Monday, July 9, 2012

The original wording of the Ninth and Tenth Amendments as proposed by Madison

".....Obscured by the contemporary assumption that the Ninth Amendment is about rights while the Tenth Amendment is about powers, the historical roots of the Ninth Amendment can be found in the state ratification convention demands for a constitutional amendment prohibiting the constructive enlargement of federal power. James Madison’s initial draft of the Ninth Amendment expressly adopted language suggested by the state conventions, and he insisted that the final draft expressed the same rule of construction desired by the states. The altered language of the final draft, however, prompted former Virginia Governor Edmund Randolph to halt his state’s efforts to ratify the Bill of Rights due
to his concern that the Ninth no longer reflected the demands of the state convention.
Antifederalists used Randolph’s concerns to delay Virginia’s, and thus the country’s,
ratification of the Bill of Rights for two years. While ratification remained pending in
Virginia, Madison delivered a major speech in the House of Representatives explaining that
the origin and meaning of the Ninth Amendment in fact were rooted in the proposals of the
state conventions and that the Ninth guarded against a “latitude of interpretation” to the
injury of the states. Although the Ninth’s rule of construction distinguishes it from the Tenth
Amendment’s declaration of principle, Madison and other legal writers at the time of the
Founding viewed the Ninth and Tenth Amendments as twin guardians of our federalist
structure of government....."

- Kurt T. Lash, Professor of Law ~ The Lost Original Meaning of the Ninth Amendment. 2, December 2004.


"The exceptions here or elsewhere in the Constitution, made in favor of particular rights, shall not be so construed as to diminish the just importance of other rights retained by the people, or as to enlarge the powers delegated by the Constitution; but either as actual limitations of such powers, or as inserted merely for greater caution."


"The powers not delegated by this Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively."

Source: Amendments Offered in Congress by James Madison June 8, 1789

1 comment:

  1. Love the site...but I must point out that part of your tag line is not grammatically correct. It is not a sentence even though it is punctuated as one and therefore might make the site look less intelligent. "The classical liberal principles of limited government, division of power, republicanism, Federalism, State sovereignty, individual liberty, and a firm reliance on Divine Providence."


G. Edward Griffin on the Federal Reserve