In the early 1830s, the city of Baltimore was developing as a bustling urban center and port. The city diverted the streams around John Barron’s successful wharf and lowered the water level, which negatively impacted his business. He sued the city to recover his financial losses.
Congress Sets Times for Electors
Article II, Section 1. Clause 4:
The Congress may determine the Time of choosing the Electors, and the Day on which they shall give their Votes; which Day shall be the same throughout the United States.
Title 3, Chapter 1 of the U.S. Code describes the timeframe for the choosing of and voting by members of the Electoral College.
Sec. 1: The electors of President and Vice President shall be appointed, in each State, on the Tuesday next after the first Monday in November, in every fourth year succeeding every election of a President and Vice President.18
Sec. 7: The electors of President and Vice President of each State shall meet and give their votes on the first Monday after the second Wednesday in December next following their appointment at such place in each State as the legislature of such State shall direct.19 [emphasis added]
Choosing Electors: A Case Study
The presidential election of 2000 provided an excellent insight into the practical application of the Constitution’s provision for choosing electors for that office. After the polls closed on November 7, 2000, attention soon turned to the state of Florida and a growing controversy over punch-card ballots used in a few of its counties. The combined count of the electors from all of the states presumed to be assigned to the Democrat candidate Albert Gore, Jr. Republican candidate George W. Bush indicated that the race was going to be close that the results of the popular vote for president in Florida would determine the outcome of the race. This was due to the fact that the assignment of electors would be determined by that popular vote.
The United States Constitution is silent on the subject of corporations. After the Civil War, as American society began to quickly evolve from agrarian to industrial, politicians from both major parties raised concerns about the rise of corporations, banks, and businesses, and the need for protection of the individual. Against this backdrop, two important political figures emerged on the national scene. William Jennings Bryan was a leader of the Populist Party (which would merge with the Democratic Party in 1896) who unsuccessfully ran for President in 1896, 1900 and 1908. Republican President Theodore Roosevelt proposed a number of “progressive” initiatives through his “Square Deal” program and other policies and positions. Other essays in this series cover the various Presidential elections in which Bryan and Roosevelt were their parties’ nominees. This essay compares the progressive and populist views of Roosevelt and Bryan, respectively.
The election of 1884 was the first to put a Democrat in the White House since the Civil War. That it did, albeit narrowly was a testament to the way even the earliest stages of industrialization had transformed the country, setting it on the road to something far removed from its, rural, agricultural, protestant roots.
Fearless and firm under fire, unflaggingly modest despite reverent acclaim, and always practical – these outstanding qualities of Ulysses S. Grant are acknowledged, whether begrudgingly or enthusiastically, by the many critics of his presidency as well as by his defenders. Grant was quintessentially American, and yet as a leader he proved that his particular mixture of quintessentially American qualities represented the best of us, which might explain why his soldiers trusted him, the northern people adored him and the southern people respected him.
For nearly the first century of her existence, America had left a promise unfulfilled to both the souls that resided within her borders, as well as humanity at large. That promise, largely taken for granted today, cost the blood of nearly five thousand in the American Revolution and hundreds of thousands in the Civil War, is the revolutionary idea expressed in the Declaration of Independence that every person is born equal. The Civil War and Reconstruction fundamentally altered the Union, and most certainly for the better. The Civil War Amendments, the 13th, 14th, and 15th, sought to fulfill the promise of equality for those enslaved.