Kevin Gutzman discusses his new book, “James Madison and the Making of America.” Gutzman states his view on Madison’s biggest achievement, “Early in his career, Madison was responsible in the Virginia House of Delegates for adoption of the Virginia Statue of Religious Freedom. We often credit Thomas Jefferson with that, but Jefferson merely wrote the bill and failed to have it pass. It was only Madison nine years later who go it enacted into law and made Virginia the first society in the history of the world that was secular.”
Gutzman gives us his view about Madison being known as “Father of the Constitution.” He points out, “Well, when it comes to the idea he is the Father of the Constitution, they will have this misconception corrected. Madison famously went to the Philadelphia Convention were the Constitution was written with a draft of the Constitution which is called, ‘The Virginia Plan’ in mind, but in the Philadelphia Convention, this plan was rejected.” Gutzman continued to make his case by pointing out, “It is inaccurate to call him the Father of the Constitution. This is best captured in a letter he wrote to Thomas Jefferson soon after the convention which he predicted that because Madison’s favorite idea, the federal veto of state laws have been defeated, it was likely that this government would fail within a few years. So Madison was unhappy with the Constitution. Far being it’s father, he was unhappy with it.”
During the interview, Gutzman discussed why Virginia was so important during the ratification process, “The Federalists promised in Virginia that if the Federal Government would pervert it’s powers, Virginians could reclaim the power they were granting. We all have been told that once you entered the union that you couldn’t leave. That was Andrew Jackson’s position, Abraham Lincoln’s position, that was the position based on the Northern war effort fought during the Civil War. But here were three leading Federalists spokesmen in the Virginia Convention all said that if this were to happen we could reclaim the powers we are granting.”
When discussing Madison’s apparent flip flopping on the Nullification concept, “He wrote a series of letters on this question. In some of them, he admitted we were not thinking of a individual state. Which of course is incorrect. If you read the resolution from Virginia from 1798, he said that each state would act to prevent that Unconstitutional and dangerous policies implantation, ‘within their perspective territories’”
He later would say, “As far as James Madison was concerned, only James Madison can decide when it was appropriate time to nullify a law.”
Later in the show, Michael Boldin, Lesley Swann and John Michaels – discussed a new project that will soon be released for members – a 2nd behind-the-scenes weekly radio show. Plus news of NDAA nullification efforts in Virginia, Tennessee and elsewhere.
The Tenther Radio Team for this Week
Michael Boldin, Lesley Swann, John Michaels, Bryce Shonka, John Lambert