A few American constitutional questions I have. I am not American.

A few American constitutional questions I have. I am not American.

>is the current power of the president more than it was supposed to be during its creation and first few formative years?
>What is the intended purpose of the Supreme Court?
>what was the intended purpose on having 2 senate seats per state ignoring population? What’s the purpose of senators over other state representatives?

  1. 1 week ago
    Anonymous

    >is the current power of the president more than it was supposed to be during its creation and first few formative years?
    It's vastly more.
    >What is the intended purpose of the Supreme Court?
    To be the final settler of legal disputes.
    >what was the intended purpose on having 2 senate seats per state ignoring population? What’s the purpose of senators over other state representatives?
    To prevent the large states from dominating national politics at the expense of the small.

    • 1 week ago
      Anonymous

      >To prevent the large states from dominating national politics at the expense of the small.

      Doesn’t it just incentive the creation of weird extra small states like the two dakotas though?

      • 1 week ago
        Anonymous

        Each new state has apply for admission into the union and be approved by Congress, so Congress would decide what qualifies as a suitably sized state. For most of early American history, the states were created to balance the number of free states and slave states (Missouri Compromise) until the Civil War.

        Like even now, Congress is pretty mull in Puerto Rico entering (even if the PR votes for it), because adding 2 new senators would disturb the current senate balance too much, and there's no guarantee those 2 senators will be pro-specific party.

        • 1 week ago
          Anonymous

          What level of representation do non state territories get then?

          • 1 week ago
            Anonymous

            Pretty much none.

            • 1 week ago
              Anonymous

              Damn. Are citizens in them even American citizens with the same rights as ones born in states?

              Can they just move to say, Texas, and have voting rights?

              • 1 week ago
                Anonymous

                They are full citizens. They can come to the United States proper as easily as I can go to a city a few miles away. They instantly gain full voting rights upon establishing permanent residency. The one exception is American Samoa. The people there have repeatedly rejected full citizenship. They can come to the United States proper without a passport or visa, but they must be naturalized as though they were foreigners.

              • 1 week ago
                Anonymous

                American Samoa didn’t want full citizenship? Or they were denied it?

                If they didn’t want it, why?

              • 1 week ago
                Anonymous

                13749249
                They can instantly vote. And like I said, American citizens LOSE the right to vote for president if they move to territories, instantly regaining it if they move to Washington, D.C. or a state.

                Full citizenship would mean their laws would have to conform with U.S. law. They currently have racial discrimination with regard to land ownership, for example. They can come here whenever they wish and stay for as long as they want, but they must go through the immigration process if they want full citizenship.

          • 1 week ago
            Anonymous

            Each gets one delegate to the House of Representatives. These delegates cannot vote on laws, but they can serve on committees and vote there. This also goes for Washington, D.C., but people there at least can vote for president, unlike people in the territories. By the way, if I moved to a U.S. territory, I would lose the ability to vote for president until I returned to the United States proper.

            • 1 week ago
              Anonymous

              You’ve kind of answered my question here

              Damn. Are citizens in them even American citizens with the same rights as ones born in states?

              Can they just move to say, Texas, and have voting rights?

              If a citizen from Peurto Rico moved to Texas so they automatically get the normal American rights to vote? Or are they treated somewhat like foreigners?

              • 1 week ago
                Anonymous

                Meant to tag this comment here

                13749249
                They can instantly vote. And like I said, American citizens LOSE the right to vote for president if they move to territories, instantly regaining it if they move to Washington, D.C. or a state.

                Full citizenship would mean their laws would have to conform with U.S. law. They currently have racial discrimination with regard to land ownership, for example. They can come here whenever they wish and stay for as long as they want, but they must go through the immigration process if they want full citizenship.

          • 1 week ago
            Anonymous

            Voting-wise, none.

