The Qualifications Clauses
in the Organic U.S. Constitution
Paul Andrew Mitchell, B.A., M.S.
Counselor at Law, Federal Witness
and Private Attorney General
All Rights Reserved
(November 10, 1998)
There are three elected offices in the federal government.
They are the offices of Representative, Senator, and President.
Eligibility for these offices is defined in three separate
clauses in the U.S. Constitution, which recite the requisite
qualifications a candidate must possess, in order to serve.
Hence, the term "Qualifications Clauses". These three clauses
are found at the following places in the U.S. Constitution:
Qualifications for the office of U.S. Representative
Qualifications for the office of U.S. Senator
Qualifications for the office of President
Despite recent unsuccessful efforts to limit the terms of
U.S. Representatives and Senators, these Qualifications Clauses
have never been amended. Therefore, they retain the same meaning
which they had, when they were first ratified into Supreme Law on
June 21, 1788 A.D.
In addition to the organic Constitution, as ratified on that
date in 1788, on February 7, 1795 the Eleventh Amendment was also
ratified by the several States. That Amendment also does refer
to State Citizens where it mentions “Citizens of another State”:
Eleventh Amendment (18 Stat. 30):
Taken together with the Diversity Clause ("3:2:1") and the
Privileges and Immunities Clause ("4:2:1"), all six of these
clauses share one very important thing in common: all six refer
to one and only one class of Citizens, namely, Citizens of ONE OF
the 50 States which are united by,and under, the Constitution for
the United States of America. Thus, the proper construction and
common understanding of these clauses (to borrow a phrase from
the case of Ex Parte Knowles) is crucial to understanding the all
important difference between State Citizens and federal citizens.
For a longer treatise on the meaning of Citizenship, see:
email: Contact Us
# # #
to Table of Contents for
Paul Andrew Mitchell