The Life of John Marshall: Conflict and construction, 1800-1815

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Houghton Mifflin, 1919

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Strana 100 - The Constitution is either a superior, paramount law, unchangeable by ordinary means, or it is on a level with ordinary legislative acts, and like other acts is alterable when the Legislature shall please to alter it. If the former part of the alternative be true, then a legislative act contrary to the Constitution is not law; if the latter part be true, then written Constitutions are absurd attempts on the part of the people...
Strana 137 - If the former part of the alternative be true, then a legislative act contrary to the Constitution is not law ; if the latter part be true, then written constitutions are absurd attempts on the part of the people to limit a power in its own nature illimitable.
Strana 118 - The interpretation of the laws is the proper and peculiar province of the courts. A constitution is in fact, and must be, regarded by the judges as a fundamental law. It therefore belongs to them to ascertain its meaning as well as the meaning of any particular act proceeding from the legislative body.
Strana 138 - ... what is expressly forbidden, such act, notwithstanding the express prohibition, is in reality effectual. It would be giving to the legislature a practical and real omnipotence, with the same breath, which professes to restrict their powers within narrow limits. It is prescribing limits, and declaring, that those limits may be passed at pleasure.
Strana 161 - Congress must possess the choice of means, and must be empowered to use any means which are in fact conducive to the exercise of a power granted by the constitution.
Strana 128 - To this objection, which is of recent date, it is sufficient to observe that practice and acquiescence under it for a period of several years, commencing with the organization of the judicial system, affords an irresistible answer, and has indeed fixed the construction. It is a contemporary interpretation of the most forcible nature. This practical exposition is too strong and obstinate to be shaken or controlled. Of course, the question is at rest, and ought not now to be disturbed.
Strana 348 - On the contrary, if war be actually levied, that is, if a body of men be actually assembled for the purpose of effecting by force a treasonable purpose, all those who perform any part, however minute, or however remote from the scene of action, and who are actually leagued in the general conspiracy, are to be considered as traitors.
Strana 612 - Blannerhassett's character, that on his arrival in America, he retired even from the population of the Atlantic States, and sought quiet and solitude in the bosom of our western forests. But he carried with him taste and science and wealth; and lo, the desert smiled!
Strana 261 - To be prepared for war is one of the most effectual means of preserving peace.
Strana 280 - The Western States (I speak now from my own observation) stand as it were upon a pivot. The touch of a feather would turn them any way.

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