James Wilson

one of the Founding Fathers of the United States and a signer of the United States Declaration of Independence
That men ought to be governed, seems to have been agreed on all hands: the reason is, that, without government, they could never attain any high or permanent share of perfection or happiness. But the question has been ― by whom should they be governed? And this has been made a question, by reason of two others ― by whom can they be governed? ― are they capable of governing themselves?

James Wilson (September 14, 1742August 21, 1798) was one of the Founding Fathers of the United States and a signatory of the United States Declaration of Independence. Wilson was elected twice to the Continental Congress, where he represented Pennsylvania, and was a major force in drafting the United States Constitution. A leading legal theorist, he was one of the six original justices appointed by George Washington to the Supreme Court of the United States.


  • The executive power is better to be trusted when it has no screen. Sir, we have a responsibility in the person of our President; he cannot act improperly, and hide either his negligence or inattention; he cannot roll upon any other person the weight of his criminality; no appointment can take place without his nomination; and he is responsible for every nomination he makes... far from being above the laws, he is amenable to them in his private character as a citizen, and in his public character by impeachment.
  • To the Constitution of the United States the term SOVEREIGN, is totally unknown.
  • Man, fearfully and wonderfully made, is the workmanship of his all perfect Creator: A State; useful and valuable as the contrivance is, is the inferior contrivance of man; and from his native dignity derives all its acquired importance.
  • Let a state be considered as subordinate to the people: But let everything else be subordinate to the state.
  • By a State I mean, a complete body of free persons united together for their common benefit, to enjoy peaceably what is their own, and to do justice to others.

External linksEdit

Wikipedia has an article about: