“A Republic, if you can keep it.” These were the immortal words of Benjamin Franklin, in answering a question put to him on whether the framers of the constitution had created a monarchy or a republic.
Today, September 17, is Constitution Day, the day that we honor the framing and signing of the United States Constitution on September 17, 1787, in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. As Benjamin Franklin said, the framers created a Constitutional Republic, not a democracy. Something that needs to be reiterated repeatedly in the present day. Especially in light of the efforts among Progressives to abolish the Electoral College.
The framers created a government that was to be governed by the rule of law, not the mob. Our system of government is unique in all the world and we should be proud of the accomplishment.
The Constitution set up a government of three separate branches with limited and defined powers. This is known as the Separation of Powers doctrine, or checks and balances.
The legislative branch, known as the Congress, has control and oversight over the federal budget. Perhaps, the present members of Congress need a class on what these powers are. If congress were to go back to the Constitution as the blueprint for governing, we would not be in the fiscal mess that we are in today.
The constitution grants powers over foreign affairs to the executive branch, which is the White House. It names the President as the Commander in Chief of the Armed Forces. That doesn’t mean that the President has the “sole discretion” on when to use the military, or where to send it into combat. The constitution grants the power of declaring war to Congress. That’s another part of the constitution overlooked and ignored by those in the halls of power today.
Article 4, Section 4 of the United States Constitution reads, “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. In light of the present day’s debate over the border and immigration, this is another constitutional plank that needs to read, studied, and remembered.
Many Americans believe that the U.S. Constitution should be required reading in every high school and college government course. Those seeking and applying for U.S. Citizenship should be required to pass a test demonstrating their knowledge of the constitution. All politicians should read and know it as well.
That would go a long way to solving a lot of our nation’s problems today, which have been caused in large part by drifting away from the Constitution as the framework and blueprint for governing.
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