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LAWS OF THE UNITED STATES.
OF THE ORIGIN, EFFECT, AND SANCTION OF THE LAWS.
ARTICLE 1. THE people of the United States, in order to form a more perfect union, establish justice, insure domestic tranquillity, provide for the common defence, promote the general welfare, and secure the blessings of liberty to themselves and their posterity, have ordained and established the constitution for the United States of America.(1)
2. All debts contracted and engagements entered into, before the adoption of the constitution, shall be as valid against the United States, under the constitution, as under the confederation.(2)
3. The constitution, and the laws, which shall be made in pursuance thereof, and all treaties made, or which shall be made, under the authority of the United States, shall be the supreme law of the land: and the judges, in every state, shall be bound thereby, any thing in the constitution or laws of any state, to the contrary notwithstanding.(3)*
(1) Preamble to the Con.-M'Culloch v. state of Maryland, 4 Wheat, 316.Martin v. Hunter's exs. 1 Wheat. 304, 324, 352.
(2) Con. Art. 6. cl. 1.
(3) Con. Art. 6. clause 2.-M'Culloch v. state of Maryland, 4 Wheat. 396.
And to the supremacy of such laws, the state laws must yield, even though enacted in pursuance of powers acknowledged to remain in the states.-9 Wheat. 210.-Gibbons v. Ogden.
An act of congress, contrary to the constitution of the United States, is voidand courts of justice are bound so to declare it, or to modify the law according to the constitution, if the case admit such modification.-Cohen v. Virginia, 6 Wheat. 381, 264. Hylton v. United States, 3 Dall. 171. Marbury v. Madison, 1 Cranch, 137. Martin v. Hunter's lessee, 1 Wheat. 304. Loughborough v. Blake, 5 Wheat. 317. United States v. Smith, 5 Wheat. 158. M'Culloch v. Maryland, 4 Wheat. 315. Note to Hayburn's case, 2 Dall. 410. Owings v. Norwood, 5 Cranch, 344. Mossman v. Higginson, 4 Dall. 11. Hodgson v. Bewerbank, 5 Cranch, 303. Vanhorne's lessee v. Dorrance, 2 Dall. 304.
And a state law, repugnant to or incompatible with the constitution of the United States, or of laws made in pursuance thereof, or of treaties, is void.—Houston v. Moore, 5 Wheat. 149.