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16th, 1866. A concurrent resolution of the Senate and House of Representatives, passed July 21st, 1868, declared that more than three-fourths of the States had ratified the proposed amendment, and that it had accordingly become a part of the Constitution of the United States; and the Secretary of State was directed to promulgate it as such, which was accordingly done July 28th, 1868. It is as follows:
“ARTICLE XIV.-SECTION 1. All persons born or naturalized in the United States, and subject to the jurisdiction thereof, are citizens of the United States and of the State wherein they reside. No State shall make or enforce any law which shall abridge the privileges or immunities of citizens of the United States : nor shall any State deprive any person of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law, nor deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws."
$ 652. By this section the rights, privileges and immunities of citizenship are extended to all persons born or naturalized in the United States, and subject to the jurisdiction thereof, without distinction of color or race.
“SECTION 2. Representatives shall be apportioned among the several States according to their respective numbers, counting the whole number of persons in each State, excluding Indians not taxed. But when the right to vote at any election for the choice of electors for President and VicePresident of the United States, representatives in Congress, the executive or judicial officers of a State, or the members of the Legislature thereof, is denied to any of the male inhabitants of such State, being twenty-one years of age, and citizens of the United States, or in any way abridged, except for participation in rebellion or other crime, the basis of representation therein shall be reduced in the proportion which the number of such male citizens shall bear to the whole number of male citizens twenty-one years of age in such State."
$ 653. This section provides that if any State shall deny the right of voting for certain officers to any of its male citizens, being twenty-one years of age, except for crime, the basis of representation of such State in Congress shall be reduced in like proportion.
“SECTION 3. No person shall be a senator or representative in Congress, or elector of President or Vice-President, or hold any office, civil or military, under the United States, or under any State, who, having previously taken an oath as a member of Congress, or as an officer of the United States, or as a member of any State Legislature, or as an executive or judicial officer of any State, to support the Constitution of the United States, shall have engaged in insurrection or rebellion against the same, or given aid or comfort to the enemies thereof. But Congress may, by a vote of two-thirds of each House, remove such disability.”
$ 654. Under this section certain persons described therein are disqualified from holding any office under the United States, or any State, unless Congress shall by a two-thirds vote remove such disability.
"SECTION 4. The validity of the public debt of the United States, authorized by law, including debts incurred for payment of pensions and bounties for services in suppressing insurrection or rebellion, shall not be questioned. But neither the United States nor any State shall assume or pay any debt
or obligation incurred in aid of insurrection or rebellion against the United States, or any claim for the loss or emancipation of any slave; but all such debts, obligations and claims shall be held illegal and void.”
$ 655. This enforces the validity of certain debts of the United States, and declares that debts or obligations incurred in aid of insurrection or rebellion, and claims for the loss or emancipation of slaves, are illegal and void.
“SECTION 5. Congress shall have power to enforce, by appropriate legislation, the provisions of this article.”
$ 656. This section grants to Congress, in express terms, the right to pass such laws as may be appropriate for enforcing the preceding sections of the amendment.
$ 657. The fifteenth amendment was proposed to the legislatures of the several States by a joint resolution of twothirds of the Senate and of the House of Representatives, passed in the month of February, 1869, and communicated to the Department of State on the 27th day of that month. On March 30th, 1870, the Secretary of State announced by proclamation that three-fourths of the States had ratified the amendment, and that it had become a part of the Constitution.
"ARTICLE XV.-SECTION 1. The right of the citizens of the United States to vote shall not be denied or abridged by the United States, or by any State, on account of race, color or previous condition of servitude."
$ 658. The object of this amendment is to provide that the right of citizens of the United States to vote shall not be denied or abridged by the United States, or by any State, on account of race, color, or previous condition of servitude.
“SECTION 2. The Congress shall have power to enforce this article by appropriate legislation.”
We have already stated that the first Continental Congress, which assembled at Philadelphia September 5, 1774, adopted a Declaration of Rights. ($21.) The following is the document, as finally agreed upon by the Congress, October 14, 1775. It is confined to the consideration of such rights as had been infringed by acts of the British Parliament since the year 1763, for the further consideration of the general state of American rights was postponed until a subsequent day.
DECLARATION OF RIGHTS.
WHEREAS, since the close of the last war, the British parliament claiming a power of right, to bind the people of America by statutes in all cases whatsoever, hath, in some acts, expressly imposed taxes on them, and in others, under various pretences, but in fact for the purpose of raising a revenue, hath imposed rates and duties payable in these colonies, established a board of commissioners, with unconstitutional powers, and extended the jurisdiction of courts of admiralty, not only for collecting the said duties, but for the trial of causes merely arising within the body of a county.
And whereas, in consequence of other statutes, judges, who before held only estates at will in their offices, have been made dependant on the crown alone for their salaries, and standing armies kept in times of peace: And whereas it has lately been resolved in parliament, that by force of a statute, made in the thirty-fifth year of the reign of king Henry the eighth, colonists may be transported to England, and tried there upon accusations for treasons, and misprisions, or concealments of treasons com