My Brother in Law is studying for his US Citizenship test (he is from Europe). He said there are 100 questions, and 200 possible questions to studyt for. Was curious what they were so am looking at the US Government flashcards. Below is the first question plus some of my own explanation added.
What is the Supreme Law of the Land? The Constitution.
On 4 July 1776, the American colonies declared their independence, and in 1778 they put together the Articles of Confederation to loosely define their government. But the articles were imperfect, and did not allow for a strong government that could govern a loose gathering of 13 states and defend against strong foreign powers. Stronger and more clearly defined guidelines were needed.
Beginning 25 May 1787, nearly 11 years after the US declared its independence, 55 representatives from 12 of the 13 states (Rhode Island did not send delegates) gathered for 4 months to negotiate the Constitution. The representatives were wealthy, learned (and white) men with different — often contrasting — opinions who engaged in countless debates and took more than 400 votes. They were over to overcome strong differences of opinion on whether the Federal or State governments should have more power, if each state should have equal representation or one based on population, how and how long the President should be appointed, and the issue of slavery (they agreed to table the discussion of slavery for 20 years but counted each slave as 3/5 of a person and allowed for 3 new non-slavery states.
The final document a living (i.e. amendable) document defining a republic providing Executive, Legislative and Judicial branches of government. The fincal consitution, The Supreme Law of the United States of the America, was signed in September 1787 and ratified by the 9th state (9 of the 13 states were required to ratify the document) on 21 June 1788.
The first 10 Amendments, known as the Bill of Rights and which clearly define individual freedoms, were added in 1791.