James Madison

About James Madison

James Madison, Jr. (March 16, 1751 – June 28, 1836) was an American statesman, political theorist and the fourth President of the United States (1809–17). He is hailed as the "Father of the Constitution" for being instrumental in the drafting of the U.S. Constitution.

Memorial and Remonstrance Against Religious Assessments

By |2016-07-15T23:11:41-05:00June 24th, 2016|Categories: American Founding, American Republic, Featured, Founding Document, Freedom, Freedom of Religion, James Madison, Liberty, Statesman|

Editor’s Note: On June 20, 1785, as a member of the Virginia legislature, James Madison authored the following essay. It was meant to serve as a petition expressing opposition to the idea that Virginia’s citizens should be taxed to support the state’s clergymen—a proposal that Patrick Henry had put forward. The success of Madison’s petition, which garnered [...]

The Necessity of the Bill of Rights

By |2020-11-19T15:20:29-06:00June 8th, 2016|Categories: American Founding, James Madison, Liberty, Quotation, Rights|

It may be said, indeed it has been said, that a bill of rights is not necessary, because the establishment of this Government has not repealed those declarations of rights which are added to the several State constitutions; that those rights of the people, which had been established by the most solemn act, could not [...]

James Madison on Representation & the Branches of Government

By |2021-03-15T15:19:14-05:00May 25th, 2016|Categories: American Founding, Constitutional Convention, Featured, James Madison|

“Mr. Madison considered an election of one branch, at least, of the Legislature by the people immediately, as a clear principle of free government; and that this mode, under proper regulations, had the additional advantage of securing better representatives, as well as of avoiding too great an agency of the State Governments in the general [...]

The Unavoidability of Parties

By |2019-08-08T15:16:53-05:00April 28th, 2015|Categories: Featured, Government, James Madison, Politics|

National Gazette, January 23, 1792 In every political society, parties are unavoidable. A difference of interests, real or supposed, is the most natural and fruitful source of them. The great object should be to combat the evil: 1. By establishing a political equality among all. 2. By withholding unnecessary opportunities from a few, to increase [...]

Take Alarm!

By |2016-11-26T09:52:13-06:00September 26th, 2012|Categories: James Madison, Quotation|

James Madison This election season, voters could do worse than remind themselves of the warning in James Madison’s “Memorial and Remonstrance”: “… take alarm at the first experiment on our liberties. We hold this prudent jealousy to be the first duty of Citizens, and one of the noblest characteristics of the late Revolution. [...]

The Aim of Every Political Constitution

By |2016-11-26T09:52:15-06:00May 13th, 2012|Categories: James Madison, Quotation|

James Madison The aim of every political constitution is, or ought to be, first to obtain for rulers men who possess most wisdom to discern, and most virtue to pursue, the common good of the society; and in the next place, to take the most effectual precautions for keeping them virtuous whilst they [...]

The Meaning of the Constitution

By |2016-11-26T09:52:22-06:00September 7th, 2011|Categories: Constitution, James Madison, Quotation, Republicanism|

James Madison “If we were to look, therefore, for the meaning of the instrument beyond the face of the instrument, we must look for it, not in the general Convention, which proposed, but in the State Conventions, which accepted and ratified the Constitution.” —James Madison Books on James Madison may be found in The [...]

James Madison on Self-Government

By |2017-06-26T16:16:07-05:00February 20th, 2011|Categories: American Founding, American Republic, James Madison, Quotation|

The first question that offers itself is, whether the general form and aspect of the government be strictly republican. It is evident that no other form would be reconcilable with the genius of the people of America; with the fundamental principles of the Revolution; or with that honorable determination which animates every votary of freedom, [...]

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