Constitutional FAQ Answer #18 – The U.S. Constitution Online – USConstitution.net

Constitutional FAQ Answer #18

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Q18. “I would like a short list of other countries
which have used our Constitution as a blueprint for theirs.”

A. I’ve read that all constitutions since ours was adopted have been
influenced by ours in some way. I guess I’d like to see that quantified.

You can see a lot of influence in state constitutions, where a lot of
verbiage is pulled right out of the national constitution. I recently read
parts of the Alaska Constitution, and some of that is almost direct quote. Vermont’s, on the other hand, which was originally
written prior to and concurrently with the U.S. version, has very little
similarity in wording. The Constitution of the Confederate
States of America
is also very similar.

I know of no other national constitutions that lift directly from ours, but
we have had a hand, direct or indirect, in several. First is Liberia’s, founded
by American slaves. Their Constitution of 1847 has
several similarities with our Constitution, but deviates from it on key points.
Next, Japan’s Constitution of 1947,
which General Douglas MacArthur had a heavy hand in, has many clauses that
mirror those in our Constitution, though it set up a parliamentary legislature
and executive. Lastly, the Philippines, which established a constitution
in 1899
when it became a commonwealth of the U.S., though their
constitution has changed several times since then.

Last Modified: 16 Aug 2010

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