Short Essay

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AMERICAN GOVERNMENT ONLINE
SHORT ESSAY

Technical Requirements: No more than two (2) pages, typed, double-spaced, 12-point font, one (1)-inch margins. Please put your name and current mailing address in a header on eachpage of the essay and number the pages. These technical requirements, including thepage limit, will be strictly enforced, and students submitting non-conforming essays riskreceiving the grade of “F” on this assignment.

Deadline:Friday, February 8, 2013, 12:00 Noon. The essay must be sent to [email protected]Late essays will be penalized at the rate of one (1) full grade per day. Essays submittedmore than four (4) days late will not be accepted and will receive the grade of “0”. Noextensions will be granted.

Assignment:In 1787-88, during the ratification debates following the drafting of the Constitution, James Madison wrote Federalist No. 10 and No. 51, which were, in a sense, commentary on the Constitution. In 1838, about 50 years after the Constitution went into effect, Abraham Lincoln gave a speech titled “The Perpetuation of Our Political Institutions” to the Young Men’s Lyceum of Springfield Illinois, which was, in a sense, commentary on American government under the Constitution. Compare and contrast these Federalist essays to Lincoln’s Lyceum Address. Based on a close reading of Federalist No. 10 and No. 51, what did Madison see as the Constitution’s greatest strength(s)? About 50 years later, what did Lincoln see as the Constitution’s greatest strength? Lincoln referred to the need for an American “political religion.” Lincoln was not proposing creation of an official American church with the Constitution as its scripture because the First Amendment prohibits that. What did Lincoln expect to be the fundamental principle of the unofficial American political religion? What might Madison have thought about that? Discuss as fully as space permits, and be specific: Vague...