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THE CONSTITUTION OF IOWA.
We, the people of the state of Iowa, grateful to the Supreme Being for
the blessings hitherto enjoyed, and feeling our dependence on Him for a continuation of those blessings, do ordain and establish a free and independent government, by the name of the state of Iowa, the boundaries
whereof shall be as follows: Beginning in the middle of the main channel of the Mississippi river, at a
point due east of the middle of the mouth of the main channel of the Des Moines river; thence up the middle of the main channel of the said Des Moines river, to a point on said river where the northern boundary line of the state of Missouri-as established by the constitution of that state, adopted June 12, 1820-crosses the said middle of the main channel of the said Des Moines river; thence westwardly along the said northern boundary line of the state of Missouri, as established at the time aforesaid, until an extension of said line intersects the middle of the main channel of the Missouri river; thence up the middle of the main channel of the said Missouri river to a point opposite the middle of the main channel of the Big Sioux river, according to Nicollett's map; thence up the main channel of the said Big Sioux river, according to the said map, until it is intersected by the parallel of forty-three degress and thirty minutes, north latitude; thence east along said parallel of forty-three degrees and thirty minutes, until said parallel intersects the middle of the main channel of the Mississippi river; thence down the middle of the main channel of the said 'Mississippi river to the place of beginning.
ARTICLE I.-BILL OF RIGHTS. SECTION 1. All men are, by nature, free and equal, and have certain inalienable rights, among which are those of enjoying and defending life and liberty, acquiring, possessing and protecting property, and pursuing and obtaining safety and happiness.
Sec. 2. All political power is inherent in the people. Government is instituted for the protection, security and benefit of the people, and they have the right, at all times, to alter or reform the same, whenever the public good may require it.
Sec. 3. The general assembly shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; nor shall any person be compelled to attend any place of worship, pay tithes, taxes or other rates, for building or repairing place of worship, or the maintenance of any minister or ministry.
Sec. 4. No religious test shall be required as a qualification for any office of public trust, and no person shall be deprived of any of his rights, privileges or capacities, or disqualified from the performance of any of his public or private duties, or rendered incompetent to give evidence in any court of law or equity, in consequence of his opinions on the subject of religion; and any party to any judicial proceeding shall have the right to use as a witness, or take the testimony of, any other person, not disqualified on account of interest, who may be cognizant of any fact material to the case; and parties to suits may be witnesses, as provided by law.
Sec. 5. ' Any citizen of this state, who may hereafter be engaged, either directly or indirectly, in a duel, either as principal or accessory before the fact, shall forever be disqualified from holding any office under the constitution and laws of this state.
SEC. 6. All laws of a general nature shall have a uniform operation; the general assembly shall not grant to any citizen or class of citizens, privileges or immunities, which upon the same terms shall not equally belong to all citizens.
SEC. 7. Every person may speak, write and publish his sentiments on all subjects, being responsible for the abuse of that right. No law shall be passed to restrain or abridge the liberty of speech, or of the press. In all prosecutions or indictments for libel, the truth may be given in evidence to the jury, and if it appear to the jury that the matter charged as libelous was true, and was published with good motives and for justifiable ends, the party shall be acquitted.
Sec. 8. The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses papers and effects, against unreasonable seizures and searches, shall not be violated; and no warrant shall issue but on probable cause, supported by oath or affirmation, particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons and things to be seized.
Sec. 9. The right of trial by jury shall remain inviolate; but the general assembly may authorize trial by a jury of a less number than twelve men in inferior courts; but no person shall be deprived of life, liberty or property, without due process of law.
Sec. 10. In all criminal prosecutions, and in cases involving the life or liberty of an individual, the accused shall have a right to a speedy and public trial by an impartial jury; to be informed of the accusation against him; to have a copy of the same when demanded; to be confronted with the witness against him; to have compulsory process for his witnesses; and to have the assistance of counsel.
SE.c 11. All offences less than felony, and in which the punishment does not exceed a fine of one hundred dollars, or imprisonment for thirty days, shall be tried summarily before a justice of the peace, or other officer authorized by law, on information under oath, without indictment or the intervention of a grand jury, saving to the defendant the right of appeal; and no person shall be held to answer for any higher criminal offence, unless on presentment or indictment by a grand jury, except in cases arising in the army or navy, or in the militia, when in actual service in time of war or public danger.
Sec. 12. No person shall, after acquittal, be tried for the same offence. All persons shall, before conviction, be bailable by sufficient sureties, except for capital offenses, where the proof is evident or the presumption great.
