The New Constitution of the United States: Do We Need One and How Would We Get One?

37 Pages Posted: 14 Nov 2013 Last revised: 24 Jan 2014

Date Written: November 18, 2013


Government in the United States has some serious problems. At the federal level, is the problem of gridlock. The United States Congress seems unable or unwilling to do anything about anything (although it must have done something to run up more than $16 trillion in debts). Forget about addressing problems such as global warming, income inequality, failing schools, economic stimulus or you name it. How bad is it, really? Has the United States become ungovernable, and is the Constitution to blame? In my view, it’s a mixed bag. Some aspects of the United States government work very well, others are disastrous and still others muddle along, could be better but function just fine. Further, it is difficult to pin some of government’s difficulties on any particular constitutional provision when the alternatives might be just as problematic. In this essay, I highlight examples in each of these categories and look at factors that might help us understand why things work as they do. Suggestions for change will be offered, often without considering political feasibility.

Keywords: Constitution, dysfunction

JEL Classification: K23, K19

Suggested Citation

Beermann, Jack Michael, The New Constitution of the United States: Do We Need One and How Would We Get One? (November 18, 2013). Boston Univ. School of Law, Public Law Research Paper No. 14-4, Available at SSRN: or

Jack Michael Beermann (Contact Author)

Boston University School of Law ( email )

765 Commonwealth Avenue
Boston, MA 02215
United States
617-353-2577 (Phone)
617-353-3110 (Fax)

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