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Unformatted text preview: S eptember 2: Overview and Introduction The Federalist Papers #47: The Particular Structure of the New Government and the Distribution of Power Among Its Different Parts Main purpose and conclusion: - A crucial principle of the American Constitution is the separation of powers among the three branches of government (executive, legislative, judicial). - State governments are consistently violating this principle by blending powers. Evidence:- Cases in which the states are mixing governmental powers (Massachusetts, New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Delaware, Maryland, Virginia, North Carolina, South Carolina, Georgia) Notes: - Idea of separation of powers; legislative, executive, and judiciary branches must be distinct- Tyranny would result from the powers of any of these branches being in the hands of too few - In the British Constitution, the three “departments” are not distinct- Montesquieu explained that “the principles of a free constitution are subverted” when the people who possess the “whole” power in one department also hold the “whole” power over another department - The American Constitution prohibits this – any one of the entire departments cannot exercise the power of another department- Despite this prohibition, “partial mixing of powers” has been allowed by states - Examples of state constitutions which allow blending of different powers of government o Ex. New Jersey has the most blending – the governor is appointed by the legislature, legislature acts as executive council to the governor, etc.- Purpose of this piece is not propose a certain organization for states- Point is to show that the “fundamental principle” (of separation of powers) has been violated; different powers are consolidated; and no state has a written provision to prevent the “practice of separation” S eptember 2: Overview and Introduction The Federalist Papers #70: The Executive Department Further Considered Main purpose and conclusion: - “Energy in the Executive is a leading character in the definition of good government…A feeble Executive implies a feeble execution of the government.”- Unity in the government (one person in charge) is important; plurality would make leaders unaccountable to the people Evidence:- Two consuls of Rome – example of unity being destroyed when power is in the hands of two people - All other states besides New York and New Jersey haven’t entrusted power to one person Notes: - The executive must have “energy” in order for there to be good government - There are four components of this energy: o Unity o Duration...
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This note was uploaded on 02/21/2012 for the course GOV 1540 taught by Professor Rogerporter during the Fall '10 term at Harvard.
- Fall '10