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Federalist Paper - the Executive Department

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Summary of Federalist No. 67 The Executive Department.

Hamilton uses eleven essays to discuss and defend the extensive roles of authority assigned to the president of the United States whilst referring to the constitution. The article is based on disproving and enlightening the critics of the constitution who have associated the roles and power of the president with that of the King of Great Britain, as well as enlisting with the reluctance of the people to monarchy. He declares his annoyance on this fact by stating how the people could not even spend time to scruple before placing the authorities of a magistrate who are in some cases both higher and less important that the governor of New York for instance. He describes them as being “magnified into more than royal prerogatives. He has been decorated with attributes superior in dignity and splendor to those of a king of Great Britain. He has been shown to us with the diadem sparkling on his brow and the imperial purple flowing in his train. He has been seated on a throne surrounded with minions and mistresses, giving audience to the envoys of foreign potentates, in all the supercilious pomp of majesty.”

Critics challenge that the Constitution gave the president power to fill vacancies in the United States Senate. Hamilton pointed out how untrue this was by stating the misrepresentation made by a person of who’s name he did not mention, “now confronted with evidence of fact and let him, if he be able, justify or extenuate the shameful outrage he has offered to the dictates of truth and to the rules of fair dealing.” Hamilton points out the facts and the misrepresented clause from section 2 of Article 2 of the Constitution.

Hamilton tries to eradicate the idea of ‘presidential power-grabbing’ by stating as his final proof from the first and second clauses of Article 1. The first states that “the Senate of the United States shall be composed of two Senators from each State, chosen by the Legislature thereof for six years,” and the second clause states that “if vacancies in that body should happen by resignation or otherwise during the recess of the Legislature of ANY STATE, the Executive THEREOF may make temporary appointments until the next meeting of the Legislature which shall then fill the vacancies”. Although the president has the power to make appointments to vacancies in major government posts as the senate is in recess, it can only be done by granting temporary commissions to run only to the end of the next senate session, hoping that by that time the senate would have considered and either approved or disapproved of such commissions.



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