t4 7★ ★ Federalis ederalist 47

Purpose
The purpose of this lesson is for students to examine the propaganda used to present two opposing viewpoints during the ratification of the Constitution. viewpoints within and across cultures.... VIa. examine persistent issues involving the rights, roles, and status of the individual in relation to the general welfare. VIc. analyze and explain ideas and mechanisms to meet needs and wants of citizens, regulate territory, manage conflict, establish order and security, and balance competing conceptions of a just society. Xc. locate, access, analyze, organize, synthesize, evaluate, and apply information about selected public issues--identifying, describing, and evaluating multiple points of view. Xg. evaluate the effectiveness of public opinion in influencing and shaping public policy development and decisionp-making.

Objective
1. The student will analyze and summarize the Federalist arguments for the ratification of the Constitution using the Federalist Papers # 47, 48, 49, or 50 by Alexander Hamilton, James Madison, and John Jay. 2. The student will analyze and summarize the Anti-Federalist arguments against the ratification of the Constitution using the writings of Agrippa, Brutus, the Federal Farmer, and Cato.

Time
60 minutes (up to 3 days)

Theme- Responsibility
Federalist Paper Number 47 discusses the importance of the three branches of government and the responsibility each has to protect their area of authority. This mutually exclusive responsibility is an important element in the checks and balances system.

Materials
★ ★ ★ ★ ★ Dictionaries Federalist Papers (Numbers 47-50) (see www.constitution.org/fed/federa00.htm) Anti-Federalist readings from Agrippa, Brutus, Federal Farmer, Cato, etc. (see http://www.constitution.org/afp.htm) Articles from local newspapers and national magazines Website - www.americanheritage.org

NCSS Standards
IIc. identify and describe significant historical periods and patterns of change within and across cultures.... IIe. investigate, interpret, and analyze multiple historical and contemporary

Preparation
★ Copy handouts ★ Gather supplies (as needed).

Focus
Ask students to decide on a policy for a specific issue like the wearing of identification badges, a school dress code, a minimum smoking age, driving permits, etc. (something you know they will not be able to agree on). Have the class debate the issue for 20 minutes and at the end of that time everyone will vote on a secret ballot. (Have students use scratch paper--no names.) Count up the ballots and then have the students try to figure out why they could not get everyone to agree. Then ask the students to figure out what these terms mean: Majority, Simple Majority, Quorum, and Unanimous.

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★ Federalist 47 ★

Activity

continued

1. Tell the Students about the Constitutional Convention and how it worked. State representatives gathered in Philadelphia to discuss changes needed in the Articles of Confederation. Each state received one vote. When an issue was voted on, regardless of whether it either passed or failed, it could be brought back for more debate. (See Links page on www.americanheritage.org for additional resources on the Constitutional Convention and the Articles of Confederation.) 2. Next, explain that after the Constitution was written and agreed upon by the representatives, each state had to ratify it. In an effort to convince the voters of each state, a series of letters was written to the editors of nearly every newspaper in the 13 states. These letters were written under the pseudonym Publius, an ancient Roman Senator and model citizen. Of course several other people wrote in support of and in complaint against these letters. They too were written under pseudonyms such at Cato, Brutus, Federal Farmer, and Agrippa. Most people chose names of honorable Roman citizens, politicians, and scholars. (See Links page on www.americanheritage.org for additional resources on the Federalist and Anti-Federalist Papers and bios of their authors.) 3. Pass out Federalist handout. Divide the class into small groups of 4 or 5, asking each group to read the handout and annotate it. Beside each paragraph, students will make notes regarding the ideas and issues presented and jot questions, keeping comments limited to the space available on the handout. As groups work, circulate among the groups to help determine definitions and meanings. As the class winds down ask some leading questions about the authors or the need for false names, etc. Require students to finish the annotation for homework. 4. Students individually or in groups may take cut-out segments of the document and analyze/research and discuss their specific terms and meanings. Students may share their analyses with the rest of the group/class. 5. Day Two: Ask students to review their notes and question their ideas and thoughts. Point out how different their notes are from those of other students. Remind them again how hard it was for them to reach a unanimous group/class decision on one simple issue as compared to what colonists 212 + years ago were fighting to accomplish. 6. Next, give half the class a copy of the Federalist argument and the other half an Anti-Federalist argument. Read each one silently or aloud in two separate groups. As the students read, ask them to make notes in one color ink of points that are positives or pluses for the writer’s arguments. In a second color, write out what some people may argue against the writer’s ideas and plans. Let each half of the class compare notes and discuss whether they like the author’s point-of-view, ideas, and/or goal of a defined government and what role each citizen plays in that government. 7. Let each half of the class discuss and eventually debate their articles. As a teacher, monitor and facilitate discussion. Start the activity off by asking a student from each side to summarize his or her article. Then begin asking leading questions of each group. Encourage the students to start formulating their own questions. 8. Day Three: Pass out copies of the political sections of several issues of newspapers and magazines like Time, U.S. News and World Report, and Newsweek. Ask students to read or skim through as many articles as they can in 15-20 minutes. Evaluate the U.S. government’s response to those issues. Were the Anti-Federalists correct to worry about the far-reaching effects of a strong central government? Do the checks and balances proposed by the Federalists guarantee a fair and unified Constitution and government? As a class spend some time debriefing what the articles say and defend.

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Additionally. and since each state had its own specie of money. On the other hand. Essays on the Making of the Constitution. made officially valid.S. and those powers relinquished to the legislature still required a three-fourths majority of states. they could not settle disputes regarding the western lands. Leonar d W . These 85 essays helped win ratification by the necessary nine states by June 1788 and by all thirteen states by May 1790. As a result. MI: Bak Baker vy . was more a “league of friendship” among independent nations than a true act of union among the several states. The Confederation grew weaker. 1993. no permanent U. Christianity and the Constitution: The Faith of the Founding Fathers. But if it was looked upon as an interim regime. established peace. the first American constitution. Athens: Bradfor ord. which prohibited slavery. Congress called for Additional Reading or d. Grand Rapids. These conditions greatly hindered the government. James Madison. • Ordinance of 1785 Provided for surveying and sale of new lands. including the cost of the Revolution. the Congress had no power over the civilian population. er ★ Eidsmore. They first appeared in New York newspapers during 1787 and 1788.. and John Jay to promote ratification of the U. Goaded by the inadequacies of the Articles of Confederation. Further. Constitution. ★ Bradf University of Georgia Press. as the government under the Confederation had neither the power nor the money to raise an army to stop Shays. M. the government established by the Articles was too flawed to be permanent. Congress provided national direction for the waging of the Revolutionary War. Ne w Y or k: Oxf or d U niv er sity Press. and no chief executive or judiciary existed. ratification Formal approval to. Books. the government of the Articles had considerable success. confirmed interim r egime regime Temporary government or administration Northwest Or dinances Ordinances Three Ordinances adopted to decide questions about the Western lands: • Ordinance of 1784 Divided the Western lands into districts and outlined the first prerequisites for statehood. 1 98 7. True. 1987.Federalist 47 Purpose The Federalist papers were written by Alexander Hamilton. New Yor ork: Oxfor ord Univ niver ersity 198 987 61 . ed. This strengthened the idea for a stronger central government. and developed precedents and influence for the making of the Constitution of 1787. Capitol could be established.. no power or money existed to raise an army or navy (as Shays’ Rebellion revealed). all power was held by the individual states so that the citizenry would be over government—to ensure that the power of government lay in the hands of citizens—except those few powers relinquished to the government. Shays’ Rebellion An uprising in 1786-87 in western Massachusetts by debt-burdened farmers. and. a consensus of all 13 states was required for any alteration of the Articles. Original Intentions: On the Making and Ratification of the United States Constitution. John. only the representative legislature (Congress). many will claim the Articles a dismal failure. led by Daniel Shays. sover eignty sovereignty Supremacy of authority or rule History The Articles of Confederation. Leonard W. passed the Northwest Ordinances.. disputes between states could not be resolved satisfactorily while total sovereignty remained with the states: states could not be compelled to pay taxes to support the cost of government. ★ Le Levy vy.S. Because of the fear of tyranny. E. • Ordinance of 1787 Created the Northwest Territory.

