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        #22: A 'Great Compromise' on State Representation

        作者:Christine Johnson 發布日期:3-5-2013

        ANNOUNCER:

        Welcome to THE MAKING OF A NATION -- American history in VOA Special English. The history of the United States Constitution is a long and interesting story that we have been telling now for several weeks. Today w e continue with the convention in seventeen eighty-seven where it was written. Here are Frank Oliver and Richard Rael.

        VOICE TWO:

        Detail from Washington as Statesman at the Constitutional Convention, by Junius Brutus Stearns, 1856
        Detail from ''Washington as Statesman at the Constitutional Convention,'' by Junius Brutus Stearns, 1856

        Last week, we told about the most serious question facing the convention in Philadelphia. It was the question of state representation in the national government. Would small states and large states have an equal voice?

        上一次我們談到了費城制憲大會所面臨的最嚴峻的問題。那就是:各州在國會里的代表權的問題。人口多少不同,在國會里的發言權是否也應該有所區別呢?

        The convention could not agree on a plan. So it created a special committee to develop a compromise. The convention suspended its meetings for the July Fourth Independence Day holiday. But the special committee continued its work. When the convention re-opened, the delegates heard the committee's report. This was its proposal:

        大會代表在這個問題上無法達成共識,因此成立了一個專門委員會,借著七月四號獨立日其他代表休息的機會,趕制了一份妥協方案,后來被稱為“大妥協”。

        The national legislature would have two houses. Representation in one house would be decided by population. Each state would have one representative for every forty thousand people in that state. Representation in the second house would be equal. Each state would have the same number of representatives as the other states.

        根據方案,美國的國會由兩個院組成,其中一個院的代表按照各州人口數量的多少來分配。每四萬名居民可以推選出一名代表;另外一個院的代表跟人口無關,每個州的議員人數一樣。

        It was called "The Great Compromise." Delegates knew that the success or failure of the convention depended on this agreement.

        費城大會的代表們知道,這項方案能否得到采納將決定制憲大會的成功與失敗。

        VOICE ONE:

        The debate between large states and small states lasted for weeks.

        大州和小州之間的辯論持續了好幾個星期。

        The small states truly believed they would lose power to the large states in a national government. Several times, they threatened to leave the convention in protest.

        人口少的州擔心,他們會在權力上輸給人口眾多的州。這些小州的代表甚至多次威脅要退出大會,以示抗議。

        William Paterson of New Jersey, a small state, spoke. "Some of the assembled gentlemen have made it known that if the small states do not agree to a plan, the large states will form a union among themselves. Well, let them unite if they please! They cannot force others to unite."

        新澤西州的代表威廉·佩特森說,“與會的一些人明確表示,如果小州不接受這些計劃,那些大州就要自行組成聯盟,如果他們愿意,就讓他們去做吧,但是他們不能強迫別人加入?!?/p>

        VOICE TWO:

        Benjamin Franklin
        Benjamin Franklin

        Benjamin Franklin of Pennsylvania, old and in poor health, sat writing quietly during the debate. Now he asked that his words be heard. Franklin asked James Wilson, also of Pennsylvania, to read his statement.

        年邁多病的賓夕法尼亞州代表本杰明·富蘭克林在辯論期間一直在默默地寫些什么。寫完后,他讓賓州的另外一位代表詹姆斯·威爾遜宣讀他的聲明。

        "Why," he asked, "do the small states think they will be swallowed if the big states have more representatives in the national legislature? There is no reason for this fear. The big states will gain nothing if they swallow up the small states. They know this. And so, I believe, they will not try."

        聲明中說,“如果大州在國會里有更多的代表,小州為什么會覺得自己會被吃掉呢?這種恐懼毫無道理。吃掉小州對大州來說沒有任何好處,他們知道這一點,因此我覺得,他們不會這樣做?!?/p>

        (MUSIC)

        VOICE ONE:

        For a long time, the delegates could not agree on representation in the legislature. So they debated other parts of the proposal.

        與會代表在國會議員分配的問題上長時間無法達成共識,因此決定先討論提案的其它內容。

        One involved the names of the two houses of the legislature. The delegates used several names. Most, however, spoke of them simply as the First Branch and the Second Branch. We will speak of them by the names used today: the House of Representatives and the Senate.

