All Weekend, Every Weekend. On C-SPAN3.

Is the American Constitution Worth Preserving?

Princeton, New Jersey
Saturday, July 20, 2013

A scholarly debate about whether the U.S. Constitution is archaic and inefficient, and whether it should remain the basis for the American system of government. The Constitution’s supporters argue for preserving the legacy and ideals of the Founding Fathers. The James Madison Program in American Ideals and Institutions and the Association for the Study of Free Institutions sponsored this program.

Updated: Saturday, July 20, 2013 at 12:08pm (ET)

Related Events

The Presidency: President Washington and the Constitution
Sunday, March 31, 2013     

What does the U.S. Constitution say about the presidency? That was the question confronting George Washington as he assumed office.  How Washington interpreted the Constitution and what he himself contributed to our idea of an American president is the topic Michael Nelson addressed at a conference dedicated to Washington, the Constitution and the powers of the presidency.  The Rhodes College political science professor spoke at Mount Vernon, Washington’s Virginia home.

Andrew Jackson & the Constitution
Saturday, April 7, 2012     

As part of the University of Oklahoma's teach-in on the founding of America, Yale University Law and Political Science Professor looks at how the Presidency of Andrew Jackson transformed the U.S. Constitution in ways that are still evident today.

The Presidency: The Constitution & the Presidency
Sunday, March 24, 2013     

Edwin Meese – former U.S. Attorney General and counselor to President Ronald Reagan –  spoke about the nation’s first president at a conference dedicated to George Washington, the U.S. Constitution and the powers of the presidency.  Recalling how Reagan’s reading of the Founding Fathers’ ideas shaped his time in the White House, Meese focused on the relevance of those ideas today.  This talk was delivered at Mount Vernon, George Washington’s Virginia home.

American Artifacts: George Washington's Constitution
Monday, December 31, 2012     

President George Washington's personal copy of the U.S. Constitution and Bill of Rights was auctioned at Christie's in New York City for $9.8 Million, which was the most ever paid for an American printed book or manuscript. The 1789 book contains brackets and notes in the margins written by Washington himself to mark the powers of the executive branch. American History TV recorded the auction, and interviewed specialists at Christie's and at George Washington's Mount Vernon, the successful bidder at the auction.  

U.S. Supreme Court and the Constitution
Saturday, December 15, 2012     

Civil libertarian and New York University professor Burt Neuborne speaks at Cooper Union about how Supreme Court justices interpret the constitution. He argues that when there is no precedent, judges often make decisions based on their values which, in the 21st century, usually coincide with their political affiliations.

The Constitutional Significance of Watergate
Saturday, June 23, 2012     

June 17th marked the 40th anniversary of the Watergate break-in that ultimately resulted in President Nixon's resignation. To commemorate the anniversary, the Chapman University School of Law held a symposium about Watergate's lasting impact. All this month American History TV is airing highlights of that symposium. This is a discussion on Watergate's constitutional impact and legacy in the context of recent presidential administrations and subsequent political scandals.

Teaching Constitutional History
Saturday, June 30, 2012     

Explaining the Constitution and encouraging students to have an interest in America’s founding can be difficult for many teachers. Radio talk show host Diane Rehm moderates a panel discussion on the issues and challenges surrounding the teaching of constitutional history. David McCullogh and Gordon Wood join the panel of five other historians and scholars at this event from a day-long teach-in on America’s founding at the University of Oklahoma.

White House Correspondents' Association
Sunday     

We hear from journalists and historians about the evolution of the White House Correspondents’ Association, which is marking its centennial. The organization was founded in 1914 after President Woodrow Wilson threatened to limit the access of White House reporters. The panel also discusses how social media has affected coverage of the president.

Recorded History of the U.S. Congress
Sunday     

2014 marks the 225th anniversary of the first meeting of the U.S. Congress at Federal Hall in New York City. As part of the annual meeting of the Society for History in the Federal Government, past and present House and Senate historians came together to discuss the state of congressional history. They explored current projects to retrieve old records from individual members of Congress as well as the many differences between the first Congress and Congress today. 

American Artifacts: Making & Breaking Secret Codes
Sunday     

American History TV visits the National Cryptologic Museum - located on the campus of the National Security Agency, just north of Washington, DC - to learn about the making and breaking of secret codes, and their role in U.S. history. This two-part program includes a look at the breaking of the German “Enigma” code and the Japanese diplomatic and naval codes in World War II. 

Share This Event Via Social Media
American History TV
Questions? Comments? Email us at AmericanHistoryTV@c-span.org