Amendments 1-10 Amendments 19-27
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Last update:
  12-Dec-99
1996-2004
  Mike Todd

The American Constitution 4
Amendments 11-18

Note: The sub-section numbers are not in the text of the Constitution and have been added here for clarity. This also represents the current version, with various changes from the original as a result of the various amendments. Because the Constitution is a long document, I've split it into:

Article 1 * Articles 2-7
Amendments 1-10 * Amendments 11-18 * Amendments 19-27


  Amendment 11 
Proposed 5-Mar-1794, ratified 8-Jan-1798
Ensures federal judicial powers are not used in lawsuits between citizens of another state
   
The judicial power of the United States shall not be construed to extend to any suit in law or equity, commenced or prosecuted against one of the United States by citizens of another state, or by citizens or subjects of any foreign state.
  Amendment 12
Proposed 9-Dec-1803, ratified 25-Sep-1804
Provides for Presidential election by Electoral College
 
12.1   
The electors shall meet in their respective states and vote by ballot for President and Vice President, one of whom, at least, shall not be an inhabitant of the same state with themselves; they shall name in their ballots the person voted for as President, and in distinct ballots the person voted for as Vice President, and they shall make distinct lists of all persons voted for as President, and of all persons voted for as Vice President, and of the number of votes for each, which lists they shall sign and certify, and transmit sealed to the seat of the government of the United States, directed to the President of the Senate; The President of the Senate shall, in the presence of the Senate and House of Representatives, open all the certificates and the votes shall then be counted; The person having the greatest number of votes for President, shall be the President, if such number be a majority of the whole number of electors appointed; and if no person have such majority, then from the persons having the highest numbers not exceeding three on the list of those voted for as President, the House of Representatives shall choose immediately, by ballot, the President. But in choosing the President, the votes shall be taken by states, the representation from each state having one vote; a quorum for this purpose shall consist of a member or members from two-thirds of the states, and a majority of all the states shall be necessary to a choice. And if the House of Representatives shall not choose a President whenever the right of choice shall devolve upon them, before the fourth day of March next following, then the Vice President shall act as President, as in the case of the death or other constitutional disability of the President.
 
12.2   
The person having the greatest number of votes as Vice President, shall be the Vice President, if such number be a majority of the whole number of electors appointed, and if no person have a majority, then from the two highest numbers on the list, the Senate shall choose the Vice President; a quorum for the purpose shall consist of two-thirds of the whole number of Senators, and a majority of the whole number shall be necessary to a choice. But no person constitutionally ineligible to the office of President shall be eligible to that of Vice President of the United States.
  Amendment 13  
Proposed 1864(rejected) Proposed again 1865, ratified 2-Dec-1865, in force 18-Dec-1865
Prohibition of slavery
 
13.1   
Neither slavery nor involuntary servitude, except as a punishment for crime whereof the party shall have been duly convicted, shall exist within the United States, or any place subject to their jurisdiction.
 
13.2   
Congress shall have power to enforce this article by appropriate legislation.
  Amendment 14  

Proposed 13-Jun-1866, ratified 28-Jul-1868
Enshrines citizenship rights for slaves, and prohibits Confederates from holding office

 
14.1   
All persons born or naturalized in the United States, and subject to the jurisdiction thereof, are citizens of the United States and of the state wherein they reside. No state shall make or enforce any law which shall abridge the privileges or immunities of citizens of the United States; nor shall any state deprive any person of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws.
 
14.2   
Representatives shall be apportioned among the several states according to their respective numbers, counting the whole number of persons in each state, excluding Indians not taxed. But when the right to vote at any election for the choice of electors for President and Vice President of the United States, Representatives in Congress, the executive and judicial officers of a state, or the members of the legislature thereof, is denied to any of the male inhabitants of such state, being twenty-one years of age, and citizens of the United States, or in any way abridged, except for participation in rebellion, or other crime, the basis of representation therein shall be reduced in the proportion which the number of such male citizens shall bear to the whole number of male citizens twenty-one years of age in such state.
 
14.3   
No person shall be a Senator or Representative in Congress, or elector of President and Vice President, or hold any office, civil or military, under the United States, or under any state, who, having previously taken an oath, as a member of Congress, or as an officer of the United States, or as a member of any state legislature, or as an executive or judicial officer of any state, to support the Constitution of the United States, shall have engaged in insurrection or rebellion against the same, or given aid or comfort to the enemies thereof. But Congress may by a vote of two-thirds of each house, remove such disability.
 
14.4   
The validity of the public debt of the United States, authorized by law, including debts incurred for payment of pensions and bounties for services in suppressing insurrection or rebellion, shall not be questioned. But neither the United States nor any state shall assume or pay any debt or obligation incurred in aid of insurrection or rebellion against the United States, or any claim for the loss or emancipation of any slave; but all such debts, obligations and claims shall be held illegal and void.
 
14.5   
The Congress shall have power to enforce, by appropriate legislation, the provisions of this article.
  Amendment 15  
Proposed 2-Feb-1869, ratified 30-Mar-1870
Ensures the right to vote for blacks and slaves
 
15.1   
The right of citizens of the United States to vote shall not be denied or abridged by the United States or by any state on account of race, color, or previous condition of servitude.
 
15.2   
The Congress shall have power to enforce this article by appropriate legislation.
  Amendment 16  
Proposed 12-Jul-1909, ratified 25-Feb-1913
Introduces income tax
   
The Congress shall have power to lay and collect taxes on incomes, from whatever source derived, without apportionment among the several States, and without regard to any census or enumeration.
  Amendment 17  
Proposed 16-May-1912, ratified 31-May-1913
Provides for direct election of Senators
 
17.1   
The Senate of the United States shall be composed of two Senators from each state, elected by the people thereof, for six years; and each Senator shall have one vote. The electors in each state shall have the qualifications requisite for electors of the most numerous branch of the state legislatures.
 
17.2   
When vacancies happen in the representation of any state in the Senate, the executive authority of such state shall issue writs of election to fill such vacancies: Provided, that the legislature of any state may empower the executive thereof to make temporary appointments until the people fill the vacancies by election as the legislature may direct.
 
17.3   
This amendment shall not be so construed as to affect the election or term of any Senator chosen before it becomes valid as part of the Constitution.
  Amendment 18  
Proposed 18-Dec-1917, ratified 29-Jan-1919, in force 16-Jan-1920
Prohibition - outlaws sale of alcoholic drinks
 
18.1   
After one year from the ratification of this article the manufacture, sale, or transportation of intoxicating liquors within, the importation thereof into, or the exportation thereof from the United States and all territory subject to the jurisdiction thereof for beverage purposes is hereby prohibited.
 
18.2   
The Congress and the several states shall have concurrent power to enforce this article by appropriate legislation.
 
18.3   
This article shall be inoperative unless it shall have been ratified as an amendment to the Constitution by the legislatures of the several states, as provided in the Constitution, within seven years from the date of the submission hereof to the states by the Congress.
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Article 1 * Articles 2-7
Amendments 1-10 * Amendments 11-18 * Amendments 19-27