George Washington 's Farewell Address Essay

1636 Words Sep 29th, 2016 7 Pages
George Washington’s Farewell Address to the People of the United States was, in essence, Washington’s last-ditch effort to keep America going on the right path before he left office. Washington could see the growing tensions spreading across America, and he knew that factors like split political parties and foreign intervention would only cause the still very young America great stress. When Washington finally made the decision to retire from office, he left behind a series of growing issues that the next president, John Adams, dealt with; however, the original plan Washington had was to retire after only one term, so the first draft of his Farwell Address, co-written with James Madison , didn’t include many of the issues Washington brought up in his publicized speech. When he turned to Alexander Hamilton to edit what Madison had originally written, Hamilton expanded on issues like “foreign affairs, and updated it to reflect the Washington Administration’s revised neutrality policy .” The final draft, published on September 19, 1796, went through several stages of revision and was edited by Thomas Jefferson and Timothy Pickering , among others, and it mainly focused on the importance of a unified government, the dangers of a two-party system, and the negative influence of getting involved in foreign affairs.
Washington did not downplay the importance of a strong, solid, and unified government. He went into great detail discussing how a unified government led to…

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