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Creating the Government of the United States

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1 Creating the Government of the United States
A New Nation Creating the Government of the United States

2 Early Government Americans thought of themselves as citizens of individual states, not of a common nation. The United States was not a nation as much as it was a confederation, an alliance of separate governments that work together. State governments had more power than the national government. Individual state constitutions were important during this period. In 1777, the Continental Congress adopted a set of laws to govern the United States. These laws were called the Articles of Confederation. Approved in 1781, the Articles established a limited national government, in which most of the power lay with the states. Perry 2006

3 Define: What is a Confederation? What does Lament mean? Perry 2006

4 The Articles of Confederation VS. today’s national government
Consisted of only one branch of government: the legislative branch, or Congress. Congress carried out the duties of both the legislative and executive branches. No national court system existed. Congress could declare war and borrow money, but lacked the power to tax. Today’s National Government Consists of three branches of government: The legislative branch, or Congress, is responsible for making laws. The executive branch, headed by the President, executes, or puts into action, laws passed by Congress. The judicial branch is made up of the courts and judges who interpret and apply the laws. The judicial branch forms a national court system. Congress has the power to tax. Perry 2006

5 Opposition to the Articles Americans generally agreed that their new nation should be a democracy, a government by the people. Specifically, they desired a republic, a government run by the people through their elected representatives. Economic Problems Public and private debt were creating economic chaos in the new republic. Many felt this was due to citizens having too much power in their state legislatures. Concerns About Weak Government Nationalists felt that a weak national government could not keep order. They argued that European history had demonstrated that people were not naturally wise enough to have so much power over their own affairs. The Annapolis Convention In 1786, Nationalists held a conference in Annapolis, Maryland, to discuss economic problems. Although the conference itself accomplished little, delegates agreed to call another convention in Philadelphia in 1787. Perry 2006

6 Shays’ Rebellion Causes of Shays’ Rebellion
In order to help pay off its large debts, Massachusetts passed the heaviest direct tax ever. This tax had to be paid in specie, gold or silver coin, rather than paper money. A group of farmers led by Daniel Shays rebelled against these taxes in a crisis which came to be known as Shays’ Rebellion. Farmers drove off tax collectors and forced courts to close when their petitions were rejected. Soon, open conflict raged as angry crowds rioted. Shays’ Rebellion Effects of Shays’ Rebellion Congress had no money to raise an army to counter Shays’ Rebellion. It also could not force states to pay for one. The Massachusetts state government raised an army that quieted the rebellion. However, Shays’ Rebellion demonstrated to many prominent Americans that a stronger national government was needed to avoid civil unrest. Perry 2006

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8 Answer: Explain 1 Weaknesses of the Articles of Confederation:
Give Two Reasons People Wanted to Write a New Constitution for the United States and Scrap the Articles of Confederation Perry 2006

9 The Convention Assembles
They met to save the country Articles of Confederation wasn’t working In May 1787, delegates from 12 of the 13 colonies met in Philadelphia to try to fix the problems of the new United States government. This meeting, known as the Constitutional Convention, produced the United States Constitution, the document that has governed the United States for over 200 years. Perry 2006

10 James Madison One particularly influential delegate at the Constitutional Convention was James Madison of Virginia. Before the convention, Madison spent a year thinking about how to create a new government. At the convention, he took detailed notes that would later become the best record of the proceedings. For his role, he became known as “the father of the Constitution.” Man of Knowledge: studied history, government and law; the best informed man at the debates Man of Politics: leader at convention, later served in Congress and became President Man of Philosophy: studied philosophy, encouraged the best in people while restraining the worst in people Perry 2006

11 Divisions at the Convention
The convention in Philadelphia had been empowered only to amend, or revise, the Articles of Confederation, not to replace them. However, two plans for a new national government emerged at the convention. The Virginia Plan Proposed a bicameral, or two-house, national legislature Each state would send representatives in proportion to the number of its citizens. The new legislature would have the power to tax; regulate foreign/interstate commerce; to veto any act of a state legislature; use force against a state, should that state defy national authority. The New Jersey Plan Proposed a unicameral, or one-house, national legislature, and the creation of executive and judicial branches Each state would send the same number of representatives to the legislature. The new legislature would have the right to tax regulate foreign and interstate commerce. Perry 2006

12 Reaching Agreements The Great Compromise
A legislative branch made up of two houses. Senate, would have the same number of representatives from each state. House of Representatives, representation would be based on state population. Three-Fifths Compromise, three fifths of a state’s slave population would be counted when determining representation. The convention approved the final draft of the United States Constitution on September 17, The strengths of the Constitution have helped it endure for more than 200 years. Perry 2006

