WE, the people of the State of Illinois - grateful to Almighty God for
the civil, political, and religious liberty which He hath so long permitted
us to enjoy, and looking to him for a blessing upon our endeavors to secure
and transmit the same unimpaired to succeeding generations - in order to
form a more perfect government, establish justice, insure domestic tranquillity,
provide for the common defence, promote the general welfare, and secure
the blessings of liberty
to ourselves and our posterity, do ordain and establish
this constitution for the State of Illinois:
Art. I.-Boundaries. § I. The boundaries and jurisdiction of the state shall be as follows, to-wit:
Beginning at the mouth of the Wabash river; thence up the same, and with the line of Indiana, to the northwest corner of said state; thence east, with the line of the same state, to the middle of Lake Michigan; thence north, along the middle of said lake, to north latitude 420 30'; thence west to the middle of the Mississippi river, and thence down along the middle of that river to its confluence with the Ohio river; and thence up the latter river, along its northwestern shore, to the place of beginning:
Provided, that this state shall exercise such jurisdiction upon the Ohio river as she is now entitled to, or such as may here-after be agreed upon by this state and the state of Kentucky.
Art. II.-Concerning the Distribution of the Powers of Government.
I. The powers of the government of the state of Illinois shall be divided into three distinct departments, and each of them be confided to a separate body of magistracy, to-wit:
Those which are legislative, to one; those which are executive, another;
and those which are judicial, to another.
2. No person, or collection of persons, being one of these departments, shall exercise any power properly belonging to either of the others, except as herein-
expressly directed or permitted, and all acts in contravention of this section be void.
Art. III.-Of the Legislative Department. §
I. The legislative authority of the state shall be vested in a general assembly, which shall consist of a senate and a hous e of representatives, both to be elected by the people.
2. The first election for senators and representatives shall be held
on the day after the first Monday in November, 1848; and thereafter, elections
members of the general assembly shall be held once in two years, on the Tuesday after the first Monday in November, in each and every county, at such places as may be provided by law.
3.No person shall be a representative who shall not have attained the age of 25 years, who shall not be a citizen of the United States, and three years an
inhabitant of this state, who shall not have resided within the limits
of the county
or district in which he shall be chosen 12 months next preceding his election, if
such county or district shall have been so long erected, but if not, then within the
limits of the county or counties, district or districts, out of which the same shall have been taken, unless he shall have been absent on the public business of the
United States or of this state, and who, moreover, shall not have paid a state or county tax.
§ 4- No person shall be a senator who shall not have attained the
age of 35 years; who shall not be a citizen of the United States, five
years an inhabitant or
this state, and one year in the county or district in which he shall be chosen
immediately preceding his election, if such county or district shall have been so
long erected; but if not, then within the limits of the county or counties, district
or districts, out of which the same shall have ueen taken, unless he shall have
been absent on the public business of the United States, or of this state, and
shall not, moreover, have paid a state or county tax.
§ 5. The senators at their first session herein provided for shall
be divided by
lot, as near as can be, into two classes. The seats of the first class shall be
vacated at the expiration of the second year, and those of the second class at the
expiration of the fourth year, so that one-half thereof, as near as possible, may be
biennially chosen forever thereafter.
§ 6. The senate shall consist of 25 members, and the house of representatives
shall consist of 75 members, until the population of the state shall amount to
1,000,000 of souls, when five members may be added to the house, and five addi-tional members for every 500,000 inhabitants thereafter, until the whole number of representatives shall amount to 100; after which the number shall neither be .
increased nor diminished; to be apportioned among the several counties according
to the number of white inhabitants. In all future apportionments, where more than one county shall be thrown into a representative district, all the representa-tives to which said counties may be entitled shall be elected by the entire district.
§ 7. No person elected to the general assembly shall receive any
civil appoint-ment within this state, or to the senate of the United States,
from the governor,
the governor and senate, or from the general assembly, during the term for which he shall have been elected; and all such appointments, and all votes given for any
such member for any such office or appointment, shall be void; nor shall any member of the general assembly be interested, either directly or indirectly, in any contract with the state, or any county thereof, authorized by any law passed during the time for which he shall have been elected, or during one year after the expira-tion thereof.
§ 8. In the year 1855, and every tenth year thereafter, an enumeration
or an ..the inhabitants of this state shall be made in such manner as shall
be directed by law; and in the year 1855, and every tenth year thereafter,
the census taken b7 authority of the government of the United States shall
be adopted by the general assembly as the enumeration of this state; and
the number of senators and repre-sentatives shall, at the first regular
session holden after the returns herein provided for are made, be apportioned
among the several counties or districts to be established
by law, according to the number of white inhabitants.
