Thomas Jefferson And The American Constitution Essay

2071 Words9 Pages
When it comes to the understanding of the Constitution, Jeffersonian Republicans are generally characterized as strict constructionists who were opposed to the broad constructionism of the Federalists. This characterization however, fails to take into account the complexities of the domestic and foreign policies supported during the presidencies of Jefferson and Madison, as well as ideas held by the Federalists support the idea that they supported some principles of a strict constitutional interpretation when it suited their cause. Between 1801 and 1817 it is clear to see that both parties to some extent crossed their political lines when it was the best way to achieve their political agendas. On August 13th 1800, before his election Thomas Jefferson wrote to Gideon Granger, a future member of Jefferson’s cabinet, about taking down the Federalists, protecting the state 's rights, and that the Constitution is the wisest piece of political literature to address the needs of such a varying and diverse nation(Doc. A). Thomas Jefferson was the Third president of the United States, the primary author of the Declaration of independence, and believed that America should grow as an agrarian nation with a limited central government and strong state governments. This document shows that Jeffersonian Republicans were strict interpreters of the Constitution by telling us directly that changing the federal constitution to hurt state governments defines this new nation as a monarchy, and
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