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Compare & Contrast: Iroquois Constitution & U.S. Constitution

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Essay title: Compare & Contrast: Iroquois Constitution & U.S. Constitution

Tim Nelson

10/05/01

Honors English Period 2

Compare & Contrast: Iroquois Constitution & U.S. Constitution

The Constitutions of both the Iroquois and the United States have similarities and differences between them. The Iroquois constitution came earlier in history than the U.S one did. Some of the same ideas that were in the Iroquois' constitution were carried over to some of the ideas that we use in our government today. In this paper I will compare and contrast these ideas as they relate with one another. Ideas like Vito Power, When a Leader Gets Sick, 3 Branches of Government, A Bicameral Legislature, and impeachment are portrayed in both of these constitutions.

The power to veto something is defined as to refuse to admit. In the Iroquois constitution they talk about how the procedure must be followed to these exact steps. Once the Mohawk and Seneca Lords have unanimously agreed upon a question, they shall report their decision to the Cayuga and Oneida Lords who shall deliberate upon the question and report a unanimous decision to the Mohawk Lords. The Mohawk Lords will then report the standing of the case to the Fire Keepers, who shall render a decision as they see fit in case of a disagreement by the two bodies, or confirm the decisions of the two bodies if they are identical. The Fire Keepers shall then report their decision to the Mohawk Lords who shall announce it to the open council. This is very similar to the U.S. government process for making and vetoing laws and regulations. As it talks about going through the different lords that is like the House of Representatives, senate, and then the president, with the Fire Keepers being the President. The Fire Keepers had the power to veto any decision that the lower levels had made just as the president does in our government.

In America's government if the president gets sick or ill where he/she cannot fulfill his/her responsibilities then their spouse takes over for them until they are able to return to office. In the Iroquois constitution it states in article 21 that certain physical defects in a Confederate Lord make him ineligible to sit in the Confederate Council. Such defects are infancy, idiocy, blindness, deafness, dumbness and impotency. When a Confederate Lord is restricted by any of these conditions, a deputy shall be appointed by his sponsors to act for him, but in case of extreme necessity the restricted Lord may exercise his rights. The Iroquois would appoint a deputy if the Lord had specific defects.

The Division of government for America is divided up into the Judicial, Executive, and Legislative Branches. In the Iroquois constitution it also splits up the Mohawk

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