Thomas Jefferson And Philosophical Consistency

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Thomas Jefferson and Philosophical Consistency Thomas Jefferson said “the excise law is an infernal one” (Doc. A), here he is in 1794 talking how a minor indirect tax is infernal. When Thomas Jefferson was elected president in 1800, he began to follow a significantly looser interpretation of the Constitution. This new view first occurred when Jefferson’s view of the Federal financial plan changed. Throughout the previous 10 years, he was strongly opposed to Hamilton’s taxes. For example, in a letter to James Madison, Jefferson claimed that Hamilton’s “excise law is an infernal one.” (Doc. A) He fully thought it was a mistake “to admit it by the Constitution,” (Doc. A) and should have never been allowed. Jefferson and Hamilton also fought while making the national bank in 1791. Thomas Jefferson believed that a literal interpretation of the Constitution should be followed, and therefore, a federal bank was unconstitutional, while Hamilton used the ‘elastic’ clause (then called the “necessary and proper” clause) to argue it is alright to start. Because of this argument, people were surprised that when Jefferson took office, he followed Hamilton’s loose interpretation of the Constitution and hardly changed any plans, only the 8% whiskey excise tax was removed. Thomas Jefferson then also followed an ‘elastic’ interpretation of the Constitution when purchasing Louisiana from France (Doc. C). Although he was authorized by Congress to purchase New Orleans, he realized that the France’s offer of the entire Louisiana Territory was too good to ignore. For example, in a letter to John Breckinridge, Jefferson acknowledged the fact that “the Constitution made no provision for our holding foreign territory, still less than incorporating foreign land into our Union.”(Doc. C) Although Jefferson realized that the deal was unconstitutional, he also realized that it would give us a
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