Applying Alexander Hamilton and Thomas Jefferson's Social Views to the Affordable Care Act

699 WordsJan 16, 20183 Pages
Alexander Hamilton and Thomas Jefferson represent the polarizing ends of the political spectrum in the early days of the United States government. Traditionally, Hamilton has been viewed as being in favor of a strong central government and a loose interpretation and application of the United States Constitution while Jefferson favored a weak central government and a strict interpretation of the Constitution (Foner, 2008). Applying these generalized views of Hamilton and Jefferson to the situation involving the Affordable Care Act, however, is not as simply done as one might expect. First, the major consideration regarding the Affordable Care Act (ACA) is the application of the Commerce Clause (Mariner, 2011). In the days of Hamilton and Jefferson, the Commerce Clause had not yet taken on the importance that it now does and, therefore, it is difficult to say precisely how either Jefferson or Hamilton might have viewed how the Commerce Clause might be applied. Based, however, on how these two men viewed commerce in general, it is highly more likely that Hamilton would have viewed the ACA as a proper exercise of Congressional power. Hamilton believed that the government should actively assist business and this view added to his corollary view that the common people too often acted foolishly would have placed him in good position today to support the provisions of the ACA (Foner: pp. 281-285). Jefferson, meanwhile, believed that the government should involve itself minimally

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