usually a hereditary sovereign such as a king or emperor 62 . in the same hands. On May 29. Work began immediately. primarily over representation.” “What emerged from this discussion was a clear delineation of the federal balance [among the executive. wrote articles to be published in newspapers that would eventually be collected under the title The Federalist. voted to ratify the new Constitution. or elective. characteristic of. These were written to persuade a wary public of the need to ratify the newly drafted U. There were impassioned political battles. Madison. 1787. the thirteenth and last of the states. they suspected.★ Federalist 47 ★ continued delegates to Philadelphia’s Independence Hall to amend the Articles.S. oppression monarchical Of. Constitution. Americans demanded the freedom to choose and the absence of coercion and did not want to be “swallowed up by the states. The Federalist Number 47 — James Madison Federalist 47 describes the particular structure of the new government and the distribution of power among its different parts: “The accumulation of all powers. on May 25. or arbitrarily coerce To force to act or think in a given manner by pressure. tyranny. to compel. or ruled by a sole and absolute ruler of the state. on September 17. These same citizens had fought a war so that man was over government and not government over man. with the support and prestige of such men as Washington and Franklin. Rhode Island. may justly be pronounced the very definition of tyranny” (third paragraph). or intimidation. severely. without a well-defined “separation of powers” and “checks and balances. The Federalists Hamilton. and Jay. legislative. 1790. executive. self-appointed. whether of one. to bring about by force despotism The rule by an absolute power or authority. The new Constitution still needed to be ratified by the states but now only by nine rather than by all thirteen of them. pertaining to. especially when exercised unjustly. ruling arbitrarily and without the consent of the people.” could coerce the people. legislative. Any government. The citizens of this new young United States of America had already experienced despotism under the monarchical rule of England. Finally. They dreaded an unrestrained centralized government—a government that would undoubtedly become tyrannical. and judiciary. to write a totally new Constitution. and whether hereditary. and judicial branches] explaining the state and national jurisdictions and the tyranny A government in which a single ruler is vested with absolute power. threats. cruelly. 1787. This statement encapsulates the intense fear that many Americans had for government. or many. a few. the work of the convention came to an end.

It is necessary to guard against the Infirmities of the best as well as the Wickedness of the worst of Men.. 311). and the American Tradition.★ Federalist 47 ★ continued relationships between them. by which the tendency on a sudden to violate them may be counteracted. Such is the Weakness of human Nature that Tyranny has oftener sprang from that than any other Source. Constitution and it became the law of the land. each with its appropriate powers and field of action” (M. and John Jay—joined together in publishing 85 essays. The Theme Is Freedom: Religion. 263-64). This balance of power was defined by the Constitution as each branch was designed to help restrain the other branches from any violation of the Constitution—hence. 1784 63 . which defended the Constitution and argued for its speedy ratification. This work became a reality on June 21. under the pseudonym “Publius” (after the legendary Roman emperor and defender of the Republic. Inc.” (Original capitalizations) Samuel Adams. Publius Valerius). is to create delays and multiply diversities of interests.C. the Constitution’s three prime supporters—Alexander Hamilton. 1994.” To convince the delegates at state conventions to ratify promptly.” John Adams. p.. Regnery Publishing.’ and other techniques for limiting all authority whatsoever” had been created and instituted (Evans. pp. “On Government. The people had consented to give limited power to the new federal government. 1788. D. It was to be a system of dual sovereignties.” 1778 “But there is a Degree of Watchfulness over all Men possessed of Power or Influence upon which the Liberties of mankind much depend. It is this that unravels the Mystery of Millions being enslaved by a few. Washington. Letter to Elbridge Gerry. the Federalists argued. the doctrine of ‘enumerated power. with the appropriate balance of power.S. Americans would be safe from tyranny. when New Hampshire—the ninth state to do so—ratified the U. the written Constitution. Thus. Although giving up a portion of state powers to the federal government. James Madison. “checks and balances. Constitutional Era / Founding Father Quotations Supporting Separation of Powers “The use of checks and balances in the forms of government. Politics. federalism. “the method of establishing and tightly controlling power through conventions. Stanton Evans.

23). arguing that Federal power. Within a few years. From their disputes arose two factions which formed the first two political parties—Hamilton’s own Federalist Party and Jefferson’s Anti-Federalists. Hamilton was among the slowly growing movement for a strong national government. Hamilton was persuaded that this tactic would not help in the ratification of the Constitution.★ Federalist 47 ★ continued Federalist Authorship Notes “The task for the Federalist authors was marked out for them the day the new Constitution for the United States was made known to the people of New York State. Madison wrote 30 articles focused on political theory. now President. Following the war. Hamilton was once again working with Washington. he took the lead in calling for a Constitutional Convention. secured the Nation’s credit and increased the power of the federal government. 1952. Alexander Hamilton. Although Hamilton thought the new Constitution “puny. signed by Cato who was known to be Governor Clinton.” he realized that it was a much needed improvement over the Articles of Confederation. and immediately beside it in the papers.” After the first inauguration. As a delegate to the Annapolis Convention (1786). born in the West Indies Hamilton emigrated to New York in 1772 to further his studies. statesman.S. he was in the thick of the Revolutionary turmoil and wrote pamphlets advocating the grievances of the patriots against the crown. U. He was soon writing pamphlets as “Publius. Robert Maynard Hutchins. p. writing under the name of renowned Romans. James Madison and John Jay almost immediately joined with Hamilton in writing well-reasoned arguments for the adoption of the new Constitution. Biographical Notes Alexander Hamilton 1755-1804. would prevent self-seekers from imposing their will and wishes on all. After two articles. The University of Chicago. Each author was a specialist in his field: Hamilton wrote 50 essays emphasizing economic and other financial issues and argued persuasively for a strong central executive (a president). responded bitterly and personally to answer Clinton. fiscal system. Hamilton created the basis of the U. On the same day it was published. came out in opposition to the new instrument of government” (Great Books of the Western World. 64 . he was General Washington’s aide and private secretary for four years (1777-81) until he took over a field command. Editor in Chief. Secretary of State. Within two years. in his cabinet as Secretary of the Treasury. Vol. and Jay offered 5 essays on foreign affairs. under the pseudonym Caesar. As Secretary of the Treasury. A bitterness arose between Hamilton. appeared an attack upon the Constitution. 43. Thereafter.S. and Thomas Jefferson. later the Democratic-Republican Party. arguing directly in favor of the ratification. he concentrated on his law practice. rather than oppressing the people. who was devoted to the principles of rural democracy. He relinquished this tactic and began a new approach. a Federalist. In the American Revolution. many of the most powerful figures in New York political life.

