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Marbury v Madison
With one ruling, Marshall both raised the stature of the Supreme Court and established the precedent known as judicial review, which gives the Supreme Court the ability to determine the constitutionality of acts of Congress and the President.
Compromise at the Constitutional Convention
It is relatively common for Americans to view the Constitution as sacrosanct and immutable. Few Americans seem to realize that the document they revere is a network of compromises made between men who often had vastly different opinions on how the new government should function. Some of those men even came to regret some of the trade-offs that made the Constitution possible. Let’s look at a few of the more significant compromises made during the Constitutional Convention. One of the most divisive issues at the Convention was also one of the most fundamental: representation. Delegates from the larger states believed...
George Washington: The Reluctant President
As the delegates discussed the role of the Executive, they began brainstorming what they imagined the office should be like. They agreed that the person to hold the office should be a person of integrity who had the respect of the people. Gradually, as they discussed this abstract Executive, whom they soon agreed should be called President, it dawned on them that they were, in fact, describing someone who already sat among them—George Washington.
An American Rebellion
It is perhaps the most American of issues: how does a republic balance the power of government power with the liberty of its citizens?
Emergence of the Republican Party
The Kansas-Nebraska Act led to a regional political realignment that gave rise to the Republican Party and was arguably the most consequential event leading to the Civil War.