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The Early Republic: 1788-1800. Chapter 8. Early Republic: Washington and Adams Presidencies. How would the new government work? Many day-to-day issues weren’t explicitly talked about in the Constitution Many important precedents established during this time. Washington 1789-1796.

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early republic washington and adams presidencies
Early Republic: Washington and Adams Presidencies
  • How would the new government work?
  • Many day-to-day issues weren’t explicitly talked about in the Constitution
  • Many important precedents established during this time
washington 1789 1796
Washington 1789-1796
  • Constitution took effect: 1788, first Presidential election 1789
  • Washington won unanimously=1st President, John Adams finished second=1st Vice President
  • Important precedents of the Washington administration
    • The cabinet: President’s advisors, head the major executive departments
    • 1st three cabinet members:
      • Secretary of State: Thomas Jefferson
      • Secretary of War: Henry Knox
      • Secretary of the Treasury: Alexander Hamilton
    • The federal courts:
      • District courtscircuitcourtsSupreme Court
      • John Jay=1st Chief Justice of the Supreme Court
    • Finances and interpreting the Constitution. . . .
washington presidency hamilton and his policies
Washington Presidency: Hamilton and his Policies
  • Alexander Hamilton: quintessential Federalist
  • Secretary of Treasury, had to fix the country’s finances
    • States and Congress couldn’t pay off debts under the Articles, nobody trusted the financial problems of the US
  • Hamilton’s economic policies, pay off the debt, get people to trust the credit of the US government
    • Pay off all government debt “at par”, controversial, why?
    • Pay off all state debt left over from the revolution (assumption of state debt), controversial, why?
    • Debt could be a good thing. . . . how? Controversial, why?
  • Southern States didn’t like Hamilton’s policies: DC bargain
hamilton s policies paying for the debt
Hamilton’s Policies: Paying for the Debt
  • 3 part plan to pay for the debt/fund the government/restart economic activity
  • Part 1: Tariffs
    • Tariff=a tax on imports, would raise money, and would raise the price of imported goods (would it raise the price of goods made in the US?)
  • Part 2: Excise taxes
    • Excise tax=a tax on goods produced/sold inside a country
    • Excise tax on whiskey=major money maker
  • Part 3: The National Bank
    • Private bank chartered by the federal government, with major government investment
    • Would provide loan money to help stimulate economic growth
    • Would provide paper currency backed up in gold to help stimulate economic activity
debate over hamilton s policies the bank debate
Debate over Hamilton’s Policies: The Bank Debate
  • Bank Debate: was it constitutional?
    • No: nowhere in the Constitution did it authorize the federal government to charter a bank
      • What’s the big deal? If the government could ignore the Constitution on a seemingly unimportant issue like the bank then it could ignore the Constitution on bigger issues
    • Yes: Article I Sect 8 Clause 18 (elastic clause) gave Congress (the federal govt) the power to make all laws “necessary and proper” for carrying out its other powers (taxation, coining money, etc)
    • Strict (or narrow) vs Loose (or broad) interpretation of the Constitution
  • Washington approved the Bank: important precedent!!!!!
debate over hamilton s policies the whiskey rebellion
Debate over Hamilton’s Policies: The Whiskey Rebellion
  • Farmers in Pennsylvania produced a lot of whiskey
  • Excise tax hurt them
  • 1794 farmers refused to pay the tax, harassed tax collectors, took up arms, threatened to march to Philadelphia
    • Sound familiar?
  • Washington and Hamilton assembled a massive federal army rebellion defeated easily
  • Why the different reaction from 1765 (Stamp Act) to 1794 (Whiskey Excise Tax)? What had changed in that time?
