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The framers of the constitution employed words in their natural sense; and, where they are plain and clear, resort to collateral aids to interpretation is unnecessary, and cannot be indulged in to narrow or enlarge the text; but where there is ambiguity or doubt, or where two views may well be entertained, contemporaneous and subsequent practical construction is entitled to the greatest weight.
Justice Melville Weston Fuller (more quotes by Justice Melville Weston Fuller or books by/about Justice Melville Weston Fuller)
(1833-1910) Chief Justice of the United States Supreme Court, 1888-1910
delivering the opinion of the court in MCPHERSON v. BLACKER, 146 U.S. 1 (1892)