he guided the drafting of the New York State constitution. Hamilton. “Those who own the country ought to govern it. On the morning of July 11. with Hamilton’s support. he was sent on a mission to England where he negotiated what became known as “Jay’s Treaty” (1794). As official White House hostess for Thomas Jefferson (who was a widower) and for her husband. Jay retired to his farm in Bedford. he was a leading Jeffersonian. As secretary of foreign affairs (1784-89). she was noted for the magnificence of her entertainments. Madison’s War. Each fired a shot. Dolley Madison.” was the chief event of his administration. He succeeded Jefferson as president in 1809. as well as for her charm. Retiring in 1817. New Jersey. Jay was president of the Continental Congress (1778-79) and one of the commissioners who negotiated peace with Great Britain (1781-83).” A principal contributor to the Federalist papers. She married Madison in 1794 (her first husband had died in 1793). he lived quietly with his wife. Burr sought revenge and challenged Hamilton to a duel. and his contributions at the Federal Constitutional Convention (1787) earned him the title “master builder of the Constitution. John Jay 1745-1829. New York. As a congressman from Virginia (1789-97). (1809-17). Later. Jay resigned from the Supreme Court in 1795 when he was elected governor of New York. he was largely responsible for securing ratification of the Constitution in Virginia. born in Conway. Burr’s struck his opponent. tact. Thus. Madison helped draft the Constitution for the new state of Virginia (1776). In 1804.★ Federalist 47 ★ continued In the presidential election of 1801. John Jay grew into manhood believing that the monied classes represented the only safe repository of power. and grace. Madison was a strong advocate of the Bill of Rights. Hamilton died the next day. During Jay’s tenure as Chief Justice. A steadfast enemy of the financial measures of Alexander Hamilton. served in the Continental Congress (1780-83 and 1787). Madison became his Secretary of State. he was violently criticized for its concessions to the British. feared Burr’s lack of principles even more. a position he held until 1801.” He first feared that independence for the Colonies would lead to mob rule and chaos.S. though he loathed Jefferson’s democratic principles. 4th president of the U. he advocated a strong central government. but he slowly became a leader of the Revolution. 1804. He said. Jefferson was elected President. when Burr ran for the governorship of New York. born in New York City Born into a wealthy and prestigious family. and was a member of the Virginia legislature (1784-86). After Jefferson triumphed in the presidential election of 1800. Although the pact prevented war. The unpopular and unsuccessful War of 1812. American statesman. Upon leaving the governorship. Jefferson was tied in the Electoral College with Aaron Burr. as a lawyer. While in that office he signed the act ending slavery in that state. 65 . Hamilton once again stepped in and crushed his hopes. He was active in the call for the Annapolis Convention (1786). known disparagingly as “Mr. James Madison 1751-1836. the first Chief Justice of the United States (1789-95). Burr became Vice President. National expansion began during his term in office. and remained a private citizen until his death in 1829. and Hamilton lay mortally wounded in the mud. Virginia Port An early opponent of British colonial measures. the two men met in a field in Weehawken.

The British constitution was to Montesquieu. so this great political critic appears to have viewed the constitution of England. and by which all similar works were to be judged. may justly be pronounced the very definition of tyranny. and that the maxim on which it relies. The oracle who is always consulted and cited on this subject. is its supposed violation of the political maxim. what Homer has been to the didactic writers on epic poetry. the several characteristic principles of that particular system. let us recur to the source from which the maxim was drawn.★ Federalist 47 ★ continued Federalist No. and to have delivered in the form of elementary truths. In the structure of the federal government. If he be not the author of this invaluable precept in the science of politics. Were the federal constitution therefore really chargeable with this accumulation of power or with a mixture of powers having a dangerous tendency to such an accumulation. that the charge cannot be supported. or elective. and the distribution of this mass of power among its constituent parts. In order to form correct ideas on this important subject. On the slightest view of the British constitution we must perceive. in which the preservation of liberty requires. or to use his own expression. and whether hereditary. and to expose some of the essential parts of the edifice to the danger of being crushed by the disproportionate weight of other parts. executive and judiciary departments are by no means totally separate and 66 . that the legislative. no regard. self appointed. as the standard. executive and judiciary in the same hands. Having reviewed the general form of the proposed government. whether of one. As the latter have considered the work of the immortal Bard. that the three great departments of power should be separate and distinct. The several departments of power are distributed and blended in such a manner. and the general mass of power allotted to it: I proceed to examine the particular structure of this government. has been totally misconceived and misapplied. The accumulation of all powers legislative. no further arguments would be necessary to inspire a universal reprobation of the system. as at once to destroy all symmetry and beauty of form. that it will be made apparent to every one. executive and judiciary departments ought to be separate and distinct. as the perfect model from which the principles and rules of the epic art were to be drawn. 1788 To the People of the State of New York. it is said. as the mirrour of political liberty. and recommending it most effectually to the attention of mankind. No political truth is certainly of greater intrinsic value or is stamped with the authority of more enlightened patrons of liberty than that on which the objection is founded. he has the merit at least of displaying. I persuade myself however. a few or many. that the legislative. it will be proper to investigate the sense. One of the principal objections inculcated by the more respectable adversaries to the constitution. 47 by James Madison January 30. seems to have been paid to this essential precaution in favor of liberty. Let us endeavour in the first place to ascertain his meaning on this point. That we may be sure then not to mistake his meaning in this case. is the celebrated Montesquieu.

