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Author: Brett Thomas

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Alabama Constitution

  The Alabama Constitution is the fundamental governing document of the state of Alabama. Background The current (and sixth) Alabama Constitution was adopted in 1901. As of the beginning of 2021, the current constitution had been amended 977 times, including constitutional amendments of local applicability. The most recent amendments to the Alabama Constitution that appeared […]

Alaska Constitution

  The Alaska Constitution is the fundamental governing document of the state of Alaska. Features Alaska has become a case study in recent constitutional development. Along with Hawaii, Alaska was able learn from the constitutional experiences of others states, and its constitution was penned during a more progressive time of reform in state governments. These […]

Arizona Constitution

  The Arizona Constitution is the fundamental governing document of the state of Arizona. Background The current (and first) Arizona Constitution was adopted in 1912. The current constitution has been amended 156 times. The most recent amendments to the Arizona Constitution, of which there were two, were approved by voters in 2018. Arizona has a […]

Arkansas Constitution

  The Arkansas Constitution is the fundamental governing document of the state of Arkansas. Background The current (and fifth) Arkansas Constitution was adopted in 1874. The current constitution has been amended 102 times. The most recent amendments to the Arkansas Constitution, of which there were two, were approved by voters in 2020. Arkansas has a […]

California Constitution

The California Constitution is the fundamental governing document of the state of California. Background The current (and second) California Constitution was adopted in 1879. The current constitution has been amended over 516 times. The most recent amendments to the California Constitution, of which there were two, were approved by voters in 2020. California has a […]

Colorado Constitution

The Colorado Constitution is the fundamental governing document of the state of Colorado. Background The current (and first) Colorado Constitution was adopted in 1876. The current constitution has been amended 166 times. The most recent amendments to the Colorado Constitution, of which there were three, were approved by voters in 2020. Colorado has a process […]

Connecticut Constitution

The Connecticut Constitution is the fundamental governing document of the state of Connecticut. Background The current (and second) Connecticut Constitution was adopted in 1965. The current constitution has been amended 32 times. The most recent amendments to the Connecticut Constitution, of which there were two, was approved by voters in 2018. The next most-recent amendment […]

Delaware Constitution

  The Delaware Constitution is the fundamental governing document of the state of Delaware. Features Delaware is the only state in the country that does not require popular approval to adopt constitutional amendments. It also does not allow initiatives or referendums at the state or local level. Background The current (and fourth) Delaware Constitution was […]

Florida Constitution

The Florida Constitution is the fundamental governing document of the state of Florida. Features The Florida Constitution establishes and describes the duties, powers, structure and function of the government of Florida and establishes the basic law of the state. It includes twelve articles. Background The current (and sixth) Florida Constitution was adopted on November 5, […]

Georgia Constitution

  The Georgia Constitution is the fundamental governing document of the state of Georgia. Features The Georgia Select Committee on Constitutional Revision, charged with creating the most recent, 1983 version, sought to create a brief, clear and flexible constitution. They achieved this goal: the final product was about half as long as the 1976 Constitution, […]

Hawaii Constitution

  The Hawaii Constitution is the fundamental governing document of the state of Hawaii. Features Though Hawaii follows the statehood model of the U.S. government, its constitutional government is reminiscent of the constitutional monarchy of the Kingdom of Hawaii in 1840. The government structure is decided by the state constitution, which divides the government into […]

Idaho Constitution

  The Idaho Constitution is the fundamental governing document of the state of Idaho. Features The constitution includes 21 articles.[1] It has been amended over one hundred times but, unlike the constitutions of many other states, has never undergone a major revision. Background The current (and first) Idaho Constitution was adopted on July 3, 1890. […]

Illinois Constitution

  The Illinois Constitution is the fundamental governing document of the state of Illinois. Features The 1970 Constitution of Illinois has a preamble, 14 articles and a schedule. Article XIV requires that Illinois voters be asked at least every 20 years if they desire a constitutional convention. The last time that measure was put to […]

Indiana Constitution

  The Indiana Constitution is the fundamental governing document of the state of Indiana. Background The current (and second) Indiana Constitution was adopted in 1851. The current constitution has been amended 24 times since 1970. The most recent amendment to the Indiana Constitution was approved by voters in 2018. Indiana does not feature a process […]

Iowa Constitution

  The Iowa Constitution is the basic governing document of the state of Iowa. Features The Iowa Constitution includes a preamble and twelve articles. Background The current (and third) Iowa Constitution was adopted on March 3, 1857. The current constitution has been amended 48 times. The most recent amendment to the Iowa Constitution, Measure 1, […]

Kansas Constitution

  The Kansas Constitution is the fundamental governing document of the state of Kansas. Features The Kansas Constitution consists of 15 articles. It was ratified on October 4, 1859, with 10,421 votes in favor and 5,530 votes against. Background The current (and first) Kansas Constitution was adopted on January 29, 1861. The Kansas Constitution was […]

Kentucky Constitution

  The Kentucky Constitution is the fundamental governing document of the state of Kentucky. Features The Kentucky Constitution is divided into a preamble and 20 articles. Background The current (and fourth) Kentucky Constitution was adopted in 1891. The current constitution has been amended 43 times. The most recent amendment to the Kentucky Constitution was approved […]

