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The structure in Virginia Plan adopted a bicameral legislature which is a legislative branch with dual chambers. The bicameral legislature was to have dual principles of rotation in the office, being applied to The House of Representatives (the lower house). Virginia Plan advocated for a national government constituting of three branches: judicial, executive and legislature. One of the legislative chambers members would be elected by people. Upon being elected by the people, members of the first chamber would then elect from a list of members nominated by the state legislature, the second chamber members. The legislative branch comprising of the dual chambers members would later select the executive branch.

The congressional representation of both the Virginia and New Jersey plans were different and were even debated in the first Constitutional Convention. New Jersey Plan was advocating for congressional representation in which each state would have one vote i.e. representation of congress with regard to the number of state. On the other hand, Virginia Plan suggested that the congressional representation be based the population. Going by Virginia plan, Virginia State would be more represented in Congress since, that time it was the most populous state.

The differences were later settled by The Great Compromise that called for bicameral Congress that advocated for the upper house that was referred to as the Senate, in which each state was represented by two senators. The House of Representatives, which was the lower house would accommodate different number of representatives from different states based on the state’s population.

In Virginia Plan the dual Chambers constituting to legislative branch had the power to negate laws of state that were seen to be incompatible with the states articles of union. With Virginia plan, unspecified majority of legislature had the power to override a veto on legislative acts by judicial and executive branches. Legislature had power to interstate trade and could use armed forces for laws enforcement.

The New Jersey Plan had unicameral legislature with each state having one representing vote. In this plan, the Congress had the mandate to elect a federal executive who would not be re-elected later and one who had never been elected. The Congress also had the authority to raise funds by use of tariffs, levy taxes and import duties and pressurize for their collection. New Jersey Plan laws se by the Congress would take precedence over the state laws. The executives elected by the Congress later appointed the judiciary.

Virginia plan benefits were based on a stronger central government that would create a strong bond among the states. The bicameral would level too much power from the government. This plan would lead to a stronger national government, the economy would be stabilized in the entire country. Executive branch would keep order having the ability to command the armed forces. Having number of representatives proportional to the population, the representation would be fair having all the population deliver their views.

New Jersey plan was beneficial to the smaller states since it called for a unicameral legislature with equal number of representatives per state enabling the voices of the small states as equal to all other states. With this plan, the government would exercise regulated powers in all the states, regardless of the population.

Views of Alexander Hamilton and Thomas Jefferson

Alexander Hamilton and Thomas Jefferson, in as much as they were cabinet members serving the same administration disagreed on many issues. Hamilton, secretary of the treasury, was a nationalist since he preferred a powerful federal government. He believed that there is need override states authority to prevent future disasters as those experienced by a weaker centralized government. On the other hand, Jefferson, a state secretary, fought for states’ rights, he sought a powerful state and weaker centralized government to avoid dictation of a powerful parliament that he had earlier experienced.

Hamilton was undemocratic, since he argued that the wealthy elite in the society and stood the best chance to control the government. Moreover, he wanted the government to use its power to suppress any threat directed to it. Jefferson had the best interest for the common man, he felt the need for independency and self-reliance and the common man to have a dominant voice in affairs of the government hence he was democratic.

On issues of economy, Hamilton vested his interests in industrial and commercial economy. He suggested that the government should encourage manufacturing. Jefferson differed with Hamilton in that he preferred an independent nation of yeoman farmers as he feared large industrial city may harm its people.

In matters of the constitution, Hamilton’s views reflected on the congress having power to pass any law. This is a result of his believes of the powerful government and the need to have a flexible constitution. Jefferson, on his own accord, fails to support this and instead advocated that the national government was to have only those powers granted to it by the constitution.

Hamilton was a nationalist, he definitely would have favored the Virginia plan; the main reason being that it provided provisions of power that could override those of states and that it was based on the proportional representation of the states based on the population. Jefferson would have settled on the New Jersey plan because it advocated equal representation to each state.

The finished constitution had a stronger and centralized government, any intention to revert the progress of slavery was strongly avoided, hence in the long run it promoted slavery; since those who wanted slavery to be abolished, such as George Mason, did not succeed. The new constitution strengthened the institution of slavery, since most of the people controlling slavery were the elite members of the society. Moreover, the surpassing power of the congress to change and pass law gave a way.

As a citizen of the new American republic in 1790, I would have favored the views of Jefferson because he stood for the rights of the common man. Also he believed in democracy, self-reliance and independence. His interests strongly rejected over-exploitation and misuse of powers by strong central government. Matters concerning constitution, I would have favored the New Jersey plan because it aimed at giving equal representation of each state and had great concern of the common man.

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