What follow are quotations from several essays in The Federalist Papers. After each selection are two kinds of activities. The first activity includes questions that should be discussed and answered by the whole class or in small groups. If necessary, refer to a dictionary or your history textbook. For Homework: Select ONE of the individual assignments, complete the activity, and include it in your notebook with this handout.

Federalist Paper 23--Alexander Hamilton
The principle purposes to be answered by
Union are these -- The common defense of the members -- the preservation of the public peace as well as against internal convulsions as external attacks -- the regulation of commerce with other nations and between the States -- the superintendence of our intercourse, political and commercial, with foreign countries.
For Discussion
1.
According to Hamilton, what are the main purposes of forming a Union under the Constitution? Make a list in your own words.
2. Do the majority of
Hamilton's purposes relate to domestic or to foreign affairs?
Individual Assignment
Which one of
Hamilton's purposes do you think is the most important for the United States today? Explain your answer in about 100 words.

Federalist Paper 47--James Madison
The accumulation of all powers legislative, executive and judiciary in the same hands, whether of one, a few or many, and whether hereditary, self appointed, or elective, may justly be pronounced the very definition of tyranny.
For Discussion
1.
According to this excerpt, do you think Madison supported or opposed the principle of "separation of powers"? (Refer to your government textbook if you are not familiar with this term.)
2. Why do you think
Madison held this view of the "separation of powers"?
Individual Assignment
In about 100 words, describe a government in which all legislative, executive and judicial power is in the hands of one person or a single small group.

Federalist Paper 51--James Madison
If men were angels, no government would be necessary. If angels were to govern men, neither external nor internal controls on government would be necessary. In 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.
For Discussion
1.
   Which of the following statements would Madison agree with based on his views in the above excerpt?

a. Government is necessary.
b. The people should elect government leaders who act like angels.
c. Elected government officials should be controlled by a system of "checks and balances." (Refer to your government textbook if you are not familiar with this term.

2.  What would you say was Madison's general opinion of people in government: angels? devils? something else?

Individual Assignment
Find and describe five examples of "checks and balances" in the Constitution (refer to your history textbook).

Federalist Paper 72--Alexander Hamilton
The original intent of the Constitution was to place no limit on the number of times an individual could be elected president. However, after Franklin D. Roosevelt won four presidential elections in a row, a constitutional amendment (the 22nd) was passed limiting a person to two terms as president. In the following selection,
Hamilton argues against limiting the number of presidential terms.

[An] ill effect of the exclusion would be depriving the community of the advantage of the experience gained by the chief magistrate in the exercise of his office. That experience is the parent of wisdom is an adage, the truth of which is recognized by the wisest as well as the simplest of mankind. What more desirable or more essential than this quality in the government of nations?

For Discussion
1.
What argument does Hamilton give against limiting the number of times a person may be elected president?
2. What could have been one of the arguments used by those who proposed the 22nd Amendment?
Individual Assignment
President Reagan remarked that there should not be a limit on the number of times a person may serve as president. Do you agree we should go back to the original intent of the Constitution and allow individuals to be elected for any number of presidential terms? Explain your answer in about 100 words.

Federalist Paper 78--Alexander Hamilton
"If then the courts of justice are to be considered as the bulwarks of a limited constitution against legislative encroachments, this consideration will afford a strong argument for the permanent tenure of judicial offices, since nothing will contribute so much as this to that independent spirit in the judges, which must be essential to the faithful performance of so arduous a duty.
This independence of the judges is equally requisite to guard the constitution and the rights of individuals from the effects of . . . designing men."


For Discussion
1.
What does Hamilton mean by "the permanent tenure of judicial offices"? Does Hamilton support or oppose this idea?
2. What does
Hamilton mean when he says that an "independent spirit in the judges" is essential for them to do their duty?
Individual Assignment
Write a letter of about 100 words to the editor of a newspaper agreeing or disagreeing with the view that the U.S. Supreme Court justices should be elected for limited terms of office.