13 Ticket Out the Door What was the 3/5 Compromise?
What was the Virginia Plan? What was the New Jersey Plan? What was the “Great Compromise” Who was the Father of the Constitution? Perry 2006

14 Government Structure Separation of Federal Powers
Within the federal government, a separation of powers was created to prevent any one of the three branches of government from acquiring too much power. Each branch has its own area of authority, but no one branch has complete power over the government. The Constitution also set up a system of checks and balances, in which each branch has the power to check, or stop, the other branches in certain ways. This system prevents the misuse of power by any one branch. Federal and State Powers The Constitution created a federal system of government, in which power is shared among state and national authorities. In a federal system of government, powers are divided into three categories: Some powers are reserved for the states only. Others are delegated to the federal government only. Still others, called concurrent powers, are held by both the federal government and state governments. Perry 2006

15 Congress, the President, and the Federal Courts
Chapter 5, Section 2 The Federal Courts “Interpret the law” The Constitution calls for one Supreme Court and several lesser courts, although the details of the federal court system were intentionally left vague. Supreme Court justices would be appointed for life by the President with the consent of the Senate. Congress “Makes the law” Each of the two houses of Congress was granted different powers. Each was also designed with different methods of election and different term lengths, making the House more receptive to public opinion and the Senate more stable. The President “Carries out the law” The President would be chosen by a group of electors from each state. The candidate with the majority of votes in the electoral college, or group of electors, would become President. The President was granted enormous powers, including the power to veto acts of Congress and to appoint judges for the federal courts. Perry 2006

16 The Federalist View For the Constitution to become law, 9 out of the 13 states had to ratify, or approve, it. Those who favored the Constitution were called Federalists. The Federalists included many Nationalists, such as George Washington, James Madison, and Alexander Hamilton Favored a strong national government. To make their case for the Constitution, the Federalists wrote a series of 85 essays, collectively known as The Federalist. One issue addressed in these essays was that one powerful faction, or group concerned only with its own interests, could not control the government under the Constitution. Perry 2006

17 The Anti-Federalist View
Those who opposed the Constitution were called anti-Federalists. Anti-Federalists believed that the Federalists’ plan threatened state governments and the rights of individuals. The anti-Federalists included Patrick Henry, people in isolated areas who had less need for a strong national government, and some former Nationalists who wanted a national government but were unhappy with the Constitution. According to the anti-Federalists, a President would be too similar to a king, a figure whose control American patriots had fought to escape. Anti-Federalists also objected to the proposed federal court system. wanted freedoms protected; agreed to the Constitution only if a Bill of Rights was added While the Federalists feared the people more than government, the anti-Federalists feared government more than the people. Perry 2006

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19 Why the Federalists Won
The Federalists had several advantages over the anti-Federalists. These included: (1) The Federalists drew on the widespread feeling that the Articles of Confederation had serious flaws. (3) The Federalists had an actual document and plan which they could defend. The anti-Federalists had no constructive plan of their own to offer. (2) The Federalists were a united, well-organized national group, while the anti-Federalists tended to consist of local politicians who did not coordinate their activities on a national level. (4) The Federalists had the support of George Washington, a respected Revolutionary War hero. Delaware, New Jersey, and Connecticut quickly ratified the Constitution. In June 1788, New Hampshire became the ninth and final state needed to ratify the Constitution. Perry 2006

20 For and Against the Bill of Rights
For the Bill of Rights Many Americans believed that the national Constitution, like most state constitutions, should include a clear declaration of the rights of the people. In September 1789, Congress proposed twelve constitutional amendments, largely drafted by James Madison and designed to protect citizens’ rights. Ten of these amendments were ratified by the states. These ten amendments became known as the Bill of Rights. Against the Bill of Rights Most Federalists saw no need for these amendments. These Federalists claimed that under the Constitution, the people and the government were the same. Therefore, the people needed no additional statements to protect their rights. Perry 2006

21 The Bill of Rights Perry 2006

22 Ratification of Constitution
9 or 13 states had to approve it. December 1787 Delaware ratifies May 1790 Rhode Island ratifies (18 months) Bill of Rights was added in 1791: protection of citizens rights April 30, 1789 George Washington inaugurated as first president Perry 2006

23 The New Leaders On April 30, 1789, George Washington took the oath of office as the first President of the United States. John Adams became Vice President. Washington also selected a Cabinet, a group of federal leaders who both advise the President and head national agencies. He named Edmund Randolph of Virginia to the post of Attorney General and kept Henry Knox as Secretary of War. Thomas Jefferson was named Secretary of State and Alexander Hamilton became Secretary of the Treasury. Perry 2006

