Political Party System
Proponents: Madison, Hamilton, John Jay, represented the upper class, bankers, rich, large-property owners.
First formed to promote and adopt the proposed Constitution.
Believed that the new Constitution,
Would ensure the protection of minorities against the majority.
Would prevent govt. tyranny through checks and balances
Protected individuals by
prohibiting ex post facto laws (laws levied after a crime was committed.)
prohibiting bill of attainder laws (laws finding a person or group guilty without trial)
guaranteeing the writ of habeas corpus (proceeding to determine whether a person has been imprisoned legally or not).
Federalists wrote series of articles, Federalist Papers, signed by pseudonym Publius
Led by newly emerging middle class, represented farmers and common people
George Mason and Richard Henry Lee were main spokesmen.
They rejected the elitist base represented by the Federalists.
In rival publication to the Federalist Papers
Pennsylvania Packet And Letters from the Federal Farmer
And through individual essays penned under the name of Brutus
Argued that the principles of the Declaration of Independence would be eroded by the new Constitution
Felt that the constitution would firmly establish an economic elite and would create the potential for an abusive federal government
Especially in the area of protecting individual rights
Anti-Federalists insisted that Bill of Rights had to be part of the new Constitution
Otherwise, a powerful presjdent supported by the Congress could easily abuse the civil liberties of the individual
Additionally, the sovereignty of the states became a concern
Even with the guarantees provided
Argument most heated in NY
The Anti-Federalists prevented the approval of the Constitution
Until Madison and Hamilton guaranteed first Congress would approve a Bill of Rights
FIRST PARTY SYSTEM (1792-1824)
FEDERALIST PARTY (1790s to 1816)
Hamilton, John Adams (only Federalist pres), John Quincy Adams, John Marshall
Washington was non-partisan but sympathetic to Federalist program
Associated with aristocracy, industry
Supporters in northeast
Strong central govt. (weaker states)
Encouraged development of industry
Favored the creation of a national bank.
Implied powers (loose construction, “necessary and proper” elastic clause)
Favored alliance with GB (Jay’s Treaty)
Was first political party
Dominant until 1800 (election of Jefferson)
Hurt during War of 1812 Hartford Convention
Largely disappeared in the Era of Good Feelings, proponents joined the Whig Party
DEMOCRATIC-REPUBLICANS (aka “Republican Party”) (1794-1826)
Jefferson and Madison
Promoted interests of farmers, masses
Rural south was stronghold.
Weak central govt. (strong states)
Against national bank
Strict interpretation of constitution.
Favored alliance with France
In power 1800 with Jefferson
After War of 1812, it was the only party (Era of Good Feelings)
After election 1824 (corrupt bargain)
Factions in support of J.Q. Adams (ex =Federalists) evolved into national Republican Party
Jacksonians became Democratic Party
ERA OF GOOD FEELINGS (1817-1825)
Federalist party had lost its popularity
Hartford Convention (New England Federalists were against popular War of 1812)
Jackson winning Battle of New Orleans = patriotism
Without Federalists there was only one party: Democrat-Republican
James Monroe (President during Era of Good Feelings) strove to downplay partisan affiliation.
SECOND PARTY SYSTEM (1828-1854)
NATIONAL REPUBLICANS (1825-1833)
John Quincy Adams, Henry Clay
Many former Federalists
Formed against Jackson (anti-Jackson party)
In favor of American System
Bank, Internal Improvements, Tariffs
Began to form after election of 1824
When JQ Adams won against Jackson with help from Henry Clay ("Corrupt Bargain" according to Jackson)
Became "Whigs" in 1833
Henry Clay, Daniel Webster, William Henry Harrison, Zachary Taylor, Winfield Scott
Same as National Republicans
In favor of the bank, high tariffs, federal funding for internal improvement (American System)
Supremacy of Congress over the Presidency (“King Andrew”)
Favored modernization and economic protection.
Named after Americans Whigs of 1776 who fought for independence – was a label for those who opposed tyranny
Emerged 1833-34 after Henry Clay’s defeat as coalition of National Republicans
Formed in opposition to Jackson and his Democratic Party
Deep fissures arose in party over slavery
Couldn’t survive sectionalism from Kansas-Nebraska Act.
Some joined other parties, others (like Lincoln) or quit politics temporarily
The Whig Party began to decline after the election of 1852.
Whigs nominated General Winfield Scott who lost badly to Democrat Franklin Pierce
Death of Henry Clay (one of the founders of the Whig Party) and Daniel Webster split the party along pro and anti-slavery lines.
The Kansas-Nebraska Act of 1854 finished off the Whig Party.
Because slavery issue turned northern Whigs into strong abolitionists.
