Download 2_John_Adams

yes no Was this document useful for you?
   Thank you for your participation!

* Your assessment is very important for improving the workof artificial intelligence, which forms the content of this project

Document related concepts

Nonintercourse Act wikipedia , lookup

States' rights wikipedia , lookup

History of the United States (1776–89) wikipedia , lookup

Report of 1800 wikipedia , lookup

Smith Act wikipedia , lookup

John Adams
XYZ Affair
Naturalization Act
Alien Act
Sedition Act
VA & Kentucky Resolution
XYZ Affair
• XYZ Affair, name usually given to an incident
(1797–98) in Franco-American diplomatic
• The United States had in 1778 entered into an
alliance with France, but after the outbreak of
the French Revolutionary Wars was both
unable and unwilling to lend aid.
• The anti-French Federalists gained the upper
hand in the United States, and there was
considerable antagonism toward France.
• The conclusion (1795) of Jay's Treaty with
England aroused French anger. Numerous
American ships were seized by French
privateers, and the countries drifted into a
mutually hostile attitude.
• President Washington sent Charles
Cotesworth Pinckney as minister to France,
but the French government refused to receive
him. Shortly afterward, President John Adams,
sent John Marshall and Elbridge Gerry ,
Pinckney on a peace mission to France.
• This three-man commission was immediately
confronted by the refusal of French foreign
minister Charles Maurice de Talleyrand to
receive it officially.
• Indirect suggestions of loans and bribes to
France were made to the commissioners
through a friend of Talleyrand.
• Negotiations were carried on through her with
Jean Conrad Hottinguer and Lucien Hauteval,
both Swiss, and a Mr. Bellamy, an American
banker in Hamburg; the three were called X, Y,
and Z in the mission's dispatches to the United
• The proposal that the Americans pay Talleyrand
about $250,000 before the French government
would even deal with them created an uproar
when it was released in the United States, where
the pro-British party welcomed the chance to
worsen Franco-American relations.
• Meanwhile, an undeclared naval war ensued
between France and the United States.
• Both Talleyrand and President Adams wished
to avoid a declaration of war.
Naturalization Act
• The Naturalization Act, raising from 5 to 14
the number of years of United States
residence required for naturalization, was
repealed in 1802.
Alien Act
• Alien Act, 1798, four laws enacted by the
Federalist-controlled U.S. Congress, allegedly
in response to the hostile actions of the
French Revolutionary government on the seas
and in the councils of diplomacy, but actually
designed to destroy Thomas Jefferson's
Republican party, which had openly
expressed its sympathies for the French
• Depending on recent arrivals from Europe for
much of their voting strength, the Republicans
were adversely affected by the Naturalization
Act, and by the Alien Act and the Alien
Enemies Act, which gave the President the
power to imprison or deport aliens suspected
of activities posing a threat to the national
Sedition Act
• Most controversial, however, was the Sedition
Act, devised to silence Republican criticism of the
• Its broad proscription of spoken or written
criticism of the government, the Congress, or the
President virtually nullified the First Amendment
freedoms of speech and the press.
• Prominent Jeffersonians, most of them
journalists, were tried, and some were convicted,
in sedition proceedings.
• The Alien and Sedition Acts provoked the
Kentucky and Virginia Resolutions and did
much to unify the Republican party and to
foster Republican victory in the election of
VA & Kentucky Resolution
• Kentucky and Virginia Resolutions, in U.S. history,
resolutions passed in opposition to the Alien and
Sedition Acts, which were enacted by the
Federalists in 1798.
• The Jeffersonian Republicans first replied in the
Kentucky Resolutions, adopted by the Kentucky
legislature in Nov., 1798.
• Written by Thomas Jefferson himself, they were a
severe attack on the Federalists' broad
interpretation of the Constitution, which would
have extended the powers of the national
government over the states.
• The resolutions declared that the Constitution
merely established a compact between the states
and that the federal government had no right to
exercise powers not specifically delegated to it
under the terms of the compact; should the
federal government assume such powers, its acts
under them would be un-authoritative and
therefore void.
• It was the right of the states and not the federal
government to decide as to the constitutionality
of such acts. A further resolution, adopted in
Feb., 1799, provided a means by which the states
could enforce their decisions by formal
nullification of the objectionable laws.
• A similar set of resolutions was adopted in
Virginia in Dec., 1798, but these Virginia
Resolutions, written by James Madison, were a
somewhat milder expression of the strict
construction of the Constitution and the compact
theory of the Union.
• The resolutions were submitted to the other
states for approval with no real result; their chief
importance lies in the fact that they were later
considered to be the first notable statements of
the states' rights theory of government, a theory
that opened the way for the nullification
controversy and ultimately for secession.