Federalist Paper No. 51 – checks and balances

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Federalist Paper No. 51 – CHECKS AND BALANCES
1) Explain the first underlined section.

a) The government should have branches with separate powers

b) Each branch should have little power over selecting members of the other branches.

2) What is the exception to one of the above answers? Why?

The judiciary. Because of “peculiar qualifications” & the life terms will free them from past allegiances.

3) The third underlined passage is referring to the development of what? (He also refers to it at the end of the third column on the first page.)

Checks and Balances.

4) What did James Madison say was necessary to counter the nature of man in framing a government?

1) Enable the government to control the governed

2) Oblige (force) the government to control itself

5) Under the framework created by the Constitution, what branch did the Founding Fathers make the strongest?

The Legislative

6) In order to check the power of this branch, what did the Founding Fathers do?

a) Divide the legislature into different branches (houses)

b) Require: different elections & different responsibilities

7) What two systems that limit the power within the government of the United States was James Madison referring to when he wrote “… the usurpations are guarded against by a division of the government into distinct and separate departments. In the compound republic of America, the power surrendered by the people is first divided between two distinct governments. Hence a double security arises to the rights of the people. The different governments will control each other, at the same time that each will be controlled by itself.”

Federalism and Separation of Powers

8) How was James Madison very idealistic in the last two columns?

“…the society itself will be broken into so many parts , interests and classes of citizens, that the rights of individuals, or of the minority, will be in little danger from interested combinations of the majority.”

“In the extended republic of the United States, and among the great variety of interests, parties, and sects which it embraces, a coalition of a majority of the whole society could seldom take place on any other principles than those of justice and the general good.”

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