In 1833, the decision of Baron v Baltimore established the concept that the Bill of Rights were not applicable to the States.

Is there evidence from the ratification debates or debate conventions that demonstrates they were also intended to protect individual rights from infringement by the States?

Aside from the First Amendment, the others are not narrowed textually to the Federal government. Shouldn't the Second through the Ninth Amendments be viewed as prohibitions on the States?

  • 3
    You seem to be asking about original intent, but I'll note that the 14th amendment has since been used to apply these to the states. This seems like it is more of a History or maybe Law question, though, when restricted to original intent(s). Sep 15, 2018 at 4:28
  • @zibadawatimmy The aim is to find if there are political statements or indicators of policy prior the Baron V Baltimore decision that support the premise the protections provided to individual rights through the Bill of Rights was also a restriction on State Governments. Upon review, this might work else where, though it might be drifting in the intersection of the Venn diagram. Sep 15, 2018 at 6:37
  • The evidence from the House discussions on amendments suggests they were intended for the federal government only. Specifically, a separate amendment proposed by Madison to protect rights in the states was accepted by the House but dropped in the Senate. An account of the discussion in the House is available on-line, but there is no direct link to the page.
    – Rick Smith
    Jul 25, 2019 at 21:04


You must log in to answer this question.

Browse other questions tagged .