About Montesquieu

"The Founding Fathers were heavily influenced by French philosopher Charles Secondat, Baron de Montesquieu when drafting the Constitution, most notably in connection with the separation of powers."

"The Founding Fathers, most especially James Madison, drew upon Montesquieu’s theory of the separation of powers when drafting the Constitution.  Montesquieu argued that the best way to secure liberty and prevent a government from becoming corrupted was to divide the powers of government among different actors who would check each other.  For example, Montesquieu warned that “Were the executive power not to have a right of restraining the encroachments of the legislative body, the latter would become despotic; for as it might arrogate to itself what authority it pleased, it would soon destroy all the other powers.”
Madison and the Founding Fathers took heed of Montesquieu’s warning by establishing an independent executive (the President), legislative (the Congress), and judiciary (the Supreme Court) in the federal Constitution.  Madison masterfully protected the separation of powers by establishing a thorough system of checks and balances as well."

Montesquieu died on February 10, 1755.   

Quotes from http://www.americassurvivalguide.com/montesquieu.php

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