§ 9. Senatorial and representative districts shall be composed
of contiguous territory bounded by county lines; and only one senator allowed
to each senatorial. District and not more than three representatives to
any representative district: Provided
that cities and towns containing the requisite population may be erected into
§ 10. In forming senatorial and representative districts, counties containing a population of not more than one-fourth over the existing ratio, shall form separate districts, and the excess shall be given to the nearest county or counties not having a senator or representative, as the case may be, which has the largest white population-
§ II. The first session of the general assembly shall commence on the first Monday of January, 1849; and forever after the general assembly shall meet on the first Monday of January next ensuing the election of the members thereof, and at no other period, unless as provided by this constitution.
§ 12. The senate and house of representatives, when assembled,
shall each choose a speaker and other officers (the speaker of the senate
excepted). Each house shall judge of the qualifications and eleclion of
its members, and sit upon its own adjournments. Two thirds of each house
shall constitute a quorum; but a smaller number
may adjourn from day to day, and compel the attendance of absent members.
§ 13. Each house shall keep a journal of its proceedings, and publish them. The yeas and nays of the members on any question shall, at the desire of any two of them, be entered on the journals.
§ 14. Any two members or either house shall have liberty to dissent and protest against any act or resolution which they may think injurious to the public, or to any individual, and have the reasons of their dissent entered on the journals.
§ 15. Each house may determine the rules of its proceedings, punish its mem-bers for disorderly behavior, and, with the concurrence of two-thirds of all the members elected, expel a member, but not a second time for the same cause; and the reason for such expulsion shall be entered upon the journal, with the names of the members voting on the question.
§ 16. When vacancies shall happen in either house, the governor, or the person exercising the powers of governor, shall issue writs of election to fill such vacancies.
§ 17. Senators and representatives shall, in all cases, except
treason, felony, or breach of the peace, be privileged from arrest during
the session of the general
assembly, and in going to and returning from the same; and for any speech or debate in either house, they shall not be questioned in any other place.
§ 18. Each house may punish, by imprisonment during its session, any person not a member who shall be guilty of disrespect to the house, by any disorderly or contemptuous behavior in their presence: Provided, such imprisonment shall not, at anyone time, exceed 24 hours.
§ 19. The doors of each house, and of committees of the whole,
shall be kept open, except in such cases as in the opinion of the house
require secrecy. Neither
house shall, without the consent of the other, adjourn for more than two days, nor to any other place than that in which the two houses shall be sitting.
§ 20. The style of the laws of this state shall be: Be it Enacted by the People of The State of Illinois, represented in The General Assembly.
§ 21. Bills may originate in either house, but may be altered, amended, or rejected by the other; and on the final passage of all bills, the vote shall be by ayes and noes, and shall be entered on the journal; and no bill shall become a law without the concurrence of a majority of all the members elect in each house.
§ 22. Bills making appropriations for the pay of the members
and officers of the general assembly. and for the salaries of the officers
of the government, shall
not contain any provision on any other subject.
23. Every bill shall be read on three different days, in each house,
unless, in case of urgency, three-fourths of the house where such bill
is so depending shall
deem it expedient to dispense with this rule, and every bill having passed both: "
houses Will be signed by the speakers of their respective houses; and no private
or local law which may be passed by the general assembly shall embrace more than
one subject, and that shall be expressed in the title. And no public act of the
general assembly shall take effect or be in force until the expiration of 60 days from, the end of the session at which the same may be passed, unless in case of emergency , the general assembly shall otherwise direct.
§ 24, The sum of $2 per day, for the first 42 days' attendance,
and $1 per day for each day's attendance thereafter, and 10 cents for each
necessary mile's travel going to and returning from the seat of government,
shall be allowed to the members of the general assembly, as a compensation
for their services, and no more.
The speaker of the house of representatives shall be allowed the sum of $1 per day, in addition to his per diem as a member.
§ 25. The per diem and mileage allowed to each member of the general assembly shall be certified by tbe speakers of their respective houses, and entered into the journals, and published at the close of each session.
§ 26. No money shall be drawn from the treasury, but in consequence
of appropriations made by law; and an accurate statement of the receipts
of the public money shall be attachted to, and published with the laws at the registrar
of each session of the general assembly. And no person, who has been or may be a collector or holder of public moneys, shall be eligible to a seat in either house of the general assembly, nor be eligible to any office of profit or trust in this state until such person shall have accounted for, and paid into the treasury all monies for which he may be accountable.
