Summary for Federalist 51

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The Federalist 51 was an article created in 1788 by, James Madison, John Jay, and Alexander Hamilton, stating that in order to have a more proper government structure the use of checks and balances is much needed. He starts off by saying each branch, legislative, executive, and judicial must be independent but all three should share the equal amount of power. The reason the three branch’s should have equal power is because it will only avoid the possibilities of democracy collapsing. He even states, “Ambition must be made to counteract ambition.” This means that since each government will want to seek more power they will have to compete with each other like tug of war. However the other two will check the one wanting to exceed thus, balancing out the power and securing citizens from a dictatorship type of government. Another reason would simply be when he states, “If men were angles, no government would be necessary.” In other words since we are not angles but are men if we had power in our hands we would abuse it. Then he continues that even though the powers are shared and are equal the government should still be able to control not only the people but, themselves. This will only help protect the people’s individual rights including the minority. In the end he says that in order to have a balanced government the majority must agree on justice. The historical significance of this article is, during this time if no separation of powers or checks and balances were enforced the government would have collapsed. If the powers were not limited; with time a certain person would end democracy and bring forth once again a tyranny government. It is also important that the government was equal yet had power to control its people because if not there would be no type of

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