can try and condemn all the subordinate officers in the executive department. and is invested with the supreme appellate jurisdiction. The judges again are so far connected with the legislative department. under certain limitations. as his own words import. His meaning. had possessed the supreme judiciary. nor administer justice in person. if the King who is the sole executive magistrate. the life and liberty of the subject would be exposed to arbitrary controul. One branch of the legislative department forms also. or body of magistrates.” Again “Were the power of judging joined with the legislative. “When the legislative and executive powers are united in the same person or body” says he. can amount to no more than this. This would have been the case in the constitution examined by him. because apprehensions may arise lest the same monarch or senate should enact tyrannical laws.” Some of these reasons are more fully explained in other passages.” or “if the power of judging be not separated from the legislative and executive powers. the judges may be removed from their offices. it is the sole depositary of judicial power in cases of impeachment. and though one of its branches is possessed of the judicial power in the last resort. “there can be no liberty. that where the whole power of one department is exercised by the same hands which possess the whole power of another department. that in saying “there can be no liberty where the legislative and executive powers are united in the same person. a great constitutional council to the executive chief. and form. He alone has the prerogative of making treaties with foreign sovereigns. or the supreme executive authority. From these facts by which Montesquieu was guided it may clearly be inferred. Were it joined to the executive power. when he pleases to consult them. though he has the appointment of those who do administer it. for the judge would then be the legislator. The judges can exercise no executive prerogative. as often to attend and participate in its deliberations.★ Federalist 47 ★ continued distinct from each other. can perform no judiciary act. or if the entire legislative body. nor any legislative function.” he did not mean that these departments ought to have no partial agency in. or the supreme administration of justice. and another. one of his constitutional councils. though he can put a negative on every law. The entire legislature. as on another hand. 67 . though not admitted to a legislative vote. the force of legislative acts. The entire legislature again can exercise no executive prerogative. The reasons on which Montesquieu grounds his maxim are a further demonstration of his meaning. on the impeachment of a third. though they may be advised with by the legislative councils. or no controul over the acts of each other. The executive magistrate forms an integral part of the legislative authority. The magistrate in whom the whole executive power resides cannot of himself make a law. This however is not among the vices of that constitution. to execute them in a tyrannical manner. All the members of the judiciary department are appointed by him. but briefly stated as they are here. though they are shoots from the executive stock. though one of its branches constitutes the supreme executive magistracy. the fundamental principles of a free constitution. had possessed also the compleat legislative power. can be removed by him on the address of the two Houses of Parliament. and still more conclusively as illustrated by the example in his eye. in all other cases. though by the joint act of two of its branches. which when made have. they sufficiently establish the meaning which we have put on this celebrated maxim of this celebrated author. are subverted. the judge might behave with all the violence of an oppressor.

and removable by the same authority. and even blends the executive and judiciary departments in the exercise of this controul. executive and judiciary powers ought to be kept as separate from. because they were formed prior to the revolution. and what is more. It goes no farther than to prohibit any one of the entire departments from exercising the powers of another department. there is not a single instance in which the several departments of power have been kept absolutely separate and distinct. the compilers of the Constitution have in this last point at least. The Executive Magistrate has a qualified negative on the Legislative body. or either of them. I pass over the constitutions of Rhode-Island and Connecticut. and in some instances. The president who is the head of the executive department. and even before the principle under examination had become an object of political attention. is the presiding member also of the senate. or either of them: The judicial shall never exercise the legislative and executive powers. a partial mixture of powers has been admitted. that binds the whole fabric of the constitution in one indissoluble bond of unity and amity. whose constitution was the last formed. The members of the judiciary department again are appointable by the executive department. but appears very clearly to have been framed with an eye to the danger of improperly blending the different departments. Lastly. In its council of appointment. In the very constitution to which it is prefixed. The executive head is himself eventually elective every year by the legislative department. which is a part of the Legislature. has a casting vote in case of a tie.★ Federalist 47 ★ continued If we look into the constitutions of the several states we find that notwithstanding the emphatical. It gives nevertheless to the executive magistrate a partial controul over the legislative department. and his council is every year chosen by and from the members of the same department. members of the legislative are associated 68 . As the appointment to offices. the unqualified terms in which this axiom has been laid down. Several of the officers of state are also appointed by the legislature. violated the rule established by themselves. And the members of the judiciary department are appointed by the executive department. seems to have been fully aware of the impossibility and inexpediency of avoiding any mixture whatever of these departments.” This declaration corresponds precisely with the doctrine of Montesquieu as it has been explained. is a court of impeachment for members both of the executive and judiciary departments. and besides an equal vote in all cases. and is not in a single point violated by the plan of the Convention. particularly executive offices. The senate which is a branch of the legislative department is also a judicial tribunal for the trial of empeachments. and the Senate. gives a like controul to the judiciary department. or either of them: The executive shall never exercise the legislative and judicial powers. is in its nature an executive function. The constitution of New-York contains no declaration on this subject. New-Hampshire. The constitution of Massachusetts has observed a sufficient though less pointed caution in expressing this fundamental article of liberty. It declares “that the legislative department shall never exercise the executive and judicial powers. on the address of the two legislative branches. or as is consistent with that chain of connection. and has qualified the doctrine by declaring “that the legislative. and independent of each other as the nature of a free government will admit. a number of the officers of government are annually appointed by the legislative department.” Her constitution accordingly mixes these departments in several respects.

declaring that the legislative. The executive prerogative of pardon. is annually elected by a vote in which the legislative department predominates. by the executive department. The members of the judiciary department are appointed by the legislative department. and with him constitutes the court of appeals. notwithstanding makes the executive magistrate appointable by the legislative department. Maryland has adopted the maxim in the most unqualified terms. The principal officers of the executive department are appointed by the legislative. The constitution of New-Jersey has blended the different powers of government more than any of the preceding. the president. ought to be forever separate and distinct from each other. is to consist of one branch of the legislature and the principal members of the judiciary department. Her constitution. The executive chief. except that the justices of the county courts shall be eligible to either house of assembly. and removable by one branch of it. Her constitution declares. shall be separate and distinct. And its court for the trial of impeachments and correction of errors. 69 . All officers may be removed on address of the legislature. and one branch of the latter forms a court of impeachments. appointed three by each of the legislative branches. is a member of the supreme court of appeals. and forms a court of impeachments for trial of all officers. “that the legislative. seem also to be removeable by the legislature. and the executive power of pardoning in certain cases to be referred to the same department. constitute the supreme court of appeals: He is joined with the legislative department in the appointment of the other judges. Throughout the states it appears that the members of the legislature may at the same time be justices of the peace. both executive and judiciary. In Delaware. as are also the members of the executive council. also is in one case vested in the legislative department. and the members of the judiciary. that two members of the latter are triennially displaced at the pleasure of the legislature.” Yet we find not only this express exception. but that the chief magistrate with his executive council are appointable by the legislature. is chancellor and ordinary or surrogate of the state. The judges of the supreme court. is appointed by the legislature. so that neither exercise the powers properly belonging to the other. the members of one branch of it are EX OFFICIO justices of peace. who is the executive magistrate. nor shall any person exercise the powers of more than one of them at the same time. the chief executive magistrate is annually elected by the legislative department. executive and judiciary departments. In this state. The governor. with respect to the members of the inferior courts. The speakers of the two legislative branches are vice-presidents in the executive department. The members of the executive council are made EX OFFICIO justices of peace throughout the state. with six others. he appoints the members of the judiciary department. and justices of the peace. on the impeachment of the other.★ Federalist 47 ★ continued with the executive authority in the appointment of officers both executive and judiciary. The same legislative branch acts again as executive council to the governor. and that all the principal offices. are filled by the same department. In conjunction with an executive council. According to the constitution of Pennsylvania. and president with a casting vote. judiciary as well as executive. executive and judicial powers of government. of one of the legislative branches. The language of Virginia is still more pointed on this subject. who is head of the executive department.

