(1) Introduction To American Constitution:
The basic philosophy, which works behind American Constitution, is that people are sovereign. Therefore, American Constitution has been created by and for people of United States of America. American Constitution gives people of United States elected representatives. Thus, American Constitution guarantees of America power to change fundamental law through their people’s sovereignty.
(2) Salient Features Of American Constitution:
Followings are salient features of American Constitution:
(i) Shortest constitution
(ii) Written constitution
(iii) Rigid constitution
(iv) Federal constitution
(v) Supremacy of constitution
(vi) Bicameral legislature
(vii) Separation of powers
(viii) Limited powers
(ix) Check & balance
(x) Independent judiciary
(xi) Fundamental rights
(xii) Rule of law
(xiii) Judicial review
(xiv) Dual citizenship
(i) Shortest Constitution:
A salient feature of American Constitution is that it is the shortest constitution in the world. It is consisted of seven article and some amendments. In addition to this, it was comprised of four hundred words.
(ii) Written Constitution:
Another important feature of American Constitution is th it is in written or documentary form.
(iii) Rigid Constitution:
Another prominent feature of American Constitution is that it is not easy to amend it. Procedure to amend American Constitution is really very complicated and difficult one. Due to this, American Constitution is considered the most rigid constitution,
(iv) Federal Constitution:
Under American Constitution, American states have been united into a federation. In such federation, central government cannot interfere into affairs of states because states are autonomous in their affairs. Due to this feature, American Constitution is in federal form.
(v) Supremacy Of Constitution:
Another salient feature of American Constitution is that it is the Supreme law of the country. Both federal government and States cannot override it.
(vi) Bicameral Legislature:
Another important feature of American Constitution is that it has provided bicameral legislature. In United Sates of America, legislature is Congress, and this legislature consists of two houses Upper House is called Senate while Lower House is called House of Representatives.
(vii) Separation Of Powers:
Another prominent feature of American Constitution is its scheme of separated powers. Legislature, executive and judiciary have separate powers and functions under American Constitution.
(viii) Limited Powers:
In addition to doctrine of separation of powers, American Constitution has introduced concept of limited powers. Through this concept, American Constitution has not only defined powers, which American government can exercise, but has also imposed some restrictions on exercise of these powers.
(ix) Check & Balance:
Under American Constitution, there exists great association between doctrine of separation of powers and doctrine of check and balance. American Constitution has introduced check and balance on powers of three branches of government For example, American Congress has power to make laws while President can veto it. In this way, American President has check over the Congress.
(x) Independent Judiciary:
It is due to American Constitution that American judiciary enjoys independence. American Supreme Court and other federal courts possess judicial powers, and other branches of government cannot interfere into these powers.
(xi) Fundamental Rights:
The Americans possess some rights like property rights, freedom of speech, and freedom of religious worship. In fact, it is American Constitution, which has provided these rights and has also guaranteed these rights.
(xii) Rule of Law:
Another distinctive feature of American Constitution is that it has laid down the principle of rule of law throughout the whole country.
(x) Judicial Review:
Another important feature of American Constitution is that American Supreme Court can declare any law or executive order has provided power for Judicial Review. Through this power, null or void particularly when such law or executive order is inconsistent with American Constitution.
(xiv) Dual Citizenship:
American Constitution has provided concept of dual citizenship. According to this concept, an American is a citizen of United States of American as well as of the Federating State, where he or she is domiciled.
(3) Conclusion :
To conclude, it can be stated that American Constitution can be considered as the oldest written constitution of the world. Since its codification, it has been changing so as to fulfill new teeds of time. And amendments are playing important role as far is changes in American Constitution a concerned.