The Constitutional Convention met in 1787 to revise the existing constitution and decide how America was going to be governed. At this convention, two plans for the future government were brought forward: the Virginia Plan and the New Jersey Plan. Both these plans had the main issue of how each of the states was going to be represented in the government. The Virginia Plan, proposed by James Madison, offered the creation of a two-house legislature with a fixed number of people depending on the population of every state. But many people disagreed with this plan as the states, such as Massachusetts, Virginia, and Pennsylvania would have greater representation due to their huge number of residents. To refute this plan, states with smaller populations came up with the New Jersey Plan. This plan called for a single-house Congress in which each state would cast one vote. Due to the conflicting plans that had been put forward, the Constitutional Convention had to come up with a compromise that later came to be known as the Great Compromise. This agreement stated that there would be a two- house Congress with a Senate, consisting of two members from every state, and d a House of Representatives, consisting of members according to the population of the state. Senators would be chosen by the state legislature every six months and the Representatives would be chosen by the public vote every 2 years. The Great Compromise satisfied the needs of both the larger states and the smaller states and gave every state equal and fair representation. Part II (273-289) 4. What was at the center of the ratification debate? Discuss each side and their arguments. The ratification debate was centered on liberty and control given by the Constitution. The two sides of the debate were the Federalists and the other side was the Anti- Federalists. The Federalists were a proponent of the ratification of the Constitution. They believed that that the Constitution was there to protect them and that the people should not consider the government as their enemy. To support the ratification, Hamilton, Madison, and Jay wrote eighty-five essays under the pen name “Publius” that was published in the newspapers. They were later compiled in a book called Federalist. Their major argument was that the abuse of power in a federal government would be impossible due to the way it is divided, checked and balanced by the different branches of government. This nullified the chance of the government turning tyrannical. The other
side was the Anti-Federalists who were against the ratification of the Constitution. They believed that the Constitution took too much liberty away and swayed the balance more to the side of power. The major Anti-federalists leaders were Samuel Adams, John Hancock, and Patrick Henry. Anti-Federalists believed that the Constitution made the central government far too strong than necessary and it would be greatly influenced by merchants, creditors, and other people that didn’t have the same ideas as ordinary people. They thought that liberty flourished when there are smaller governments ruling
You've reached the end of your free preview.
Want to read all 8 pages?
- Spring '20