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The Federalist Papers and Federalism The Federalist Papers were mostly the product of two young men Alexander Hamilton of New York age 32 and James Madison of Virginia age 36 Both men sometimes wrote four papers in a single week An older scholar John Jay later named as first chief justice of the Supreme Court wrote five of the papers Hamilton who had been an aide to Washington during the Revolution asked Madison and Jay to help him in this project Their purpose was to persuade the New York convention to ratify the just-drafted Constitution They would separately write a series of letters to New York newspapers under the pseudonym Publius In the letters they would explain and defend the Constitution Hamilton started the idea and outlined the sequence of topics to be discussed and addressed most of them in fifty-one of the letters Madisons Twenty-nine letters have proved to be the most memorable in their balance and ideas of governmental power It is not clear whether The Federalist Papers written between October 1787 and May 1788 had any effect on New Yorks and Virginias ratification of the Constitution Encyclopedia Britannica defines Federalism as A mode of political organization that unites independent states within a larger political framework while still allowing each state to maintain its own political integrity 712 Having just won a revolution against an oppressive monarchy the American colonists were in willing to replace it with another monarchy style of government On the other hand their experience with the disorganization under the Articles of Confederation due to unfair competition between the individual states made them a little more receptive to an increase in national powers A number of Federalist Papers argued that a new kind of balance never achieved elsewhere was possible The Papers were themselves a balance or compromise between the nationalist ideas of Hamilton who wrote more for the commercial interests of New York and the uneasiness of Madison who
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