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25 Jefferson and Hamilton
Secretary of State Jefferson After serving several years as ambassador to France, Thomas Jefferson returned to the United States in He quickly became involved again in domestic affairs, or the country’s internal matters. In addition to being a politician, Jefferson was a planter, writer, and inventor. His interest in architecture led him to build several homes, including his most famous, Monticello. Jefferson later became one of Washington’s harshest critics. Treasury Secretary Hamilton Alexander Hamilton was chosen to head the government’s largest department, the Department of the Treasury. Hamilton had been an officer in the Continental Army during the Revolution, where he had carried out important military missions. In contrast to Jefferson, Hamilton believed that governmental power, properly used, could accomplish great things. Perry 2006

26 Washington’s Government
Washington knew that he was establishing precedents for how to govern. Washington worked to establish a tone of dignity in his administration. The President held regular receptions for government officials and was escorted by soldiers when he traveled. Although he felt that such pomp was necessary to command respect, others saw these activities as reminiscent of a king and his court. In 1792, Washington won unanimous reelection. His second term, however, became marked by criticism and controversy. Perry 2006

27 Planning a Capital City
The Need for a Capital City During Washington’s first year in office, the government resided in New York City. In 1790, the capital was moved to Philadelphia while a new capital could be planned and built. The Residence Act of 1790 specified a 10-square-mile stretch of land on the border between Maryland and Virginia for the new capital. This area, to be called the District of Columbia, would be governed by federal authorities, not by either state. Planning the District of Columbia African American mathematician Benjamin Banneker helped survey the city. French architect Pierre-Charles L’Enfant developed the city plan. The District of Columbia was designed to echo the beauty and structure of European capital cities. The federal government moved there in 1800. Today, Washington, D.C., remains the most visible legacy of the Federalists’ belief in the power and dignity of the new government. Perry 2006

28 Liberty Versus Order in the 1790s Hamilton’s Program
As Treasury Secretary, Alexander Hamilton was responsible for developing a program to repay debts incurred during the Revolution. In 1790, Congress approved the plan to allow the federal government to take responsibility for debts acquired by individual states. Southern states resisted this plan at first, since they did not want to help pay back the loans owed by northern states. However, Hamilton won southern support by promising to locate the nation’s new capital in the South. By assuming states’ debt, the federal government indirectly increased its strength. Since creditors now had an interest in the United States, not just individual states, they would help ensure that the new nation did not collapse. Perry 2006

29 Hamilton’s Strategy and Opponents
Congress created a tax on whiskey and a tariff, or a tax on imported goods. Rather than pay off all debt at once, the United States paid interest. Hamilton believed in a loose construction of the Constitution -- that the government could take any action that the Constitution did not forbid. Hamilton’s Opponents Many viewed it as interference in state affairs. Many also disliked Hamilton’s new taxes. Secretary of State Thomas Jefferson was particularly opposed to Hamilton’s plans. Jefferson favored a strict construction of the Constitution -- the government should not take any actions other than those specifically called for in the Constitution. Perry 2006

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31 Defining the Government’s Powers
Raising Money Congress used its constitutional right to “collect taxes, duties, imposts and excises” to pass tow measures Tariff – tax on imported goods Excise tax on Whiskey The money raised went to pay expenses of the government and creditors Perry 2006

32 Defining the Government’s Powers
Whiskey Rebellion Whiskey was critically important to the economy Traditional beverage Made from corn but didn’t spoil Was used as a kind of currency In 1794, opposition to the tax became so strong that Pennsylvania appeared to be in a state of rebellion against the authority of the federal government. Perry 2006

33 Defining the Government’s Powers
The Powers of the President President Washington was determined to crush the resistance Saw the rebellion as a way to demonstrate the power Gathered an army of 12,000 met and marched to Pittsburgh Rebellion dissolved Showed that the American government had the means and will to force its citizens to obey its laws. Perry 2006

34 Defining the Government’s Powers
The Powers of Congress State of Maryland tried to tax the Bank of the United States. The bank refused to pay saying the tax was unconstitutional 1819 – McCulloch v Maryland, Chief Justice Marshall declared the fine illegal and the bank constitutional The chief justice stated that Article I, Section 8 states that Congress has the right to make all laws necessary and proper for it to carry out the powers granted under the Constitution. Thus, Congress had the power to create the bank Perry 2006

