Alexander Hamilton...The President who wasn't....Hamilton is considered by most political historians as the man who was 'overlooked' when it came to the presidency. Till this day there is an...

Alexander Hamilton...The President who wasn't....

Hamilton is considered by most political historians as the man who was 'overlooked' when it came to the presidency. Till this day there is an ongoing  debate as to why he never had his 'turn'. Some say it was his unsavory childhood, others say it was due to his indescretions with other men's wives, lastly his untimely death by 'code duello' inflicted by Arron Burr. Comments???

Asked on by dbello

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litteacher8's profile pic

litteacher8 | High School Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

Posted on

Alexander Hamilton was unpopular as Secretary of the Treasury. Maybe no political party wanted to risk having him run for president? He also might have got around to running if he hadn't been shot to death by Arron Burr before he had the chance.
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brettd | High School Teacher | (Level 2) Educator Emeritus

Posted on

In Hamilton's time as Secretary of the Treasury, remember that America was deeply divided, still, among Federalist and anti-federalist lines, there was distrust and even outright animosity between the frontier, rural areas, and the eastern cities. Hamilton was viewed by many as the poster child for Federalism. I don't think that, had he actually been able to organize enough support to even run, he would have been elected. Jefferson was viewed much more favorably by most Americans and barely won. Adams as well. I also think we're lucky we got Hamilton in the position we did, when we did. I think he was more helpful there than he would have been as President.
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dbello | High School Teacher | (Level 1) Educator

Posted on

I was fascinated by his biography that I read a few years ago. I wonder if it was more his foreign birth than his unsavory childhood. Even now, other politicians and the public are keenly aware of who is a native-born American and who is a foreign-born naturalized citizen. I'm thinking specifically of Gov. Schwarzenegger in California.

Certainly Hamilton's personal behavior and private life would have contributed to his never getting a turn at the presidency. Nonetheless, even if his private life were exemplary, I suspect that his foreign birth would have precluded his serving.

Thank you for your response. I am in total agreement with you with regard to the 'public awareness' aspect of the argument. Hamiltonian historians all agree that Hamilton always suffered with the 'never measuring up' complexity.

However, it was understood that all persons in the United States regardless of their place of birth were American citizens upon the ratification of the U.S. Constitution (with the exception of slaves and indentured servants who had not yet completed their indentured status.) therefore Hamilton was considered an American citizen thus stumping a legal argument.

Having said that, I  introduce the Maria Reynolds affair as a possible argument to the topic. Any further comments???

 

 

drmonica's profile pic

drmonica | (Level 2) Associate Educator

Posted on

I was fascinated by his biography that I read a few years ago. I wonder if it was more his foreign birth than his unsavory childhood. Even now, other politicians and the public are keenly aware of who is a native-born American and who is a foreign-born naturalized citizen. I'm thinking specifically of Gov. Schwarzenegger in California.

Certainly Hamilton's personal behavior and private life would have contributed to his never getting a turn at the presidency. Nonetheless, even if his private life were exemplary, I suspect that his foreign birth would have precluded his serving.

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