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Jensen, Merrill; Kaminski, John P.; Saladino, Gaspare J. (ed.) / Ratification of the Constitution by the states: Pennsylvania
2 (1976)

C. Public and private commentaries on the Constitution, 10 October-10 November 1787,   pp. 180-223


Page 181

On 21 October Tench Coxe's "An American Citizen" IV was first
printed in a broadside anthology which contained reprints of some of
the major Federalist items that had been published between 26 Sep-
tember and 10 October (CC:183-A). For other important Federalist
items, see Mfm:Pa. 127, 152, 161, 165, 175, 183. Some major out-of-
state Federalist items, such as "Curtius" (CC:111) and Governor John
Hancock's speech to the Massachusetts General Court (CC:177),
were also widely reprinted in Pennsylvania.
A Federalist, Independent Gazetteer, 10 October
The CENTINEL, in your paper of last Friday,' compliments the
citizens of Philadelphia, when he says, "A frenzy of enthusiasm has
actuated them, in their approbation of the proposed Federal Con-
stitution, before it was possible that it could be the result of a ra-
tional investigation."  This, however, is trivial compared with the
sequel, wherein he charges the worthy and very patriotic characters,
of whom the late Convention was composed, with a conspiracy against
the liberty of their country; not even the immortal WASHINGTON,
nor the venerable FRANKLIN escapes his satire; but both of them,
-says this insidious enemy to his country, were non compos mentis,
when they concurred in framing the new Federal Constitution. When
he ventured to make these assertions against characters so very re-
spectable, he should have been able to support the charge. One of his
objections to this Constitution is that each state is to have two Senators
and not a number proportioned to its inhabitants; here, he has fallen
into a terrible inconsistency, not recollecting that such is the mode
of electing members of the Supreme Executive Council, in this state,
where every county appoints one, and only one, without any regard
had to the number of taxable inhabitants in the respective counties.
Yet, he has gone so far in panegyrics upon the constitution of this
state, as to maintain that a similar one would be the best that could
be devised for the United States.
Had the different members of the Convention entertained sentiments
thus narrow, local, contracted and selfish, each would have proposed
the constitution of his own state, and they would never have united
in forming that incomparable one which is now exhibited to our
view, and which, without partiality to any particular state, is adapted
to the general circumstances of all.
I am happy to find the distinction of Republican and Constitu-
tionalist in this city has given way to the more important one of
Federalist and Antifederalist;2 such a worthy example will, I trust,
be imitated through every part of this state.
To conclude, sir, if some person of better abilities should not step
181
C. COMMENTARIES/10 OCT.


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