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The Major Domestic and Foreign Policy Issues of George Washington’s Presidency

Updated on October 15, 2018
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The names of political parties have changed over time since the United States gained independence. However, their core variations that have motivated partisan politics have not changed much. There are many reasons that make political parties to change their positions. Some of the most notable reasons include party organization and environmental incentives.

It is significant to note that there are many foreign policy issues during George Washington’s presidency that resulted in distinct political parties. Many issues motivated George Washington and his party to change policy positions. The rise of distinct political parties during George Washington’s presidency was as a response to changes in the position of the mean voter.

It is apparent that voters change their behavior towards their political parties at different times. Therefore, it is only rational for political parties to change in relation to what the voter wants. There are significant domestic and foreign policy issues of George Washington’s presidency that gave rise to distinct political parties.

It is apparent that voters change their behavior towards their political parties at different times. Therefore, it is only rational for political parties to change in relation to what the voter wants. There are significant domestic and foreign policy issues of George Washington’s presidency that gave rise to distinct political parties.

During Washington’s presidency, there was widespread support from the electorate. The people had a lot of confidence with the new government and their president. However, the workings of the new government did not run as smoothly as expected. There were many foreign and domestic policy decisions that made the public to react with anger.

The dramatic responses from the public made it possible for people to start championing the rise of new political parties. The people became dissatisfied with the new government which made them rise against it and voice their concerns. It is highly significant to note that the electorate had ‘years of experience voicing their dislike of the British government’ .

Therefore, it was nothing new rising against the administration of George Washington. One notable issue that gave rise to the uprising was the imposition of whiskey tax. People felt oppressed and gave rise to a notable disruption of peace and harmony that had existed before. Also, slavery and the Black populations contributed to the rise of distinct political parties.

The Black people were concentrated in the Southern States while the Whites were in the Northern States. The Southerners were largely Democrats while the Northerners championed Republican ideals.

The new nation during President George Washington was characterized by political parties or factions. There were various interests to ratify the constitution which led to a heightened struggle for political parties. There was intense friction between the political parties because there were interests to have a new federal government that was highly powerful. Some interest groups like federalists wanted a highly strong central government and were led by Hamilton. ‘Hamilton had reached a political prominence during the revolution as an aide to General Washington’ (Boyer 9).

There were other people who acted as anti-federalists and opposed things proposed by federalists. This group was led by Thomas Jefferson which championed the rights of the people as opposed to having power in a few hands. This back and forth between the two groups gave rise to distinct political parties.

This group was led by Thomas Jefferson which championed the rights of the people as opposed to having power in a few hands. This back and forth between the two groups gave rise to distinct political parties. Those who supported a federal system of government supported capitalism or the commercial sector while the antifederalists supported agriculture. Washington noticed that the sharp divisions between the two groups were only polarizing the country. During his farewell party, he warned that it was detrimental to the nation’s peace and tranquility.

The United States faced foreign debts at the time of its independence which affected its financing. The young country had a huge debt from Britain which it had not repaid. As a young nation, it had severe financial challenges because it experienced phenomenal economic growth. When George Washington took over, there was a surge in immigrants from Africa, Europe, and England. The British were the majority of immigrants to the new nation which strained the country’s resources.

However, ‘the population growth played a central role in the economic development of the region’ (Boyer 1). The new people that settled in the US contributed immensely to the formation of distinct political parties. For example, most European immigrants became Republicans while people of African origin became Democrats.

People from European origin were largely assimilated to the American culture as compared to those from Africa or Asia. In a nutshell, some immigrants became more Americanized compared to the others. There was significant population growth which played an immense role in economic development.

America faced war when it secured its independence and defined its nationhood. There was waging war against an empire that made people have distinct opinions. These opinions led to the rise of distinct political parties. There was a revolutionary conflict across the United States occasioned by the British. The British ships attacked commercial installations that were the backbone of the nation’s economy. They also destroyed goods that were vital to the nation’s wealth.

Major towns and cities were also destroyed by the naval ships. Some of the major casualties include the New York Harbor which adversely affected traffic flow. ‘The British and thus the Colonials were ultimately victorious in this conflict but the outcomes proved to be a mixed blessing in the long-term’ .

The attempt by Americans troops to invade Canada failed miserably. George Washington was a skillful and calculating leader who avoided direct confrontations with the British troops. Although some people opposed this move, most people supported it. This further strengthened the emergence of distinct political parties in the US.

In conclusion, George Washington’s presidency had foreign and domestic policy issues that gave rise to distinct political parties. Washington, as the father of the nation, can be credited with leaving the country united instead of being divided by factions of many political parties. He crushed political dissent that advocated the formation of many political parties because he did not want the country to disintegrate. The rise in immigrants contributed to having distinct political parties. Some immigrants became more assimilated to the American culture more than the others. The war with the British and other European nations also contributed immensely to the rise of diverse opinions among the electorate.

© 2018 Jeff Zod

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    • Erudite Scholar profile imageAUTHOR

      Jeff Zod 

      4 weeks ago from Nairobi

      You are welcome Fiberesima.

    • Miebakagh57 profile image

      Miebakagh Fiberesima 

      4 weeks ago from Port Harcourt, Rivers State, NIGERIA.

      Hi, Jeff, it is good to note this development. In every political situation, such development is necessary because society is dynamic and not statistic. Thank you.

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