Novus Ordoro Seclorum is Latin for “a new order for the ages.” Why did Americans select the constitutional order they did in 1787-1789, and why did they reject a more democratic and confederal form not more than a decade old?
“Having initially hesitated in attending the Convention, once decided, Washington pushed the delegates to adopt ‘no temporizing expedient’ but instead to ‘probe the defects [of the Articles] to the bottom, and provide radical cures,’" from Matthew Spalding, Ph.D. At the beginning of the Philadelphia debates in 1787, Edmond Randolph set aside the Articles of Confederation and the Congress of Confederation, and instead created the skeleton of a new constitution which included a Supreme National Government with separate legislative, executive, and judicial branches; the start of a republican government. The final draft of the Constitution went to the floor of the convention on September 17, 1787. Fifty-five delegates were sent to Philadelphia to revise the Articles of Confederation, and after four months of debate, they had come up with something radically different from the Articles. The delegates were presented with three options of structure for their new government. The first was a Democracy, the second, a Confederacy, and lastly, Madison’s Republic. Under the Democratic view, the states were sovereign nations, resulting in absolutely no unity, and possible anarchy. Under the Confederate view, we observe a weak government, resting all the power in the states, ending in failure. After many months of debate, most of the delegates came to the conclusion a Republic was the best form of government, and they were absolutely correct.
As the delegates gathered at the Philadelphia Convention, one of the many ...
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...culties, and would have rejoiced to find in the Constitution of the United States the remedy that is provided for the healing of the nation.
1. Estrada, Will. “The Constitutional Convention.” Generation Joshua. 15, Oct 2011. HSLDA: Generation Joshua, Distance Learning Online Civic Classes. 15, Oct 2011.
2. Schweikart, Larry and Allen, Michael. A Patriots History of the United States From Columbus’s Great Discovery To The War On Terror. New York; Penguin Group 2004.
3. Spalding, Ph.D., Matthew and Forte, David. “Heritage Guide to the Constitution: Formation of the Constitution” Heritage.org. 14, Sept 2007. The Heritage Foundation. 13, Oct 2011.
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