Homeworks academic service


A comparison of policies expansion and foreign affairs by two american presidents thomas jefferson a

Reconstruction in Practice Jefferson's First Term The inauguration of Thomas Jefferson as the nation's third president marked a turning point in American politics. For the next two dozen years, Republican leadership guided the nation through peace and war. While the Federalists faded as a political force, their ideology continued to influence the country for decades in the decisions handed down by the Supreme Court.

  1. American presidential election, 1800Results of the American presidential election, 1800Source. He was overruled in the end by Chief Justice John Marshall , who sat as the judge in the trial.
  2. The Lewis and Clark expedition.
  3. Capitol Rotunda, Washington, D.
  4. The major achievement of his first term was also an act of defiance, though this time it involved defying his own principles. Madison 1803 , the Supreme Court had not been considered an especially important branch of the federal government.
  5. Indeed, many historians regard it as the boldest executive action in American history.

Indeed, the judiciary finally attained coequal status as one of the branches of government after 1800. The period of Republican ascendancy witnessed the doubling of the size of the country through the Louisiana Purchase 1803 and the addition of eight states 1803—21. The admission of Maine and Missouri raised the expansion of slavery into a national issue and set the stage for the sectional debates that raged in the decades before the Civil War.

Jefferson had been alarmed by the growth of the national debt under Federalist rule. Albert Gallatin, his secretary of the treasury, agreed that the debt created high taxes that creditors manipulated to their own advantage.

Gallatin promised to eliminate the national debt in sixteen years by reducing both military expenditures and the size of government. The Republicans also repealed internal taxes, including the hated excise on whiskey.

These policies bore fruit; early in the administration, both military and other governmental spending dropped, and debt declined modestly. Despite his strict constructionist views, Jefferson did not dismantle important elements of the Federalist program. He saw no need, for example, to abolish the Bank of the United States; it was working well. Nor did Jefferson systematically replace Federalist officeholders with Republicans; rather, he filled vacancies with his supporters as Federalists resigned or died.

A number of Federalists even served in his cabinet. In making judicial appointments, however, Jefferson took the upper hand. Madison and judicial review. The legislation reduced the number of justices on the Supreme Court from six to five, and also created sixteen federal judgeships, which President Adams quickly filled with Federalists. No Republicans were on the federal bench at the time, and Jefferson would have virtually no opportunity to appoint any during his term in office.

Secretary of State James Madison refused to issue William Marbury his commission to serve as justice of the peace in the District of Columbia.

Thomas Jefferson

Marbury then petitioned the Supreme Court to get his judgeship. Chief Justice John Marshall, a Federalist who had recently been appointed to the Supreme Court, rejected Marbury's plea on the grounds that the Judiciary Act of 1789 had incorrectly given the Supreme Court the power to take such action.

  1. Despite his strict constructionist views, Jefferson did not dismantle important elements of the Federalist program.
  2. But the Paris years were important to Jefferson for personal reasons and are important to biographers and historians for the new light they shed on his famously elusive personality. In truth, by the 1820s the interest on his debt was compounding at a faster rate than any repayment schedule could meet.
  3. His chief role was as a draftsman of resolutions. In 1803 Napoleon decided to consolidate his resources for a new round of the conflict with England by selling the vast Louisiana region, which stretched from the Mississippi Valley to the Rocky Mountains.
  4. The two chief influences on his learning were William Small, a Scottish-born teacher of mathematics and science , and George Wythe , the leading legal scholar in Virginia. Early in his career Jefferson had taken a leadership role in pushing slavery onto the political agenda in the Virginia assembly and the federal Congress.
  5. But he then placed both daughters in a convent, wrote them stern lecturelike letters about proper female etiquette, and enforced a patriarchal distance that was in practice completely at odds with his theoretical commitment to intimacy.

Meanwhile, Congress repealed the Judiciary Act of 1801. At first impression, it might seem that by rejecting Marbury's claim, Marshall was not acting in the interest of a fellow Federalist.

