The Alien And Sedition Acts


The debate over of 1798 revealed bitter controversies on a number of issues that had been developing since the penning of the Constitution. The writers of the document knew that over time the needs of the nation and its people would change, and therefore provided for its amendment. But by not expressly delegating powers to specific organizations, whether the federal government, state governments, or the people themselves, they inadvertently created a major problem in the years to follow:
Constitutional interpretation.
Shortly after the Constitution's ratification, two distinct camps formed, each believing in opposite manners of interpretation. One group, the Federalists, led by the newly ...

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In essence, Hamilton wished to use the implied powers to build a strong and authoritative central government.
In 1789, the Minister to France Thomas Jefferson, to Francis Hopkinson of Pennsylvania, protesting that "I am not of the party of the federalists. But I am much farther from that of the anitfederalists." However, the situation was so sensitive that he could not help but chose a side. In 1795, Jefferson wrote to a congressman from Virginia, William Giles, that he "held "t honorable to take a firm and decided part." The group he sided with, the Democratic-Republicans, favored a strict interpretation. As their leader, Jefferson argued that all powers not enumerated by the Constitution belonged to the States. The basis for his argument was the old English "compact" theory. This theory stated that various individuals, in this case the states, joined together in a formal agreement of government. Since the states had drawn up the contract and given power to the federal ...

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that spirit, warp and bias its directions, and render it a heterogeneous, incoherent, distracted mass." Yet perhaps the person who best displayed the American attitude toward immigrants was John Adams.
In 1797, during a speech to a special session of Congress, Adams implied that people from foreign countries were enemies of the nation as their leaders had taught them impressed upon then undemocratic principles. Said Adams, "The speech of the President [ of the French Directory]...evinces a disposition to separate the people of the United States from the government...whom they themselves have chosen to manage their common concerns." Such distrust of immigrants led to the passing of the ...

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PAPER DETAILS
Added: 10/6/2004 01:02:58 AM
Category: Political Science
Type: Premium Paper
Words: 1730
Pages: 7

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