Concluding Remarks: Evils under Confederation Exaggerated; Constitution must Be Drastically Revised Before Adoption Melancthon Smith By Melancthon Smith (a "Plebeian"). . . . . It is agreed, the plan is defective -- that some of the powers granted are dangerous -- others not well defined -- and amendments are necessary why then...
On the Lack of a Bill of Rights Brutus By "Brutus." When a building is to be erected which is intended to stand for ages, the foundation should be firmly laid. The Constitution proposed to your acceptance is designed, not for yourselves alone, but for generations yet unborn. The principles, therefore, upon...
The Federal Judiciary and the Issue of Trial by Jury Luther Martin By Luther Martin of Maryland. . . . . in all those cases, where the general government has jurisdiction in civil questions, the proposed Constitution not only makes no provision for the trial by jury in the first instance, but,...
The Power of the Judiciary. (Part 4) Brutus, March 6 & March 20, 1788 Part 1: Part 2 of "Brutus" 14th essay (from the March 6, 1788, New-York Journal). Part 2: The final segment of the 15th essay (March 20, 1788 New York Journal). It may still be insisted that this clause...
The Power of the Judiciary. (Part 3) Brutus, February 7th, 14th & 28th, 1788 Part 1: from the 12th essay by "Brutus" from the February 7th & 14th (1788) issues of The New-York Journal.Part 2: Taken from the first half of the 14th essay February 28, 1788. In my last, I...
The Power of the Judiciary. (Part 2) Brutus, January 31, 1788 From the 11th essay of "Brutus" taken from The New-York Journal, January 31, 1788. The nature and extent of the judicial power of the United States, proposed to be granted by the constitution, claims our particular attention. Much has been said and...
The Power of the Judiciary Brutus, March 20 & April 10, 1788 Part one is taken from the first part of the "Brutus's" 15th essay of The New-York Journal on March 20, 1788; Part two is part one of his 16th of the New York Journal of April 10, 1788. The supreme...
An Antifederalist View of the Appointing Power under the Constitution Richard Henry Lee . . . . In contemplating the necessary officers of the union, there appear to be six different modes in which, in whole or in part, the appointments may be made. 1. by the legislature; 2. by the...
A Note Protesting the Treaty-making Provisions of the Constitution Hampden, February 16, 1788 The following essay was penned anonymously by "Hampden," and it appeared in The Pittsburgh Gazette on February 16, 1788. .... It may be freely granted, that from a mistaken zeal in favor of that political liberty which was so...
The President as Military King Philadelphiensis, February 6 & 20, and April 9 of 1788 "Philadelphiensis," who was influenced by Thomas Paine (in Common Sense), wrote the following selection. It is taken from 3 essays which appearing February 6 & 20, and April 9 of 1788 in either The Freeman's Journal...
Does the Presidential Veto Power Infringe on the Separation of Departments? William Penn, January 3, 1788 "William Penn," an anonymous writer appeared in the Independent Gazetteer on January 3, 1788. . . . I believe that it is universally agreed upon in this enlightened country, that all power residing originally in...
On The Electoral College; on Re-eligibility of the President Republicus, March 1, 1788 By an anonymous writer "Republicus," appearing in The Kentucky Gazette on March 1, 1788. . . I go now to Art. 2, Sec. 1, which vest the supreme continental executive power in a president -- in order to the...
The Presidential Term of Office Agrippa, February 5, 1788; A Customer, March 13, 1788 Part 1: Luther Martin, The Genuine Information. Part 2: An excerpt from the 18th letter of "Agrippa" appearing in The Massachusetts Gazette on February 5, 1788. Part 3: From by "A Customer" in the Maine Cumberland Gazette,...
The Powers and Dangerous Potentials of His Elected Majesty An Old Whig, December 11, 1787 "An Old Whig's" essay from The New-York Journal of December 11, 1787. .... In the first place the office of president of the United States appears to me to be clothed with such powers as are dangerous....
The Character of the Executive Office By Richard Henry Lee. The great object is, in a republican government, to guard effectually against perpetuating any portion of power, great or small, in the same man or family. This perpetuation of power is totally uncongenial to the true spirit of republican governments. On...