Louisiana Constitution

  The Louisiana Constitution is the fundamental governing document of the state of Louisiana. Features The Louisiana Constitution includes 14 articles that define the rights of individuals, describe the distribution and power of state officials and local government and establish the state and city civil service systems. The state’s current constitution, its 11th version, was […]

Maine Constitution

  The Maine Constitution is the fundamental governing document of the state of Maine. Features The Maine Constitution consists of a preamble and ten articles. Maine’s constitution was first adopted in 1820, making it the 23rd state in the Union. The constitution has been amended many times since 1820, and it has been re-codified every […]

Maryland Constitution

  The Maryland Constitution is the fundamental governing document of the state of Maryland. Features The Maryland Constitution was ratified by the people of the state on September 18, 1867. Background The current (and fourth) Maryland Constitution was adopted in September 1867. The 1867 constitution has been amended 234 times. The most recent amendments to […]

Massachusetts Constitution

  The Massachusetts Constitution is the fundamental governing document of the state of Massachusetts. Features The Massachusetts Constitution is often referred to as the oldest state constitution in continuous effect. The Massachusetts Constitution contains four parts: a preamble, a declaration of rights, a description of the framework of government in six chapters and articles of […]

Michigan Constitution

  The Michigan Constitution is the fundamental governing document of the state of Michigan. Features The current constitution contains a preamble followed by 12 articles. There is also a schedule at the end, to ease transition from territory to state. Background The current (and third) Michigan Constitution was adopted in 1963. The current constitution has […]

Minnesota Constitution

  The Minnesota Constitution is the fundamental document of the state of Minnesota. Features The Minnesota Constitution was adopted on October 13, 1857 and generally revised on November 5, 1974. Background The current (and first) Minnesota Constitution was adopted on October 13, 1857. The current constitution has been amended 120 times. The most recent amendment […]

Mississippi Constitution

The Mississippi Constitution is the fundamental governing document of the state of Mississippi. Features The Mississippi Constitution includes a Preamble and 15 articles, each of which is divided into sections. Unlike most other state constitutions, the numbering of the sections does not begin again at “1” with each article. Instead, the Mississippi Constitution ends at […]

Missouri Constitution

  The Missouri Constitution is the fundamental governing document of the state of Missouri. Features Altogether, the Missouri Constitution has 13 constitutional articles. The state’s current constitution was adopted in 1945 and is the state’s fourth constitution. Since 1962, Missourians have been asked every twenty years if they would like to convene a constitutional convention […]

Montana Constitution

  The Montana Constitution is the fundamental governing document of the state of Montana. Features The Montana Constitution consists of a preamble followed by 15 sections, and establishes and defines the powers of the three branches of the government of Montana and the rights of its citizens. Its provisions are sovereign within the state, subject […]

Nebraska Constitution

  The Nebraska Constitution is the fundamental governing document of the state of Nebraska. Features The Nebraska Constitution consists of a preamble and 18 articles. From its adoption on October 12, 1875, it has been amended 228 times, including an amendment to create a unicameral legislature. Background The current (and second) Nebraska Constitution was adopted […]

Nevada Constitution

  The Nevada Constitution is the fundamental governing document of the state of Nevada. Background The current (and first) Nevada Constitution was adopted in 1864. The current constitution has been amended over 107 times. The most recent amendments to the Nevada Constitution, of which there were four, were approved by voters in 2020. Nevada has […]

New Hampshire Constitution

  The New Hampshire Constitution is the primary governing document of the state of New Hampshire. Features The New Hampshire Constitution is composed of two parts: the “Bill of Rights” and “Form of Government.” The subsections of each part are called “articles.” Background The current (and third) New Hampshire Constitution was adopted on October 31, […]

New Jersey Constitution

  The New Jersey Constitution is the fundamental governing document of the state of New Jersey. Features The New Jersey Constitution mirrors many of the basic provisions contained in the United States Constitution but also contains additional provisions such as rules pertaining to the operation of casinos. Background The current (and third) New Jersey Constitution […]

New Mexico Constitution

  The New Mexico Constitution is the fundamental governing document of the state of New Mexico. Features The New Mexico Constitution contains a preamble followed by 24 articles. New Mexico does not have the statewide initiative process. However, New Mexico does have the popular referendum process. Background The current (and first) New Mexico Constitution was […]

New York Constitution

  The New York Constitution is the fundamental governing document of the state of New York. Features The New York Constitution consists of a preamble followed by 20 articles. Background The current (and fourth) New York Constitution was adopted in 1895. The current constitution has been amended over 204 times. Since 1996, 17 constitutional amendments […]

North Carolina Constitution

  The North Carolina Constitution is the fundamental governing document of the state of North Carolina. Features The constitution is the highest legal document for North Carolina, and subjugates North Carolina law. It is subject to federal judicial review. Any aspect of the constitution can be nullified if it does not align with federal law […]

