After reading Marbury v. Madison for the umpeenth time, I was drawn to this line:
The government of the United States has been emphatically termed a government of laws, and not of men.
If that last bit looks familiar, it should. It’s a direct quote from Article XXX (that is 30) of the Massachusetts Constitution of 1800, authored by none other than fellow federalist John Adams (who appointed Marshall to serve as Secretary of State, and Chief Justice:
Art. XXX. In the government of this commonwealth, the legislative department shall never exercise the executive and judicial powers, or either of them; the executive shall never exercise the legislative and judicial powers, or either of them; the judicial shall never exercise the legislative and executive powers, or either of them; to the end it may be a government of laws, and not of men.
Was this another “fuck you” to Jefferson from Marshall?