Critical Analysis Of James Madison's Federalist No. 51

analytical Essay
973 words
973 words

James Madison writes in Federalist No. 51, “[i]n framing a government which is to be administered by men over men, the great difficulty lies in this: you must first enable the government to control the governed; and in the next place oblige it to control itself.” He goes on to explain his concept of “compound republic” in which two distinct governments (national and state) are further subdivided into separate departments. In each of the two distinct governments, the legislative, executive and judicial branches (departments) work like a scale to balance each other and prevent one from gaining too much power or influence. This is the “double security” for the “rights of the people.” (Federalist No.10 & 51). Madison was very concerned about the negative effects of factions: “[a]mong the numerous advantages promised by a well-constructed Union, none deserves to be more accurately developed than its tendency to break and control the violence of faction” (Federalist No. 10). In the most widely-read of the Federalist papers, Madison states that one of the strongest arguments in favor of the Constitution is the fact that, through a system of checks and balances, it …show more content…

In this essay, the author

  • Explains james madison's concept of "compound republic" in which two distinct governments (national and state) are further subdivided into separate departments.
  • Analyzes how madison was concerned about the negative effects of factions, stating that the constitution establishes a government capable of controlling the violence and damage caused by them.
  • Explains that factions are so pervasive that many americans are disillusioned with all politicians and blame government for many problems. the two levels of government within the new country, plus the tri-partite balancing system, effectively manages and more or less equalizes the power
  • Opines that the causes of factions are part of human nature and we must deal with their effects and accept their existence. madison wanted a representative form of government, in which the many elect the few who govern.
  • Argues that madison hoped that the men elected to office would be wise and good men seeking the best for the new country.
  • Analyzes how madison sees the immediate objective of the constitution as bringing the present thirteen states into a secure union.
  • Analyzes how madison concludes that he is confident that the public will not listen to those "prophets of doom" who say the proposed government is unworkable.
  • Opines that james madison's "compound republic," with its "double security" for the "rights of the people, has survived for over 200 years.

Madison further states that “according to the degree of pleasure and pride we feel in being Republicans, ought to be our zeal in cherishing the spirt and supporting the character of federalist” (James Madison). The most important idea James Madison shares in Federalist 10 was that the size of the United States and its variety of interests could be guaranteed stability and justice under the new constitution. When Madison wrote this, accepted opinion among sophisticated politicians was exactly the opposite. His “compound republic,” with its “double security” for the “rights of the people,” has survived for over 200 years (James Madison, Federalist

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