political parties emerge
Political Parties Emerge
  • Another important precedent of the Washington administration
  • Divide centered around Hamilton’s policies: some in favor, some opposed—(broad interpretation of Constitution, assumption of states debts, national bank, tariffs, excise taxes, strong govt response to Whiskey Rebellion)
    • Those in favor: Federalists
      • Hamilton, Washington, Adams
      • New England, cities, merchants, factory owners, wealthy
    • Those opposed: Anti-Federalists (Democratic-Republicans)
      • Jefferson, Madison
      • South, West, rural areas, farmers, poor
foreign policy under the constitution
Foreign Policy Under the Constitution
  • Jay’s Treaty 1795 US-Britain
    • British left US soil
    • British repaid US merchants for seized ships
    • US govt had to finally repay the British for pre-war debts and loyalist losses
  • Pinckney’s Treaty 1795 US-Spain
    • US got access to Mississippi River/New Orleans
    • US got disputed territory in the Southwest
  • Treaty of Fort Greenville 1795 US-Indians
    • US got access to the Northwest (Ohio, Indiana, etc) from Miami Indian Confederacy
constitution successes criticisms recap
Constitution Successes/Criticisms: Recap
  • Domestic Problems
    • International/interstate trade problems
    • Internal rebellions
    • Worthless money
    • Defaulting on state/federal debts
  • Foreign Problems
    • British occupation of Northwest
    • Spanish occupation of Southwest/lack of access to Mississippi
    • Indian attacks
  • Criticisms
    • Constitution was undemocratic
    • Constitution favored the wealthy/powerful
bill of rights
Bill of Rights
  • The original Constitution did not contain a Bill of Rights
  • What is a bill of rights?
    • List of freedoms that individuals have that the government cannot violate
  • Why no bill of rights in the original Constitution?
    • States had their own bills of rights
    • A lot of rights were already protected in the Constitution
      • Habeas Corpus, no ex post facto laws, freedom of speech for members of Congress, no religious tests
    • In the British governmental tradition (including the US) many rights were protected by tradition—bill of rights seemed unnecessary
    • Bill of Rights could be dangerous—how?
    • Saying that the government can’t do something limits whom?
bill of rights cont
Bill of Rights (Cont.)
  • 1st ten amendments to the Constitution
    • 1-speech, press, religion, assembly, petition
    • 2-right to bear arms
    • 3-no quartering of troops
    • 4-no search or seizures without a search warrant
    • 5-right to life liberty and property, no double jeopardy
    • 6-speedy trial, trial by jury, trial in the place where the crime occurred
    • 7-trial by jury for common law offenses
    • 8-no cruel or unusual punishment
    • 9-there are more rights that people have than the ones listed in the Bill of Rights
    • 10-powers not given to the federal govt, and not prohibited by the Const to the states are reserved by the states, or the people
problems with france
Problems with France
  • 1789 French Revolution began
  • 1793 Radicals took control of the Revolution/French government
  • France at war with Britain 1793-1815
  • US still technically allied with the French (Revolutionary War 1778), what should the US do?
  • 1793—Washington’s Neutrality Proclamation
    • US would not get involved
  • 1796—Washington leaves office after 2 terms (another precedent)
    • Farewell address warns about “entangling alliances”
    • Us won’t want to get involved in international affairs until WWI-WWII
john adams as president
John Adams as President
  • Adams wins election of 1796 becomes 2nd Federalist President
    • Jefferson finished 2nd, becomes VP
    • What party was Jefferson??
  • Problems with France
    • French angry over Neutrality Proclamation began seizing US ships in the Caribbean—led to the Quasi War (Naval War between US and France)
    • XYZ affair—Adams sent representatives to France, were denied access to the French foreign minister by three French diplomats (X, Y, and Z) unless they paid a bribe
      • Angered Americans, war with France seemed likely
preparations for war federalist mistakes
Preparations for War: Federalist Mistakes
  • Adams/Federalists in Congress voted to increase the size of the navy and the army
    • Problems—money?
    • Problems—philosophically? (Why might a standing army look bad?)
  • Alien and Sedition Acts
    • Technically targeted at foreigners (Aliens) living in the US who might be hostile to the US in the event of war with France (French, Irish)
    • Targeted at people who criticized the government in the event of war—could be arrested for criticizing the government/president
    • In reality used by the Federalists to persecute/deport their political rivals/critics (newspaper editors, congressman, etc)
election of 1800 jefferson elected
Election of 1800: Jefferson Elected
  • Federalists looked bad by 1800
    • High taxes to pay for the army/navy
    • Abuses of power with the Alien and Sedition Acts
  • Republicans elected 73 electors in the election of 1800, Federalists only 65
    • All 73 Republican electors cast their 2 votes for Jefferson and Aaron Burr—who had the most electoral votes?
    • What happens in the event of a tie in the electoral college, or if someone doesn’t have 50% +1 of the electoral votes?
  • Jefferson won the tie breaker, became President, Burr=VP
  • 12th Amendment made separate elections for President and VP