Select Page


The instability of our laws is really an immense evil.

What did the Founders think of passing large complicated pieces of legislation with such haste that neither the citizens nor the legislators themselves had time to read it? Here are Thomas Jefferson’s thoughts in his letter to James Madison in December of  1787:

“The instability of our laws is really an immense evil. I think it would be well to provide in our constitutions that there shall always be a twelve-month between the ingross-ing a bill & passing it: that it should then be offered to it’s passage without changing a word: and that if circum-stances should be thought to require a speedier passage, it should take two thirds of both houses instead of a bare majority.” Thomas Jefferson to James Madison, December 1787

Photo of A F/A-18E Super Hornet launches from the flight deck of the aircraft carrier USS Dwight D. Eisenhower in the Atlantic Ocean, Sept. 6, 2015. The carrier is conducting flight deck certifications. The Hornet is assigned to Strike Fighter Squadron 86. U.S. Navy photo by Petty Officer 3rd Class J. Alexander Delgado