Federalist And Anti-Federalist

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During the period from which the drafting of the federal Constitution in 1787 and the ratification in1789, Americans were involved in passionate debate on ratification. Though the Constitution is the supreme law of the United States, it lays the framework for the organization of the United States Government and its citizens. But some felt that the Constitution did not protect the individual rights of citizen well enough, this brought around the Bill of Rights. During this period, the Federalist and the Anti-Federalist, which were the two different factions in contention for power of the government had different ideas of what the Constitution, Bill of Rights and powers of government should be. Each party has their own beliefs on why or why not these documents should or should not be passed and what power is justified. It is these different ideas which helped shape the future of the Constitution and the Bill of Rights. The Anti-Federalists, such as Thomas Jefferson and Patrick Henry, were against ratification of the Constitution. They believed that the closer the government was to the people, the easier it was for the people to keep it in check and making it harder for the government to become tyrannical. Anti-Federalist tried to appeal to western settlers with ideas of voting right to everyone and not just rich land holders. Thomas Jefferson a man of enlightenment and a supporter of separation of church and state believed in sovereignty of the states, a system of checks and balances and that the uniting of all the states under one government would take away the sovereignty of the states. One of the Anti-Federalist achievements during Jefferson’s presidency, was the Louisiana Purchase and shortly after the Treaty of San Lorenzo also known as Pinckney’s Treaty. This opened up the western frontier to more trade and the ability for more people to own land.

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