The Constitution of the Jeffersonian Republic:
Article II - Legislative

This page Copyright © 2014, Karl Leffler
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SECTION 1. No elected or appointed Councilor, Senator, Representative, or other agent or officer of the Jeffersonian Republic, or territory subject to its jurisdiction, shall in any way be exempt from the Laws of the Jeffersonian Republic, except in cases of Diplomatic Immunity, and then only as defined by the Department of State.

SECTION 2. All Legislative powers herein granted shall be vested in a Congress of the Jeffersonian Republic, which shall consist of a Senate and a House of Representatives.

SECTION 3. The House of Representatives shall be composed of Members chosen every sixth Monticellan year by the people of each Province.

No Person shall be a Representative who shall not have been eight years a Citizen of the Jeffersonian Republic, and who shall not, when elected, be an inhabitant of that Province in which he shall be chosen. No Representative shall be elected to more than five terms, and no more than three of those terms shall be consecutive to any other.

Representatives shall be apportioned among each Province which may be included within this Republic, according to their respective Numbers. The actual Enumeration shall be made within three Years after the first Meeting of the Congress of the Jeffersonian Republic, and within every subsequent Term of ten Years. The census shall be prohibited from gathering any information beyond the name, location of residence, and status of Citizenship or Subjectry of each person. The Number of Representatives shall not exceed one for every thirty thousand Persons, but each Province shall have at least one Representative; and until such enumeration shall be made, the Province of West Continent, Monticello, shall be entitled to choose eight, East Continent, Monticello, eight, South Continent, Monticello, five, Grande, New Texas, eight, and Panhandle, New Texas, six.

When vacancies happen in the Representation from any Province, the Executive Authority thereof shall issue Writs of Election to fill such Vacancies.

The House of Representatives shall choose their Speaker and other Officers; and shall have the sole Power of Impeachment.

SECTION 4. The Senate of the Jeffersonian Republic shall be composed of two Senators from each Province, chosen by the legislature thereof for six years; and each Senator shall have one vote.

Immediately after they shall be assembled in consequence of the first Election, they shall be divided as equally as may be into three Classes. The seats of the Senators of the first Class shall be vacated at the expiration of the second year, of the second Class at the expiration of the fourth year, and of the third Class at the expiration of the sixth year, so that one-third may be chosen every second year; and if vacancies happen by resignation, or otherwise, during the Recess of the Legislature of any Province, the Executive Body thereof may make temporary appointments until the next Meeting of the Legislature, which shall then fill such vacancies.

No Person shall be a Senator who shall not have been nine years a Citizen of the Jeffersonian Republic, and who shall not, when elected, be an inhabitant of that Province for which he shall be chosen. No Senator shall be elected to more than three terms, and no more than two of those terms shall be consecutive to any other.

The three junior members of the Pentamvirate of the Jeffersonian Republic shall be Triumvirate of the Senate, but shall have no vote, unless the Senate be equally divided. The Senate shall choose their other Officers.

The Senate shall have the sole power to try all impeachments. When sitting for that purpose, they shall be on oath or affirmation. When a Councilor of the Pentamvirate of the Jeffersonian Republic is tried, the Chief Justice shall preside: and no Person shall be convicted without the concurrence of two-thirds of the members present.

Judgement in case of impeachment shall not extend further than to removal from office, and disqualification to hold and enjoy any office of honor, trust or profit under the Jeffersonian Republic; but the party convicted shall nevertheless be liable and subject to indictment, trial, judgement and punishment, according to Law.

SECTION 5. The times, places and manner of holding elections for senators and representatives, shall be prescribed in each Province by the legislature thereof; but the Congress may at any time by law make or alter such regulations, except as to the places of choosing Senators.

The Congress shall assemble at least once in every year, and such meeting shall be on the first Monday in Sixthmonth, unless they shall by law appoint a different day.

SECTION 6. Each House shall be the judge of the elections, returns and qualifications of its own members, and a majority of each shall constitute a quorum to do business, but a smaller number may adjourn from day to day, and may be authorized to compel the attendance of absent members, in such manner, and under such penalties as each House shall provide.

Each House may determine the rules of its proceedings, punish its members for disorderly behavior, and with the concurrence of two-thirds, expel a member.

Each House shall keep a journal of its proceedings, and at least once each year publish the same, excepting such parts as may in their judgement require secrecy; and the yeas and nays of the members of either House on any question shall, at the desire of one-fifth of those present, be entered on the journal.

Neither House, during the sessions of Congress, shall without the consent of the other, adjourn for more than three days, nor to any other place than that in which the two Houses shall be sitting.

SECTION 7. The Senators and Representatives shall receive a compensation for their services, paid out of the Treasury of the Jeffersonian Republic, which shall not, in whatever forms, in total exceed the average income of all Jeffersonian Citizens at the time of election. This compensation shall not be altered for any Senator or Representative during the term for which he has been elected.

