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Federalists Ascendant: John Adams’ Presidency

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1 Federalists Ascendant: John Adams’ Presidency
US History – Libertyville HS

2 Development of Political Parties
Washington “above” politics, but a federalist Federalist party emerges John Adams, Hamilton, etc Characteristics Pro industrial development Pro British Pro strong central government “Looser” interpretation of Constitution Prominent Federalists

3 Development of Political Parties
Democratic-Republicans (D-Rs) Thomas Jefferson, Madison, etc Characteristics Pro agriculture Pro revolutionary France Pro “common” man Pro States rights (vs. strong central government) Strict interpretation of Constitution

4 Election of 1796 First post-Washington election John Adams (F) – 71 EV
Thomas Jefferson (D-R) – 68 EV Thomas Pinckney (F) – 59 EV Aaron Burr (D-R) – 30 EV President = John Adams (F) VP = Thomas Jefferson (D-R)

5 President, VP From Different Parties
Constitution President to be person with most EVs VP to be person with second most EVs No concept of “ticket” or pres, VP running together Founders did not anticipate rise of political parties Became big problem in Adams’ Admin. VP Jefferson Pres. Adams

6 John Adams Born in Massachusetts Raised a “puritan-lite”
Became a lawyer Second cousins to Samuel Adams Joined patriot cause after Stamp Act Popularized argument “no taxation without representation” Birthplace of John Adams Young Adams

7 John Adams During Rev. War, served in Continental Congress
Served on “Committee of 5” Looked to for advice on forming governments / writing constitutions

8 Adams in Europe 1777 – Adams sent to France as diplomat
Sent back to Europe to negotiate peace treaty, Continued to serve as ambassador to Holland ( ), England ( ) Portrait of Treaty of Paris negotiators (British refused to pose – portrait never Finished)

9 "My country has in its wisdom contrived for me the most insignificant
Vice President Adams Came in second in election of 1788, 1792 (second of revolutionary generation, only after Washington) Washington rarely asked Adams’ opinion Adams’ main job = president of Senate His opinion on the Vice-presidency: "My country has in its wisdom contrived for me the most insignificant office that ever the invention of man contrived or his imagination conceived."

10 President Adams: Foreign Policy
Continued neutrality Adams wanted to stay out of war between Britain, France Problem: Jay’s Treaty angered French, so they began attacking American shipping Adams sent diplomats to negotiate with French (Pinckney, Gerry, Marshall) French (in distance) bearing down on damaged American ship

11 John Adams: XYZ Affair Three French agents demanded $250k bribe, $12 million loan to help French fight wars and public apology just to let Americans see French foreign minister Americans went home, instead Americans (at left) facing French revolutionary demands, in US newspaper cartoon

12 John Adams: XYZ Affair Jefferson demanded to see reports from diplomats (Why?) Released to public, changing French agents’ names to X, Y and Z Huge public outcry: “Millions for defense, but not one cent for tribute!” Token handed out during XYZ Affair

13 John Adams: “Quasi-War”
Quasi-War: No declaration, but French, American warships attacked each other and merchant ships American negotiators offered French same terms as Jays Treaty, but French refused 1800: Adams renegotiated treaty US drops claim for damaged merchant ships France released US from alliance of 1778 Weakened US affection for French USS Constellation – active during Quasi War

14 John Adams: Domestic Affairs
Alien-Sedition Acts (1798) Alien Friends Act Authorized the president to deport any resident alien considered "dangerous to the peace and safety of the United States.” Aimed at French sympathizers Alien Enemies Act (still in effect) authorized the president to apprehend and deport resident aliens if their home countries were at war with the United States Naturalization Act Extended the duration of residence required for aliens to become citizens to 14 years Sedition Act made it a crime to publish "false, scandalous, and malicious writing" against the government or its officials Fight in Congress during debate over Sedition Act, 1798

15 John Adams: Domestic Affairs
Reaction to Sedition Act Jefferson: Unconstitutional!! First Amendment Tenth Amendment No Judicial Review yet (M v M in 1803) – thus, exercise of “undelegated powers” by Feds TJ, James Madison introduce KY and VA Resolutions Called on states to nullify laws Compact theory: US made up of voluntary union of states giving some power to central gov’t; but states do not give away their sovereignty If state’s sovereignty violated, then state had right to nullify Federal act or secede from union “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the Press . . .” “The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people.”

16 John Adams: Domestic Affairs
Alien-Sedition Acts in Action No aliens deported (many fled) 25 people, mainly D-R newspaper editors, arrested under Sedition Act (incl. 1 congressman!) 11 tried, 10 convicted Led to end of Federalist Party Federalists tossed out of office After his election, President Jefferson pardoned all those convicted under Sedition Act The power of the press . . .

17 The 1800 Election One of the nastiest elections ever (slander, personal attacks) Jefferson v. Adams Campaign destroyed friendship, for years Jefferson, Burr tie; election goes to Federalist House On 35 ballots, deadlocked 8 states to 8 states On 36th ballot, Hamilton convinced other Federalists to change vote to Jefferson (Burr was personal enemy) Jefferson (D-R) 73 Burr (D-R) 73 J. Adams (F) 65 Pinckney (F) 64

18 1800 Election Aftermath 12th Amendment
President, VP run as a ticket Each elector casts 1 vote for a president, & 1 vote for a VP President, VP must win absolute majority of EC votes Deadlocks go to House, where each state gets one vote for any of top 3 tickets Federalists lose control of legislature, Fed bureaucracy Adams: Midnight appointments to judiciary (eventually leads to Marbury v. Madison) Boston Sentinel, 1801

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