Sec. 13. The writ of habeas corpus shall not be suspended or refused, when application is made as required by law, unless in case of rebellion or invasion the public safety may require it.
Sec. 14. The military shall be subordinate to the civil power. No standing army shall be kept up by the state in time of peace; and in time of war, no appropriation for a standing army shall be for a longer time than two years.
Sec. 15. No soldier shall, in time of peace, be quartered in any house without the consent of the owner, nor in time of war, except in the manner prescribed by law.
Sec. 16. Treason against the state shall consist only in levying war against it, adhering to its enemies, or giving them aid and comfort. No person shall be convicted of treason, unless on the evidence of two witnesses to the same overt act, or confession in open court.
Sec. 17. Excessive bail shall not be required; excessive fines shall not be imposed, and cruel and unusual punishment shall not be inflicted.
Sec. 18. Private property shall not be taken for public use without just compensation first being made, or secured to be made, to the owner thereof, as soon as the damages shall be assessed by a jury, who shall not take into consideration any advantages that may result to said owner on account of the improvement for which it is taken.
Sec. 19. No person shall be imprisoned for debt in any civil action on mesne or final process, unless in case of fraud; and no person shall be imprisoned for a military fine in time of peace.
Sec. 20. The people have the right freely to assemble together to counsel for the common good; to make known their opinions to their representatives, and to petition for a redress of grievances.
Sec. 21. No bill of attainder. ex-post-facto law, or law impairing the obligation of contracts, shall ever be passed.
SEC. 22. Foreigners who are, or may hereafter become residents of this state, shall enjoy the same rights in respect to the possession, enjoyment, and descent of property, as native born citizens.
Sec. 23. There shall be no slavery in this state; nor shall there be involuntary servitude, unless for the punishment of crime.
Sec. 24. No lease or grant of agricultural lands, reserving any rent or service of any kind, shall be valid for a longer period than twenty years.
Sec. 25. The enumeration of rights shall not be construed to impair or deny others, retained by the people.
ARTICLE II-RIGHT OF SUFFRAGE. Section 1. Every white male citizen of the United States, of the age of twenty-one years, who shall have been a resident of this state six months next preceding the election, and of the county in which he claims his vote, sixty days, shall be entitled to vote at all elections which are now or hereafter may be authorized by law.
Sec. 2. Electors shall, in all cases except treason, felony or breach of the peace, be privileged from arrest on the days of election, during their attendance at such elections, going to and returning therefrom.
Sec. 3. No elector shall be obliged to perform military duty on the day of election, except in time of war or public danger.
Sec. 4. No person in the military, naval or marine service of the United States shall be considered a resident of this state by being stationed in any garrison, barrack, or military or naval place or station within the state.
Sec. 5. No idiot or insane person, or person convicted of any infamous crime shall be entitled to the privilege of an elector. Sec. 6. All elections by the people shall be by ballot.
ARTICLE III.-OF THE DISTRIBUTION OF POWERS. SECTION 1. The powers of the government of Iowa shall be divided into three separate departments: The Legislative, the Executive and the Judicial; and no person charged with the exercise of powers properly belonging to one of these departments shall exercise any function appertaining to either of the others, except in cases hereinafter expressly directed or permitted.
LEGISLATIVE DEPARTMENT. SECTION 1. The legislative authority of this state shall be vested in a general assembly, which shall consist of a senate and house of representatives; and the style of everv law shall be: “ Be it enacted by the goueral assembly of the state of Iowa.”
SEC. 2. The sessions of the general assembly shall be biennial and shall commence on the second Monday in January next ensuing the election of its members; unless the governor of the state shall, in the meantime, convene the general assembly by proclamation.
Sec. 3. The members of the house of representatives shall be chosen every second year, by the qualified electors of their respective districts, on the second Tuesday in October, except the years of the presidential election, when the election shall be on the Tuesday next after the first Monday in November; and their term of office shall commence on the first day of January next after their election, and continue two years, and until their successors are elected and qualified.
Sec. 4. No person shall be a member of the house of representatives who shall not have attained the age of twenty one years, be a free white male citizen of the United States, and shall have been an inhabitant of this state one year next preceding his election, and at the time of his election shall have had an actual residence of sixty days in the county or district he may have been chosen to represent.
