tv Richard Brookhiser John Marshall CSPAN December 9, 2018 12:40am-1:41am EST
there were white folks who were afraid of michelle and fraser and southside and i want us to hold on to that because that still goes on with the notion that people look at the color of your skin and make assumptions of who you are. they didn't know we were kids striving to be good at our father was hard-working. they didn't care but they were running from our race and we still do that. >> - - just a portion of her talk in new york city watch for more in-depth coverage saturday december 1:58 o'clock p.m. and sunday december 16 on book tv. [inaudible conversations] >> good morning. we will get our program started now.
that there will be coffee and food in the back if you want to get up please do so. thank you for coming to this forum discussing his new book on john marshall and a special welcome to our friends at the manhattan institute our cosponsor today and our c-span audience i am president of national review institute the nonprofit organization supporting the national review mission it is my pleasure to welcome you. national review magazine over six years is an mission to preserve and promote the legacy of william f buckley junior and the conservative principles he championed to support the balance of the magazine he founded. this past february mark ten years since his passing and his contributions to our
nation we house successful events all of the country not only to be nostalgic but also inspirational and we realize the young staff who are just barely reaching their teens when bill passed to him his person - - one --dash persistent advocacy and inclusive manner are not just words on a wikipedia page so this fall we took those legacy events to over 15 college campuses last week we are at berkeley last night we were at king's college in a forum national review editor in chief and discussion about the important values buckley espoused as ronald reagan warned freedom can be lost within the generation as we continue to read and appreciate the philosophy and experiments, the successes and failures and respect gratitude
for those who have paved the way before us that is the reason why we support brett for kaiser's work on the american founding we will continue to stand up for the principles of conservative values that made this country great and exceptional and we are not afraid to say it. with the upcoming ads summit this march we will highlight that to make a case for the american experience so please come join us. our featured guest is mister brooke kaiser journalist and biographer and historian who first published at the age of 15 as he has held many roles over the years and is senior editor at the national review institute his most widely known for a series of biographies on the american founders including mister hamilton and george washington he has been awarded many
honors notable is the national humanities medal. we are fortunate he is dedicated to document the founding to bring it to new audiences. after he talks about his book he will sit with rich to talk about more topics in depth no car loan - - there are no cards on the table to be incorporated so please enjoy our discussion with rick per kaiser. [applause] >> thank you for the introduction thank you for coming out. i am always glad to be speaking here because i was married here 38 years ago. i am still married. same wife. [laughter] i just want to thank one
person whom the book is dedicated to met him in 1982 covering national review brevity - - running for governor against cuomo and he lost that race and new york is still suffering from that from the second generation but lou was able to perceive one - - pursue his great love of american history and over the years it is duller with the institute the exhibition of the new york historical society we were for hamilton before he was cool so it was a great honor for me to dedicate this book to him.
was a party on - - i'm sorry the supreme court has been out of the news the last few months but i will try to make the talk relevant anyway. the reason it is is because of john marshall the man who made the federal judiciary so this morning i just want to say a few things about him personally and talk about how he led the court and look at one of his important cases and his critics the most important thing about john marshall even though he spent most of his adult life in richmond one month a year in washington dc when the court was in session in six months in paris but all of his life he was a country boy in the first house he
lived in was a log cabin in the second house was a frame house the third house had glass in the windows so not quite daniel boone but definitely a life in the country he retained those habits all his life. he is described as simple. he did not care how he dressed. when he was in raleigh north carolina he forgot to pack a pair of pants they were on able to hide the slack so he had to cover himself with his judicial robe his hair was cut by his wife otherwise who
knows what he would have looked like. he had very simple attitudes he liked to drink a lot. when he became chief justice the court had a custom already that the justices when they deliberated would hear cases during the day then go to the boarding house they stayed in and discuss them over dinner and after dinner but they could only have wine if it was raining outside i was assumed to cheer themselves up so marshall when he became chief justice only to ask one of his colleagues to look out the window to tell him the weather. then he'd say the sky is clear and marshall would say our jurisdiction is so vast so it must be raining somewhere so wine was only served to the marshall court.
he loved simple exercise and simple games he walked several miles before breakfast every day of his life until he was too feeble his nickname was silver heels partly because his mother sewed him socks with white patches in the heels but also because he could jump over a bar resting on the heads of two men. his favorite game was coins which is like horseshoes only played with metal rings and the point is to pitch them over a post and people who saw marshall play the game said he would devote as much attention to deciding who was was closer as he would on the great supreme court decisions.
