This text is part of:
Table of Contents:
 and that the government formed was federal and not national. Washington, Hamilton, Sherman, Ellsworth, Ames, Bowdoin, Morris, and, in short, all the fathers, took the same view; all recognizing the union of sovereign States. Now, how is it possible for any informed person to doubt that sovereignty is, as James Wilson says, ‘in the people before they make a Constitution, and remains in them after it is made,’ i. e., ‘in thirteen independent sovereignties’—to use his own words? Of course the collective people, that is to say, societies, is meant, for only as organized bodies can the people have political mind and act in government. New York, Massachusetts, Maryland, and the rest of the names in the Constitution, mean only ‘the people’ called by those names—‘the people of the United States.’ ‘The people,’ as States, have the only voters. ‘The people,’ as States, have all the federal representation. ‘The people,’ as States, ‘choose’ and ‘appoint’ and ‘commission’ all representatives, senators and electors of presidents from their own citizens. [Articles I and II.] ‘The people,’ as States, are to ‘establish’ the Constitution through their conventions. [Article VII.] ‘The people,’ as States, are guaranteed by the associated States to be republics or self-governing peoples. [Article IV.] ‘The people,’ as States, are to make all amendments. [Article V.] Each State has ‘suffrage’ in the Senate, which can never end without her ‘consent.’ All these provisions of the constitution, especially the last, make obvious both mind in the State and sovereignty in mind. Denying this seat and residence of sovereign will is simple untruth-criminal, if coupled with knowledge.
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 United States License.