- 1 Features
- 2 Preamble
- 3 Declaration of Rights
- 4 Article I
- 5 Article II
- 6 Article III
- 7 Article IV
- 8 Article V
- 9 Article VI
- 10 Article VII
- 11 Article VIII
- 12 Article IX
- 13 Article X
- 14 Articles XI - XI-I
- 15 Article XII
- 16 Article XIII
- 17 Article XIV
- 18 Article XV
- 19 Article XVI
- 20 Article XVII
- 21 Article XVIII
- 22 Article XIX
- 23 Amending the constitution
- 24 History
- 25 See also
- 26 External links
- 27 Additional reading
- 28 References
The Maryland Constitution was ratified by the people of the state on September 18, 1867.
- See also: Preambles to state constitutions
The Preamble to the Maryland Constitution states:
The Maryland Constitution begins with a "Declaration of Rights," which is similar to the U.S. Bill of Rights. There are some differences, however. For example, the Maryland Declaration of Rights states that "a well regulated Militia is the proper and natural defense of a free Government," but it does not guarantee the right to bear arms.
Article I of the Maryland Constitution is entitled "Elective Franchise" and consists of thirteen sections.
Article II of the Maryland Constitution is entitled 'Executive Department" and consists of 24 sections. This article establishes the executive department and the governor at its head.
Article III of the Maryland Constitution is entitled "Legislative Department" and consists of 66 sections. This article of the Maryland Constitution establishes the legislative department as the law-making body of the state.
Article IV of the Maryland Constitution is entitled "Judiciary Department" and consists of seven parts. This article establishes the judicial department as the system of courts.
Article V of the Maryland Constitution is entitled "Attorney-General and State's Attorneys" and concerns the attorney-general as well as the state's attorneys.
Article VI of the Maryland Constitution is entitled "Treasury Department" and consists of six sections. This article establishes the treasury department.
Article VII of the Maryland Constitution is entitled "Sundry Officers" and consists of six sections, most of which have been repealed.
Article VIII of the Maryland Constitution is entitled "Education" and consists of three sections. This article establishes the public school system for the state of Maryland.
Article IX of the Maryland Constitution is entitled "Militia and Military Affairs" and consists of three sections. This article is concerned with the state militia.
Article X of the Maryland Constitution has been repealed.
Articles XI - XI-I
Article XII of the Maryland Constitution is entitled "Public Works" and consists of three sections.
Article XIII of the Maryland Constitution is entitled "New Counties" and consists of two sections.
Article XIV of the Maryland Constitution is entitled "Amendments to the Constitution" and consists of three sections, which together define how the constitution can be amended.
Article XV of the Maryland Constitution is entitled "Miscellaneous" and consists of 11 sections. This article is concerned with miscellaneous governmental provisions.
Article XVI of the Maryland Constitution is entitled "The Referendum" and consists of six sections.
Article XVII of the Maryland Constitution is entitled "Quadrennial Elections" and consists of 13 sections. This article states that elections be held every four years.
Article XVIII of the Maryland Constitution is entitled "Provisions of Limited Duration" and consists of five sections. This article concerns provisions that only last for a limited duration.
Article XIX of the Maryland Constitution is entitled "Video Lottery Terminals" and consists of a single section.
Amending the constitution
- See also: Amending state constitutions
Article 14 defines these ways to amend the Maryland Constitution:
- Constitutional amendment can be accomplished via a legislatively-referred constitutional amendment. Placing such a proposed amendment on the ballot must be approved by a two-thirds vote of each chamber of the Maryland State Legislature. Note: The required two-thirds vote is of the full membership of each chamber, not two-thirds of whatever quorum is present when the vote is held.
- The constitution can also be amended via a constitutional convention.
- Article XIV allows for the possibility that some proposed constitutional amendments may apply to only one county (or the City of Baltimore, which is governed independently of a county structure). In this case, Article XIV says that in order to become part of the constitution, the proposed amendment must be approved by a majority vote not just statewide, but specifically in the county (or Baltimore) to which it exclusively applies.
Maryland has had a total of four constitutions. The first was adopted during the Revolutionary War in 1776, and the others followed in 1851 and 1864. The fourth and current constitution was adopted in 1867.
- State constitution
- Constitutional article
- Constitutional amendment
- Constitutional revision
- Constitutional convention
- Maryland.gov, "Maryland Constitution"
- From The Archives of Maryland, "Constitutional Records"
- Maryland.gov, "Statewide Ballot Question Results"
- Teaching American History in Maryland, "Maryland Constitutions", a list of primary and secondary resources about the Maryland Constitution and its history.
- Friedman, Dan (2006). The Maryland State Constitution: A Reference Guide, Westport, Connecticut: Greenwood Publishing
- Rees, Charles A. (2007). "Remarkable Evolution: The Early Constitutional History of Maryland" in University of Baltimore Law Review, Vol. 36, No. 2, 2007
- Ridgway, Whitman H. (2001). "(Maryland in) the Nineteenth Century" from the Maryland Humanities Council
- Berg-Andersson, Richard E. (2004). "Constitutions of the Several states" from The Green Papers
- Maryland.gov, "Constitution of Maryland," accessed March 28, 2014
- Maryland.gov, "Constitution of Maryland: Declaration of Rights," accessed June 18, 2014
- 2010 Maryland Convention, "We are not alone," July 6, 2009
- Maryland State Board of Elections, "Official 2010 Gubernatorial General Election results for All State Questions," accessed June 18, 2014
- Maryland.gov, "Maryland at a Glance," accessed June 18, 2014