What Is An Amendment ?  

An amendment, or a constitutional amendment to be more precise, refers to a change or a modification of the constitution of a state or a nation. The constitutional alterations or the amendments are usually made to enable the governments to enforce new laws for the betterment of the society. As the constitutions of most US states are usually deep-rooted and inflexible, a long, complicated procedure needs to be followed to put any amendment into practice. This procedure is different from the one used for ratifying ordinary laws.

In some states, a direct approval of the electorate in a referendum is enough to enforce an amendment. However, in most of the other states and nations, the amendment proposal must be first approved and by the legislature. The constitutions of majority of states in the US can be amended by way of a constitutional referendum prompted by a citizen’s initiative.

Following are the two different ways in which an amendment to the US Constitution can be put forward for approval:

  • The bill or the amendment proposal should be first passed by a two-thirds majority in each of the two houses of the legislature. After gaining approval from the houses, it is presented in front of the state governments for final ratification. A time limit of seven years has been pre-determined by the Congress for the approval of any proposed amendment.
  • Another less popular method is to put forward the amendment through a Constitutional Convention called by two-thirds of the State legislatures. Once approved, the amendment proposal is sent to the state legislatures for ratification by 3/4th of the conventions.

Irrespective of the path chosen, the amendment must be approved and ratified by 3/4th of the states of the nation before it can be put into practice. An interesting point to note is that although the US President is free to make his own opinion, he is at no pint involved in the formal process of enforcing a constitutional amendment. He is not empowered to veto an amendment proposal or ratification.

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What Is An Amendment

What-Is-The-10th-Amendment      The 10th Amendment was approved by the legislature as a part of the Bill of Rights on December 15, 1971. The Amend states, “The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people.” In other words, the Amendment reinforces the principle of federation. It suggests that the powers which are not in the hands of the national government nor disallowed to the goverments of states by the Constitution are in the hands of respective states or their people. More..




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