History of the U.S. - Confederation and Constitution example

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History of the U.S. - Confederation and Constitution

At the end of the Revolutionary War, the thirteen American colonies had to come together and have a unifying government. This was made possible through the Article of Confederation. The article of association created a weak federal government ensuring that it would not turn to another colonial master. This was the wrong doing of the Article of Confederation as it resulted in numerous challenges and ultimately the failure of first American government. Among the issues include the inability of the federal government to collect taxes. As a result, the government could not pay its debts (Saward, 2003). Passing the laws needed an approval of nine members out of the 13 states. Reaching consensus was a challenge leading to a lot of time being wasted. The Article of Confederation also failed to provide a national judicial system. It also failed to live up to the expectations of the nation by failing to unite the thirteen states. Each state had sovereign powers rendering the federal government weak.

Due to the failures of the Article of Confederation, America needed a new document that would take care of the flaws identified in the Article of Confederation. On September 17, 1787, the Constitutional Convention came to an end. With it came the signing of a new U.S. constitution. One of the main ideas of having a new constitution was to give the central government more powers to run the business of all states. The founding fathers, nevertheless, were aware of the danger a strong central government would pose. It dealt with this threat by introducing the principles of separation of powers and systems of check and balances. Coming up with a new constitution was not an easy task. There were two primary plans which the opposing sides supported. There was the Virginia Plan and the New Jersey Plan. Proponents of the Virginia Plan supported a strong central government while those supporting strong states vouched for the New Jersey Plan (McGeehan & Gall, 2001). The divide created by this two plans almost led to the different states parting their ways. The Connecticut Plan acted as the tie-breaker. It supported a strong federal government and also presented a fair chance of representation. The struggle of adapting a new constitution led to the development of federalists and non-federalists. Federalists supported a strong federal government while non-federalists vouched for strong states. These two movements would later turn into parties, one belonging to federalists and the other to democratic republicans.

Jeffersonian Democracy is an ideology started by Thomas Jefferson showing Republican values. This ideology favored public education, freedom of voting, a free press, and limited government among other values. According to Jefferson, people were ruled by reason. As a result, their decision was sound and well informed. It is from this that Jefferson favored a law by the decision made by the majority (Saward, 2003). Jeffersonian Democracy supported a limited government. According to Jefferson, the increased industrialization and urbanization was not a good …

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