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popular sovereignty

the doctrine that sovereign power is vested in the people and that those chosen to govern, as trustees of such power, must exercise it in conformity with the general will.
American History. (before the Civil War) a doctrine, held chiefly by the opponents of the abolitionists, that the people living in a territory should be free of federal interference in determining domestic policy, especially with respect to slavery.
Origin of popular sovereignty
1840-50, Americanism Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for popular sovereignty
  • Their demands have for the most part revolved around questions of popular sovereignty.
  • So let us stick to this popular sovereignty,—this insidious popular sovereignty.
  • It is also and equally a commitment to popular sovereignty under law.
  • Here is set forth a recognition of popular sovereignty, the equality of men and their mutual rights and duties.
  • Describe the importance of popular sovereignty in a representative democracy.
British Dictionary definitions for popular sovereignty

popular sovereignty

(in the pre-Civil War US) the doctrine that the inhabitants of a territory should be free from federal interference in determining their own domestic policy, esp in deciding whether or not to allow slavery
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Contemporary definitions for popular sovereignty

the concept that political and legislative power resides with the citizens's 21st Century Lexicon
Copyright © 2003-2014, LLC
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