Differences Between Madison And Jefferson

583 Words3 Pages
Jefferson and Madison; Jeffersonian Republicans with Federalist Tendencies The ideological differences between Alexander Hamilton and Thomas Jefferson led to rancorous disputes and the first political parties in America. Throughout the 1790s, the two fought bitterly over issues of constitutional interpretation, but during their presidencies both Jefferson and his friend and ally, James Madison, demonstrated the Federalist ideas of their rival. Although they held mostly Jeffersonian Republican tendencies, both Jefferson and Madison occasionally reflected the beliefs of their adversary, Alexander Hamilton. Throughout his political career, Thomas Jefferson had advocated for a weak central government and a strict constructionist view of the Constitution.…show more content…
Jefferson, for example, switched from his strict-constructionist proclivities towards a looser constitutional interpretation involving the Louisiana Purchase of 1803. While there was nothing explicitly stated in the constitution about territorial acquisition, Jefferson accepted the deal for the good of the country. He also initiated the Embargo Act of 1807, which harmed the agriculture, mainly in the South. This goes against the Jeffersonian ideals, which value the agrarian republic over private enterprise and manufacturing. The anger in the South is demonstrated in Isaac Cruikshank “The Happy Effects of that Grand System of Shutting Ports Against the English” in which the people portrayed complained of “warehouses [that] are full” and “goods [that] are spoiling” (Doc. 6). Madison also displayed beliefs similar to those of Hamilton when he went to war in 1812. Hamilton, in “Tully No. III” maintains the necessity of force to preserve law and that “Government supposes control” (Doc. 2). Although Madison did not believe in a strong central government, he did believe that force must be applied in order to maintain laws and the order, demonstrated by his engagement in the War of 1812. John Adams, a Federalist himself, even claimed in a letter to Benjamin Waterhouse that he “give [his vote] to Mr. Madison” (Doc. 7). Madison’s policies often reflected so close to those of the Federalists that even the Federalists themselves grew to admire
Open Document