Constitutional Issues and Federalist Opposition
The Constitution did not appear to give direct assent to the purchase of land from another country. To remedy this, Jefferson, not wishing to violate his views of Constitutional construction, drafted two Amendments, the first one being lengthy and detailing all aspects of the purchase. His Cabinet rejected the notion of an Amendment, pointing out that the deadline for ratification of the treaty was October, not nearly enough time to ratify a Constitutional Amendment. Further, the Congress was not in session.
Congress was called into a special session to deal with the issue. It was Jefferson’s Treasury Secretary, Albert Gallatin, who pointed out that the Constitution allowed for th
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