Guess What the CSA Forgot to Put in its Constitution?
Someone a while back linked to a very neat line by line comparison of the U.S. and Confederate Constitutions.
One surprise is they actually had some good ideas, notably a Presidential line-item veto and a stipulation that bills pertain to a single subject only. Apparently problems with the system were already being noted.
And for anyone who doubts the Civil War was about slavery, we find
No bill of attainder, ex post facto law, or law denying or impairing the right of property in negro slaves shall be passed.
and if the Confederacy gained any new territory, it could form new states where,
In all such territory the institution of negro slavery, as it now exists in the Confederate States, shall be recognized and protected by Congress and by the Territorial government;
But guess what is not in the CSA Constitution? After all the hoo-hah about States having a right to secede, there is no right of secession in the CSA Constitution! Neither “secede” nor “secession” occur in the document at all. What a strange omission. You’d think they’d have bothered to clarify it. What there is, is an almost word for word repetition of the U.S. Constitution’s empowerment to suppress insurrections. Jim McCullough, author of the page, notes wryly “By keeping this clause the CSA essentially gives itself the right to fight its own Civil War someday.” In fact, the CSA, for all the hoopla over “States’ Rights,” gave almost no new real powers to the States. The most important was that states could impeach Federal officials whose jurisdiction was entirely within a state. Also, the States had a much greater role in amending the Constitution; Congress had no role at all, and it only took three States to propose an amendment.