They were instrumental in gaining popular support for a large republic. The Federalist #10 is an important document as it set out the framework for how we view special interests, majority rule, and where the power in government will reside.
A major portion of the Federalist papers defined the nature of special interest groups. Madison termed them factions and warned of their ability to wield undue influence. Factions are known by the more modern term special interest groups. By concentrating money and political power a small minority can have a great impact on laws and legislation. Factions can bring about corruption and give a voice to a segment of the population that is unduly loud in comparison with the one man one vote philosophy that underpins our constitutional system. Small, well organized factions can influence local politics, elect friendly delegates, and promote laws that are favorable to their cause. In this process the average voter is shut out from the system of government and it is given over to a form of tyranny.
Factions have two main impacts on the constitutional system. It has the causes, which are the organized groups attempting to subvert the system, and the results which Madison termed the effects. Madison was realistic in his analyzing of the causes and effects. He understood that there could be no law against special interest groups working to forward their agenda. ...
In creating a constitutional government where factions could have their least effect, Madison examined the Democracy and the Republic. Democracy is inherently the most fair to the majority, and the most expedient. Democracy also carries with it the dangers of mob rule. It locks out the interests of the minority and does not consider individual freedom. A democracy has the ability and the function of eliminating dissent and minority viewpoints. In Madison's view this was the biggest threat of a democratic form of government. While a Democracy carried with it the threat of the majority usurping the rights of the minority, a Republic carries with it the opportunity for rule by a select few.
Representative Republicanism was the lesser of the two evils as Madison viewed it. A Republic that was represented by local representatives would help establish a balance between the majority and the rights of the minority. Spreading out the political power geographically and demographically would help deter the majority from gaining absolute rule. Madison foresaw the weakness of a republic becoming elitist and ruled by factions. However, his vision of a large republic helps to minimize the effects of rule by a few special interests. Madison believed that factions could not overtake a large republic. While they may be able to promote local support, on the federal stage the constitutional form of government and the balance of power would limit their influence. When compared to a democracy, a republic was more beneficial to the people. The larger the republic, the less vulnerable to undue influence by factions it would have.
Madison's Federalist #10 helped set the tone for our constitutional form of government we have today. While