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This article uses political science data on participation, knowledge, and popular sentiments about the political process to critique different strands of popular constitutionalism, a recent movement in constitutional theory that highlights the People's role in the development of interpretive norms. It argues that popular constitutionalists have not paid sufficient attention to the increasingly distant relationship between the people and political life, resulting in an interpretive model that is often unable to realize its normative goals and rests on some weak descriptive premises. It also suggests that the existence of high levels of civic engagement during the 1960s - a formative period for many current theorists - has contributed to the increasingly distant relationship between constitutional theory and political practice.