Posts Tagged ‘Thomas Jefferson
As Kevin pointed out, his “friend” was seriously considering going underground. Yes, it was me. LOL…I admit I’ve been in a fog of shock and horror for the last week. But after copious amounts of macaroni and cheese and study of our founders and what they wanted for us…I’m back. Dammit. Read more about it here.
Thomas Jefferson was the first United States Secretary of State, serving from September 26th, 1789 – December 31st, 1793 in George Washington’s administration. Previous to Jefferson in this newly created position, John Jay served in an acting role as United States Secretary for Foreign Affairs.
Jefferson had been the US minister to France from 1785-1789, and became Secretary of State at a time when British and French intrigues occupied the majority of US foreign policy. He and Alexander Hamilton fought over fiscal policy, particularly the Revolutionary War debt and its foreign policy implications. Hamilton wanted the debts shared equally by all states, while Jefferson wanted each state to pay its own debt (Jefferson’s home state of Virginia did not have much debt, so he did not want it to pay the debt of other states).
Jefferson equated Hamilton and the Federalists with Tories and Monarchists because of their approach to the war debt, insisting they were threats to republicanism (since they were trying to force Virginians to pay debts they did not incur, which were debts that belonged to other states). Jefferson and James Madison founded the Democratic-Republican Party as a rebuttal to Hamilton and Federalism, wich Jefferson called “Royalism”.
In 1793, Jefferson supported France against Britain when war broke out between those two nations. However, he agreed with Washington that the United States should not get involved in the war. But, in 1793 French minister Edmond-Charles Genet arrived to convince Americans to violate the pledge of neutrality and come to war on the side of France. Genet went over Washington’s head and tried to appeal directly to the American people; Jefferson thwarted his efforts. Jefferson believed that French victories over England in Europe helped America, though the United States should not be dragged into the fighting.
Jefferson retired to Monticello in 1793, but continued to orchestrate opposition to Hamilton and Washington, running for president himself in 1796 (and winning enough electoral votes to become Vice President under John Adams).
Jefferson was succeeded as Secretary of State by Edmund Randolph on January 2, 1794
Just something to think about on this the Eleventh Day, Year One, of The Golden Age of Obama. It’s actually very rare for a President to win a second term, no matter how well things go in that first term. Because of Reagan, Clinton, and George W. Bush, we assume a second term’s a given for presidents because the majority of those in our lifetimes have been two-termers (especially for those of us in our early 30s, who’ve mainly known two-termers). But, historically, that’s not the case.
Here are the men (and, unfortunately all men so far, despite all the talk of change still in the air) who’ve held the office two terms (or more, in one case):
(1) Franklin Delano Roosevelt (served 3 full terms, but elected to 4)
(2) Thomas Jefferson (2 terms)
(3) James Madison (2 terms)
(4) James Monroe (2 terms)
(5) Andrew Jackson (2 terms)
(6) Ulysses S. Grant (2 terms)
(7) Grover Cleveland (2 nonconsecutive terms)
(8) Woodrow Wilson (2 terms)
(9) Dwight Eisenhower (2 terms)
(10) Ronald Reagan (2 terms)
(11) Bill Clinton (2 terms)
(12) George W. Bush (2 terms)
(13) George Washington (2 terms)
(14) Richard Nixon (2 terms)
(15) William McKinley (2 terms)
(16) Abraham Lincoln (2 terms)
Those who wanted second terms but lost their elections:
(a) John Quincy Adams
(b) Martin van Buren
(c) Franklin Pierce
(d) Benjamin Harrison
(e) William Howard Taft
(f) Herbert Hoover
(g) Jimmy Carter
(h) George H.W. Bush
(i) John Adams
So, 16 wanted a Part Deux and got one. 9 wanted re-election but were denied. Almost 2/3 of our presidents were thus one-termers (or less).
And another interesting thing to note is that the last time THREE two-term presidents happened in a row was all the way back in the early 1800s, with Jefferson/Madison/Monroe (the 3rd, 4th, and 5th presidents). That hasn’t been repeated for 200 years now.
Not saying it won’t ever again, because it’s much too early to tell, but just noting it’s not an automatic, considering past as probability if not predictor.
Clinton/Bush/Obama as three two-termers in a row would be anomalous but certainly not impossible.