DBQ: Hamilton vs. Jefferson
During the times of 1789 through 1815, Thomas Jefferson and Alexander Hamilton represented the two key paths that the New Republic should take. Those two paths were polar opposites of each other and caused clash between the ideas of the people of the Nation. Although there were differing opinions among the Nation, Hamilton’s ideas seemed to be the direction America was leaning towards during the times of the New Republic. The leader of the Democratic-Republican ideals was Thomas Jefferson. He believed that the constitution should be taken in strictly, with no other interpretation. For example, the Louisiana Purchase, Jefferson suffered an internal debate as to whether he should purchase the territory or not because he believed that the purchase would defy the powers given by the Constitution, “The general government has no powers but such as the Constitution has given it” (Document G). Jefferson believed that the government should refrain from governing the people as much as possible because people were “innately good” and protecting their opinion was the task of the government, “the basis of our government being the opinion of the people, the very first object should be to keep that right” (Document E). His beliefs were that a person who has talent, virtue, and was a man of property should help rule the politics of the government, “Those who labor in earth are the chosen people of God…He has made…substantial and genuine virtue” (Document D). His supporters consisted of James Madison, James Monroe, the South agrarians, the Northeast workers, and the Western pioneers. In the end, Thomas Jefferson was a strict interpreter of the Constitution but a believer in the good of human nature. He wanted the rights of the people to be protected and the government to leave the people to themselves. The ideals of the Federalist Party were led by Alexander Hamilton. He believed in a loose interpretation of the Constitution, for example, the debates...
Please join StudyMode to read the full document