What Is Popular Sovereignty

Popular Sovereignty comes from political origins. It literally means that the “people are the rulers”. This terminology is applicable when political disputes and issues are resolved and settled through a popular vote or to the governments based on the concept of democracy. 

In the 19th century, the ill concept of slavery had taken all over the United States. Instead of going about the slavery issue in a direct manner, leaders of the federal government tended to refrain from the controversial dilemma. In order to avoid themselves getting in the debate, the leaders formed a compromise that was the flag bearer of popular sovereignty. Rather than officially declaring whether a state should or should not have slavery, they left the decision making onto the hands of the local people through carrying out a popular vote. 

What Is Meant By Popular Sovereignty?

Popular Sovereignty is basically a doctrine in a political context. It supports the ideology that a government is created and subject to the will people. In other perspectives, it also refers to people having the authority to determine the territorial legislature. Meaning that it’s entirely on them to decide whether slavery should exist in that territory or not. It gets carried out through a popular vote. 

What Is An Example Of Popular Sovereignty?

A historical example of popular sovereignty would be the Compromise of 1850. On the occasion of the Compromise of 1850, the federal government gave the citizens of New Mexico the authority to conduct popular sovereignty. The whole meaning behind it was to give locals the power to determine the causes on their own. Whether slavery should or should not exist in that territory. 

All American citizens know that the United States was established under the U.S. Constitution in 1788. However, the establishers of the government specifically created a government that could exclusively be controlled by the people of the United States. It’s the right of every U.S. citizen to know that they have they elect their own government, government representatives and laws. This means that the energy to fuel the government power comes from within the will of its people. Basically, the whole point of a government is to provide benefits to the citizens. If a government fails to do so, it should be eliminated imminently. 

However, the U.S. wasn’t the first nation to adopt the concept of popular sovereignty. Other governments and constitutions had already developed the concept way before U.S. did. The Greeks and The Romans are example.