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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 tranquillity, 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.
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
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 have 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. Representative 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. 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 choose 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,
4. When vacancies happen in the representation from any State, the
executive authority thereof shall issue writs of election to fill such
5. The House of Representatives shall choose their speaker and other
officers; and shall have the sole power of impeachment.
1. The Senate of the United States shall be composed of two senators
from each State, chosen by the legislature thereof, 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.
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 choose 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, 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.
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 places of choosing senators.
2. The Congress shall assemble at least once in every year; and such
meeting shall be on the first Monday in December, unless they shall by
law appoint a different day.
1. Each house shall be the judge of the election, 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
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 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.
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 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 increased, 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.
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 becomes 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 or against the bill 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 the 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.
The Congress shall have power--
1. To lay and collect taxes, duties, imposts and excises to pay the
debts and provide for the common defense 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 a 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
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;
And to make all laws which shall be necessary and proper for carrying
into execution the foregoing powers, and all other powers vested by the
Constitution in the Government of the United States, or in any
department or officer thereof.
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
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 hereinbefore directed to be taken.
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 or another; nor shall vessels bound
to or from one State be obliged to enter, clear, or pay duties in
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 moneys 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.
1. No State shall enter into any treaty, alliance, or confederation;
grant letters of marque and reprisal; coin money; emit bills of credit;
make anything 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 impost
or duties on imports or exports, except what may be absolutely necessary
for executing its inspection laws; and the net produce of an 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 control of the Congress. No State shall, without the
consent of the 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.
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 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 a majority, and
have an equal number of votes, then the House of Representatives shall
immediately choose, 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, choose the President. But in choosing
the President the votes shall be taken by States, the representation
from each State having one vote; a quorum for this purpose shall consist
of a member or members from two-thirds of all 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 choose from
them, by ballot, the Vice-President.
4. The Congress may determine the time of choosing 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 the age of
thirty-five years, and been fourteen years a resident within the United
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 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
7. The President shall, at stated times, receive for his services a
compensation, which shall neither be increased nor diminished during the
period for which he shall have been elected; and he shall not receive
within that period any other emoluments from the United States, or any
8. Before he enter on the execution of his office, he shall take the
following oath or affirmation:
I 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
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 embassadors, 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
3. The President shall have power to fill all vacancies that may happen
during the recess of the Senate, by granting commissions which shall
expire at the end of their next session.
1. 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
embassadors and other public ministers. He shall take care that the laws
be faithfully executed; and shall commission all officers of the United
1. 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.
1. The judicial power of the United States shall be vested in one
Supreme Court and in such inferior courts as Congress may from time to
time ordain and establish. The judges both of the Supreme and inferior
courts shall hold their offices during good behavior; and shall, at
stated times, receive for their services a compensation which shall not
be diminished during their continuance of office.
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; to all
cases affecting embassadors, other public ministers and consuls; to all
cases of admiralty and maritime jurisdiction; to controversies to which
the United States shall be a party; to controversies between two or more
States, between a State and citizens of another State, between citizens
of different States, between 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.
2. In all cases affecting embassadors, other public ministers and
consuls, and those in which a State shall be a party, the Supreme Court
shall have original jurisdiction. In all the other cases mentioned, the
Supreme Court shall have appellate jurisdiction, both as to law and
fact, with such exceptions and under such regulations as the Congress
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 crime
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
l. 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.
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 II. 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
3. No person held to service or labor in one State under the laws
thereof, escaping into another, shall, in consequence of any laws or
regulations therein, be discharged from such service or labor; but shall
be delivered up on claim of the party to whom such service or labor may
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 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 claim of the United States, or of
any particular State.
1. 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.
1. 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 fifth article; and that no State,
without its consent, shall be deprived of its equal suffrage in the
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 of every State shall be bound thereby,
anything in the Constitution or laws of any State to the contrary
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 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.
1. The ratification of the convention 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 December, 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.
President, and Deputy from Virginia.
Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or
prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of
speech or of the press, or the right of the people peaceably to
assemble, and to petition the government for a redress of grievance.
A well regulated militia being necessary to the security of a free
state, the right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be
No soldier shall, in time of peace, be quartered in any house without
the consent of the owner, nor in time of war, but in a manner to be
prescribed by law.
The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers
and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be
violated; and no warrants shall issue but upon probable cause, supported
by oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be
searched, and the persons or things to be seized.
No person shall be held to answer for a capital or otherwise infamous
crime, unless on a presentment or indictment of a grand jury, except in
cases arising in the land or naval forces, or in the militia, when in
actual service in time of war or public danger; nor shall any person be
subject for the same offense to be twice put in jeopardy of life or
limb, nor shall be compelled, in any criminal case, to be a witness
against himself, nor be deprived of life, liberty, or property, without
due process of law; nor shall private property be taken for public use,
without just compensation.
In all criminal prosecutions, the accused shall enjoy the right to a
speedy and public trial, by an impartial jury of the State and district
wherein the crime shall have been committed, which district shall have
been previously ascertained by law; and to be informed of the nature and
cause of the accusation; to be confronted with the witnesses against
him; to have compulsory process for obtaining witnesses in his favor,
and to have the assistance of counsel for his defense.
