How Democratic Is The American Constitution Essay

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The question posed by both Madison and the Framers in the 85 “Federalist Papers” and Dahl in his book How Democratic is the American Constitution? is how effective the Constitution is at promoting the ideals of a democracy. For Dahl, there are several issues surrounding the Constitution, from its drafting, to its ideology, to its relevance. By analyzing Dahl’s critiques of the Constitution in terms of the parallels that exist between factions and the two-party system, the issue of unequal representation, and the necessity for the Framers to compromise on their ideals to ratify the Constitution, Dahl defined a clear argument based in his general disapproval for the Constitution. However, by combining Dahl’s critiques with potential rebuttals from the opinions and perspectives of Madison and his fellow Federalists, it is evident that both Dahl and the Framers believed that if the constitution was completely successful, then the lives of the American people would be enhanced. While Dahl believed that the Constitution, ultimately, has not fully protected the rights of all persons, he, like the Framers, focused on the particulars of government that must be improved such that the American life is bettered. The Framer’s notion of a republic, or democratic republic form of government, rested on the necessity to limit the formation and success of factions. Yet, as Dahl argued, the irony of Madison’s aversions to factions is that, not long after the ratification of the
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