It is but too obvious that in some instances. under which they were framed. executive and judiciary departments. “that the legislative.★ Federalist 47 ★ continued The constitution of North-Carolina. the appointment not only of the executive chief. and still stronger of the inexperience. executive and supreme judicial powers of government. the fundamental principle under consideration has been violated by too great a mixture.” refers at the same time to the legislative department. and the executive prerogative of pardon. It gives to the latter also the appointment of the members of the judiciary department. I am fully aware that among the many excellent principles which they exemplify. executive and judiciary departments shall be separate and distinct. In the constitution of Georgia. and even an actual consolidation of the different powers. down to captains in the army and navy of the state. and the appointment of officers in the executive department. nor by the sense in which it has hitherto been understood in America. This interesting subject will be resumed in the ensuing paper. Even justices of the peace are to be appointed by the legislature. which declares. Publius (Pseudonym) 70 .” We find that the executive department is to be filled by appointments of the legislature. they carry strong marks of the haste. but all the principal officers within both that and the judiciary department. so that neither exercise the powers properly belonging to the other. of violating a sacred maxim of free government. In South-Carolina. and that in no instance has a competent provision been made for maintaining in practice the separation delineated on paper. the constitution makes the executive magistracy eligible by the legislative department. where it is declared. including even justices of the peace and sheriffs. In citing these cases in which the legislative. is warranted neither by the real meaning annexed to that maxim by its author. “that the legislative. to be finally exercised by the same authority. ought to be forever separate and distinct from each other. What I have wished to evince is. I wish not to be regarded as an advocate for the particular organizations of the several state governments. have not been kept totally separate and distinct. that the charge brought against the proposed constitution.

Text Analysis Having reviewed the general form of the proposed government. as the mirrour of political liberty. self appointed. The British constitution was to Montesquieu. in which the preservation of liberty requires. so this great political critic appears to have viewed the constitution of England. that the legislative. seems to have been paid to this essential precaution in favor of liberty. executive and judiciary departments ought to be separate and distinct. and the general mass of power allotted to it: I proceed to examine the particular structure of this government. and by which all similar works were to be judged. that the charge cannot be supported. as the standard. One of the principal objections inculcated by the more respectable adversaries to the constitution. is the celebrated Montesquieu. 1788 To the People of the State of New York. is its supposed violation of the political maxim. it will be proper to investigate the sense. and to expose some of the essential parts of the edifice to the danger of being crushed by the disproportionate weight of other parts. the several characteristic principles of that particular system. As the latter have considered the work of the immortal Bard. In the structure of the federal government. as at once to destroy all symmetry and beauty of form. and the distribution of this mass of power among its constituent parts. The several departments of power are distributed and blended in such a manner. 47 James Madison January 30. or to use his own expression. 71 . a few or many. If he be not the author of this invaluable precept in the science of politics. Were the federal constitution therefore really chargeable with this accumulation of power or with a mixture of powers having a dangerous tendency to such an accumulation. it is said. The oracle who is always consulted and cited on this subject. that the three great departments of power should be separate and distinct. as the perfect model from which the principles and rules of the epic art were to be drawn. That we may be sure then not to mistake his meaning in this case. no regard. let us recur to the source from which the maxim was drawn. has been totally misconceived and misapplied. I persuade myself however. and that the maxim on which it relies. that it will be made apparent to every one. executive and judiciary in the same hands. No political truth is certainly of greater intrinsic value or is stamped with the authority of more enlightened patrons of liberty than that on which the objection is founded. whether of one. In order to form correct ideas on this important subject. or elective. what Homer has been to the didactic writers on epic poetry. he has the merit at least of displaying. Let us endeavour in the first place to ascertain his meaning on this point. no further arguments would be necessary to inspire a universal reprobation of the system. and whether hereditary. The accumulation of all powers legislative. and to have delivered in the form of elementary truths. may justly be pronounced the very definition of tyranny. and recommending it most effectually to the attention of mankind.Federalist No.

The entire legislature. that in saying “there can be no liberty where the legislative and executive powers are united in the same person. This however is not among the vices of that constitution. as on another hand. nor any legislative function. or body of magistrates. can perform no judiciary act. it is the sole depositary of judicial power in cases of impeachment. that where the whole power of one department is exercised by the same hands which possess the whole power of another department. had possessed also the compleat legislative power. The reasons on which Montesquieu grounds his maxim are a further demonstration of his meaning. The judges can exercise no executive prerogative. the life and liberty of the subject would be exposed to arbitrary controul. From these facts by which Montesquieu was guided it may clearly be inferred. and another. though by the joint act of two of its branches. though they may be advised with by the legislative councils. they sufficiently establish the meaning which we have put on this celebrated maxim of this celebrated author. as often to attend and participate in its deliberations. if the King who is the sole executive magistrate. One branch of the legislative department forms also. the fundamental principles of a free constitution. The magistrate in whom the whole executive power resides cannot of himself make a law. because apprehensions may arise lest the same monarch or senate should enact tyrannical laws. and though one of its branches is possessed of the judicial power in the last resort. “When the legislative and executive powers are united in the same person or body” says he. a great constitutional council to the executive chief. to execute them in a tyrannical manner. 72 . though one of its branches constitutes the supreme executive magistracy. can be removed by him on the address of the two Houses of Parliament. Were it joined to the executive power.” Some of these reasons are more fully explained in other passages. the force of legislative acts. or if the entire legislative body.” he did not mean that these departments ought to have no partial agency in. though not admitted to a legislative vote. The judges again are so far connected with the legislative department. though he can put a negative on every law. are subverted. in all other cases. the judges may be removed from their offices. His meaning. as his own words import. All the members of the judiciary department are appointed by him. executive and judiciary departments are by no means totally separate and distinct from each other. “there can be no liberty. but briefly stated as they are here. for the judge would then be the legislator. The entire legislature again can exercise no executive prerogative. though they are shoots from the executive stock. one of his constitutional councils. which when made have. can try and condemn all the subordinate officers in the executive department.” or “if the power of judging be not separated from the legislative and executive powers. and form. or the supreme executive authority. when he pleases to consult them.On the slightest view of the British constitution we must perceive. and is invested with the supreme appellate jurisdiction. had possessed the supreme judiciary. The executive magistrate forms an integral part of the legislative authority. though he has the appointment of those who do administer it. can amount to no more than this. and still more conclusively as illustrated by the example in his eye. the judge might behave with all the violence of an oppressor. nor administer justice in person. or the supreme administration of justice.” Again “Were the power of judging joined with the legislative. or no controul over the acts of each other. This would have been the case in the constitution examined by him. He alone has the prerogative of making treaties with foreign sovereigns. on the impeachment of a third. under certain limitations. that the legislative.

