Amendment of the Constitution
November 23, 1866
The Dispatch publishes the full text of the proposed 14th amendment to the Constitution of the United States of America. This amendment has served as an epicenter of debate across the Nation since its introduction.
Amendment of the Constitution. Republished by Request. Resolved, By the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America, in Congress assembled, two-thirds of both Houses concurring, That the following article be proposed to the Legislatures of the several States as an amendment to the Constitution of the United States which, when ratified by three-fourths of the said Legislatures, shall be valid as a part of the Constitution, namely: Article--Section 1. All persons born or naturalized in the United States, and subject to the jurisdiction thereof, are citizens of the United States, and of the State wherein they reside. No State shall make or enforce any law which shall abridge the privileges or immunities of the citizens of the United States. Nor shall any State deprive any person of life, liberty, or property without due process of law, nor deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws. Section 2. Representatives shall be apportioned among the several States according to their respective numbers, counting the whole number of persons in each State, excluding Indians not taxed; but whenever the right to vote at any election for electors of President and Vice-President, or for United States representatives in Congress, executive and judicial officers, or the members of the Legislature thereof, is denied to any of the male inhabitants of such State, being twenty-one years of age, and citizens of the United States, or in any way abridged, except for participation in rebellion or other crime, the basis of representation therein shall be reduced in the proportion which the number of such male citizens shall bear to the whole number of male citizens twenty-one years of age in that State. Section 3. No person shall be a senator or representative in Congress, elector of President or Vice-President, or hold any office, civil or military, under the United States, or under any State, who, having previously taken an oath as a member of Congress, or as an officer of the United States, or as a member of any State Legislature, or as an executive or judicial officer of any State, to support the Constitution of the United States, shall have engaged in insurrection or rebellion against the same, or given aid and comfort to the enemies thereof; but Congress may, by a vote of two-thirds of each House, remove such disability. Section 4. The validity of the public debt of the United States authorized by law, including debts incurred for the payment of pensions and bounties for services in suppressing insurrection or rebellion, shall not be questioned; but neither the United States nor any State shall assume or pay any debt or obligation incurred in aid of insurrection or rebellion against the United States, or any claim for the loss or emancipation of any slave, but all such debts, obligations, and claims shall be held illegal and void. Section 5. The Congress shall have power to enforce by appropriate legislation the provisions of this article.
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“Amendment of the Constitution,” Reconstructing Virginia, accessed November 28, 2022, https://reconstructingvirginia.richmond.edu/items/show/426.