Question 1: Given that Madison (in Federalist 10) and Washington warned against the dangers of political factions and political parties, why did they form so early in American history (first as Federalists and Democratic Republicans, and later as Democrats and National Republicans/Whigs)? What do you think were the main political divisions or issues early on that led to the first American political parties? Would the U. S. have been better off without political parties before the 1840s, why or why not?
Question 2: Why was the Mexican War controversial? Why did Thoreau and others protest against the war? If you were a U. S. citizen during this period do you think you would have supported the war or been against it, and why do you think so?