has a casting vote in case of a tie. It declares “that the legislative department shall never exercise the executive and judicial powers. or as is consistent with that chain of connection. the unqualified terms in which this axiom has been laid down. New-Hampshire. or either of them: The judicial shall never exercise the legislative and executive powers. and what is more. And the members of the judiciary department are appointed by the executive department. Several of the officers of state are also appointed by the legislature. or either of them: The executive shall never exercise the legislative and judicial powers. that binds the whole fabric of the constitution in one indissoluble bond of unity and amity. and the Senate. The president who is the head of the executive department. The constitution of Massachusetts has observed a sufficient though less pointed caution in expressing this fundamental article of liberty. members of the legislative are associated with the executive authority in the appointment of officers both executive and judiciary. As the appointment to offices. The executive head is himself eventually elective every year by the legislative department. and even blends the executive and judiciary departments in the exercise of this controul. is in its nature an executive function. is the presiding member also of the senate. but appears very clearly to have been framed with an eye to the danger of improperly blending the different departments. which is a part of the Legislature. The constitution of New-York contains no declaration on this subject.” Her constitution accordingly mixes these departments in several respects. The members of the judiciary department again are appointable by the executive department. It gives nevertheless to the executive magistrate a partial controul over the legislative department. the compilers of the Constitution have in this last point at least.” This declaration corresponds precisely with the doctrine of Montesquieu as it has been explained. is a court of impeachment for members both of the executive and judiciary departments. And its court for the trial of impeachments and correction of errors. there is not a single instance in which the several departments of power have been kept absolutely separate and distinct. In its council of appointment. a number of the officers of government are annually appointed by the legislative department. particularly executive offices. or either of them. and has qualified the doctrine by declaring “that the legislative. Lastly. I pass over the constitutions of Rhode-Island and Connecticut. and independent of each other as the nature of a free government will admit. violated the rule established by themselves. In the very constitution to which it is prefixed. and in some instances. It goes no farther than to prohibit any one of the entire departments from exercising the powers of another department. seems to have been fully aware of the impossibility and inexpediency of avoiding any mixture whatever of these departments. and is not in a single point violated by the plan of the Convention. 73 . on the address of the two legislative branches. and even before the principle under examination had become an object of political attention. and besides an equal vote in all cases. a partial mixture of powers has been admitted. whose constitution was the last formed. and his council is every year chosen by and from the members of the same department. The senate which is a branch of the legislative department is also a judicial tribunal for the trial of empeachments. executive and judiciary powers ought to be kept as separate from. The Executive Magistrate has a qualified negative on the Legislative body. is to consist of one branch of the legislature and the principal members of the judiciary department. because they were formed prior to the revolution. gives a like controul to the judiciary department.If we look into the constitutions of the several states we find that notwithstanding the emphatical. and removable by the same authority.

“that the legislative. In this state. so that neither exercise the powers properly belonging to the other.The constitution of New-Jersey has blended the different powers of government more than any of the preceding. and forms a court of impeachments for trial of all officers. declaring that the legislative. with respect to the members of the inferior courts. with six others. and one branch of the latter forms a court of impeachments. of one of the legislative branches. which declares. The language of Virginia is still more pointed on this subject. and the members of the judiciary. is a member of the supreme court of appeals. executive and supreme judicial powers of government. The constitution of North-Carolina. “that the legislative. The judges of the supreme court. is annually elected by a vote in which the legislative department predominates. Her constitution. constitute the supreme court of appeals: He is joined with the legislative department in the appointment of the other judges. he appoints the members of the judiciary department. The members of the executive council are made EX OFFICIO justices of peace throughout the state. The members of the judiciary department are appointed by the legislative department. The same legislative branch acts again as executive council to the governor. In Delaware. but that the chief magistrate with his executive council are appointable by the legislature. The speakers of the two legislative branches are vice-presidents in the executive department. executive and judiciary departments. and president with a casting vote. both executive and judiciary. who is head of the executive department. The executive prerogative of pardon. All officers may be removed on address of the legislature. on the impeachment of the other. the chief executive magistrate is annually elected by the legislative department. as are also the members of the executive council. but all the principal officers within both that and the judiciary department. the members of one branch of it are EX OFFICIO justices of peace. that two members of the latter are triennially displaced at the pleasure of the legislature. and removable by one branch of it. According to the constitution of Pennsylvania.” Yet we find not only this express exception. and that all the principal offices. executive and judicial powers of government. also is in one case vested in the legislative department. judiciary as well as executive. Throughout the states it appears that the members of the legislature may at the same time be justices of the peace. except that the justices of the county courts shall be eligible to either house of assembly. by the executive department. appointed three by each of the legislative branches. and justices of the peace. In conjunction with an executive council. shall be separate and distinct. The governor.” refers at the same time to the legislative department. seem also to be removeable by the legislature. Maryland has adopted the maxim in the most unqualified terms. 74 . The executive chief. is appointed by the legislature. the appointment not only of the executive chief. Her constitution declares. is chancellor and ordinary or surrogate of the state. and the executive power of pardoning in certain cases to be referred to the same department. are filled by the same department. ought to be forever separate and distinct from each other. and with him constitutes the court of appeals. ought to be forever separate and distinct from each other. nor shall any person exercise the powers of more than one of them at the same time. notwithstanding makes the executive magistrate appointable by the legislative department. The principal officers of the executive department are appointed by the legislative. who is the executive magistrate. the president.

In citing these cases in which the legislative. It gives to the latter also the appointment of the members of the judiciary department. Publius 75 . executive and judiciary departments shall be separate and distinct. the fundamental principle under consideration has been violated by too great a mixture. “that the legislative. so that neither exercise the powers properly belonging to the other. It is but too obvious that in some instances. the constitution makes the executive magistracy eligible by the legislative department. down to captains in the army and navy of the state. I wish not to be regarded as an advocate for the particular organizations of the several state governments. nor by the sense in which it has hitherto been understood in America. I am fully aware that among the many excellent principles which they exemplify. under which they were framed. What I have wished to evince is.” We find that the executive department is to be filled by appointments of the legislature. and the executive prerogative of pardon. and that in no instance has a competent provision been made for maintaining in practice the separation delineated on paper. including even justices of the peace and sheriffs. that the charge brought against the proposed constitution. and even an actual consolidation of the different powers. executive and judiciary departments. of violating a sacred maxim of free government. is warranted neither by the real meaning annexed to that maxim by its author. In the constitution of Georgia. and still stronger of the inexperience. they carry strong marks of the haste. Even justices of the peace are to be appointed by the legislature. to be finally exercised by the same authority. where it is declared. have not been kept totally separate and distinct.In South-Carolina. This interesting subject will be resumed in the ensuing paper. and the appointment of officers in the executive department.