§ 27. The house of representatives shall have the sole power of
impeachment but a majority of all the members elected must concur in an
impeachments shall be tried by the senate, and when sitting for that purpose, the senators shall be upon oath, or affirmation, to do justice according to law of
evidence. No person shall be convicted without the concurrence of two-thirds of the senators elected.
§ 28. The governor and other civil officers under this state shall
be liable for impeachment for any misdemeanor in office, but judgment in
such cases shall not extend further than to removal from office, and disqualification
to hold any office of honor, profit, or trust, under this state. The party,
or acquitted, shall, nevertheless, be liable to indictment, trial, judgment, and punishment, according to law.
§ 29. No judge of any court of law or equity, secretary of state, attorney generaI, attorney for the state, recorder, clerk of any court of record, sheriff or collector or member of either house of congress, or person holding any lucrative office under the United States or of this state (provided that appointments in the militia, or justice of the peace, shall not be considered lucrative offices) shall have a seat in the general assembly; nor shall any person, holding any office of honor or profit under the government of the United States, hold any office of honor or profit under the authority of this state.
§ 30. Every person who shall be chosen or appointed to any office of trust or profit shall, before entering upon the duties thereof, take an oath to support the constitution of the United States, and of this state, and also an oath of
S 31. The general assembly shall have full power to exclude from the
privilege of electing, or being elected, any person convicted of bribery,
perjury, or other infamous crime
§ 32. The general assembly shall have no power to grant divorces,
but may authorize the courts of justice to grant them for such cause as
may be specified by law: Provided, that such laws be general and uniform
in their operation.
33. The general assembly shall never grant or authorize extra compensation to any public officer, agent, servant, or contractor, after the service shall have been rendered or the contract entered into.
S 34 The general assembly shall direct by law in what manner suits may be brought against the state.
S 35. The general assembly shall have no power to authorize lotteries for any purpose, nor to revive or extend the charter of the state bank, or the charter of any other bank heretofore existing in the state, and shall pass laws to prohibit the sale of lottery tickets in this state.
§ 36. The general assembly shall have no power to authorize, by private or special law, the sale of any lands or other real estate belonging in whole or in part to any individual or individuals.
§ 37. Each general assembly shall provide for all the appropriations necessary for the ordinary and contingent expenses of the government until the adjournment of the next regular session, the aggregate amount of which shall not be increased without a vote of two-thirds of each house, nor exceed the amount of revenue authorized by law to be raised in such time: Provided, the state may, to meet casual deficits or failures in revenues, contract debts never to exceed in the aggregate $50,000, and the moneys thus borrowed shall be applied to the purpose for which they were obtained, or to repay the debt thus made, and to no other purpose; and no other debt, except for the purpose of repelling invasion, suppressing insurrection, or defending the state in war (for payment of which the faith of the state shall be pledged), shall be contracted, unless the law authorizing the same shall, at a general
election, have been submitted to the people, and have received a majority of all the votes cast for members of the general assembly at such election. The general assembly shall provide for the publication of said Iaw for three months at least before the vote of the people shall be taken upon the same; and provision shall be made, at the time, for the payment of the interest annually, as it shall accrue, by a tax levied for the purpose, or from other sources of revenue; which law, providing for the payment of such interest by such tax, shall be irrepealable until such debt be paid: And, Provided,further, that the law levying the tax shall be submitted to the people with the law authorizing the debt to be contracted.
S 38. The credit of the state shall not, in any manner, be given to or in aid or any individual, association, or corporation.
39 The general assembly shall provide, by law that the fuel and stationery furnished for the use of the state, the copying, printing, binding, and distributing the laws and journals, and all other printing ordered by the general assembly, shall be let, by contract, to the lowest responsible bidder; and that no member of the general assembly,. or other officer of the state shall be interested, either directly or indirectly, in any such contract: Proided, that the general assembly may fix a maximum price.
S 40 Until there shall be a new apportionment of senators and representatives, the state shall be divided into senatorial and representative districts, and the
senators and representatives shall be apportioned among the several
follows, [Apportionment omitted.]
41. Until the general assembly shall otherwise provide, the clerks of the
county commissioners' courts in each of the aforesaid senatorial districts, and in
such of the represeutative districts as may be composed of more than one county,
shaIl meet at the county seat of the oldest county in said district, within 30 days
next after any election for Senator or representative therein, for the purpose of ,
comparing and canvassing the votes given at such election; and the said clerks
shall in all other respects conform to the Laws on the subject in force at the time
of the adoption of this constitution.
Art. IV.-Of the Executive Department.
§ I. The executive power of the state shaIl be vested in a governor.
