The United States Constitution
is the supreme law
of the United States of America
. It was adopted on September 17, 1787, by the Constitutional Convention
, and later ratified
by conventions in each state
in the name of "the People"; it has since been amended
seventeen times, besides the 10 added through the Bill of Rights
. The Constitution has a central place in United States law
and political culture
. The handwritten, or "engrossed", original document
is on display at the National Archives and Records Administration
in Washington, D.C.
The United States Constitution has 4,543 words, including the signatures.
Several of the ideas in the Constitution were new, and a large number of ideas were drawn from the literature of Republicanism in the United States, from the experiences of the 13 states, and from the British experience with mixed government. The most important influence from the European continent was from Montesquieu, who emphasized the need to have balanced forces pushing against each other to prevent tyranny.
Stephen Grover Cleveland
(March 18, 1837 – June 24, 1908) was the 22nd and 24th President of the United States
. Cleveland is the only president to serve two non-consecutive terms (1885–1889 and 1893–1897) and therefore is the only individual to be counted twice in the numbering of the presidents. He was the winner of the popular vote
for president three times—in 1884
, and 1892
—and was the only Democrat
elected to the presidency in the era of Republican
political domination that lasted from 1860 to 1912. Cleveland was the leader of the pro-business Bourbon Democrats
who opposed high tariffs, free silver
to business, farmers or veterans. His battles for political reform and fiscal conservatism made him an icon for American conservatives. His second term coincided with the Panic of 1893
, a severe national depression that Cleveland was unable to reverse. It ruined his Democratic party, opening the way for Republican landslides in 1894 and 1896, and for the agrarian and silverite seizure of his Democratic party in 1896. Cleveland took strong positions and in turn took heavy criticism. His intervention in the Pullman Strike
of 1894 to keep the railroads moving angered labor unions nationwide and angered the party in Illinois; his support of the gold standard
and opposition to free silver
alienated the agrarian
wing of the Democratic Party. Biographer Allan Nevins
wrote, "in Grover Cleveland the greatness lies in typical rather than unusual qualities. He had no endowments that thousands of men do not have. He possessed honesty, courage, firmness, independence, and common sense. But he possessed them to a degree other men do not."