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Ratification Debate

RatificationOn Septemebr 17, 1787, the Constitution was signed by the delegates and dispatched to the Congress, in New York, under a cover letter from George Washington, whio had served as the President of the Convention. 

The Congress, because several members were also delegates to the Federal Convention, was able to approve Constitution, with no changes, and sent it on to the States for for ratification.

A furious debate ensued in the several States during the ratification process which revealed a a wide range of defects in the original document, resulting in the States submitting 189 proposals for change to the Congress.

At the first session of the new Congress, the 189 proposals were reduced to seventeen (17) significant amendments of which twelve (12) were approved and sent to the States for approval. Of those twelve, ten (10) were approved and we know them as the Bill of Rights. Of significance to one's understanding of the Bill of Rights it is important to recognize that it actually conveys no rights to anyone. The rights addressed within the context of the first ten amenedments were seen to be pre-existing the Constitution and in keeping with the Declaration of Independence's recognition of a domain of natural rights that were beyond the reach of the federal government. A more accurate term, although not uised, woulf be the Bill of Restrictions as the first ten amendments restrict the reach of the federal government rather than grant any rights.

This catagory contains the material related to the debates in the various states.

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