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With Recommendations for Change All recommendations for change have been classified into three categories, indicating the importance given to each by the Commission.

Class 1 Changes - Bold Type Class 1 changes are those recommendations for amendment which the Commission deems to be of first importance, critically needed for the efficient conduct of the state government, and which the Commission strongly urges the General Assembly to approve.

Class 2 Changes - Italics Class 2 changes are those recommendations for amendment which the Commission deems to be very desirable, but which are not vital for the efficient conduct of the state government.

Class 3 Changes - Times Roman Class 3 changes are those changes which would improve the language and form of the Constitution, but which are not deemed to be of sufficient importance to be recommended for adoption other than as part of a general revision of the Constitution.

In editing the copy for the current sections of the Constitution of 1874, reference was mad to the Constitution of 1874 as set forth in the Journal of the Convention of 1873, Part 2, pages 1303-1337; to Purdon's Pennsylvania Statutes Annotated; and to the pertinent pamphlet laws. In the instance of discrepancies in wording, that of the original text was given preference. In the case of matter added by amendment, the proper joint resolution in the pamphlet laws was consulted. Some changes in punctuation were made for purposes of uniformity, though care taken not to change the sense of any provision.

Section titles are unofficial and are intended only to convey briefly the subject matter of the section.



(Constitution of 1874)

PREAMBLE We, the people of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, grateful to Almighty God for the blessings of civil and religious liberty, and humbly invoking His guidance, do ordain and establish this Constitution.


DECLARATION OF RIGHTS That the general, great and essential principles of liberty and free government may be recognized and unalterably established, WE DECLARE THAT:

Section 1 - Inherent Rights of Mankind


All men are born equally free No Change.
and independent, and have certain
inherent and indefeasible rights,
among which are those of enjoying
and defending life and liberty, of
acquiring, possessing and protecting
property and reputation, and of
pursuing their own happiness.

Section 2 - Political Powers

All power is inherent in the peo- No Change.
ple, and all free governments are
founded on their authority and in-
stituted for their peace, safety and
happiness. For the advancement of
these ends they have at all times an
inalienable and indefeasible right to
alter, reform or abolish their gov-
ernment in such manner as they
may think proper.

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Section 7 - Freedom of Press and Speech

Recommended No Change.

Current The printing press shall be free to every person who may undertake to examine the proceedings of the legislature or any branch of government, and no law shall ever be made to restrain the right thereof. The free communication of thoughts and opinions is one of the invaluable rights of man and every citizen may freely speak, write and print on any subject, being responsible for the abuse of that liberty. No conviction shall be had in any prosecution for the publication of papers relating to the official conduct of officers or men in public capacity, or to any other matter proper for public investigation or information, where the fact that such publication was not maliciously or negligently made shall be established to the satisfaction of the jury; and in all indictments for libels the jury shall have the right to determine the law and the facts, under the direction of the court, as in other cases.

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the nature and cause of the accusation against him, to meet the witnesses face to face, to have compulsory process for obtaining witnesses in his favor, and, in prosecutions by indictment or information, a speedy public trial by an impartial jury of the vicinage; he cannot be compelled to give evidence against himself, nor can he be deprived of his life, liberty or property, unless by the judgment of his peers or the law of the land.

Section 10 - Twice in Jeopardy; Eminent Domain

Recommended No person shall, for any indict- No person shall, for the same able offense, be proceeded against offense, be twice put in jeopardy of criminally by information, except life or limb; nor shall private propin cases arising in the land or erty be taken or applied to public naval forces, or in the militia, when use, without authority of law and in actual service, in time of war or without just compensation being public danger, or by leave of the first made or secured. court for oppression or misdemeanor in office. No person shall, for the same offense, be twice put in jeopardy of life or limb; nor shall private property be taken or applied to public use, without authority of law and without just compensation being first made or secured.

Section 11 - Courts to be Open; Suits Against the Commonwealth

All courts shall be open; and No Change.
every man for an injury done him
in his lands, goods, person or repu-
tation shall have remedy by due
course of law, and right and justice
administered without sale, denial or
delay. Suits may be brought against
the Commonwealth in such manner,
in such courts and in such cases as
the Legislature may by law direct.

Section 12 - Power of Suspending Laws

No power of suspending laws

No Change. shall be exercised unless by the Legislature or by its authority.

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