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The supreme, absolute, and uncontrollable power by which an independent state is governed and from which all specific political powers are derived; the intentional independence of a state, combined with the right and power of regulating its internal affairs without foreign interference.

Sovereignty is the power of a state to do everything necessary to govern itself, such as making, executing, and applying laws; imposing and collecting taxes; making war and peace; and forming treaties or engaging in commerce with foreign nations.

The individual states of the United States do not possess the powers of external sovereignty, such as the right to deport undesirable persons, but each does have certain attributes of internal sovereignty, such as the power to regulate the acquisition and transfer of property within its borders. The sovereignty of a state is determined with reference to the U.S. Constitution, which is the supreme law of the land.

See: authority, bureaucracy, capacity, dominance, dominion, hierarchy, home rule, influence, jurisdiction, polity, predominance, primacy, regime, supremacy


in UK constitutional law, the doctrine that the monarch in Parliament is competent to make or unmake any law whatsoever and cannot be challenged in any court. The doctrine developed historically, its first major enunciation being in the BILL OF RIGHTS. Possible limitations are:
  1. (i) the ACTS OF UNION;
  2. (ii) the inability of Parliament to bind its successors;
  3. (iii) territorial competence, being a practical limitation rather than a legal one.

By far the most significant restraint is found in the law of the EUROPEAN UNION, which asserts its supremacy in the ever-expanding matters subject to the Treaties. Enforcement of an Act of Parliament has been enjoined on the basis of conflict with European law. The creation of the devolved Scottish Parliament has brought about a conventional restraint of Parliament exercising its powers on matters within the devolved powers:


SOVEREIGNTY. The union and exercise of all human power possessed in a state; it is a combination of all power; it is the power to do everything in a state without accountability; to make laws, to execute and to apply them: to impose and collect taxes, and, levy, contributions; to make war or peace; to form treaties of alliance or of commerce with foreign nations, and the like. Story on the Const. Sec. 207.
     2. Abstractedly, sovereignty resides in the body of the nation and belongs to the people. But these powers are generally exercised by delegation.
     3. When analysed, sovereignty is naturally divided into three great powers; namely, the legislative, the executive, and the judiciary; the first is the power to make new laws, and to correct and repeal the old; the second is the power to execute the laws both at home and abroad; and the last is the power to apply the laws to particular facts; to judge the disputes which arise among the citizens, and to punish crimes.
     4. Strictly speaking, in our republican forms of government, the absolute sovereignty of the nation is in the people of the nation; (q.v.) and the residuary sovereignty of each state, not granted to any of its public functionaries, is in the people of the state. (q.v.) 2 Dall. 471; and vide, generally, 2 Dall. 433, 455; 3 Dall. 93; 1 Story, Const. Sec. 208; 1 Toull. n. 20 Merl. Repert. h.t.

References in periodicals archive ?
Our governors should join together in rejecting the striking down of state sovereignty," Bell said in the announcement, "and should form a coalition standing between an overreaching federal government and the citizens of the separate states.
Charter, international law and the basic foundations of humanitarian work, especially state sovereignty and the role of the state, and principles of neutrality, transparency and non-politicized assistance.
Reasons why other states respect the national sovereignty of fellow states is because all states recognize the importance of being equal whether small, big, strong, weak or poor; state sovereignty is the source of order and rule of law in the international arena and in the relation that exists among all states.
HARTUM (CyHAN)- Sudanese President Omar al-Bashir said Saturday that the recent military campaign against the armed groups in volatile regions aimed to uphold the state sovereignty and protect the civilians.
State Sovereignty & the Role of the Federal Responder
Center for Tenth Amendment Action will focus on defending state sovereignty.
I then explore the emergence of tentative shifts in jurisprudential conceptions of state sovereignty and extra-territoriality through a consideration of four post-Charkaoui decisions: the two judgments in the Omar Khadr matter, the Amnesty International claim regarding Afghan POWs detained by the Canadian military and a case with respect to an overseas RCMP investigation.
After reviewing the effects of globalizaion and various forms of localism on state sovereignty, Vecchio (U.
While in the nineteenth century human rights had to endure the intellectual critiques of Jeremy Bentham, Edmund Burke or Karl Marx, in present days they must face new strong challenges such as cultural relativism, state sovereignty or counter-terrorist measures.
The Army has been resuming operations in the Sinai, but this time not to end foreign occupation, but to safeguard state sovereignty.
Concord: At a Senate Commerce Committee hearing on the Marketplace Fairness Act--which would require online retailers with more than $500,000 in remote sales to collect and remit sales tax to other states--Republican Senator Kelly Ayotte testified that it would be "an unfair burden for our businesses to bear" and that by imposing collection requirements on businesses with no physical presence outside their home state, it would "erode existing protections on state sovereignty.
The development of the Chinese armed forces poses no threat to any nation, in that it aims to safeguard state sovereignty, security and development interests," said Senior Colonel Wu Xihua, vice director of the Emergency Response Office of the General Staff Department of the People's Liberation Army.

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