In the premier episode of “Constitutional,” we go back in time to that hot Philadelphia summer in 1787 when a group of revolutionary Americans drafted the U.S. Constitution. Subscribe to the "Constitutional" podcast for the full episode!
United States


00:00:05I Franklin Delano Roosevelt by Richard milhous Nixon and we'll do the best of my ability reserved and defend the Constitution Constitution Constitution Constitution
00:00:42every American president takes the same oath of office from the Capitol building in Washington DC and just a few blocks west from there in the National Archives since the original version of the Constitution
00:00:59it's pages are a bit yellowed and the edges are soft but the document has aged well it's in surprisingly good condition you can still clearly make out its words and across the parchment in perfectly even lines of slanted script words that president after president vows to uphold and here with these Pages inside the archives building is where our Story begins last year when I was making the presidential podcast I visited just about every other building in Washington I went to the Library of Congress the White House the Lincoln Memorial the Woodrow Wilson house I spent 44 weeks study each of the American president what's made certain presidents effective and others ineffective at achieving their goals and what I was trying to figure out was what makes for a great leader
00:01:59United States
00:02:03it took that long march through all of American presidential history to date to ultimately realize something pretty simple what I realized was that the presidents that we think of as great as they weren't the ones who are effective at achieving what they wanted to achieve our greatest presidents are actually the ones who are effective at achieving what we we as a nation wanted to achieve
00:02:30in other words those presidents who embrace the mission set forth in the Constitution to lead us toward a more perfect union which brings us back to the National Archives
00:02:43hey I'm going to lay in it so nice to meet you the Constitution is here under tight security security by the way that's David ferio the national archivist but the original Constitution is here right next to the two other most important founding documents in our nation's history together they form the blueprint for Americans values and these are our best tools for judging whether a president is leading Us in the right direction so what are we looking at in this room we are in the Rotunda of the National Archives here in Washington DC in this is the shrine to the charters of Freedom the Declaration of Independence the Constitution and the Bill of Rights it feels like a shrine space
00:03:37it's dimly-lit in here there are massive bronze Gates a marble floor Limestone walls reaching all the way up to a huge vaulted ceiling and the document that sits right in the center is the Constitution it's 230 years old and it's made up of just four pages of parchment but those four page which were written over the course of one very hot summer in 1787 they mapped out the framework for an entirely new Democratic nation and the first words on that first page are we the Peeples again over our history but there's something about seeing the ink up close the curve of the letters the texture of the parched
00:04:36and that reminds me of these were words written by real people that this constitution is such a deeply human expression of Hope Vision it was a group of 55 passionate flawed idealistic men who crafted the words on these four pages of parchment yet ultimately it will be an uncountable number of us overtime abolitionists suffragists prohibitionist presidents politicians citizens who continue to preserve and Challenge and amend the ideals expressed here that's what this podcast is about
00:05:20we the people who have shaped the values of America
00:05:28Lillian Cunningham with the Washington Post and this is constitutional
00:05:43we the people of the United States in order to form a more perfect union establish justice secure the blessings of liberty
00:06:10that's the first 5 minutes of episode 1 of constitutional if you want to hear the full episode which I hope you do please go subscribe to the new constitutional podcast just search for us on Apple podcast Stitcher wherever you're listening to this thanks so much for being a presidential fan and I hope you'll join me for constitutional

Transcribed by algorithms. Report Errata
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