No Senator or Representative shall, during the time for which he was elected, be appointed to any civil office under the authority of the Jeffersonian Republic, which shall have been created, or the emoluments whereof shall have been increased during such time; and no Person holding any Office under the Jeffersonian Republic, shall be a member of either House during his continuance in Office.

To further reduce the burden of government on the people, there shall be no pension or other retirement arrangement provided by the government for any Senator, Representative, Councillor, or other elected or appointed officer or agent of the Jeffersonian Republic, except for long-term, active, regular military service. The formation of unions, trade associations, and the like, by any and all officers, agents, or employees of government at all levels, is hereby prohibited.

SECTION 8. All bills for raising revenue shall originate in the House of Representatives; but the Senate may propose or concur with amendments as on other bills.

No amendment, rider, or any other attachment or alteration to any bill shall be valid unless directly related to the original title, language, and meaning of said bill.

No bill shall pass the House of Representatives without demonstrating a compelling need for its implementation as law with full respect to the rights of individuals and restrictions upon government declared herein; nor shall any bill pass unless the full content of said bill has been available for public review for not less than one-half Monticellan year before it is voted upon.

Every bill which shall have passed the House of representatives and the senate, shall before it become Law, be presented to the Pentamvirate of the Jeffersonian Republic; if a majority of the Five approve they shall sign it, but if not they shall return it, with their objections to that House in which it shall have originated, who shall enter the objections at large on their journal, and proceed to reconsider it. If after such reconsideration two-thirds of that House shall agree to pass the bill, it shall be sent, together with the objections, to the other House, by which it shall likewise be reconsidered, and if approved by two-thirds of that House, it shall become a law. But in all such cases the votes of both Houses shall be determined by yeas and nays, and the names of the Persons voting for and against the bill shall be entered on the journal of each House respectively. If any bill shall not be returned by the Pentamvirate within ten days (Saturdays and Sundays excepted) after it shall have been presented to them, the same shall be a Law, in like manner as if they had signed it, unless the Congress by their adjournment prevent its return, in which case it shall not be a Law.

Every order, resolution, or vote to which the concurrence of the Senate and House of Representatives may be necessary (except on a question of adjournment) shall be presented to the Pentamvirate of the Jeffersonian Republic; and before the same shall take effect, shall be approved by them, or, being disapproved by them, shall be repassed by two-thirds of the Senate and House of Representatives, according to the rules and limitations prescribed in the case of a bill.

SECTION 9. The wasteful, destructive and thieving practice of redistrubition of wealth through government funding of social programs, entitlements, endowments for arts, subsidies, incentives, foreign aid, and the like, to include any system comparable to those known as Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid, Minimum Wage, Food Stamps, or Electronic Benfits Transfer, is hereby prohibited; and the Jeffersonian Republic shall not borrow money from any other nation; nor shall it engage in deficit spending; and if the national budget is not balanced at the end of each legislative session, all members of the House of Representatives, the Senate, the Cabinet, and the Pentamvirate, shall be denied their federal salaries until the budget is balanced; and any salary not paid during such period shall not under any circumstances be compensated, but instead put toward any debt or other financial shortcoming suffered by the Republic. Furthermore, all members of the House of Representatives, in office during such deficit, shall be ineligible for reelection for the term immediately following. No tax upon income, property or estates shall ever be laid; and the total of all government spending shall never exceed five percent of the gross domestic product, except in time and only for the duration of declared war.

The Congress shall have power only as described herein:

  • To lay and collect taxes, duties, imposts and excises, for no other purpose than to pay the debts and provide for the common defense of the Jeffersonian Republic; but all taxes, duties, imposts and excises shall be uniform throughout the Jeffersonian Republic;
  • To establish a uniform rule of naturalization, and uniform laws on the subject of bankruptcies throughout the Jeffersonian Republic;
  • To coin money, regulate the value thereof, and of foreign coin, and fix the standard of weights and measures, save that gold, silver, platinum, and similarly precious metals or commodities shall be considered legal tender;
  • To provide for the punishment of counterfeiting the securities and current coin of the Jeffersonian Republic, save that government approval or certification of the aforementioned metals or commodities shall not be required between consenting parties;
  • To promote the progress of science and useful arts, by securing for limited times, through patent and copyright, to authors and inventors, the exclusive right to their respective writings and discoveries;
  • To constitute tribunals inferior to the Supreme Court;
  • To define and punish piracies and felonies committed in International Space, and offences against the Law of Nations;
  • To declare war, grant letters of marque and reprisal, and make rules concerning captures planetside and in space;
  • To raise and support the Militia, but no appropriation of money to that use shall be for a longer term than two years;
  • To make rules for the government and regulation of the Militia;
  • To provide for calling forth the Militia to execute the laws of the Jeffersonian Republic, suppress insurrections and repel invasions;
  • To provide for organizing, arming, and disciplining the Militia, and for governing such part of them as may be employed in the service of the Jeffersonian Republic, reserving to the Provinces respectively, the appointment of the officers, and the authority of training the Militia according to the discipline prescribed by Congress;
  • To exercise exclusive legislation in all cases whatsoever, over such district (not exceeding two thousand cubic kilometers) as may, by cession of particular Provinces, and the acceptance of Congress, become the seat of government of the Jeffersonian Republic, and to exercise like authority over all places purchased by the consent of the legislature of the Province in which the same shall be, for the construction of forts, magazines, arsenals, dock yards, and other needful installations; - And
  • To make all laws which shall be necessary and proper for carrying into execution the foregoing powers, and all other powers vested by this Constitution in the government of the Jeffersonian Republic, or in any department or officer thereof.