On the Mode of Electing the President William Grayson, June 18, 1788 From a speech by William Grayson given to the Virginia ratifying convention on June 18, 1788. Mr. GRAYSON. Mr. Chairman, one great objection with me is this: If we advert to..... democratical, aristocratical, or executive branch, we shall...
Various Fears Concerning the Executive Department Cato, November 8, 1787 From the "Cato" letters of George Clinton, taken from The New-York Journal of November 8, 1787. I shall begin with observations on the executive branch of this new system; and though it is not the first in order, as arranged therein, yet...
On The Power of Impeachment North Carolina From North Carolina Mr. JOSEPH TAYLOR objected to the provision made for impeaching. He urged that there could be no security from it, as the persons accused were triable by the Senate, who were a part of the legislature themselves; that, while men were fallible,...
On the Organization and Powers of the Senate. (Part 4) Gilbert Livingston and John Lansing, June 24, 1788 (By Gilbert Livingston and John Lansing delivered on June 24, 1788 to the New York ratifying convention.) Mr. Gilbert LIVINGSTON rose, and addressed the chair. He, in the first place, considered the importance of the...
On the Organization and Powers of the Senate. (Part 3) Cincinnatus, Nov. 22, 1787 Taken from the New York Journal, Nov. 22, 1787 by "Cincinnatus" It appears to have been written in answer to James Wilson's Antifederalist # 12). I come now, sir, to the most exceptionable part of the Constitution --...
On the Organization and Powers of the Senate. (Part 2) . . . . The senate is an assembly of 26 members, two from each state; though the senators are apportioned on the federal plan, they will vote individually. They represent the states, as bodies politic, sovereign to certain purposes....
On the Organization and Powers of the Senate. (Part 1) Brutus, April 10, 1788 Taken from the 16th essay of "Brutus" from The New York Journal of April 10, 1788. The following things may be observed with respect to the constitution of the Senate. 1st. They are to be elected by the legislatures...
Questions and Comments on the Constitutional Provisions Regarding the Election of Congressmen The Federal Farmer The "Federal Farmer" comments on the election of Congressmen. . . . . It is well observed by Montesquieu, that in republican governments the forms of elections are fundamental; and that it is an essential part of...
Will the Constitution Promote the Interests of Favorite Classes? John F. Mercer, 1788 John F. Mercer of Maryland was the author of this essay, taken from his testimony to members of the ratifying conventions of New York and Virginia, 1788, (From the Etting Collection of the Historical Society of Pennsylvania.) We have...
The Danger of Congressional Control of Elections Vox Populi, October 30, 1787 Alexander Hamilton, in Federalist #59, addresses this same topic from an opposing viewpoint. This essay was written anonymously by "Vox Populi," and appeared in The Massachusetts Gazette on October 30, 1787. . . I beg leave to Jay before the...
Will the House of Representatives Be Genuinely Representative? (Part 4) The Federal Farmer It is said that our people have a high sense of freedom, possess power, property, and the strong arm; meaning, I presume, that the body of the people can take care of themselves, and awe their rulers; and,...
Will the House of Representatives Be Genuinely Representative? (Part 3) The Federal Farmer . . . . But "the people must elect good men." Examine the system -- is it practicable for them to elect fit and proper representatives where the number is so small? "But the people may choose whom...
Will the House of Representatives Be Genuinely Representative? (Part 2) The Federal Farmer . . . . Why in England have the revolutions always ended in stipulations in favor of general liberty, equal laws, and the common rights of the people, and in most other countries in favor only of a...
Will the House of Representatives Be Genuinely Representative? (Part 1) The Federal Farmer Following are four essays by "The Federal Farmer." .... It being impracticable for the people to assemble to make laws, they must elect legislators, and assign men to the different departments of the government. In the representative branch we...
Apportionment And Slavery: Northern And Southern Views This four part essay shows both northern and southern dissatisfaction with "the Great Compromise." The first is taken from the third essay of "Brutus." The second: from the speeches of Rawlins Lowndes to the South Carolina ratifying convention on January 16, 17, and...