The US constitution is the supreme law of the United States of America, it consisted originally of seven articles but has been continually amended since its codification in 1787. The adding of amendments, such as the Bill of Rights 1789, involves a process which was laid out by the Founding Fathers. The amendment process of the US constitution was made rigid, this was so that every amendment made was properly scrutinised and would not destroy the foundations of the constitution.
The amendments can be proposed by a two-thirds majority of both houses of Congress, once this is passed it is then ratified by the legislatures in three-quarters of the States. The constitution can also be amended by a national convention called by Congress at the request of the State Legislatures, which can then be ratified by conventions in three-quarters of the States. These processes are interchangeable; the houses of Congress can propose an amendment and it can be ratified by the States, or vice-versa. No amendments have ever been passed through the use of conventions, as gaining a two-thirds majority of State legislatures is too substantial. The US constitution has been criticised for being too rigid making it difficult to amend and as the parties within government become more homogenous and party voting increases, the process of amendments gets even tougher.
Since its creation over 200 years ago, there have been 27 amendments; a very small number of amendments, especially when compared to the British Constitution. The most recent amendment was in 1992, which limits Congressional pay rises and prior to that the majority of amendments were made within 20 years of the constitution being made.
In conclusion, the constitution is rigid and difficult to amend. Gaining a two-thirds majority in both houses of Congress insures that only amendments that are necessary and that follow the intentions of the Founding Fathers are