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Key Agreements Made At The Constitutional Convention

Delegates acknowledged that a major error in the statutes was that any constitutional amendment required unanimous agreement from countries. On 23 July, the Convention approved the need for a constitutional amendment, but was not prepared to comment on the details. [121] When the Convention received the draft proposals, another lively debate erupted. Opponents of the export ban have raised objections for economic reasons. One delegate said that denying the power to tax exports would deprive the government of “half of trade regulation.” Another pointed out that export taxation could become important “if America were to become a producing country.” James Wilson feared that the Virginia plan would make the executive branch too dependent on Congress. He pleaded for a single unified leader. Members of a multiple executive would most likely be selected in different regions and would represent regional interests. In Wilson`s view, a single executive could represent the entire nation, while leaving “energy, message and responsibility” to the government. [72] On June 1, Wilson proposed that “the executive be made up of one person.” This request was detached by Charles Pinckney, whose plan required a single executive and explicitly referred to the official as “president.” [72] Roger Sherman opposed a similar parliamentary system in which the executive should be appointed by the legislative branch and directly accountable to Parliament. Edmund Randolph agreed with Wilson that the executive needed “strength,” but he disapproved of a single executive he feared as the “fetus of the monarchy.” [76] Randolph and George Mason led the opposition to a single executive, but most delegates endorsed Wilson. The prospect of George Washington being the first president may have allowed supporters of a single executive to build a grand coalition. Wilson`s request for a single executive was adopted on June 4.

[77] The Convention originally set the executive`s mandate at seven years, but this task would be reviewed. [78] The first thing the Convention did was elect a presidential officer who unanimously elected George Washington as President of the Convention. [25] [Page required] The Convention then adopted rules for its procedures.