§ 2. The first election for governor shall be held on Tuesday next
after the first
Monday in November, 1848; and the next election shall be held on Tuesday
next after the first Monday of November, 1852; and thereafter an election for governor
shall be held once in four years, on Tuesday next after the first Monday of November.
The governor shall be Chosen by the electors or the members of the general
assembly, at the same Places and in the same manner that they shall respectively
vote for members thereat. The returns for every election for governor shall be
sealed up and transmitted to the seat of government, by the returning officers,
directed to the speaker of the house of representatives, who shall open and publish
them in the presence of a majority of the members of each house or the general
assembly. The person having the highest number of votes shaIl be governor; but
if two or more be equal and highest in votes, then one of them shaIl be Chosen
governor by joint ballot of both houses of the general assembly. Contested elections
shall be determined by both houses of the general assembly, in such manner
as shall be prescribed by Law.
§ 3. The first governor shall enter upon the duties of his office
on the second
Monday of January, 1849, and shall hold his office until the second Monday of
January, 1853, and until his successor shaIl have been elected and qualified;
and thereafter the governor shall hold his office for the term of four years, and until
his successor shaIl have been elected and qualified; but he shall not be eligible to
such office more than four years, in any term of eight years, nor to any other
office until after the expiration of the term for which he was elected.
§ 4- No person except a citizen of the United States shall be eligible
office or governor; nor shall any person be eligible to that office who shall not
have attained the age of 35 years, and been 10 years a resident of this state and
14 years a citizen of the United States.
§ 5. The governor shall reside at the seat of government, and receive
a saIary of $1500
per annum, which shall not be increased or diminished; and he shall not
during the time for which he shall have been elected, receive any emolument from
the United States, or either of them.
§ 8. The governor shall have power to grant reprieves, commutations,
after conviction, for all offences, except treason and cases of impeachment,
upon such conditions and with such restrictions and limitations as he may think
proper, subject to such regulations as may be provided by Law relative to the
manner of applying for pardons. Upon conviction for treason, he shall have
power to suspend the execution of the sentence until the case shall be reported
to the general assembly at its next meeting, when the. general assembly shall pardon
the convict, commute the sentence, direct the execution thereof, or grant a further
reprieve. He shall, biennially, communicate to the general assembly each case of
reprieve, commutation, or pardon granted, stating the name of the convict, the
crime for which he was convicted, the sentence and its date, and the date of com-mutation,
pardon, or reprieve.
S 9. He may require information, in writing, from the officers in the executive department, upon any subject relating to the duties of their respective offices, and shaIl take care that the Laws be faithfully executed.
§ 10. He may, on extraordinary occasions, convene the general assembly by proclamation, and shall state in said proclamation the purpose for which they are to convene; and the general assembly shall enter on no legislative business except that for which they were specially called together.
§ 11. He shall be commander-in-chief of the army and navy of this state, and of the militia, except when they shall be called into the service of the United States.
§ 12. The governor shall nominate and, by and with the advice and
consent of the senate (a majority of all the senators concurring) appoint
all officers whose offices are established by this constitution, or which
may be created by Law, and
whose appointments are not otherwise provided for; and no such officer shall be appointed or elected by the general assembly.
§ 13. In case of disagreement between the two houses with respect
to the time of adjournment, the governor sball have power to adjourn the
general assembly to such time as he thinks proper: Provided, it be not
to a period beyond the next
constitutional meeting of the same.
§ 14- A lieutenant-governor shall be chosen at every election
of governor, in
the same manner, continue in office for the same time, and possess the same
qualifi-cation. In voting for governor and lieutenant governor, the electors shall
distin-guish whom they vote for as governor, and whom as lieutenant-governor.
I 15. The lieutenant-governor shall, by virtue of his office, be speaker of the senate; have a right, when in committee of the whole, to debate and vote on all subjects, and, whenever the senate are equally divided, to give the casting vote.
§ 16. Whenever the government shall be administered by the lieutenant-gov-ernor, or he shall be unable to attend as speaker of the senate, the senators shall elect one of their own number as speaker for that occasion; and if, during the vacancy of the office of governor, the lieutenant-governor shall be impeached, removed from office, refuse to qualify, or resign, or die, or be absent from the state, the speaker of the senate shall, in like manner, administer the government.
§ 17. The lieutenant-governor, while he acts as speaker of the senate, shall receive for his services the same compensation which shall, for the same period, be allowed to the speaker of the house of representatives, and no more.
I 18. If the lieutenant-governor shall be called upon to administer
the govern-ment, and shall, while in such administration, resign, die,
or be absent from the state, during the recess of the general assembly,
it shall be the duty of the secretary