            Peutro Rico and Washington DC can send some non-voting members to Congress (Resident Commissioner of PR) , who can lobby/advise/beg/whatever - but they don't get a vote. Peurto Rico also has its own governor and effective state government, but Congress can overrule Puerto Rico since it's not an official state government, just a territorial government.

            Territories basically means US land not owned by a state, and thus directly under Congress' purview and whims.

            You can read more on the non-voting US reps of territories here:
            https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Non-voting_members_of_the_United_States_House_of_Representatives

      • 1 week ago
        Anonymous

        the Dakotas, Montana, Idaho, and Wyoming were a mistake (maybe Washington as well at the time, although it actually has people now) but the constitution predated partisan politics, and the people writing it didn't really consider the possibility that a ruling party would try to pack the senate with a bunch of meme states with tiny populations.

      • 1 week ago
        Anonymous

        the Dakotas, Montana, Idaho, and Wyoming were a mistake (maybe Washington as well at the time, although it actually has people now) but the constitution predated partisan politics, and the people writing it didn't really consider the possibility that a ruling party would try to pack the senate with a bunch of meme states with tiny populations.

        There are plenty of small blue states too. Nobody is crying about Delaware, Connecticut, or Rhode Island.

        • 1 week ago
          Anonymous

          >Delaware, Connecticut, or Rhode Island.
          Just sayin' but maybe use a better example of the og!13 colonies for artificial creations of "small states". It wasn't a sure thing that states would vote along such regional lines in the early US.

        • 1 week ago
          Anonymous

          To be fair. I did say I’m not American. I don’t know about internal politics to that degree. I’m only really talking about stuff like north and South Dakota because the wording is so obviously weird. If they had totally different names like Oregon and Washington I’d have assumed it was more normal.

          I know Virginia and West Virginia used to be one state but split during the civil war and just stayed that way after. But clearly deciding Dakota couldn’t be one state was more of a tactical political decision to boost house seats for a party right?

          • 1 week ago
            Anonymous

            > clearly deciding Dakota couldn’t be one state was more of a tactical political decision to boost house seats for a party right?
            Apparently not. Seems the Dakotas didn't like each other.
            Generally, one party wouldn't have enough seats in Congress to simply force through statehood, and there were criteria like population which limited when a territory could apply. Thus, the western states are physically larger than their eastern counterparts.

            • 1 week ago
              Anonymous

              What problem did north and south have? Especially with what I’d assume were such tiny populations back then?

              • 1 week ago
                Anonymous

                The Southern portion was more populated (350,000 - 200,000). The Southerners were 'classic' pioneers who came there in wagons; the Northerners came by rail.
                The Northerners had strong connections with neighboring Minnesota; the South didn't.
                Then there was petty fighting over things like where the capital should be, how many districts to have, who would choose representatives, and so on.
                They also argued that the territory was simply too big; it would be the fourth-largest state today if united. California and Texas are larger, but their admission circumstances were special.

              • 1 week ago
                Anonymous

                Am I right in assuming Texas and California’s “special” circumstances are

                >Texas was an independent republic requesting admission
                >California was a territory directly annexed from Mexico

                ?

              • 1 week ago
                Anonymous

                Somewhat.
                The Bear Flag revolt made it the "California Republic" for a bit (which is why those words are on its flag), then it fell under US control (made official in 1848). Gold Rush and the Compromise of 1850 got it statehood fast without California ever formally being an organized territory.
                With slavery being a massive issue, there was no appetite for creating more than the minimum number of states.
                Then generally, politics, religion (Mormonism) and spikes in population as mining and railroads drew settlers caused territories to be split up into what would after decades become new states.

        • 1 week ago
          Anonymous

          They were all original colonies which predate the USA.

        • 1 week ago
          Anonymous

          I'm not talking about contemporary politics (It could be reasonably argued that they skew it to this day, but coalitions have flipped 2-3 times since even if the party names are the same) but 1890s ones, and the admission of those states was absolutely about partisan political advantages at the time.

