Thomas Jefferson – First Inaugural Address (March 4, 1801) I am called to this office & thank you for the trust you’ve put in me. This job is beyond any human being. We are a young nation with fruitful land, engaged in industry, & commerce with nations who are surgingContinue Reading

The North Carolina Biennial Act, 1715 Act on Biennial & other Assemblies, & Regulating Elections & Members The Assembly of the colony of North Carolina wishes to enlarge the number of constituencies, as well as increase the frequency with which the assembly will meet. The precincts will be determined byContinue Reading

Massachusetts House of Representatives on the Governor’s Salary, 11 September 1728 The governor’s salary was often used as a weapon by representatives to coerce him into signing bills, as was the case in South Carolina with Governor Glen. The Crown gave instructions to governors to establish a permanent payment ofContinue Reading

John Cotton – Certain Proposals Made by Lord Say, Lord Brooke, and Other Persons of Quality, as Conditions of Their Removing to New England, with Answers Thereto, 1636 Demand – Lord Say & others who have poured a ton of money into New England ought to be allowed to keepContinue Reading

John Wise, Vindication of the Government of the New England Churches, 1717 I will disclose principles of natural knowledge, the law of nature, true sentiments of natural reason, with respect to man’s being & government under 2 heads – natural & the civil being of man Man in a stateContinue Reading

The Mayflower Compact, 11 November, 1630 This is the first “democratic” document in America… Passengers are loyal subjects of King James In order to advance Christian faith and the honor of the king & country, they wish to settle a colony in Northern Virginia Combine themselves into a civil bodyContinue Reading

“Dissertation on First Principles of Government” by Thomas Paine (1795) One subject is near & dear to most people’s hearts, government because no matter if they are poor or rich, their prosperity is tied to it Should know its principles There has been precious little development in improving governments excludingContinue Reading

Chapter 8: What Tempers the Tyranny of the Majority in the United States I – Absence of Administrative Centralization 2 types of centralization – government & administrative Only government centralization in the US If directing power had both, there’s be no freedom because it have the right to command, &Continue Reading

Chapter 7: The Omnipotence of the Majority in the United States and Its Effects Democratic government’s essence is absolute sovereignty of the will of the majority Legislature is chose to represent the majority directly for short terms – almost all government power is here Laws weaken the executive to theContinue Reading

Chapter 6: The Real Advantages Derived by American Society From Democratic Government I – The General Tendency of Laws Under the Sway of American Democracy and the Instincts of Those Who Apply Them defects of Democracy are obvious but the benefits are only seen in the long run laws canContinue Reading

Federalist No. 71 – Alexander Hamilton The President’s term should be four years. Some think that it’s too long and he could amass power. In this span, he has time to counteract temporary passions or influences of factions in the public and their representatives. His duty is to protect theContinue Reading

Federalist No. 70 – Alexander Hamilton A single executive is necessary for accountability, “executive energy” and defense against legislative encroachment on his power. One is enough to ensure secrecy, fewer fights and allowing decisions to be made quickly. Congress will have time to deliberate and listen to open discussion toContinue Reading

Federalist No. 69 – Alexander Hamilton The President won’t be an elected monarch. He can only negate acts, not pass them. He can have a veto overturned but a king can’t. Both the President and King serve as commander and chief. A King can raise and maintain an army butContinue Reading

Federalist No. 68 – Alexander Hamilton The Electoral College allows the sense of the people playing a role in selecting the President without mayhem and disorder. A direct election would bring us chaos and instability. Electors in the Electoral College would be unbiased since they don’t hold office. This ensuresContinue Reading

Federalist No. 51 – James Madison Explains how the structure of government has an effect on liberty. Each branch should be mostly independent – no branch should have too much power in selecting members of the other branches. Easy to make executive and legislative branches elected positions but it’s difficult forContinue Reading

Federalist No. 47 – James Madison Detractors say that the Constitution doesn’t divide the powers up enough so that they’re not wholly independent and that they are unevenly distributed. Important to focus on separation of powers. If too much power is given to one branch, it’s tyrannical but how muchContinue Reading

Federalist No. 31 – Alexander Hamilton The federal government needs to tax because it needs money to perform its functions Needs enough power to fulfill its responsibilities Can’t predict future problems of the government and shouldn’t be constrained Needs money to do those things and it needs to be ableContinue Reading

Federalist No. 15 – Alexander Hamilton The Confederation didn’t preserve peace and happiness. And will probably lead to anarchy, riots, large debts, territories near foreign powers, no military, no money, no commerce, no foreign respect and falling prospects. The Confederation needed a stronger central government but couldn’t do so withoutContinue Reading

Federalist No. 10 – James Madison The best argument for the Constitution is that it controls damage and chaos of factions – people have banded together to promote and protect special economic and political interests. These often work against the public’s interest. The Articles of Confederation and strong, independent mindedContinue Reading

Federalist No. 9 – Alexander Hamilton A strong union will act as a defense barrier against invasion and domestic problems. This will come from a system of checks and balances between the different branches of government. Compare the branches of government to planets orbiting the sun – in a singleContinue Reading