Sec. 5 Senators shall be chosen for the term of four years, at the same time and place as representatives; they shall be twenty five years of age and possess the qualifications of representatives as to residence and citizenship
Sec. 6. The number of senators shall not be less than one-third nor more than one-half the representative body; and shall be so classified by lot that one class, being as nearly one-half as possible, shall be elected every two years. When the number of senators is increased, they shall be annexed by lot to one or the other of the two classes, so as to keep them as nearly equal in numbers as practicable.
Sec. 7. Each house shall choose its own officers, and judge of the qualification, election and return of its own members. A contested election shall be determined in such manner as shall be directed by law.
Sec. 8. A majority of each house shall constitute a quorum to transact business; but a smaller number may adjourn from day to day, and may compel the attendance of absent members in such manner and under such penalties as each house may provide.
Sec. 9. Each house shåll sit upon its own adjournments, keep a journal of its proceedings, and publish the same; determine its rules of proceedings, punish members for disorderly behavior, and, with the consent of two-thirds, expel a member, but not a second time for the same offense; and shall have all other powers necessary for a branch of the general assembly of a free and independent state.
Sec. 10. Every member of the general assembly shall have the liberty to dissent from or protest against any act or resolution which he may think injurious to the public or an individual, and have the reasons for his dissent entered on the journals; and the yeas and nays of the members of either house, on any question, shall, at the desire of any two members present, be entered on the journals.
Sec. 11. Senators and representatives, in all cases, except treason, felony or breach of the peace, shall be privileged from arrest during the session of the general assembly, and in going to and returning from the same.
Sec. 12. "When vacancies occur in either house, the governor, or the person exercising the functions of governor, shall issue writs of election to fill such vacancies.
Sec. 13. The doors of each house shall be open, except on such occasions as, in the opinion of the house, may require secrecy.
Sec. 14. Neither house shall, without the consent of the other, adjourn for more than three days, nor to any other place than that in which they may be sitting
Sec. 13. Bills may originate in either house, and may be amended, altered or rejected by the other; and every bill having passed both houses, shall be signed by the speaker and president of their respective houses.
SEC. 16. Every bill which shall have passed the general assembly shall, before it becomes a law, be presented to the governor. If he approve, he shall sign it; but if not, he shall return it, with his objections, to the house in which it originated, which shall enter the same upon their journal, and proceed to reconsider it; if, after such reconsideration, it again pass both houses, by yeas and nays, by a majority of two-thirds of the members of each house, it shall become a law, notwithstanding the governor's objections. If any bill shall not be returned within three days after it shall have been presented to him, (Sunday excepted) the same shall be a law in like manner as if he had signed it, unless the general assembly, by adjournment, prevent such return. Any bill submitted to the governor for his approval during the last three days of a session of the general assembly, shall be deposited by him in the office of the secretary of state, within thirty days after the adjournment, with his approval, if approved by him, and with his objections if he disapproves thereof.
Sec. 17. No bill shall be passed unless by the assent of a majority of all members elected to each branch of the general assembly, and the question upon the final passage shall be taken immediately upon its last reading, and the yeas and nays entered upon the journal.
Sec. 18. An accurate statement of the receipts and expenditures of the public money shall be attached to and published with the laws at every regular session of the general assembly.
Sec. 19. The house of representatives shall have the sole power of impeachment, and all impeachments shall be tried by the senate. When sitting for that purpose, the senators shall be upon oath or affirmation; and no person shall be convicted without the concurrence of two-thirds of the members present.
Sec. 20. The governor, judges of the supreme and district courts, and other state officers, shall be liable to impeachment for any misdemeanor or malfeasance in office; but judgment in such cases shall extend only to removal from office, and disqualification to hold any office of honor, trust or profit, under this state; but the party convicted or acquitted shall nevertheless be liable to indictment, trial and punishment according to law. All other civil officers shall be tried for misdemeanors and malfeasance in office, in such manner as the general assembly may provide.
Sec. 21. No senator or representative shåll, during the time for which he shall have been elected, be appointed to any civil office of profit under this state, which shall have been created, or the emoluments of which shall have been increased during such term, except such offices as may
be filled by elections by the people.
Sec. 22. No person holding any lucrative office under the United States, or this state, or any other power, shall be eligible to hold a seat in the general assembly. But offices in the militia to which there is attached no annual salary, or the office of the justice of the peace, or postmaster whose compensation does not exceed one hundred dollars per annum, or notary public, shall not be deemed lucrative.
Sec. 23. No person who may hereafter be a collector or holder of public moneys, shall have a seat in either house of the general assembly, or be eligible to hold any office of trust or profit in this state, until he shall have accounted for and paid into the treasury all sums for which he may be liable.