The Bill of Rights
The Bill of Rights: The Fight to Secure America's Liberties by Carol Berkin. ISBN 978-1-4767-4379-0. Copyright 2015. Hardcover with 259 pages including bibliography, notes, and index.
The real story of how the Bill of Rights came to be: a concise, vivid history of political strategy, big egos, and partisan interest that set the terms of the ongoing contest between the federal government and the states.
In 1789, the young nation faced a great ideological divide around a question still unanswered today: should broad power and authority reside in the federal government or should it reside in state governments? The Bill of Rights, from protecting religious freedom and the people's right to bear arms to reserving un-enumerated rights to the states, was a political ploy first, and matter of principle second. How and why Madison came to devise this plan, the divisive debates it fostered in the Congress, and its ultimate success in defeating anti-federalist counter plans to severely restrict the powers of the federal government is more engrossing than any of the myths that shroud our national beginnings.