Model State Constitution

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The Model State Constitution is "an ideal of the structure and contents of a state constitution that emphasizes brevity and broad functions and responsibilities of government," according to Ann O'M Bowman and Richard Kearney in "State and Local Government."[1]

The National Municipal League (now the National Civic League) first developed the Model State Constitution in 1921 to advocate constitutional reform based on a "higher-law tradition" (a state constitutional tradition based on basic and enduring principles that reach beyond statutory law) as opposed to "Positive Law Tradition" (a state constitutional tradition based on detailed provisions and procedure). The National Municipal League would revise the Model State Constitution five times with the last revision - the sixth version published in 1963. It does not promote partisan ideals or a particular political ideology but rather a simplistic, more concise, and more readable outline for state fundamental law that seeks to remain flexible to deal with emerging problems.

The Model State Constitution has twelve basic articles:

The Alaska State Constitution was partially inspired by the Model state constitution.[2]

Online Editions at HathiTrust


  1. ^ Ann Bowman and Richard Kearney. State and Local Government. Pg. 63.
  2. ^