Political Parties in the 1790's

Essay by nickie548High School, 11th grade August 2008

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Despite their different views of the government and the economy, Thomas Jefferson and Alexander Hamilton were two great leaders in United States history. Throughout their political lives, they never stopped debating and representing what they believed in. People disagreeing with the government and the government's different views on issues led to the rise of political parties in the 1790's.

Thomas Jefferson spoke out in the early 90's with a strict interpretation of the Constitution and his views on the bank. "To take a simple step beyond the boundaries... is to take possession of a boundless fiels of power" (Document A). It is evident that powers are delegated based on the Constitution and accepting those limits is the foundation of the United States. He believes the bank is not favored by the Constitution. Jefferson obviously had different opinions than Alexander Hamilton. In 1790, Jefferson wrote, "...Hamilton was not only a monarchist, but in support of a monarchy based upon corruption" (Document 1).

That quote foreshadows their differences that would be clearly known in the future.

Alexander Hamilton, on the other hand, has a more loose interpretation of the Constitution. He basically believes that proof is needed that the government is sovereign because, he said, "the power which can create a supreme law of the land, in any case, it doubtless sovereign as such case" (Document B). He believes that all laws made in the United States under the Constitution shall be the supreme law of the land. Hamilton also accepts the growing tension. "Mr. Jefferson is at the head of a faction, decidedly hostile to me and my administration...Mr. Jefferson displays his dislike of funding the debt...Jefferson and his supporters are unsound and dangerous..." (Document 2).

The growing gap between these two men and their opinions creates tension. The...