Compromises of the Constitution

Essay by KiyaKaelarHigh School, 11th gradeA+, April 2004

download word file, 4 pages 5.0

By late 1786, it was clear to the states that the Articles of Confederation could no longer provide for an adequate government, an essential function to promote the prosperity of the fledgling country. To fix this problem, delegates from all states except Rhode Island congregated in Philadelphia in an attempt to revise the Articles of Confederation. During the convention, the delegates had a variety of views on how the government should function, which led to lengthy and, at times, acrimonious debates. In the end, however, some kind of compromise would always be reached; then another issue would be brought about and the whole cycle repeats over and over again. Sleepless nights and smoke filled rooms followed one after another. Little did the delegates know that four months later, a whole new constitution would be born. The Constitution of the United States, the first formally written "rules of conduct" of a government in the world, still stands firmly today.

The genius of the Constitution is found in the series of compromises which made it acceptable to so many, especially in representation, presidency, and slavery. Maybe some of the compromises were not the best for the country, but they definitely achieved the purpose of uniting all the states; and at the time of the convention, that was one of its most important goals.

During the convention, there were two general plans of government that were proposed. One of these is the Virginia Plan, also called the Large State Plan, which advised that the representation in a bicameral legislature be proportional to property or population. The other is the New Jersey Plan, which called for equal representation for all states regardless to population in a unicameral legislature. Had the Virginia Plan been adopted entirely, large states would always have a dominant...