Some to Know-Nothings
Others to Free Soil Democrats
In 1854, most northern Whigs joined Free-Soilers, anti-Nebraska Democrats and abolitionists to form a new Republican Party
Went to Know-Nothings (American Party)
Then Democratic Party
Or dropped out
DEMOCRATIC PARTY (1832-1854)
Andrew Jackson, Martin Van Buren, James Polk, Stephen Douglas
For farmers across country, urban workers and new immigrants, all championed the "common man"
Advocated western expansion (Manifest Destiny)
And equality among all white men
Opposed national bank
1896 Democratic Party split between Bourbon Democrats (eastern business interests) and agrarian (poor farmers in South and West who favored “free silver”/inflation in 1896.
Nominated William Jennings Bryan in 1896
THIRD PARTY SYSTEM (1854-1890s)
REPUBLICAN PARTY (1854-1932)
Purely sectional party (north only)
Abraham Lincoln, Horace Greeley, Salmon Chase, Charles Sumner
Northern white Protestants, businessmen, small business owners, professionals, factory workers, farmers and African-Americans
Coalition of disgruntled northern Whigs, northern Democrats, free-soilers and Know Nothings
All members opposed expansion of slavery
Against the expansion of slavery (not necessarily abolition)
Because it drove down wages of free workers
And degraded the dignity of manual labor.
Wanted a society of independent farmers, artisans ("free labor")
Supported middle class values: domesticity and respectability, religious commitment, capitalist enterprise.
Pro-business, supported banks, gold standard
Railroads and high tariffs to protect industry
Homestead Act (free land to families who settled in west)
Liberal immigration policy to keep cost of labor down.
Emerged 1854 to combat Kansas-Nebraska Act which threatened to extend slavery into the territories
Affected by “bleeding Kansas,” and “Caning of Charles Sumner”
Name coined by Horace Greeley
Almost no presence in the South.
First presidential candidate was John C. Fremont in 1856 (who lost to Buchanan)
Lincoln won in 1860
Anti-Masonic Party (1827-1852)
Anti-Masonic Party was created in 1826 after a bricklayer mysteriously went missing after he had broken his vow of secrecy as a Freemason
Opposed the Order of the Masons
They wanted to break the power of what they considered an aristocratic conspiracy.
They nominated William Wirt for president in 1832.
Anti-Masonic Party declined by the late 1830s as slavery issues became more important.
Most of the members joined the Whig Party.
Liberty Party (1840-48) (some offshoots 1850s and 60s)
Created by abolitionist who broke away from American Anti-Slavery Society
Believed Constitution was an anti-slavery document
William Lloyd Garrison said constitution should be condemned as an evil pro-slavery document and abolitionists should NOT fight politically.
First national convention took place in Albany, NY in 1840.
Party was created by abolitionists who hoped to use political action to end slavery
Liberty Party elected James Birney (a former slave owner from Kentucky) to run against Van Buren and Harrison in 1840 (.3% of vote) and against Clay and Polk in 1844 (2.3% of the popular vote).
62,000 votes in 1844
Party dissolved in 1848 after their nominee, John P. Hale, withdrew from the race.
Many members joined "Barnburner" Democrats and "Conscience" Whigs in former the Free-Soil Party.
Free-soil Party (1848-1854)
They were disappointed with the ambivalent position of the Whig Party toward slavery.
Created by anti-slavery members of the "Conscience" Whig Party and antislavery faction of Democrats known as the "barnburners."
"Conscience Whigs held a convention in August in Buffalo, NY.
Joined by members of Liberal Party
Wanted "free soil, free speech, free labor and free men"
Oppose expansion of slavery into western territories (agreeing with Wilmot Proviso)
Against growth of slave power (power of slave owners) in the national government.
Attracted small farmers, debtors, village merchants -- people who resented black-labor competition.
In 1848 they nominated ex-president Martin Van Buren who won 10% of popular vote
Weakened Democratic candidate and contributed to election of Whig Zachary Taylor .
Still had power in the House of Representatives.
Party membership was largely absorbed by the Republican Party in 1854
Know-Nothing Party aka American Party (1850)
Had origins in anti-immigrant and anti-Catholic movement of the 1840s (when Irish and German immigration was high).
In 1850 these nativist societies banded together as the Order of the Star Spangled Banner
1851, created the American Party.
When questioned, the party's secrecy-conscious members often replied "I know nothing"
Nativists who were against immigrants - especially Irish Catholics
Also opposed slavery on racist grounds, opposed expansion of slavery
Mobilize native-born Protestants against the "alien menage of Irish and German Catholics
prohibited further immigration
and instituted literacy tests for voting.
In 1854 voters elected dozens of American Party candidates to the HOR
and gave the party control to the state governments of Mass and Penn.
Constitutional Union Party
Created in 1860 against Republicans and Democrats
Organized by John J. Crittenden
They were committed to the Constitution and the Union of the states
Former Whigs, Know Nothings and some Southern Democrats
Party was created by people who didn't want to secede because of slavery
The members didn't take a stand for or against slavery
After the election, they tried to prevent civil war through the Crittenden Compromise
They helped organize the split of West Virginia at the Wheeling Convention
1860- John Bell from Tennessee
Won Virginia, Kentucky and Tennessee