The Louisiana territory was acquired by Napoleon in a secret treaty with Spain in 1800. Although France really owned the territory Spain announced that it was denying America access to the port of New Orleans, in violation of the Pinckney treaty of 1795. Upset westerners demand the port be opened. Wanting to ovoid war Jefferson sends delegates to France to buy the port. Napoleon had wanted to build an empire in America with this land, but when he realized it wouldn’t work, he offers to sell not only the port but the whole territory. Not knowing what to do the delegates decide to buy the whole territory even though Jefferson had told them only to buy the port. They bought the whole territory for 15 million dollars-a bargain. When it came time to sign the treaty, Jefferson was unsure whether he had the power to buy land since it wasn’t specifically written in the constitution. He ended up purchasing the territory by saying that it was part of making a treaty. This purchase was in direct contradiction to his views of a strict construction of the constitution. Jefferson’s purchase of the territory ultimately led him to betraying his views of how he wanted the country to be.
During Jefferson’s term, the judiciary was in the hands of the federalists. The decisions of the Supreme Court, led by Chief Justice John Marshall will threaten Jefferson’s vision by strengthening the power of the federal... [continues]
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