Pros And Cons Of The Louisiana Purchase

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The Louisiana Purchase posed several significant moral dilemmas for President Thomas Jefferson, but violating his strict constructionist view of the Constitution was one of the many dilemmas faced over the Purchase from France that occurred on numerous occasions. Jefferson believed if a power couldn’t be found in the Constitution it didn’t exist and reverted to the interest of the states. According to the Constitution, there is no power granting the President to make land investments or expend funds. President Jefferson also disagreed with Alexander Hamilton’s loose interpretation of the presidential powers found in the Constitution and the creation of the National Bank. American farmers and tradesmen used the port of New Orleans to ship their…show more content…
The problem with this was, originally the House had only authorized Jefferson to spend two million dollars “to secure the waterway into the Gulf of Mexico”, Congress would have to raise funds to finance the purchase (Nesmith). As I stated in the introduction there was no power granting the President to make land investments and Jefferson had a strict constructionist view of the Constitution which he followed. According to “The White House Historical Association”, Jefferson “did not believe that the president had the right to increase the national domain by a treaty of purchase” and United States would incorporate the residents of Louisiana into the Union, and they would have the same rights and privileges as other American citizens. “Jefferson wondered if he and the Congress had the power to bring into the nation whole groups of people who were outside its original limits” (http://www.whitehousehistory.org). Therefore, the moral dilemma Jefferson faced here was putting aside his strict constructionist principles of the Constitution, because the allowance for this type of transaction was not expressly listed in the Constitution. Of course a Constitutional amendment would have taken far too long and the French could have taken back the offer within that…show more content…
Jefferson believed the creation of the National Bank was unconstitutional. In the article “Jefferson and the Louisiana Purchase” the author argues, “While it a National Bank was not expressly mentioned in the Constitution, Hamilton felt that the elastic clause (Art I., Sect. 8, Clause 18) gave the government the power to create such a body. Jefferson completely disagreed. He felt that all powers given to the National Government were enumerated. If they were not expressly mentioned in the Constitution then they were reserved to the states” (http://americanhistory.about.com). But under Hamilton’s National Bank, the United States had developed the financial credit necessary to receive a loan large enough for the Louisiana Purchase. With that being stated I am sure anyone can see why this would cause a problem for Jefferson if he believed the creation of the National Bank was unconstitutional. Jefferson believed that the Constitution was to be strictly interpreted and that government should act within the stated boundaries. Jefferson also favored limited government and believed that congress should be restricted to enumerated powers listed in the Constitution. The major difference between Jefferson and Hamilton concerning executive power rests with Jefferson’s faith in the body politic as represented by the

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