The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 20, July 1916 - April, 1917 Page: 22
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The Southwestern Historical Quarterly
States to be very much alike in their grants of power to their
legislative bodies. An attempt at analysis of the powers to be
granted to the Mexican congress fails to reveal any marked lean-
ing toward either the Spanish or American precedent.
In some few details the Mexican congress was to possess less
power than the congress of the United States. No mention is
made of congressional power to create courts inferior to the
Supreme Court, to establish uniform laws regarding bankruptcy,
nor to establish postoffices or post roads. The most marked point
of difference lies in the absence of any grant that might be com-
pared with our "necessary and proper" clause.
In the power of congress to control all external commerce, to
regulate internal commerce, to regulate the finances of the nation,
to control the army and navy,-the influence of the United States
is seen. The Spanish constitution of 1812 still entrusted the
control of the army and navy to the king.7 The Acta Constitu-
tiva, like the constitution of the United States, attempted to re-
move powers with such tremendous possibilities as far as possible
from the hands of a single individual.
The executive to be created was not defined by the Acta Con-
stitutiva. Article 15 states, "The supreme power of the execu-
tive is placed by the constitution in the 'individual' or 'indi-
viduals' who may be chosen, who are residents and native born
citizens of any of the states or territories of the federation."
This phraseology may be explained by the fact that, since the
abdication of Iturbide, the executive power had been lodged in
a triumvirate made up of NicolAs Bravo, Guadalupe Victoria and
Pedro Celestino Negrete. The opponents of those advocating the
federal scheme of government were led by Don Carlos Busta-
mante, who strenously advocated a multiple executive.8 Dr.
Miguel Ramos Arizpe, chief draftsman of the Acta Constitutiva,
however, admirably advanced the arguments favoring a single
The great powers of the President of the United States are
due largely to the lack of specific restriction. The Mexican
'Constitution of Spain (1812), Titulo IV, Capitulo I, Art. 171, Sees. 8-9.
sDiario de los Debates, April 12, 1824.
"Ibid., April 13, 1824.
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Texas State Historical Association. The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 20, July 1916 - April, 1917, periodical, 1917; Austin, Texas. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth101070/m1/28/: accessed February 20, 2018), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Texas State Historical Association.