Todd Estes is a professor and former chair of the history department at Oakland University. His research concentrates on early U.S. political history and political culture, and he is the author of The Jay Treaty Debate, Public Opinion, and the Evolution of Early American Political Culture (2006) and many journal articles and book chapters among other publications. He is currently researching a book on the ratification debate, tentatively entitled "The Campaign for the Constitution: Political Culture and the Ratification Contest." He has won a couple of teaching prizes, including the Oakland University Teaching Excellence Award.
This lecture examines the rise and practice of political moderation in the ratification debate. It focuses on the writings and actions of James Madison and John Jay and traces the emergence of moderation at a key stage of the debate over the Constitution. In fact, it argues that moderation is what enabled the Federalists to reach out to opponents and win them over.