The Federalist Papers Reader and Historical Documents of Our American Heritage

By Frederick Quinn | Go to book overview

No. 85
Conclusion

"Let us now pause and ask ourselves whether, in the course of these papers, the proposed Constitution has not been satisfactorily vindicated from the aspersions thrown upon it; and whether it has not been shown to be worthy of the public approbation and necessary to the public safety and prosperity," Hamiltonwrites, knowing full well that his response is a satisfactory "Yes." Next be argues that, for the question to be answered honestly, the reader must bold "no partial motive, no particular interest, no pride of opinion, no temporary passion or prejudice." "Let him beware of an obstinate adherence to party; let him reflect that the object upon which be is to decide is not a particular interest of the community, but the very existence of the nation," Hamiltonconcludes, adding, in case the reader is wavering, "and let him remember that a majority of Americahad already given its sanction to the plan which be is to approve or reject." In this summing up, Hamiltonsays, "I am persuaded that it is the best which our political situation, habits, and opinions will admit." In language as enthusiastic as that contained in the opening Federalist Papers, he looks "forward with trembling anxiety" to establishing a constitution "in time of profound peace, by the voluntary consent of a whole people."

According to the formal division of the subject of these papers announced in my first number, there would appear still to remain for discussion two points: "the analogy of the proposed government to your own State constitution," and "the additional security which its adoption will afford

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