35 Defining the Government’s Powers
The Powers of the Supreme Court The judicial branch was not clearly defined 1803 the Supreme Court’s Chief Justice, John Marshall, helped define the powers of the courts in Marbury v. Madison. Judicial review -- the federal courts had the authority to review laws and declare them unconstitutional if necessary. Perry 2006

36 Foreign Policy Issues American Neutrality and Jay’s Treaty
The United States did not want to offend either nation in the war between Britain and France. President Washington issued a proclamation of neutrality in 1793, stating that the United States would remain neutral. In 1794, Washington sent Chief Justice John Jay to Britain to negotiate an agreement with the British. The agreement, which became known as Jay’s Treaty, was highly controversial in the United States because it contained no protection for American shipping. The French Revolution The French Revolution sharply divided Americans. Federalists saw the French Revolution as a democratic revolution gone wrong. Supporters of Jefferson, however, viewed it as an extension of the American Revolution. The political split grew more intense in 1793, when the French ambassador to the United States, “Citizen” Edmond Genêt, tried to convince private Americans to fight with the French against the British. Perry 2006

37 Political Parties Emerge
The Jeffersonian Republicans Two political parties began to emerge in the new nation. The Federalists formed one of these parties. The other, composed of critics of the Federalists, were called Republicans or Democratic-Republicans because they stood for a more democratic republic. To avoid confusion, historians call them the Jeffersonian Republicans. The Election of 1796 President Washington chose not to run for a third term in With the nation politically divided, the election of 1796 was close. The Federalists won a narrow victory, making John Adams the second President. Jefferson, who finished second in the electoral vote race, became the new Vice President. In his Farewell Address of 1796, Washington drew on his years of experience and offered advice for the young nation in the years ahead. He warned against competing political parties and advocated a foreign policy of neutrality. Perry 2006

38 John Adams as President
The XYZ Affair At the beginning of the Adams administration, the United States was drifting toward war with France. The United States sent officials to France to negotiate. These officials were met by three secret agents: X, Y, and Z, who demanded a bribe and a loan to France. The U.S. officials refused to pay the bribe and were met with public acclaim for their patriotism upon their return home. This XYZ affair infuriated Americans, resulting in what amounted to an undeclared naval war with France. Perry 2006

39 John Adams as President
The Alien and Sedition Acts The Federalists took advantage of the war crisis to push important new measures through Congress. These included the Alien and Sedition Acts of 1798. Under the Alien Act, the President could imprison or deport citizens of other countries living in the United States. Under the Sedition Act, persons who wrote, published, or said anything “false, scandalous, and malicious” against the American government could be fined or jailed. Perry 2006

40 Increasing Tensions Jefferson, James Madison, and other Republicans believed that the Sedition Act violated the constitutional protection of freedom of speech. Responded with the Virginia and Kentucky Resolutions. The resolutions allowed these two states to nullify federal laws which they felt were unconstitutional. Tensions between Federalists and Jeffersonian Republicans continued to grow during the late 1790s. Enslaved African Americans, although barred from participation in the political system, embraced the discussions of liberty going on around them. A blacksmith named Gabriel Prosser and several other slaves in the area around Richmond, Virginia attempted a slave revolt. Prosser’s small-scale rebellion failed before it could get underway. Perry 2006

41 Adams Loses Support Adams angered many Federalists when he sought a peaceful solution to the undeclared naval war with France. Federalists such as Alexander Hamilton were in favor of a harsher policy toward France, including a declaration of war. Adams entered the election of 1800 with several disadvantages. With peace with France, the Republicans’ support for France became less of a rallying point for the Federalists. The Alien and Sedition Acts became less justified without the threat of imminent war. Adams’s bid for re-election was further damaged when Aaron Burr, the Jeffersonian Republican nominee for Vice President, obtained and printed a damaging pamphlet against Adams written by Hamilton. Perry 2006

42 The Campaign and Jefferson’s Victory
By 1800, Thomas Jefferson emerged as the leader among those who preferred local to national government. Jefferson ran against Adams in what became a nasty presidential campaign. Jefferson’s campaign accused Adams of being a monarchist. Adams’s campaign claimed that Jefferson would lead the nation into chaos. Jefferson’s Victory Jefferson won the popular vote but did not win a majority in the electoral college. He tied with his vice presidential running mate, Aaron Burr. As specified in the Constitution, the House of Representatives voted to choose the President. Voting was deadlocked until the House elected Jefferson on its thirty-sixth ballot. Jefferson’s victory was aided by the support of his usual nemesis Hamilton, who preferred Jefferson over Burr. Perry 2006

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