On September 17, 1787, a majority of the delegates to the Constitutional Convention approved the documents over which they had labored since May. The document was "laid before the United States in Congress assembled" on September 20. For 2 days, September 26 and 27, Congress debated whether to censure the delegates to the Constitutional Convention for exceeding their authority by creating a new form of government instead of simply revising the Articles of Confederation. They decided to drop the matter. Instead, on September 28, Congress directed the state legislatures to call ratification conventions in each state. Article VII stipulated that nine states had to ratify the Constitution for it to go into effect. It took 10 months for the first nine states to approve the Constitution. The first state to ratify was Delaware, on December 7, 1787, by a unanimous vote, 30 - 0. Faced with threatened treatment as a foreign government, it ratified the Constitution by the narrowest margin (two votes) on May 29, 1790.