In suits at common law, where the value in controversy shall exceed
twenty dollars, the right of trial by jury shall be preserved; and no
fact tried by a jury shall be otherwise reexamined, in any court of the
United States, than according to the rules of the common law.
Excessive bail shall not be required, nor excessive fines imposed, nor
cruel and unusual punishment inflicted.
The enumeration in the Constitution of certain rights shall not be
construed to deny or disparage others retained by the people.
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 preceding ten amendatory articles were proposed
to the legislatures of the States by the first Congress, September 25,
1789, and notification of ratification received from all the States
except Connecticut, Georgia and Massachusetts.]
The judicial power of the United States shall not be construed to extend
to any suit in law or equity commenced or prosecuted against one of the
United States by citizens or subjects of any foreign state.
[Proposed by the Third Congress, and Congress notified of its adoption
January 8, 1798.]
1. The electors shall meet in their respective States, and vote by
ballot for President and Vice-President, one of whom, at least, shall
not be an inhabitant of the same State with themselves. They shall name
in their ballots the person voted for as President, and in distinct
ballots the person voted for as Vice-President; and they shall make
distinct lists of all persons voted for as President, and of all persons
voted for as Vice-President; and of the number of votes for each; which
lists they shall sign and certify, and transmit sealed to the seat of
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 the certificates, and the votes shall
then be counted. The person having the greatest number of votes for
President shall be the President, if such number be a majority of the
whole number of electors appointed; and if no person have such majority,
then from the persons having the highest numbers, not exceeding three,
on the list of those voted for as President, the House of
Representatives shall choose immediately, by ballot, the President. But,
in choosing the President, the votes shall be taken by States, the
representation from each State having 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.
And if the House of Representatives shall not choose a President
whenever the right of choice shall devolve upon them, before the fourth
day of March next following, then the Vice-President shall act as
President, as in the case of the death or other constitutional
disability of the President.
2. The person having the greatest number of votes as Vice-President
shall be the Vice-President, if such number be a majority of the whole
number of electors appointed, and if no person have a majority, then
from the two highest numbers on the list the Senate shall choose the
Vice-President. A quorum for the purpose shall consist of two-thirds of
the whole number of senators, and a majority of the whole number shall
be necessary to a choice.
3. But no person constitutionally ineligible to the office of President
shall be eligible to that of Vice-President of the United Stales.
[Proposed by the Eighth Congress, and declared adopted September 23,
1804, by proclamation of the Secretary of State.]
1. Neither slavery nor involuntary servitude, except as a punishment for
crime, whereof the party shall have been duly convicted, shall exist
within the United States, or any place subject to their jurisdiction.
2. Congress shall have power to enforce this article by appropriate
[Proposed by the Thirty-eighth Congress, and declared adopted December
18, 1865, by proclamation of the Secretary of State.]
All persons born or naturalized in the United States, and subject to the
jurisdiction thereof, are citizens of the United States and of the State
wherein they reside. No State shall make or enforce any law which shall
abridge the privileges or immunities of citizens of the United States,
nor shall any State deprive any person of life, liberty, or property,
without due process or law, nor deny to any person within its
jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws.
SECTION II. Representatives shall be apportioned among the several
States according to their respective numbers, counting the whole number
of persons in each State, excluding Indians not taxed. But when the
right to vote at any election for the choice of electors for President
and Vice-President of the United States, representatives in Congress,
the executive and judicial officers of a State, or the members of the
legislature thereof, is denied to any of the male inhabitants of such
State, being twenty-one years of age, and citizens of the United
States, or in any way abridged, except for participation in rebellion or
other crime, the basis of representation therein shall be reduced in the
proportion which the number of such male citizens shall bear to the
whole number of male citizens twenty-one years of age in such State.
SECTION III. No person shall be a senator or representative in Congress,
or elector of President and Vice-President, or hold any office, civil or
military, under the United States, or under any State, who, having
previously taken an oath as a member of Congress, or as an officer of
the United States, or as a member of any State legislature, or as an
executive or judicial officer of any State, to support the Constitution
of the United States, shall have engaged in insurrection or rebellion
against the same, or given aid or comfort to the enemies thereof; but
Congress may, by a vote of two-thirds of each house, remove such
SECTION IV. The validity of the public debt of the United States,
authorized by law, including debts incurred for payment of pensions and
bounties for services in suppressing insurrection or rebellion, shall
not be questioned. But neither the United States nor any State shall
assume or pay any debt or obligation incurred in aid of insurrection or
rebellion against the United States, or any claim for the loss or
emancipation of any slave; but all such debts, obligations and claims
shall be held illegal and void.
SECTION V. The Congress shall have power to enforce, by appropriate
legislation, the provisions of this article.
[Proposed by the Thirty-ninth Congress and declared adopted by concurrent
resolution of Congress, July 21, 1868.]
The right of citizens of the United States to vote shall not be denied
or abridged by the United States, or any State, on account of race,
color or previous condition of servitude.
The Congress shall have power to enforce this article by appropriate
[Proposed by the Fortieth Congress, and declared adopted by proclamation
of the Secretary of State, March 30, 1870.]
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