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Anti-Federalist 73



DOES THE PRESIDENTIAL VETO POWER INFRINGE ON THE SEPARATION OF DEPARTMENTS?

January 3, 1788 [WILLIAM PENN] (excerpt)

[Philadelphia] Independent Gazetteer:

This doctrine is not novel in America; it seems on the contrary to be everywhere well understood and admitted beyond controversy. In the bills of rights or constitutions of New-Hampshire, Massachusetts, Maryland, Virginia, North- Carolina and Georgia, it is expressly declared, “That the legislative, executive and judicial departments, shall be forever separate and distinct from each other.” In Pennsylvania and Delaware, they are effectually separated without any particular declaration of the principle. In the other states indeed, the executive branch possesses more or less of the executive power. And here it must appear singular that the state of Massachusetts- where the doctrine of a separate jurisdiction is most positively established, and in whose bill of rights these remarkable words are to be found, “The executive shall never exercise the legislative and judicial powers, or either of them, to the end it may be a government of laws and not of men"....




Anti-Federalist 75



A NOTE PROTESTING THE TREATY-MAKING PROVISIONS OF THE CONSTITUTION

February 16, 1788 [HAMPDEN] (excerpt)

Pittsburgh Gazette:

The first clause of the constitution assures us, that the legislative powers shall be vested in a Congress, which shall consist of a senate and house of representatives; and in the second clause of the second article, it is declared that the president, by and with the consent of the senate, is to make treaties. Here the supreme executive magistrate is officially connected with the highest branch of the legislature. And in article sixth, clause second, we find that all treaties made, or which shall be made, under the authority of the United States, shall be the supreme law of the land, and the judges in every state shall be bound thereby, anything in the constitution or laws of any state to the contrary notwithstanding. When we consider the extent of treaties-that in filing the tariff of trade, the imposts and port duties generally are or may be fixed by a large construction which interested rulers are never at a less to give to any constitutional power- treaties may be extended....






Anti-Federalist 74



THE PRESIDENT AS MILITARY KING

Date [PHILADELPHIENSIS] (excerpt)

April 9th, 1788:

The President-general, who is to be our king after this government is established, is vested with powers exceeding those of the most despotic monarch we know of in modern times. What a handsome return have these men [the authors of the Constitution made to the people of America for their confidence! Through the misconduct of these bold conspirators we have lost the most glorious opportunity that any country ever had to establish a free system of government. America under one purely democratical, would be rendered the happiest and most powerful nation in the universe. But under the proposed one composed of an elective king and a standing army, officered by his sycophants, the starvelings of the Cincinnati, and an aristocratical Congress of the well-born-an iota of happiness, freedom, or national strength cannot exist. What a pitiful figure will these ungrateful men make in history; who, for the hopes of obtaining some lucrative employment, or of receiving a little more homage....




Anti-Federalist 76



AN ANTIFEDERALIST VIEW OF THE APPOINTING POWER UNDER THE CONSTITUTION

[Richard Henry Lee] (excerpt)



Could the federal legislators be excluded in the manner proposed, I think it would be an important point gained; as to themselves, they would be left to act much more from motives consistent with the public good. In considering the principle of rotation I had occasion to distinguish the condition of a legislator from that of a mere official man. We acquire certain habits, feelings, and opinions, as men and citizens-others, and very different ones, from a long continuance in office. It is, therefore, a valuable observation in many bills of rights, that rulers ought frequently to return and mix with the people. A legislature, in a free country, must be numerous; it is in some degree a periodical assemblage of the people, frequently formed. The principal officers in the executive and judicial departments must have more permanency in office. Hence it may be inferred, that the legislature will remain longer uncorrupted and virtuous; longer congenial to the people, than the officers of hose departments....



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