The State Constitutions are the oldest things in the political history of America, for they are the continuations and representatives of the royal colonial charters. James Bryce, The American Commonwealth1 New York’s first constitution, adopted in 1777, was written and adopted in the midst of a revolutionary war by a government literally on the run. The shape of that document, however, reflected the state’s peculiar history and geography more than the hazardous conditions under which it was hammered out. Three factors stand out in this respect. First was the...
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