Federalist No. 70
Federalist No. 70 (Federalist Number 70) is an essay by Alexander Hamilton and the seventieth of the Federalist Papers. It was published on March 15, 1788 under the pseudonym Publius, the name under which all the Federalist Papers were published. Its title is, "The Executive Department Further Considered", and it is the fourth in a series of 11 essays discussing the powers and limitations of the Executive branch
The essay deals with the question of a plural executive. Hamilton argues that a plural executive, having more than one president, "tends to conceal faults, and destroy responsibility", and states that a singular president would better be suited to wield the full potential of his power in a quick and efficient way, without falling into endless squabbling and dispute with other executives with the same power. He also warns that when dealing with more than one leader, "there is always danger of difference of opinion."
Hamilton writes that when the "unity" of the president falls away into a plural executive the separate rulers will "less the respectability, weaken the authority, and distract the plans and operations of those whom they divide." He gives the historic example of the plural executive in Rome. The separate executives were inefficient because the rulers could not come together to make decisions for the common good of the citizens.
A strong and energetic executive branch requires unity, duration in office, adequate resources, and sufficient powers.
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