Jefferson and Madison Presidencies

Topics: Thomas Jefferson, James Madison, Democratic-Republican Party Pages: 2 (831 words) Published: February 6, 2006
During the presidencies of Jefferson and Madison (1801-1817), a dual political party government was starting to form. In the Constitution, which was made in 1787, it is portrayed Jeffersonian Republicans as strict constructionists and Federalists as broad ones. It is true that the Democratic-Republicans believed in the strict construction of the constitution and a weaker federal government, thinking that if there were high concentration of central government, it would lead to a loss of individual and state rights. Madison and Jefferson were two members of this political party, with Jefferson being known as the founder and leader of it. The Federalists, on the other hand, believed that a stronger central government was needed and the Articles of Confederation were too weak.

The Democratic-Republican Party (also known as Anti-Federalists) began because of groups that opposed Alexander Hamilton’s fiscal policies. These groups were organized into a party in the mid-1790s by Jefferson and Madison, but it wasn’t until 1800 though that they had a breakthrough and began taking control of the Presidency and Congress. Meanwhile, the Federalist Party was on a slow decline because of Hamilton and Adams not being there anymore and was eventually destroyed as a political force after the Hartford Convention (1814-1815). The meeting was held to discuss several constitutional amendments needed to protect New England’s interests (Document E). This left a short break from political debates and competition, known as the “Era of Good Feeling”. The Federalist Party was made in the first Washington administration to support the fiscal policies of Hamilton and came to support a strong national government, loose constitution, and a more industrial, less agricultural economy. John Adams and Alexander Hamilton were among its leaders. They were doing well until the Democratic-Republicans took over Congress and the Presidency in the “Revolution of 1800”. After that, they...
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