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Chapter 5: Creating the Constitution
Name ___________________________________
Study Guide
Important Vocabulary
1. Amendments - changes or additions to the Constitution
2. Bicameral - a two house legislature
3. Federalism - the idea that power is divided between the state and the federal governments
4. Posterity – future generations
5. Tranquility – peaceful or restful
Plans of Government
The Virginia Plan:
 Was proposed by James Madison of Virginia, the big states loved the plan
 Called for a strong 3 branch central government
 Called for a bicameral (or two house) legislature
 It said that representation in both houses of the Congress should be based on population another words the more people in a state the more representatives that state would have in
the Congress
The New Jersey Plan:
 Was proposed by William Paterson of New Jersey, the small states loved the plan
 Called for a one branch government
 Called for a unicameral (or one house) legislature
 Said that each state would get only one vote no matter how large the state's population
The Connecticut Plan (Great Compromise):
 Was proposed by Roger Sherman of Connecticut
 It setup a 3 branch government
 It setup a bicameral legislature (as suggested in the Virginia Plan).
 It said that in the House of Representatives representation was based on population, while in
the Senate each state had 2 senators, regardless of how large the population of the state
 This plan was a compromise between the Virginia Plan and the New Jersey Plan
3/5's Compromise:
 Was proposed by James Wilson
 It said that for purposes of the census slaves would count as 3/5's of a person
 It made the southern, slave states, happy because it meant that they got more representation
in Congress
 It made the northern states 'happy' because slaves were at least counted as people
 It said that after 1808 the Atlantic Slave Trade would end
Chapter 5: Creating the Constitution
Name ___________________________________
Electoral College:
 Was proposed by Roger Sherman and Elbridge Gerry
 Setup the way that the President would be elected
 It said instead of the citizens electing the president directly the state legislatures would select
people, or electors, who would listen to the citizens and they (the electors) would cast the
vote for the president
 This is the same process that still exists today
Slave Trade:
Would not be addressed again until 1808
Delegates feared northern delegates would walk out of the convention if slavery was
The Constitutional Convention
 Originally organized to revise the Articles of Confederation
 The Articles of Confederation, however, were completely abandoned because, among other
things, the national government could not settle arguments between states and it could not
enforce laws
 Before the Constitution could go into effect 9 of the 13 states had to approve of it
The Federalists vs. the Anti-Federalists
 The Federalists supported the Constitution and wanted a strong national government
 They felt a strong national government would:
1. Provide protection for all the states
2. Maintain law and order
3. Guarantee the rights of all citizens
 The Anti-Federalists did not support the Constitution; they wanted the states to have more
 They felt a strong national government would:
1. Endanger the liberties of the people of the country
2. Would swallow up the state governments leaving them with even less power
3. Not guarantee the rights of the people since there was no Bill of Rights in the
The Preamble
 It’s the introduction to the Constitution, which states the goals of the document and the nation
 You need to memorize the Preamble:
“We the People of the United States, in Order to form a more perfect Union, establish Justice,
insure domestic Tranquility, 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”