North Dakota Constitution

  The North Dakota Constitution is the fundamental governing document of the state of North Dakota. Features The North Dakota Constitution consists of a preamble followed by 13 articles and a schedule. Background The current (and first) North Dakota Constitution was adopted in 1889. The current constitution has been amended 166 times. The most recent […]

Ohio Constitution

  The Ohio Constitution is the fundamental governing document of the state of Ohio. Features The Ohio Constitution provided the rights for Ohio citizens and is the basic law of the state. This state constitution has the distinction of having one of the shortest preambles which includes 28 words. Background The current (and second) Ohio […]

Oklahoma Constitution

  The Oklahoma Constitution is the fundamental governing document of the state of Oklahoma. Features The Oklahoma Constitution is superseded only by the United States Constitution and consists of a preamble and thirty articles, with the first eight pertaining to the state’s government. Background The current (and first) Oklahoma Constitution was adopted in 1907. The […]

Oregon Constitution

  The Oregon Constitution is the fundamental governing document of the state of Oregon. Features The Oregon Constitution contains fundamental laws outlining principles by which Oregon is governed. It consists of a preamble and 18 articles. The right to free speech in Oregon is broader than that enjoyed at the federal level. Article I, Section […]

Pennsylvania Constitution

  The Pennsylvania Constitution is the fundamental governing document of the state of Pennsylvania. Features The Pennsylvania Constitution consists of a preamble followed by 11 articles and two schedules. Background The current (and fifth) Pennsylvania Constitution was adopted in 1968. The current constitution has been amended about 49 times. The most recent amendments to the […]

Rhode Island Constitution

  The Rhode Island Constitution is the fundamental governing document of the state of Rhode Island. Features The Rhode Constitution describes the structure and function of the government of Rhode Island. It consists of a preamble followed by 15 articles. Background The current (and sixth) Rhode Island Constitution was adopted in 1986. The current state […]

South Carolina Constitution

The South Carolina Constitution is the fundamental governing document of the state of South Carolina. Features The South Carolina Constitution consists of a preamble followed by 17 articles. Background The current (and sixth) South Carolina Constitution was adopted in 1896. The 1896 constitution was amended hundreds of times prior to 2006. It has been amended […]

South Dakota Constitution

  The South Dakota Constitution is the fundamental governing document of the state of South Dakota. Features The South Dakota Constitution consists of a preamble followed by 30 articles. Background The current (and first) South Dakota Constitution was adopted in 1889. The 1889 constitution has been amended 11 times since 2006. The most recent amendments […]

Tennessee Constitution

The Tennessee Constitution is the fundamental governing document of the state of Tennessee. Features The Tennessee Constitution establishes the government of the state. It sets the structure, responsibilities, character, rules, and process of amendment. It consists of a preamble, 11 articles and a schedule. Background The current (and third) Tennessee Constitution was adopted in 1870. […]

Texas Constitution

  The Texas Constitution is the fundamental governing document of the state of Texas. Features The Texas Constitution describes the structure and function of the government of Texas. It consists of a preamble and 17 articles. Background The current (and fourth) Texas Constitution was adopted in 1876. The current constitution has been amended 515 times. […]

Utah Constitution

  The Utah Constitution is the fundamental governing document of the state of Utah. Features The Utah Constitution defines the basic form and operation of government of the state of Utah. It consists of a preamble followed by 22 articles. Background The current (and first) Utah Constitution was adopted in 1896. The current constitution has […]

Vermont Constitution

The Constitution of the State of Vermont is the fundamental governing document of the state of Vermont. Features The Vermont Constitution established a government and laws for the state.[1] It is divided into two chapters. The first is divided into articles, while the second is divided into sections: Chapter I is entitled “A Declaration of […]

Virginia Constitution

The Virginia Constitution is the fundamental governing document of the state of Virginia. Features The Virginia Constitution sets the structure of the state government and limits its power. It also establishes the basic rights of Virginia’s citizens. The constitution is the supreme governing document of the state but may be superseded by the United States […]

Washington Constitution

The Washington State Constitution is the fundamental governing document of the state of Washington. Features The Washington State Constitution describes the fundamental structure and function of the state’s government. It consists of a preamble and 32 articles. Background The current (and second) Washington Constitution was adopted on October 1, 1889. The current constitution has been […]

West Virginia Constitution

The West Virginia Constitution is the fundamental governing document of the state of West Virginia. Features The West Virginia Constitution consists of a preamble followed by 14 articles. Background The current (and second) West Virginia Constitution was adopted in 1872. The first constitution was adopted by the state in 1863. The West Virginia Constitution has […]

Wisconsin Constitution

The Wisconsin Constitution is the fundamental governing document of the state of Wisconsin. Features The Wisconsin Constitution consists of a brief preamble and 14 articles detailing the state government, its powers and its limitations. Background The current (and second) Wisconsin Constitution was adopted in 1848 The current Wisconsin Constitution has been amended over 102 times. […]

Wyoming Constitution

The Wyoming Constitution is the fundamental governing document of the state of Wyoming. Features The Wyoming Constitution contains a preamble and 21 articles. The constitution contains provisions for the organization and operation of government, a “declaration of rights”, a process for amendment and a schedule. Background The current (and first) Wyoming Constitution was adopted on […]