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U.S. Constitution For Dummies (0470543000) cover image

U.S. Constitution For Dummies

ISBN: 978-0-470-54300-9
408 pages
April 2009
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Foreword xix

Introduction 1

Part I: Exploring Constitutional Basics 7

Chapter 1: Constitutional Law: The Framework for Governance 9

Chapter 2: Framing the U.S. Constitution: Big Thinkers, Big Thoughts 17

Chapter 3: Debating the Constitution 31

Chapter 4: Introducing . . . the Constitution! The Preamble and the Seven Articles 43

Chapter 5: Amending versus Interpreting the Constitution: Taking Time for Change 53

Part II: We the People: How the United States Is Governed 65

Chapter 6: Scrutinizing Sovereignty: Who Rules America? 67

Chapter 7: Federalism: Forming One out of Many 79

Chapter 8: Separation of Powers: To Each His Own 91

Chapter 9: Doing Business: The Commerce Clause101

Part III: Balancing the Branches of Government: The President, Congress, and the Judiciary 113

Chapter 10: Looking at the Role of Commander in Chief 115

Chapter 11: Giving Everyone a Voice: The House of Representatives and Senate 139

Chapter 12: “During Good Behaviour”: The Judicial System 157

Chapter 13: You’re Fired! Investigating the Impeachment Process 179

Part IV: The Bill of Rights: Specifying Rights through Amendments 193

Chapter 14: The First Amendment: Freedom of Religion, Speech, and Assembly 195

Chapter 15: The Second Amendment: Bearing Arms 207

Chapter 16: The Third and Fourth Amendments: Protecting Citizens from Government Forces 217

Chapter 17: Taking the Fifth — and a Bit of the Fourteenth 231

Chapter 18: Dealing with Justice and Individual Rights: The Sixth through Eighth Amendments 247

Chapter 19: The Ninth and Tenth Amendments: Leaving Things Up to the People and States 263

Part V: Addressing Liberties and Modifying the Government: More Amendments 277

Chapter 20: States’ Rights, Elections, and Slavery: The Eleventh through Thirteenth Amendments 279

Chapter 21: The Fourteenth Amendment: Ensuring Equal Protection 291

Chapter 22: Starts, Stops, and Clarifications: Amendments since 1870 305

Part VI: The Part of Tens 321

Chapter 23: Ten Landmark Constitutional Cases 323

Chapter 24: Ten Influential Supreme Court Justices 329

Chapter 25: Two Sides of Five Constitutional Conundrums 337

Appendix: Constitution of the United States of America 345

Index 369

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