2016 Elections

Be Thankful Carson Was Wrong About Jefferson

This Founding Father had some terrible ideas about writing the Constitution.

To be fair, the Declaration of Independence was pretty good.

Photographer: Alex Wong/Getty Images

I come not to mock Ben Carson for forgetting that Thomas Jefferson was in France when the Constitution and Bill of Rights were drafted, but to thank him for (unwittingly) raising the topic. My thesis is this: We should be thankful Jefferson was away. Notwithstanding the genius of the Declaration of Independence, its principal draftsman had truly terrible views about what a constitution should be like. If we’d followed them, we wouldn't have the Constitution we revere. In fact, I don't think we’d have much of a constitution at all.

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