Hamilton was a federalist and served as the secretary of the treasury in the
He was a strong supporter of a centralized federal government. He also
advocated loose interpretation of the u.s. constitution and the use of the
Which was an ambiguous power of the federal government stating
that “congress can do what it is proper and necessary” john Marshall’s
epitomizing of these Hamiltonian principals and philosophies can be seen in
several of his court rulings. Such as, McCulloch vs. Maryland, Dartmouth college
vs. Woodward, Gibbons vs.
Ogden, and Cohens vs. Virginia. In the case McCulloch
vs. Maryland in 1819, Maryland brought a suit against McCulloch and bands him
for refusing to pay a tax on the federal bank.
Marshall said, ” the power to
tax implies the power to destroy.” Marshall’s ruling sanctified the federal
government’s user of implied powers. His decision was in favor of the federal
bank. It established the national supremacy over state governments.
paved the way for vast expansion of federal power in the future. In the case of
Dartmouth college vs. Woodward in 1919 as well, Dartmouth was telling its case
on how they had been chartered in 1769 as a private school to train missionaries
and native Americans in new Hampshire. Republican members of the board of
trustees sought to have the state legislature convert the school into a new
The state court supported contention that the state had the
right to alter the schools charter. The courts ruling was in favor of the
republican board members. Daniel Webster appealed to the Supreme Court and
Marshall overturned the state courts decision. This set the precedent for the
It also set a precedent for the supreme courts power to
overturn the state courts decisions. Which again had strengthened the central
governments. In 1824 the Cohens were arrested for selling lottery tickets in
Virginia. They then appealed to the Supreme Court.
Marshall ruled in favor of
the state. Marshall’s ruling strengthened the federal government by
establishing the power of the Supreme Court to review all state court decisions.
The case of Gibbons vs. Ogden in 1824 dealt with Gibbons who wanted to run a
steamboat company in New York and he sued Ogden.
Ogden had the state given
monopoly of the New York waterways. Article 1 of the constitution grants the
regulation of interstate commerce to congress. New York’s giving of a monopoly
conflicted with the federal coasting act. That act required all vessels on
navigational, coastal an interstate waterways that you have a federal license
there fore the monopoly was void.
This ruling strengthened the federal
government with the power to regulate interstate commerce. It is easy to see on
how the Supreme Court with john Marshall epitomized Hamiltonian principles and
philosophies due to his rulings in court. If not for Marshall’s rulings it
could be easy to say that our federal government would have fallen apart.