United States HistoryFrom Federalism to RepublicanismIn a brief period of time, the United States won its independence from Britain and created a new form ofgovernment, representing the culmination of decades of intellectual and political thought. Soon mostAmericans supported a republican-style government where the people were sovereign and they delegatedpower and authority to elected government leaders, although government leaders clashed as to the degree ofdirect control that the government should have over the people. In the midst of this argument a few citizens—for example, James Madison—realized that the diversity of opinion over the government’s structure wasone of the strengths of the union and society taking shape and not a weakness. From a Federalist paper about 1800. Federalists and Republicans arewarring over the nation whileWashington looks on from heaven.At first there were no parties in the new nation and government leaders feared political parties, believing thatthey would tear the Republic apart. But factions formed around personalities, particularly those of Secretaryof the Treasury Alexander Hamilton and Secretary of State Thomas Jefferson. By 1793 Hamilton had built a network of supporters that emerged as a party called the Federalists. Inreaction, Thomas Jefferson and James Madison built their own body of supporters, calling themselves theRepublicans—eventually refined as the Democratic-Republicans. By 1796 the bi-partisanship in America’spolitics had emerged in full-force. Another presidential election was set for 1800 and the contest between John Adams and Thomas Jeffersonwas heated as the differences that divided the Federalists and the Republicans became more pronounced. When the elector’s votes were counted in February 1801, the Republicans came out on top, but by only a slimmargin, 73 to 65.