usa constitution essay

in Federalist No. 51, James Madison argues that, “Ambition must be made to counteract ambition.” Madison was rejecting traditional claims that democracy required virtuous citizens who actively participated in the political life of the country to be successful. Rather, Madison’s argument held that the way that power was divided within a government could provide a more successful mechanism to protect democracy. In other words, Madison rejected the idea that American democracy was dependent on virtuous citizens.

How does Madison’s assertion relate to the idea of citizenship and popular participation? How was Madison’s argument operationalized in the U.S. Constitution? Be sure to provide specific examples in your answer.

 
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