        首先是國會兩院的名稱。當時,大多數人都把這兩院簡單地稱為第一院和第二院。為了方便起見,我們借用了今天的名字:參議院和眾議院。

        VOICE TWO:

        Next came the questions: Who could be elected to the House and Senate? Who would elect them?

        接下來是國會議員的資格,以及由誰來推選的問題。

        Delegates did not take long to decide the first question. Members of the House, they agreed, must be at least twenty-five years old. They must be a citizen of the United States for seven years. And, at the time of election, they must live in the state in which they are chosen.

        第一個問題很簡單,與會代表們一致認為,眾議員的年齡必須在25歲以上;一定要是美國公民,而且至少要七年以上;此外,眾議員當選的時候必須是所在州的居民。

        Members of the Senate must be at least thirty years old. They must be a citizen of the United States for nine years. And, at the time of election, they must live in the state in which they are chosen.

        參議員的要求更加嚴格,年齡至少要滿30歲;一定要是美國公民,至少在九年以上;也必須是他所代表的州的居民。

        VOICE ONE:

        How long would lawmakers serve? Roger Sherman of Connecticut thought representatives to the House should be elected every year. Elbridge Gerry of Massachusetts agreed. He thought a longer term would lead to a dictatorship.

        國會議員的任期長短是下一個問題??的峡酥莸拇砹_杰·謝爾曼認為,眾議員任期應該是一年。麻薩諸塞州的埃里布里奇·格里表示贊成,因為他覺得,任期太久會導致獨裁。

        James Madison of Virginia protested. "It will take almost one year," he said, "just for lawmakers to travel to and from the seat of government!" Madison proposed a three-year term. But the delegates finally agreed on two years.

        然而,維吉尼亞州的詹姆斯·麥迪遜抗議說,“當選議員從家鄉到國會往返一次就要將近一年?!彼ㄗh任期三年。最后大會代表將眾議員的任期定為兩年。

        There were many ideas about the term for senators. A few delegates thought they should be elected for life. In the end, the convention agreed on a Senate term of six years.

        在參議員任期的問題上也出現了不同的看法,有些人甚至認為參議員應該定為終身制。制憲大會的代表最后將任期定為六年。

        VOICE TWO:

        Next came a debate about the lawmakers' pay. How much should they get? Or should they be paid at all?

        接下來是議員工資的問題。他們是否應該領取報酬,報酬又該是多少呢?

        Some delegates thought the states should pay their representatives to the national legislature. Others said the national legislature should decide its own pay and take it from the national treasury.

        有些代表認為,議員的工資應該由其所在的州支付;另外一些代表則認為,這筆錢應該由國庫出。

        That idea, James Madison argued, was shameful. He thought the amount should be set by the Constitution. Again, Madison lost the argument. The Constitution says that lawmakers will be paid for their services and that the money will come from the national treasury.

        美國憲法后來規定,國會議員供職,應該得到收入,這筆錢來由國庫。

        (MUSIC)

        VOICE ONE:

        The question of who should elect the lawmakers raised an interesting issue. It concerned democracy. In seventeen eighty-seven, the word "democracy" meant something very different from what it means today. To many of the men meeting in Philadelphia, it meant mob rule. To give power to the people was an invitation to anarchy.

        國會議員由誰來選舉產生的問題涉及到民主,是一個很有意思的問題。1787年的時候,“民主”一詞的含義跟今天不同。對很多參加費城制憲大會的人來說,民主就意味著暴民統治,把權力交給人民就會導致無政府狀態。

        "The people," Roger Sherman declared, "should have as little to do as possible with the government." Elbridge Gerry said, "The evils we have seen around us flow from too much democracy."

        羅杰·謝爾曼說,“人民越少參政越好?!卑@锊祭锲妗じ窭镎f,我們周圍的邪惡就是源于過度的民主。

        From such statements, one can see why the delegates sharply debated any proposal calling for the people to elect the national lawmakers.

        從這些說法不難看出,關于由人民選舉國會議員的提案為什么會引起費城制憲大會代表們的激烈爭論。

        VOICE TWO:

        Sherman, Gerry, and others wanted the state legislatures to choose national lawmakers.

        謝爾曼、格里等人希望由州議會來推選聯邦議員。

        George Mason of Virginia argued for popular elections. "The people will be represented," Mason said, "so they should choose their representatives." James Wilson agreed. "I wish to see the power of the government flow immediately from the lawful source of that power. . .the people."

