Federalist No. 51: Is Liberty Guaranteed by Structures?
Article first published online: 14 NOV 2011
Copyright © 2011 The American Society for Public Administration
Public Administration Review
Special Issue: The Federalist Papers Revised for Twenty-First-Century Reality Edited by Paul C. Light of the Robert Wagner School of Public Service at New York University Co-sponsored by the School of Public Affairs at American University and the School of Policy, Planning, and Development at the University of Southern California
Volume 71, Issue Supplement s1, pages s83–s89, December 2011
How to Cite
Lynn, L. E. (2011), Federalist No. 51: Is Liberty Guaranteed by Structures?. Public Administration Review, 71: s83–s89. doi: 10.1111/j.1540-6210.2011.02466.x
- Issue published online: 14 NOV 2011
- Article first published online: 14 NOV 2011
Federalist No. 51 can be read as a statement of the national government’s dual responsibility to serve the public interest and to preserve liberty. It is built on James Madison’s belief in checks and balances as a method for keeping government’s parts in their proper places. This essay asks whether this gridlock has gone too far in rendering the constitutional design obsolete. Drawing on previously unpublished fragments of Federalist No. 51, the author argues that Madison fully anticipated these problems, and he offers the unpublished text as a salutary appendix to this iconic defense of liberty.