and to aim strongly to one consolidated government of the United States. I shall be open to conviction. but to be the first important step. and states. the weight of my reasons. all things considered. and. not for cool and deliberate reforms in the governments. and a steady execution of the laws. and be disposed to accept any government. In a Number of Letters from the Federal Farmer to the Republican Dear Sir.constitution. they will as hastily and as blindly be led to alter or abolish it. that shall promise stability and firmness. on the present occasion. is not calculated equally to preserve the rights of all orders of men in the community. for governments not very favourable to the people at large. that if men hastily and blindly adopt a system of government. till the peaceable and better part of the community will grow weary with changes.org/afp.An Anti-Federalist Viewpoint by Federal Farmer (pseudonym) Text provided by the Constitution Society (www. This I shall endeavour to do.htm) Observations Leading to a Fair Examination of the System Of Government Proposed by the Late Convention. I do not mean. and how far my conclusions are well drawn. if I am under any biass at all. on carefully examining the plan of government proposed by the convention. 76 . that “That which is best administered is best. and to which point we ought to direct our exertions. We have suffered the present to languish. It appears to be a plan retaining some federal features. And to Several Essential and Necessary Alterations in It. unfriendly to republican equality. The instability of our laws increases my wishes for firm and steady government. tumults and disorders. one after another. that the operations of our system must be very uncertain. perhaps. My object has been to join with those who have endeavoured to supply the defects in the forms of our governments by a steady and proper administration of them.constitution. if it shall be adopted. I will pass by the men.txt) Anti-Federalist Papers. 1787 My letters to you last winter. Though I have long apprehended that fraudalent debtors. however despotic. and it behoves us to make the best of it. Indeed I am so much convinced of the truth of Pope’s maxim. and the interest I have in the protection of property. Acquit me. It must be granted. that. on the subject of a well balanced national government for the United States. who have been particularly instrumental in preparing the way for a change. I know our situation is critical. I shall be satisfied with seeing. shall appear to me to be most for the happiness of the community. I anticipated the anxieties I feel. or which we may accept. we must attentively examine the system itself. I am not disposed to unreasonably contend about forms. but for changes calculated to promote the interests of particular orders of men. is the question. a prudent administration.org/afp/fedfarmer. it is in favor of any general system which shall promise those advantages. on the one hand. and prepare the way. so far as I am able. which. in my opinion. when I passed from that subject to enquiries relative to our commerce. and leave you to decide upon the propriety of my opinions. of any agency in the formation of the new system. it is now but of little importance. I can consent to no government. were the result of free enquiry. A federal government of some sort is necessary. revenues. and men. hastily and positively to decide on the merits of the constitution proposed. past administration. sir.” that I am much inclined to subscribe to it from experience. and always disposed to adopt that which. Whatever may be the conduct of others. Constitution Society (www. on the other. To determine this question. would produce an uneasiness among the people. so unnaturally divided between the general and state governments. but then. and embarrassed men. and the representation of the people. with candor and fairness. with or without amendments. A constitution is now presented which we may reject. etc. and changes must ensue. with propriety. will convince you. It leaves the powers of government. October 8th. and whether the confederation was capable or not originally of answering any valuable purposes. My uniform federal attachments. and the probable consequences of either step.

It must. and idle men get to work. is. impatient. Whenever a clamor is raised. that our federal system is defective. will find this to be true. wretched. have not yet fully repaired the waste made by it. and the public lands have now become a productive source for diminishing them much more. that men state facts not as they are. depend principally upon their own exertions. however. It is natural for men. and such as are not sanguine in their expectations relative to the consequences of the proposed change. in some cases. I shall fully convince you. we are in no immediate danger of any commotions. be admitted. under a federal head. now is the crisis — now is the critical moment which must be seized. do not admit all these facts. But it is deliberate and thinking men. Many commercial and monied men. and whether we adopt a change. and providing for the interest. they will enquire whether it will probably be a blessing or a curse to this people. but. to tell us. Instead of being thirteen republics. and enquire attentively. will plunge us into commotions. and draw a pleasing picture of that which we would have him assume. we impute to the defects in our governments many evils and embarrassments which are most clearly the result of the late war. And when we wish the contrary. they are very little to be regarded: and as to those who designedly avail themselves of this weakness and ardor. their happiness and prosperity. we are in a state of perfect peace. who wish to hasten the adoption of a measure. after all. ought to be respected. and. if time should be taken fully to examine and consider the system proposed. I think. I presume it still behoves them to endeavour deliberately to change it for the better. unreasonably disappointed in their expectations and hopes. Men who feel easy in their circumstances. we describe it as miserable. under what impressions they act. then. diminished. but as they wish them to be. or all will be lost: and to shut the door against free enquiry. 77 . We must allow men to conduct on the present occasion. except the regulation of trade. which time and investigation will probably discover. it is highly necessary to examine facts carefully. the state governments are in the full exercise of their powers. of the public debts. in some instances. order and justice in the community — but a new object now presents. I know uneasy men. three or nine months hence. The fickle and ardent. in my following letters on this subject. we ought to precipitate the adoption of the proposed constitution? If we remain cool and temperate. as to those weak and ardent men who always expect to be gainers by revolutions. We are hardly recovered from a long and distressing war: The farmers. by no means.The first principal question that occurs. and our governments answer all present exigencies. and whose lot it generally is to get out of one difficulty into another. Of this. It is too often the case in political concerns. what has been so often said. our condition as a people. The plan of government now proposed is evidently calculated totally to change. to reform our federal system. but they are facts well known to all men who are thoroughly informed in the affairs of this country. whether it can be effected without convulsions and civil wars. can make but little odds with the private circumstances of individuals. and almost every man. it is clearly designed to make us one consolidated government. we reverse our descriptions. If it is true. by calling to mind past scenes. they are to be despised. as on all similar ones. and that some of the state governments are not well administered. and without unreasonably suspecting men of falshood. will remain quiet under the existing governments. fishmen. Whether such a change can ever be effected in any manner. but as to those who expect employments under the new constitution. and in no danger of invasions. who must establish and secure governments on free principles. and to strengthen our governments — to establish peace. and despised. Whether. The present moment discovers a new face in our affairs. who are uneasy. whether such a change will not totally destroy the liberties of this country — time only can determine. or disorderly men. considering our situation. Nothing but the passions of ambitious. I conceive. and public debts incurred by the war have been. Before they decide on the plan proposed. This consolidation of the states has been the object of several men in this country for some time past. This has been the custom of tyrants and their dependants in all ages. in any community. whenever conscious the thing presented has defects in it. not without just cause. securing credit. to examine. &c. are the proper tools for establishing despotic government. who wish very much to precipitate. in time. Private debts are lessened. Industry and frugality are again assuming their proper station. that the people of this country cannot change their condition for the worse. by various ways. When we want a man to change his condition. Our object has been all along. They will urge a thousand pretences to answer their purposes on both sides.

