Party politics in the 1970’s
After the endorsement of the constitution, a new American government started to take shape in the form of a central government which was critical to encourage commerce and industry development. National leaders struggled with issues that related to the constitution with some leaders believing that what the constitution did not specifically condemn, it allowed. Formation of a more centralized government aimed at curbing what the framers saw as the excess democratic power which made it difficult to come up with an appropriate course of action. The periods of 1790’s and 1800 saw the emergence of two political parties with a different view on how to interpret the constitution (Bingham & O’Leary, 2011). The federalists preferred a strong central government which they saw as a great element of change which the Americans want. The republicans, on the other hand, preferred a limited central government, so as to limit too much power in one system that may end up undermining the people. Division of these two political parties marked the Federalist period.
The republican party came into view between 1791 to 1793 with the aim of opposing the Federalist party which was centralizing policies and advocating for centralization of the government. Republicans coalesced around issues of limiting federal power and expanding active participation of everyone in politics and administration. Republican party stood for states’ rights in opposition to the central government the Federalists were advocating for. The Republicans represented the interests of the common freemen. The Republican party different from the Federalists saw the need of giving the common person the freedom of expressing their ideas and actively participate in the administration and running of the government. As such, each person is given a voice to see that their ideas and views are put into consideration.
The Republican economic policies reflected the needs of small businesses and individuals rather than that of wealthy merchants and large commercial ventures. The Republicans believed in protecting the rights and interests of the majority working class which covers mostly the small business ventures including farmers, laborers, and merchants. Protection of the rights of small centered producers goes hand in hand with the political views of the Republicans which aims at giving the people power to control and manage their country. Its policies on economic views made the Republicans more famous and as a result ended up taking control of power from the Federalists. More support came from the working groups which were the majority group of the economic population, mostly the small scale working class.
In reference to the diplomatic view, the Republicans opposed any sort of alliance with Great Britain as they believed it would keep the country in a state of colonial dependence. In relation to European alliances, Republicans were also sympathetic to France because of the liberal republican politics of the French. Republicans saw it easy to ally with France than Britain which would restrict the economic growth of the United States.
The Kentucky resolution was a political statement which was drafted in 1798 and 1799, in which the Kentucky legislators took the position that the federal Alien and Sedition Acts were unconstitutional (Gutzman, 2000). It argued that the state had the right to declare unconstitutional acts of the congress which were not authorized by the constitution. The main aim of the Kentucky resolutions was mainly to put the federal government in check so as not to exercise powers not specifically delegated to it. If by chance the federal government assumes such powers, the state declares its acts unconstitutional, and as such, the state could decide the constitutionality of the laws passed by the congress.
In summary, Federalists political and economic views aim at usurping the power that belongs to the individuals’ states and is tied closely to the rich. As such, the Republican is the only party that gives consideration to the common people who are the majority in the state.
Bingham, L. B., & O’Leary, R. (2011). Federalist No. 51: Is the Past Relevant to Today’s Collaborative Public Management? Public Administration Review, 71(1), 78-83.
Gutzman, K. C. (2000). The Virginia and Kentucky Resolutions Reconsidered:” An Appeal to the Real Laws of Our Country”. Journal of Southern History, 473-496.
Zuck, R. R. (2012). Alien and Sedition Acts. The Making of Modern Immigration: An Encyclopedia of People and Ideas, 2(13), 3-5.