  • In 1812 his vast correspondence began to include an exchange with his former friend and more recent rival John Adams;
  • Jefferson was unsure whether the United States could legally buy the Louisiana territory because the Constitution said nothing about purchasing land;
  • Accompanying them were a French fur trader, Toussaint Charbonneau, as guide and interpreter; his wife, a Shoshone Indian named Sacajawea; and their infant son.

Marshall, however, had a greater goal in mind. By overturning part of a congressional law, he established the Supreme Court's power of judicial review—the power to declare federal laws invalid if they violated the Constitution.

7a. The Evolution of the Presidency

Madison 1803the Supreme Court had not been considered an especially important branch of the federal government.

In fact, Marshall was the fourth chief justice to serve in a dozen years. The decision established the Court as a major force in American politics. The United States had paid tribute to the rulers of the North African states since the 1790s. Although maintaining peace was a cornerstone of Republican foreign policy, Jefferson took action when the pasha of Tripoli made extraordinary demands for payment and declared war on the United States 1801.

The conflict, which led to an American naval blockade and bombardment of Tripoli as well as a land assault by marines, ended in 1805 when a new treaty was signed and the United States agreed to pay a ransom for its captured soldiers and sailors.

During the same time, a threat much closer to home was also resolved by paying cash. Napoleon Bonaparte, who came to power in France in 1799, dreamed of reestablishing the French empire in North America.

One more step

But the agreement did not remain secret for long. This turn of events just a few years after the successful Pinckney Treaty had opened the Mississippi River and port of New Orleans to American traffic justifiably alarmed Jefferson. His concern was reinforced when a Spanish official in New Orleans forbade the deposit of American produce there for transshipment to other countries, an action many Americans incorrectly believed was ordered by Napoleon. Jefferson feared that France might leave the Mediterranean to British influence in return for a new opportunity on the North American continent.

By this time, Napoleon had given up his plans for a colonial empire. His trying to restore French rule after a slave revolt in Saint Domingue Haiti cost him a great deal in both money and men, his troops having been decimated by tropical diseases. Jefferson was unsure whether the United States could legally buy the Louisiana territory because the Constitution said nothing about purchasing land.

He considered proposing a constitutional amendment but dropped the idea because it might take too much time, and the opportunity could vanish. The bargain was too good to pass up.

Jefferson approved the purchase, the Senate ratified it, and the United States abruptly doubled in size.

What can I do to prevent this in the future?

The Lewis and Clark expedition. The Louisiana Purchase was then unknown; neither France nor Spain had mapped its rivers, mountains, or plains, and the important sources of the Mississippi and Missouri rivers and their tributaries were still a mystery. Jefferson quickly made plans for its exploration, appointing his secretary, Captain Meriwether Lewis, to head the expedition. Lewis asked his friend Lieutenant William Clark to serve as coleader.

Louis, heading up the Missouri River. Although military men, Lewis and Clark had received crash courses in botany, zoology, and astronomy, enabling them to carefully collect plant and animal specimens and map the rivers. In addition, every literate man on the expedition was ordered to keep a diary. The expedition spent the first winter among the hospitable Mandan on the Upper Missouri River and then headed west for the Pacific coast in the spring of 1805.

Accompanying them were a French fur trader, Toussaint Charbonneau, as guide and interpreter; his wife, a Shoshone Indian named Sacajawea; and their infant son. The presence of the baby and a fortuitous meeting with Shoshone tribesmen reinforced Lewis and Clark's claim that they came in peace. They distributed medallions to the tribal chiefs along with other gifts and pledged their friendship.

Jefferson's First Term

On reaching the Pacific in November 1805, the expedition returned eastward. In addition to stimulating later settlement and trade in the region, the expedition reinforced the American claim to the Oregon Country that was first made by Lieutenant Robert Gray, who came upon the Columbia River in 1792. Jefferson authorized other expeditions as well.

Pike's map was later proved incorrect, however, due mainly to the complexity of the rivers and lakes at the headwaters. Pike also headed west to explore the area between the Arkansas and Red rivers, but he became lost and was taken into custody by Spanish soldiers on the Rio Grande.

Although his maps and papers were confiscated, Pike remembered enough to reconstruct a good deal of his records after he was released.