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Constitution Monday: No Pay Hike Without Election

Here is the 27th, and so far, final Amendment to the Constitution of the United States:

AMENDMENT XXVII

Originally proposed Sept. 25, 1789. Ratified May 7, 1992.

No law, varying the compensation for the services of the Senators and Representatives, shall take effect, until an election of representatives shall have intervened.

This Amendment effectively says that Congress cannot get the benefit of a salary increase they give themselves until a vote for Members of the House of Representatives has taken place. In practice this could lead to salary increases that take effect for the candidate who defeated the House member who voted for the salary increase.

Take another look at the proposal date and the ratified date. This amendment has been around since the time of George Washington, but not ratified till 1992. This is the longest gap between proposal and ratification of any Amendment.

With the posting of the 27th Amendment, I have finished what I started to do back on August 17, 2009. You can review the whole series at https://alaskanlibrarian.wordpress.com/category/constitution-monday.

I hope this series has helped you take a deeper look at our Constitution. We hear much talk about the Constitution these days, but not much quoting from it aside from the First and Second Amendments. Tell your friends how much more of it there is. Tell them what is and is not in the Constitution. And if you don’t like something that is being done because of something in the Constitution or the way it has been interpreted, then start prodding your Members of Congress to change it. It’s happened 27 times before and can again.

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