the other important thing about him was who he most admired. one of the men was certainly his father thomas marshall he homeschooled him and dedicated him to being a lawyer. but the other man he admired was george washington marshall volunteered to join the virginia militia than the following year he joined he was in the revolution through 1781 almost the entire length add five and seven battles three of them commanded by washingto washington, brandywine and germantown. he also spent the winter at valley forge where washington was in command. he saw his commander in chief and defeat and victory it was
at this terrible winter encampment where they were not clothed or fed or paid and marshall's conclusion through these experiences was washington was the rock on which the revolution rested. he was the man who saw the project through and brought it to success. when washington returned his commission to congress at the end of the war 1783 marshall wrote a letter to a friend of his and said the link in the military career of the greatest man on earth is closed may happiness attend him wherever he goes. whenever i think of that superior man my full heart overflows with gratitude. it is not a trivial feeling. marshall followed washington after the war when washington and other leaders decided the american form of government needed to be changed with the articles of confederation
under which we declared our independence was not sufficient to carry out the task that the government had to do. we needed a new constitution washington presided over the constitutional convention 1787 than one year later john marshall was a delegate to the general ratifying convention where he took the pro- constitution stand he followed washington again 1798 the first two party system had arisen in the federalist versus the republicans the first republican party is the ancestor of today's denmark mine - - democrats jefferson a matter and alexander hamilton in washington were the other marshall was a federalist and 1798 washington summit thames to mount vernon for him to run to congress the federalist party was weak in virginia and
it needed new younger blood marshall did not want to run because he was a lawyer and making good money in his practice with a growing family and buying land but he needed the income so he was refusing then decided i cannot keep saying no to the greatest man on earth i just have to get up that washington got up first and put on his old uniform so marshall exceeded to the representation he ran for congress and one and then from congress to president john adams then secretary of state after a cabinet shakeup. at the end of adam's term, he loses the election 1802 jefferson as a rematch adams beaded - - be summarily prior but 1800 was a blue wave.
jefferson won the white house and his party took both houses of congress so in this lame duck. adams and his secretary of state are trying to fill the federal judiciary with federalist. then adams gets a letter from the then current justice chief justice to say he knows his health was bad that he was leaving the job and now adams had to fill this post so the first man to be chief justice john j the great spymaster diplomat paper author chief justice 1789 through 1795 and then he left to be governor of new york. adam sent his name to the senate and the senate confirmed him then they got a
letter from jay saying he would not take the job the federal judiciary lacks energy and wit and dignity and would not be chuffed one - - chief justice again. so we have to imagine adams and john marshall sitting in adam's office with this unfinished white house the exterior shell is done but the interior is a construction site and adam says to marshall who shall i nominate now cracks marshall said i don't know and adams said i believe i will nominate you. this is how he gets the job in february 18 oh one. the other man who was important marshall's life is the winner of the election, thomas jefferson his second cousin once removed he detest
him and thomas jefferson hates them in return he couldn't hate many jefferson hated a number but jefferson was high on his list he would twist anything to predetermine legal conclusion jefferson warned joseph story before he got on the court you must never give a direct answer to any question that marshall asks you if he asks me if the sad were shining i would say i don't know sir i cannot tell. marshall felt jefferson was a demagogue talked about letting congress run things but secretly directing it behind the scenes and riding the waves of populist to serve his own popularity and also thought that jefferson was disloyal secretary of state serving george washington form policy on one hand while
undermining them with another. so march 18 oh one the one cousin the new chief justice swears in the other cousin , the new president. now marshall comes onto a court there were only six in those days they are all federalist all appointed by washington or adams but only 11 years after jefferson's administration and james madison the balance of support has changed from two federalist 25 republicans congress has increase the size of the court at seven federalist had died or retired and all been replaced by republican judges but yet all of these justices followed marshall's lead. how did he do this cracks the first was the simplicity his
congenial manners, he liked his colleagues said they liked being with him. this is that irreducible basis of success in any political field. he also practiced difference if there were colleagues that were more expert in the law than he was he would let them take the lead if it was land titles would be someone else to show deference he get that in return so it's not just the right thing to do but the smart thing to do. a third factor he was always the smartest man in the room and many of his colleagues were brilliant jurist themselves but they all ignore its mom - - acknowledged his superiority. his mind was not quick it would take him a while to get going but then once he did he was almost unstoppable
starting out before the supreme court later attorney general he said marshall's mind is like the atlantic ocean everyone else was a pond in the fourth factor is life tenure he was chief justice 34 years which is still a record he will swear in five presidents and nine and our girls he is picked by adams goes to the second term of andrew jackson. in the middle of that there is 111 year. 1812 through 23 there is no personal changes there was only such one. again so marshall spent a long time to exercise his deference and intellect probably the most famous case is marbury
