The problem of quantizing general relativity using the Schwinger action principle is considered. The advantages of this technique are discussed and the general formulation of the action principle using the Palatini Lagrangian is given. The difficulty in quantizing general relativity is due to the constraint equations. Two types of constraints are distinguished: algebraic constraint equations and differential constraint equations. The former may be dealt with trivially in this formalism. The latter arise due to the presence of function-type ("gauge") group invariances. In order to eliminate these variables one must make use of the group transformations themselves. Thus in general relativity the transformation from the full set of variables to the independent canonical ones is a coordinate transformation. The linearized theory is treated in detail from this viewpoint and the full theory is briefly discussed.