  2. 1 week ago
    Dirk

    Yes
    Ensure the law is correctly enforced, to include checking legislative and executive overreach by checking constitutionality.
    The house of representatives and Senate are a kind of compromise between state equality and population size

  3. 1 week ago
    Anonymous

    >is the current power of the president more than it was supposed to be during its creation and first few formative years?
    Yes, certain vagaries in the way the constitution is written and laws passed by congress gave the president far more power than they originally had.
    >>What is the intended purpose of the Supreme Court?
    The constitution says little about this besides being the highest court of the land, but it practice they interpret the constitution and federal law. They were not directly given the power to rule on the constitution but early on they insisted it was implied in their mandate and Congress and the States never called them on it or changed the constitution to stop them.
    >what was the intended purpose on having 2 senate seats per state ignoring population? What’s the purpose of senators over other state representatives?
    The US started out as more of a confederacy, and the less popular states would not agree to the union unless they had some guarantee they would not simply be overruled by the more populous states. Thus congress has a popular house based on population, and a senate based on the idea that every state is a separate and equal entity.

  4. 1 week ago
    Anonymous

    >what was the intended purpose on having 2 senate seats per state ignoring population?
    Compromise so that the less populous states wouldn't feel that they had no relevance in the federal government. Turned out it was a moot issue; state blocs never formed around population size.
    >What’s the purpose of senators over other state representatives?
    United STATES of America. The States aren't just administrative units; they have to be the foundations of the country. Originally, state legislatures elected senators, and the Senate was thus the body that represented states in the federal government.

  5. 1 week ago
    Anonymous

    >is the current power of the president more than it was supposed to be during its creation and first few formative years?
    Yes and no. It is potentially, but it is not where the real power lies. So when the institutions that are the basis of our governing class want to use it, it has an immense level of power. But when an outsider is in the seat, its power is limited.
    >What is the intended purpose of the Supreme Court?
    That is in itself a subject of dispute. It is beyond controversy that the court is supposed to settle disputes to which the states are parties contra one another, or the federal government, and between the federal government and individuals. It practices judicial review now, which involves the prerogative to say what is and isn't constitutional. But before Marshall was ever on the court it was denied that any such power existed by the court itself.
    >what was the intended purpose on having 2 senate seats per state ignoring population? What’s the purpose of senators over other state representatives?
    When the framers began to draw up the constitution the various States were sovereign entities united by articles of confederation. The States were all represented as States. The central government had no ability to act on individuals. Each state was weighted equally in representation. For the new federal constitution, it was thought necessary to take into account both the States and the individuals who were subjects of both the state governments and the federal government.

  6. 1 week ago
    Anonymous

    >>what was the intended purpose on having 2 senate seats per state ignoring population? What’s the purpose of senators over other state representatives?
    Ensuring that all States felt represented and influential in government. This same method is used in Canada and Switzerland today.
    Basically it's to avoid the situation the UK is currently facing with Scotland. Due to England's population being so much bigger than the rest, Scotland becomes powerless in a democratic system by virtue of being the minority. If the UK used the same sort of Senate as the US, Scots would have more equal power to the English and thereby secessionist sentiment would dissipate

    • 1 week ago
      Anonymous

      > This same method is used in Canada and Switzerland today.
      It's how federations/federal/federative republics generally organize themselves.
      >Basically it's to avoid the situation the UK is currently facing with Scotland
      It's more about the nature of a federation as parts coming to form a whole, rather than a center devolving power, which is why unitary states tend to be unicameral.
      >Scotland becomes powerless in a democratic system
      The UK case is awkward because Scotland, Wales, and Northern Ireland have devolved Parliaments while England doesn't. Scottish MPs can vote on issues that solely affect England, but the reverse isn't normally true.

    • 1 week ago
      Anonymous

      Scotland has more representation than England. They don’t want independence for “freedom”. They’re just deluded

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