The purchasing process of the Louisiana Territory was not as easy of a business transaction as one might think. It was a very rushed, stressful process that caused President Thomas Jefferson a considerable amount of mental and emotional anguish. The problem that was the Louisiana purchase can be broken into three parts: Jefferson’s dilemma, Jefferson’s decision, and the consequences.
When the opportunity to purchase the Louisiana Territory presented itself, Jefferson could not pass it up. However, being a strict constructionist, Jefferson strongly felt that any powers not specifically given to the federal government were reserved for the states. Obtaining the Louisiana territory would be very beneficial to the growing United States, but Jefferson opposed “manipulating” the constitution to allow him any power he wanted. So Jefferson proposed the idea of possibly making an amendment to the constitution that made it possible for the president to purchase land for the United States. The problem with this idea was time. It would take over three months for the amendment to be approved by the House, Senate, and an appropriate number of states.Napoleon started to wish he had not signed the treaty and looked for any reason to break it. If a decision were not made soon, Jefferson would lose the opportunity altogether. Jefferson had to find a way to make the Louisiana purchase without the danger of it being ruled unconstitutional.
Jefferson finally made a decision. He decided to purchase the Louisiana Territory from France. However, he still needed two-thirds of the Senate and a majority of the House to approve this treaty. Jefferson’s party had an overwhelming majority in both the House and the Senate, so he knew his treaty would pass. Jefferson specifically said that Congress should just approve the treaty “without talking.” The treaty had to be made “now,” leaving congress no time to discuss it. Not surprisingly, the treaty quickly…