Presentation on theme: "Chapter 9 Section 4 “the second president”. Adams Gets Tested In the first months of John Adams’ presidency, he was tested. France, unhappy with Jay’s."— Presentation transcript:
Chapter 9 Section 4 “the second president”
Adams Gets Tested In the first months of John Adams’ presidency, he was tested. France, unhappy with Jay’s Treaty, began attacking American Ships. The American people called for war! Adams wanted to stay out of European affairs, so he did not declare war. Instead he sent diplomats to Paris to see if they could work something out. When the American diplomats met with the French, the French diplomat asked for $250,000 just to talk. The Americans refused to pay the bribe and went home.
The XYZ Affair When the Americans came back and told about how the French tried to bribe them, the country became outraged. This time they demanded war!!! Adams still didn’t think that the US should get involved in another war. Instead, he built ships fast-sailing ships called frigates with many guns. This helped convince France that attacking US ships might not be such a good idea. Adams’ refusal to support war led to a split in the Federalist party. You’d better step off France!!
Alien and Sedition Acts Under the Alien Act, the president could expel any foreigner from the country if he thought they were dangerous. Also, immigrants had to be a citizen for 14 years before they could get the right to vote (before the alien act it was 4 years). The Sedition Act made it legal for the government to fine or imprison people that criticized the government or its officials. This made republicans very angry!! I can’t believe Adams would make me wait 14 yrs to vote!! You can’t vote anyway, you’re a woman…I think.
State’s Rights Thomas Jefferson and others in the Republican party urged states to nullify (cancel) the Alien and Sedition Acts. He argued that a state had the right to call a law unconstitutional, and nullify the law within that state’s borders. This brought up many pressing questions. Did the state governments have the right to declare laws unconstitutional? What exactly were the rights that states had? Within a few years, the Alien and Sedition acts expired. Still, the issue of where a state had the power to nullify federal laws would come up again.
Election of 1800 The federalist party ruined its reputation with the alien and sedition acts. Jefferson (leader of the republican party) won the election, and that was pretty much all she wrote for the federalists. Especially after their leader, Alexander Hamilton was killed in a dual by Aaron Burr.