Re-examining the Constitution

Are major changes needed?


The 225th anniversary of the U.S. Constitution finds Americans in a less celebratory mood than they were during the Bicentennial a quarter-century ago. The Constitution's intricate system of checks and balances and separation of powers is sometimes blamed for the political gridlock in Washington. Some of the basic structural features are also viewed as outmoded, such as the Electoral College, equal representation for each state in the Senate and life tenure for Supreme Court justices. And many conservatives and libertarians, including the Tea Party movement, complain that the federal government has taken on powers beyond what the Constitution was intended to allow. Simmering discontent on both the left and the right has led to efforts to force Congress to call a convention to propose constitutional ...

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