    Congress shall have no further power except as specified by Amendment to this Constitution.

    Congress shall make no law which applies to the Citizens of the Jeffersonian Republic which does not apply equally to the Senators or Representatives, and Congress shall make no law which applies to the Senators or Representatives which does not apply equally to the Citizens of the Jeffersonian Republic.

    Any provision of law or regulation of the Jeffersonian Republic may be repealed by the Provinces, and such repeal shall be effective when the legislatures of two-thirds of the Provinces approve resolutions for this purpose that particularly describe the same provision or provisions of law or regulation to be repealed.

    SECTION 10. The migration of such Persons as any of the Provinces shall think proper to admit, shall be authorized or denied by the Department of Citizenship of the Jeffersonian Republic, in a manner to be prescribed by Law.

    The privilege of the writ of habeas corpus shall not be suspended, unless when in cases of rebellion or invasion the public safety may require it.

    No bill of attainder or ex post facto law shall be passed.

    Being inevitably prone to abuse, and attractive to the most destructive and tyrannical elements in society, no malum prohibitum law or scheme shall be passed except by Amendment to this Constitution.

    No law or scheme implementing the principle of collective responsibility shall be valid. No person shall be punished, fined, or restricted in his rights for the actions or inactions of another person.

    No capitation, or other direct, tax shall be laid.

    No tax or duty shall be laid on articles exported from any Province. No preference shall be given for any regulation of commerce or revenue to the ports of one Province over those of another: nor shall vessels bound to, or from, one Province, be obliged to enter, clear, or pay duties in another.

    No money shall be drawn from the treasury, but in consequence of appropriations made by Law; and a regular statement and account of the receipts and expenditures of all public money shall be published at least once each year.

    No title of nobility shall be granted by the Jeffersonian Republic: and no Person holding any office of profit or trust under the Republic shall, without the consent of the Congress, accept of any present, emolument, office, or title, of any kind whatever, from any king, prince, or foreign State.

    No foreign State shall have any base of or facilities for military forces, personnel, or operations within the territory of the Jeffersonian Republic, except allies by treaty, and only while in time, and for the duration, of declared war; nor shall any extraterritoriality be granted within the territory of the Jeffersonian Republic to any foreign State, except for official embassies and ships of foreign registration as recognized by International Law.

    SECTION 11. No Province shall enter into any treaty, alliance, or confederation; grant letters of marque and reprisal; coin money; emit bills of credit; make any thing a tender in payment of debts except what is recognized by the Treasury of the Jeffersonian Republic; pass any bill of attainder, ex post facto law, or law impairing the obligation of contracts, or grant any title of nobility.

    No Province shall, without the consent of Congress, lay any imposts or duties on imports or exports, except what may be absolutely necessary for executing its inspection laws; and the net produce of all duties and imposts, laid by any Province on imports or exports, shall be for the use of the Treasury of the Jeffersonian Republic; and all such laws shall be subject to the revision and control of the Congress. No Province shall, without the consent of Congress, lay any duty of tonnage; keep troops, or ships of war in time of peace, except for the maintenance of an official regional or planetary Militia as defined by the Department of Defense; enter into any agreement or compact with another Province, or with a foreign power; or engage in war, unless actually invaded, or in such imminent danger as will not admit of delay.

    SECTION 12. Before he enter on the execution of his office, each Senator or Representative shall take the following oath or affirmation:

    "I do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will faithfully execute the office of Senator (or Representative) of the Jeffersonian Republic, and will to the best of my ability, preserve, protect and defend the Constitution of the Jeffersonian Republic. I understand that violation of this oath (or affirmation) shall be considered an act of Treason which may be punishable by death."

    Within one hundred hours of his election, each Senator or Representative shall, while physically within the district from which he is elected, publicly read aloud to his constituents the entire text of this Constitution. Failure to do so shall render the Senator or Representative ineligible for office and he shall be replaced by the candidate with the next-highest number of votes.

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