Date of Defense



Political Science

First Advisor

Dr. Ken Dahlberg

Second Advisor

Dr. Peter Renstrom

Third Advisor

Dr. Michelle Miller-Adams


The roots of the democratic system in the United States are deeply embedded within the compelling language of the Declaration of Independence. This document is still held on high regard for the inspiration it has provided to the development of democratic institutions and ideals. The creation of United States democracy was founded on the principles outlined in this historic document "that certain truths are self-evident, that people are created equal, that they are endowed with inalienable rights, that governments derive their power from the consent of the governed and that the purpose of government is to protect these rights." These principles are still a cause for much thought, as they are a sign of the new basis for U.S. Democracy, yet can still portray its faults simultaneously. Within the U.S. Constitution three branches of government were created: the executive, the legislative, and the judicial. The President was to act as chief executive in administering the law, while the Congress created the laws and ensured that local politicians represented U.S. citizens. The U.S. judicial system's responsibility was to protect the integrity of the Constitution by making certain that laws and actions did not conflict with it and that justice would be served by fair and objective procedures.

Access Setting

Honors Thesis-Open Access