Machiavelli's Influence On American Government

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Niccolò Machiavelli, better known as the father of modern political theory, wrote the famous socio-political treatise The Prince, during a dark time in his career. In The Prince, there are several policies that can be found in the American government, specifically in the United States Constitution and Bill of Rights. Many of our American leaders have adopted similar policies as Machiavelli's book is recognized as a political manual for many leaders. Obviously, there are many common themes in The Prince and The United States government's policies, such as the idea of arming one's citizens along with how leaders are brought to power; however, there are also many differences, in particular, the distribution of power in government. The United…show more content…
Congress consists of the Senate and the House of Representatives. “All legislative powers herein granted shall be vested in a Congress of the United States, which shall consist of a Senate and House of Representatives.”(Article 1 Section 1) Both houses in Congress have representatives from each state, in order to represent the positions and opinions of all fifty states. Machiavelli, however, did not believe in having so many people counselling the leader was effective. Machiavelli explains how it is more beneficial to have ministers than to have nobles. With ministers, the leader is the only ruler in the country and therefore, ministers will remain loyal to the ruler since he is the one who selects them. “Either by a prince, with a body of servants, who assist him to govern the kingdom as, ministers by his favor and permission … do not bear him any particular affection.” (Machiavelli 16) Ministers are picked by the leader of the territory, and that by picking ministers; it causes the citizens to hold their prince with more consideration. Machiavelli and the United States Constitution clearly disagree on this policy since Machiavelli argues there should be more control in how government is run. That's not the way the Founding Fathers wanted this country to run since it limits the people's power in…show more content…
There is no coincidence that the United States Constitution holds similar ideas to The Prince. Not only because of The Prince’s proven effectiveness in government, but because Machiavelli had experience on what did, and did not work in government. Clearly, The Prince and The United States government's policies have many common themes, like arming one's citizens, along with how leaders are brought to power. However, The United States Constitution does differ from Machiavelli's The Prince in that he believes there should be more control on how government should run. Without Machiavelli's The Prince, The United States of America would not have the same effective government structure
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