        維吉尼亞州的代表喬治·梅森則主張由人民投票選舉。他說,“國會議員代表的是人民,當然應該由人民選舉產生?!闭材匪埂ね栠d表示贊成。他說,“我希望看到政府的權力來源于合法的渠道--那就是人民?!?/p>

        James Madison stated firmly that the people must elect at least one branch of the national legislature. That, he said, was a basic condition for free government. The majority of the convention agreed with Mason, Wilson, and Madison. The delegates agreed that members of the House of Representatives should be elected directly by the people.

        詹姆斯·麥迪森很堅決地表示,國會兩院至少要有一個院的成員由人民選舉產生,這是一個自由政府最基本的要求。制憲大會的大多數代表都同意梅森、威爾遜和麥迪森的意見,決定國會眾議院成員由人民直接選舉產生。

        VOICE ONE:

        The convention now considered the method of choosing senators. Four ideas were proposed. Senators could be elected by the House, by the president, by the state legislatures, or by the people. Arguments for and against were similar to those for choosing representatives for the House.

        與會代表繼續討論參議員的產生。代表們一共提出了四種提案。根據提案,參議員可以由眾議院、總統、州議會、或是由人民選舉產生。

        In the end, a majority of the delegates agreed that the state legislatures would choose the senators. And that is what the Constitution says. It remained that way for more than one hundred years. In nineteen thirteen, the states approved the Seventeenth Amendment to the Constitution. This amendment permits the people to vote directly to elect the senators.

        最后,大多數代表決定,參議員由州議會推舉產生,并將此寫入了憲法。這種做法一直延續了一百多年。直到1913年,各州才通過了憲法第17修正案,規定參議員也由人民選舉產生。

        (MUSIC)

        VOICE TWO:

        The convention voting record. This page shows the final vote on the draft Constitution, September 15, 1787
        The convention voting record. This page shows the final vote on the draft Constitution, September 15, 1787

        Finally, the time came for the convention to face the issue of representation in the House and Senate. The large states wanted representation based on population. The small states wanted equal representation.

        制憲大會代表最后又回到了國會議員分配的問題。大州希望議員人數按人口多少分配,小州則主張不問人口多少,議員人數一樣。

        The delegates had voted on the issue several times since the convention began. But both sides stood firm. Yet they knew they could not continue to vote forever, day after day.

        費城大會代表們先后多次就此進行表決,但雙方互不相讓。與此同時,他們也清楚地知道,不能這樣沒完沒了地僵持下去。

        On July fifth, the Grand Committee presented a two-part compromise based on Roger Sherman's ideas. The compromise provided something for large states and something for small states. It called for representation based on population in the House and equal representation in the Senate.

        費城大會的特別委員會7月5號提出了一份妥協方案,建議眾議院議員的分配按照人口決定,參議院議員,各州人數一樣。

        The committee said both parts of the compromise must be accepted or both rejected. On July sixteenth, the convention voted on the issue for the last time. It accepted the Great Compromise.

        1787年7月16號,費城大會就此議題進行了最后一次投票表決,接受了這個被稱為“大妥協”的方案。

        (MUSIC)

        ANNOUNCER:

        Our program was written by Christine Johnson. The narrators were Frank Oliver and Richard Rael.

        We have more to come in the story of the Constitution. Then, in the weeks ahead, we introduce you to some of America's early presidents. And we tell the story of the Civil War.

        If American history interests you, then join us here each week for THE MAKING OF A NATION in VOA Special English. More than two hundred programs are in our series. This was number twenty-two.

        THE MAKING OF A NATION has its own history. The series was first heard on radio in nineteen sixty-nine. New programs have continually been added, but many that were recorded long ago are still replayed.

        And now, thanks to the Internet, we can offer transcripts, MP3s and podcasts of our programs, at www.squishedblueberries.com.

        網友的學習評論(3條):
        作者:xuding45
        4-1-2013 13:47:40
        A 'Great Compromise' on state representations. The state legislature was designed to two houses. Representation in one house would designed by population. The other one would designed by equal in every state.
        作者:鄭烈波
        3-18-2015 13:58:55
        it accepted the great compromise.
        作者:karen
        8-28-2017 15:20:4
        The committee said both parts of the compromise must be accepted or both rejected. On July sixteenth, the convention voted on the issue for the last time. It accepted the Great Compromise.
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