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The Constitutional Convention of 1787

The Constitutional Convention of 1787

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The Constitutional Convention of 1787

The
Constitutional Convention took place in 1787 in Philadelphia, PA. It was one of
the primary instances of the gathering of delegates from the collective state
of the Union. The Constitutional Convention was comprised of
55 delegates from 12 of the 13 states of the Union. Rhode Island, protesting
the proposed ideals set forth in the Constitution, refused to send any
delegates.

The
Constitutional Convention was presided over by George Washington, a delegate
from Virginia, and the future first President of the United States. The actual
content of the Constitution is considered to be a conglomeration of ideas
contributed by various politicos of that time, including Thomas Jefferson,
James Madison, Thomas Paine, and John Adams. 

Due to the unrest caused by the gubernatorial system put in place
by the Articles of Confederation, which consisted of a weak central government
coupled with each state maintaining its individual sovereignty, many political
figureheads of the time held that there needed to exist a vast restructuring of
the governmental model serving the newly-formed United States of America. The
initial realization of the importance of this overhaul was brought to light
during a meeting held by George Washington at his home in Mount Vernon,
Virginia, which focused on creating a mandated plan regarding the navigation of
the Potomac River.

 

Due to the fact that the Potomac River runs through multiple
states, the establishment of a definitive plan was difficult due to the absence
of any national policy. Each state had individual agency in the creation of
laws and statutes regarding any events that took place within their respective
borders. As a result, the fact became clear that additional legislative power
needed to be afforded to the central government in order to eradicate confusion
due in part to legislative inconsistency that was occurring on national
level. 

 

In the wake of the Federalist ideals set forth by Alexander
Hamilton, the establishment of the Constitutional Convention was to solidify an
all-encompassing legislative process, which balanced power between State and
governmental bodies. 
However, despite what some political figureheads
and citizens alike viewed as glaring inefficiencies existing in the midst of
the governmental structure set forth in the Articles of Confederation, other
citizens of the United States felt that both the ability for individual states
to exists as sovereign entities, as well the lack of central government,
allowed for a heightened sense of agency and autonomy within the scope of a
conglomeratic framework. 

 

As a result of the an initial impasse on the part of various
states – larger states and smaller states were amongst those who failed to
arrive at an initial meeting of the minds – various legislative addenda was submitted
to the text of the Constitution of the United States with the hopes of
establishing a legislative methodology that would satisfy the needs of both
larger states, as well as their smaller counterparts. In addition, issues such
as slavery and individual state legislative representation were amongst the
most largely debated during the Constitutional Convention. 

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