a few men from the middle states met at Annapolis. so limited and checked the powers. and several legislatures. in a few hands. and tender laws. therefore. has furnished aristocratical men with those very weapons. to guard against usurpation. and of the other states arrived — still not a word was said about destroying the old constitution. and making a new one — The states still unsuspecting. merely for vesting in congress power to regulate trade was proposed. for the purpose. universally supposed the convention would report alterations in the confederation. and that. in great measure. Ten other states appointed. with which. but Pennsylvania appointed principally those men who are esteemed aristocratical. which otherwise they would not have thought of — when by the evils. By these and other causes. I am persuaded a better system presented. by making tender. several orders of men in the community have been prepared. I shall ever consider as a very unfortunate event to the United States. or be rejected. but those parties in the states which have misused their powers. touching paper money.To have a just idea of the government before us. especially as to the internal police of the country. It was early proposed to vest congress with powers to levy an impost. The conduct of several legislatures. therefore. etc. We expected too much from the return of peace. in some cases. a bold step was taken. and hastily proposed a convention to be held in May. — Had they attended. as the constitution reported proposes to vest in them — the young visionary men. Virginia made a very respectable appointment. There would not have been so great an accumulation of powers. that the vestment. could not have been admitted — a convention. 1787. and forming one consolidated system. had an idea that the old ship was to be destroyed. that. and placed at the head of it the first man in America: In this appointment there was a mixture of political characters. till within these ten or twelve days. but such was known to be the caution of the states in parting with power. and the landed people had little or no concern about it. or of being left in danger of sinking — The States. and of the respective states. This was pleasing to the commercial towns. probably no state would have appointed members to the convention. generally. ultimately. who were appointed members of the convention. And should an oppressive government be the consequence of the proposed change. or a civil war. We find. was proposed to be under several checks and limitations. and those very means. appointed members to the new convention. infused in the minds of people vague ideas respecting government and credit. who seized it with address. the state government. which would pass an examination in congress. A general convention for mere commercial purposes was moved for — the authors of this measure saw that the people’s attention was turned solely to the amendment of the federal system. posterity may reproach not only a few overbearing unprincipled men. and the framers of it. which is usually followed by a revolution. and paper money laws. on the other. and the introduction of paper money. that the result of the convention would not have had that strong tendency to aristocracy now discemable in every part of the plan. and after being agreed to there. and of course we have been disappointed. had the idea of a total change been started. I believe. September. would be confirmed by all the legislatures. for a change of government. by degrees. they are inadequate to the exigencies of the union. members of congress urging alterations in the federal system almost as soon as it was adopted. probably. 1786. and this very abuse of power in the legislatures. but also its history. the minds of men were become sufficiently uneasy. not one man in ten thousand in the United States. I am pretty clear. and 78 . and tho’ they chose men principally connected with commerce and the judicial department yet they appointed many good republican characters — had they all attended we should now see. The non-attendance of eight or nine men. The idea of destroying. the general confusion. they are rapidly effecting their favourite object. of amending the confederation — this was done before the delegates of Massachusetts. and to shew that a consolidated one is the object in view. During the war. has prepared many honest men for changes in government. and he put to the alternative of embarking in the new ship presented. has been charged upon the democratic part of the community. on the one hand. and the politics of its particular friends. which. Our governments have been new and unsettled. to regulate trade. and by the secret instigations of artful men. suspension. for the sole and express purpose of revising and amending the confederation — and. Here the favourite moment for changing the government was evidently discerned by a few men. in many respects. The confederation was formed when great confidence was placed in the voluntary exertions of individuals. have given just cause of uneasiness to creditors. even of these. it is necessary not only to examine the plan. and not aware that they were passing the Rubicon.

Indian affairs. I do not think much can be said in its favor: The sovereignty of the nation. the time to determine to which we will direct our views. that we reflect there were men of abilities and integrity in it. peace and war. and silence those designing or empty men. or compleat consolidating plan. Distinct republics connected under a federal head. quoad certain objects only. but. to make treaties. at the same time. and one legislature. one judiciary. we must recollect how disproportionably the democratic and aristocratic parts of the community were represented — Perhaps the judicious friends and opposers of the new constitution will agree. We may consolidate the states as to certain national objects. Under this federal modification of government. in other respects. a candid and thorough examination. must consist of delegates amenable to. how far the states can be consolidated into one entire government on free principles. In this case there would be a compleat consolidation. and leave them severally distinct independent republics. As to the second. consisting of senators and representatives collected from all parts of the union: In this case there would be a compleat consolidation of the states. and after four months close attention presented the new constitution. to be adopted or rejected by the people. Eleven states met in the convention. cannot always be depended on to answer the purposes of government. and its powers extend exclusively to all foreign concerns. I shall premise. there must necessarily be an unreasonable mixture of powers in the same hands. navies. calculated ultimately to make the states one consolidated government. and he will direct every movement to this point. and removeable by the respective states: This congress must have general directing powers. a general plan for the militia. and to a few internal concerns of the community. to naturalization. who weakly and rashly attempt to precipitate the adoption of a system of so much importance — We shall view the convention with proper respect — and. 79 . The happiness of the people at large must be the great object with every honest statesman. is. the powers of congress would be rather advisary or recommendatory than coercive. armies. I presume.the consolidating aristocracy. imports. by every American: If it be impracticable. weights and measures. as not to be able to enjoy equal happiness and advantages under one government. The plan proposed appears to be partly federal. perhaps to bankruptcies. 2. causes arising on the seas to commerce. in the discussion of this subject. post-offices. etc. exclusively to the state governments. a judiciary. or federal plan. as to internal police generally. it deserves to be carefully considered at this time. would have been more restrained than they have been. or be condemned for its own defects. to direct the operations of armies. that it is best to let it rest solely on its own merits. without coercive and efficient powers to collect the strength of it. as the administration of justice in all causes arising internally. it is a fatal error to model our governments. with one executive. perhaps. In considering this question extensive objects are to be taken into view. If we are so situated as a people. Touching the first. In the first place. Let the general government consist of an executive. and exclusively regulate their internal police. that the plan proposed is a plan of accommodation — and that it is in this way only. There are three different forms of free government under which the United States may exist as one nation. 3. the laying and collecting of internal taxes. The congress of the states. In this case the respective state governments must be the principal guardians of the peoples rights. and now is. therefore suggested. and the forming of the militia according to a general plan prescribed. and. the consolidation of the states cannot be admitted. powers to require men and monies of the states. We may do away the several state governments. but principally however. and balanced legislature. peace and war. This circumstance candid men will always keep in view. that we can ever expect to obtain a government founded in freedom and compact. or federal head. in them must rest the balance of government. The uneasy and fickle part of the community may be prepared to receive any form of government. leaving the internal police of the community. the enlightened and substantial part will give any constitution presented for their adoption. and in a congress of representatives of sovereign states. to the coin. and by giving up a part of our opinions. and important changes in the forms of government to be carefully attended to in all their consequences. The first interesting question. 1. and form or consolidate all the states into one entire government.

80 . and from its views in this respect. probably. Your’s &c. Independant of the opinions of many great authors. probably originated the greatest defects in the proposed plan. that a free elective government cannot be extended over large territories. in the United States into one entire government. Before we do away the state governments. The convention appears to have proposed the partial consolidation evidently with a view to collect all powers ultimately. and in half a century will.directing our views ultimately to it. customs. that this third plan is the only one we can with safety and propriety proceed upon. is my object. The United States contain about a million of square miles. contain ten millions of people. I am fully satisfied. the only one that can secure the freedom and happiness of this people. or adopt measures that will tend to abolish them. never can extend equal benefits to all parts of the United States: Different laws. in my opinion. and to consolidate the states into one entire government. with candor and fairness. The third plan. or partial consolidation. but from long attention. I shall pursue in my next. several principles should be considered and facts ascertained: — These. the parts of the new constitution which appear to be improper. and the proceedings of the convention. and opinions exist in the different states. which by a uniform system of laws would be unreasonably invaded. Making this the standard to point out. and from the center to the extremes is about 800 miles. a few reflections must evince. and my examination into the essential parts of the proposed plan. that one government and general legislation alone. is. and from the tenacity of the small states to have an equal vote in the senate. The Federal Farmer. I once had some general ideas that the second plan was practicable.