing of Section 5. "I suspect that there would be more discrimination in lower profile places, like school boards and town councils and smaller city councils," he said. "The further away you get and the less high profile it is, the more the influence of having to go that route makes the difference for racial minorities."

Debate at the Constitutional Convention centered on two issues. The first was to ensure that the executive would not spend money without congressional authorization. The second concerned the roles the House and Senate would play in setting fiscal policy.

At the Convention, the framers considered the extent to which the Senate—like the House of Lords—should be limited in its consideration of budget bills. The provision was part of a compromise between the large and small states. Smaller states, which would be over-represented in the Senate, would concede the power to originate money bills to the House, where states with larger populations would have greater control. Speaking in favor of the provision, Benjamin Franklin of Pennsylvania said, “It was a maxim that those who feel, can best judge. This end would . . . be best attained, if money affairs were to be confined to the immediate representatives of the people.” The provision in the committee’s report to the Convention was adopted, five to three, with three states divided on the question. The Convention reconsidered the matter over the course of two months, but the provision was finally adopted, nine to two, in September 1787.

The constitutional provision making Congress the ultimate authority on government spending passed with far less debate. The framers were unanimous that Congress, as the representatives of the people, should be in control of public funds—not the President or executive branch agencies. This strongly-held belief was rooted in the framers’ experiences with England, where the king had wide latitude over spending once the money had been raised.

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The Origins of Caesarian Section

A Caesarian, or C section, is the medical term for the intervention of childbirth where the baby is cut and removed from the womb of the mother by doctors.

It is believed that there is only one known case of a woman giving herself a caesarian section without a doctor, where both the mother and child survived. On March 5, 2000, in Mexico, Inés Ramírez performed a Caesarean section on herself and survived, as did her son, Orlando Ruiz Ramírez. She was tended to shortly afterwards by a nurse and was taken to hospital.

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It is rumoured that Caesarian Sections got their name from the infamous Roman Ruler Gaius Julius Caesar. Caesar left an enormous legacy on the world we know today, influencing the world we live in and the way in which we speak.

The earliest record of Julius Caesars birth was in a 10 th century document The Suda, a Byzantine-Greek historical encyclopaedia, citing Caesar as the namesake of the Caesarean section, stating ‘The emperors of the Romans receive this name from Julius Caesar, who was not born. For when his mother died in the ninth month, they cut her open, took him out, and named him thus for in the Roman tongue dissection is called ‘Caesar.’

Julius Caesar has been flouted for centuries as the first to be born in this way, by cutting open the mother to remove the child, therefore the process was called a ‘Caesarian’. This is in fact a myth. Caesar was not born by Caesarian section.

This text states that Caesarians are not named after Caesar but instead Caesar was named after Caesarians. In Latin caesus is the past participle of caedere meaning “to cut”.

But it gets more complicated than that because Julius Caesar wasn’t even born from a caesarian section. Not only were they not named after him, he never even had one.

The practice of cutting a baby from it’s mother was actually part of the law when Julius Caesar was born however it was only ever preformed after the mother had died.

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