In the year of 1803, the great Napoleon of France offered to sell Thomas Jefferson the entire territory of Louisiana. The United States bought the land gaining complete control of Mississippi River for fifteen million dollars. The Louisiana Purchase was remarkable. Buying the Louisiana Purchase, U.S. gained complete control of the Mississippi River. This benefited the farmers with transporting their goods. The major benefit of agreeing to buy this territory was how it doubled the size of the United States. So, the question is, even thou the Louisiana purchase benefited the US, did Thomas Jefferson violate his political principles?
Thomas Jefferson considered the government a necessary evil at best (Davidson 159). Jefferson believed its faith in the power of human
reason to improve society and decipher the universe. He believed in life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness (Davidson 159). Jefferson believed that people may be trusted to make political choices based on correct principle, human reason is the powerful tool that will unlock the secrets of nature and improve human society and the life of the independent farmer in a free market is an economically preferable and morally superior social condition (Davidson 159). Thomas Jefferson was flexible when he ran across problems and tried to balance mean and ends. When Jefferson entered the office, his policy proposal was to cut federal spending and national debt. He made serious cuts in the military branches and abolished internal taxes by federalists. But ended up failing to dismantle the economic program and gave us western expansion by purchasing Louisiana from France.
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Originally, Jefferson just wanted New Orleans but when James Monroe and Robert Livingston traveled to France in hope of buying New Orleans, Napoleon offered the entire Louisiana Territory to the U.S. At this time France was in war and needed to pour more money into his country, so Napoleon offered the entire territory and at a very low price. Jefferson could not pass up the opportunity. It was a substantial piece of land and it gave them the perfect path to transfer the people’s products to market. Jefferson was unsure if purchasing the land was unconstitutional. Nowhere in the Constitution does it give the power to buy land from a foreign country. This was troublesome for Jefferson. He purchased because he needed New Orleans port for the people of the frontier to transfer their products down the Mississippi River.
The Louisiana purchase impacted us. Increased in population, commerce, and agriculture It strengthen the nation. It gave the opportunity for individuals and families to move around into unsettled territory and create lives for themselves.
If the Louisiana Purchase did not happen, it would have been a slower westward expansion by the U.S. The United States would not be a one
country from coast to coast. France would have territory in middle south section of the U.S. And then, of course, the territory would have separate government, laws, military. There would be all sorts of implications. I believe the Louisiana Purchase was one of the greatest land deals Jefferson could have ever made whether it was unconstitutional or not.
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