commission of justice of the peace was by john adams but the man who stamped the great seal of the united states for delivery was the secretary of state john marshall he told his brother james marshall to deliver these commissions so that's why it was sitting on the desk when the jeffersonian's came along and
they said we will not give that as they leave the office so this is the origin so there were a number of things where justices would never recuse themselves the former justice of maryland from the united states. >> but the whole jackson presidency was dismayed to him he had tangled with jefferson but there was a quality of jefferson he could get very
exercised but then he would leave him alone. then he would move on but jackson never moved on. he just had a will on a follow through and marshall hoped he would not be reelected. i hope was if someone else one marshall would retire then associate justice story would be promoted to chief justice so he attends the first political convention in history and is invited as an eminent person just to come i think he is probably vetting them to see how serious they are could they be the one? today it seems crazy but
people were alarmed there was this group with secret oaths and andrew jackson happen to belong to it but of course jackson is reelected and as far as the cherokee decision goes marshall just has to live with it because jackson would not see that the law was enforced and it wasn't pressed to the final stage. that would have been if samuel the imprisoned missionary to the cherokees brought a lawsuit he would have had to tell his attorneys the decision is not being followed they are not obeying the decision so the court must notify the president must execute the law. but at the same time an altercation crisis with south
carolina over the tariffs come to a boil will georgia joined south carolina? so the missionary is leaned on and they say drop the lawsuit we don't want to split the country because of your problem so he did. so we never reach the point of the ultimate clash. so who side would he be on in the back and forth between trump and chief justice roberts or the obama judge that stayed i cannot imagine marshall tweeting. [laughter] or doing any public expression
outside as his decision. he wrote letters to people but he very deliberately did not do anything in public. i think he certainly would agree yes there is politics of how judges get picked and where they come from and marshall knew this better than anyone. but i think he would've tried to move the court in the direction of the roberts ideal he was a federalist but he was not out there leading with his chest he would rein in his court there were a couple of times instead of confronting jefferson as thoughtfully as the federalist would have liked these steps back and doesn't want to get the court
into open political to be picked by that political one - - political process that something he wanted the court to embody. >>. >> you chose this because an old friend of mine the professor of law school told me to write this book he told me to write my last book and gave me the title for that book i thought about it for a second and i thought that's a great idea. >> what about the next but? [laughter] he has given me to jeannie has given me three.
my first biography was george washington hamilton was a natural follow and then governor morris for the third but my publisher said no you can do adams or andrew jackson and then i went to morris. i take suggestions. sometimes i come up with my own ideas. >> why haven't you done jefferson yet quick. >> i always want to do jefferson he is very important in the marshall book because he is the antagonist marshall is like prayer rabbit and always gets away but he does have a point with that objection he has is a serious point it is just the attention that we will never get rid of it jefferson i think would be
very hard to do i think his mind is a big house with a lot of rooms all with connected doors there's a way he lived in thought it would be very tough to get at. >> how do you research? as you go or do you sit down quick. >> 80000 words or 200 plus pages and the one thing that has changed over the 20 years i've been doing this that
google books with old books online like senator jones memoir but i read a revolutionary war veterans book this is the only evidence we had he never mentioned it but a fellow soldier with his pension request you can go online to read this man's handwriting. >> even on a research question with writers block if i am stuck i asked my friend who is a phd in history, she can figure out everything. but of the famous cases collins versus virginia having helluva time they sold the out
not write ron sure now style doorstop. then if you want to learn everything that can be known you don't want to read the collective papers, that is what those books do. what is most important about these people so yes some of the family background but mostly in his career and who the litigants were. >> do you ever think as you dig into these cases this is
why quick. >> he only had one semester william and mary yes. i have worries about this with early guidance with scholars who gave me tips and pointers so the matter to be patient and figure out what's going on. i didn't always do it with the trial of aaron burr 25000 word opinion with a lot of wheels spinning in that and with these english sources and with
>> what does every american to know about the constitution quick. >> i am a historian the most exciting thing in the last generation is the way the 14th amendment comes at the center of the constitution and really over the last generation this is how it begins. >> is that contained in your pocket guide crack. >> absolutely the 14th amendment section they would have been shocked to the people who wrote that because when they wrote it the constitution we're just starting to see a change of the national government to be in charge of guaranteeing so the new thing that starts around the civil war.
>> what else is contained in the us pocket guide crack. >> line by line if you want to know everything you need to know is there what is part of the constitution with a quick precise way to explain their history and tell you what they should mean as a historian i tell you what they do mean. >> in your view is it possible the constitution could be amended it could be amended we have a procedure it is a difficult process with a strong consensus to make it