News Releases

Messmer Report: Celebrating the U.S. Constitution

Celebrating the U.S. Constitution

By State Sen. Mark Messmer (R-Jasper)

The United States Constitution protects the rights of our citizens from a variety of encroachments.

Initially, our federal government worked under the Articles of Confederation. However, this first set of laws were weak and the states called for a Constitutional Convention in 1787.

That summer, delegates drafted and debated the structure of the new United States government.

Our founding fathers wanted to ensure no branch of government gained too much power, so they created a system of checks and balances between the executive, legislative and judicial branches of government. Many of these have been adopted by state and local governments as well.

The U.S. Constitution was signed by the delegates on Sept. 17, 1787, at Independence Hall in Philadelphia.

By 1791, the original 13 states had ratified the Constitution and its first 10 amendments known as the Bill of Rights.

These first 10 amendments guaranteed American citizens' rights like free speech, freedom of religion and the right to bear arms.

Since then, 17 additional amendments have been added that abolish slavery, guarantee voting rights and many more.

In 1955, the Daughters of the American Revolution (DAR) urged Congress to declare the week of Sept. 17-23 as Constitution Week to encourage American citizens across the country to learn about the history of the Constitution and its importance to modern society.

I encourage all Americans to learn about the Constitution and how it helped ensure the freedoms that endure today.

The DAR will be setting up displays in the Dubois County Public Libraries and VUJC the week of Sept. 17.

As always, feel free to contact my office directly with your questions and concerns by email at or by phone at 800-382-9467.


State Sen. Mark Messmer (R-Jasper) represents Senate District 48, which
includes Crawford, Dubois, Gibson, Perry, Pike and Spencer counties.
Click here to download a high-resolution photo.