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Sunday, February 21, 2010

People: the ultimate source of Authority

"Every nation has a right to govern itself internally under what forms it pleases, and to change these forms at its own will; and externally to transact business with other nations through whatever organ it chooses, whether that be a King, Convention, Assembly, Committee, President, or whatever it be. The only thing essential is, the will of the nation." --Thomas Jefferson to Thomas Pinckney, 1792. ME 9:7

"[The people] are in truth the only legitimate proprietors of the soil and government." --Thomas Jefferson to Pierre Samuel Dupont de Nemours, 1813. ME 19:197

"[It is] the people, to whom all authority belongs." --Thomas Jefferson to Spencer Roane, 1821. ME 15:328

"The constitutions of most of our States assert that all power is inherent in the people; that they may exercise it by themselves in all cases to which they think themselves competent (as in electing their functionaries executive and legislative, and deciding by a jury of themselves in all judiciary cases in which any fact is involved), or they may act by representatives, freely and equally chosen; that it is their right and duty to be at all times armed; that they are entitled to freedom of person, freedom of religion, freedom of property, and freedom of the press." --Thomas Jefferson to John Cartwright, 1824. ME 16:45

"We think experience has proved it safer for the mass of individuals composing the society to reserve to themselves personally the exercise of all rightful powers to which they are competent and to delegate those to which they are not competent to deputies named and removable for unfaithful conduct by themselves immediately." --Thomas Jefferson to Pierre Samuel Dupont de Nemours, 1816. ME 14:487

"The ultimate arbiter is the people of the Union." --Thomas Jefferson to William Johnson, 1823. ME 15:451

1 comment:

IbnElsawra said...

Thank you for Sharing. Very inspiring.