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The Consitutional Interpretation

Powerful Essays
Adopted in 1787, the United States Constitution set the framework for a new nation. Over the course of a decade, the Constitution was continuously amended and encouraged interpretation as enumerated rights left gaps of implied powers for its abiders. In aim of clarifying and refuting opposing arguments, Alexander Hamilton authored a primary source on interpreting the Constitution as he contributed to authoring the Federalist Papers. The Constitutional interpretations of John Jay, John Marshall, and Roger Taney exemplify Alexander Hamilton's adeptness of accurately detailing the relationship among the governmental branches depicted in Federalist 78. In the essay Federalist 78, Hamilton focused attention on the judiciary branch and its role in the balance of power among the three branches of government. In order to avoid an omnipotent or tyrannical government, the Constitution enforces limits on Congress that protect individual liberties; However in order to offer such protection, the courts must be independent. Hamilton expresses in his essay that the duties of the Courts are to interpret the laws and prevent both the legislative and executive branches from exceeding their granted powers. “The courts were designed to be an intermediate body between the people and the legislature….The interpretation of the laws is the proper and peculiar province of the courts.” Additionally, Hamilton clarifies that the while the Constitution is both the fundamental and supreme law, the Courts must also place the will of the people ahead of that of the representatives. In July of 1793, President Washington issued a request to the United States first Chief-Justice, John Jay, for an advisory opinion on the constitutional status of his Neutrality ... ... middle of paper ... ...from federal custody. Booth secured a writ of habeas corpus from the Wisconsin Supreme Court and was released from federal custody. The attorney general secured a writ of error from the U.S. Supreme Court against the Wisconsin Court, but the Wisconsin Supreme Court refused to recognize the authority of the federal courts. Taney stated that the Wisconsin Supreme Court had claimed the supremacy of state courts over federal courts and that the states do not hold such power. The Constitution of the United States established the foundation for developing a balance of power among the branches of government while leaving room for interpretation as the nation continued to evolve. Alexander Hamilton’s Federalist 78 contributed an analysis of the Constitution that was then reflected through the federalist rulings of Chief-Justices John Jay, John Marshall and Roger Taney.