Reply To: Philadelphia Convention lecture–tariff question


George Mason called in the Philadelphia Convention for a two-thirds vote to be required to levy a tariff. His contention was that otherwise, the 8-5 northern majority of states would mean that the North could use the tariff power to force the South to pay higher shipping charges. He lost.

As the exporting/importing section, tariffs would fall mostly on the South and have negative repercussions on the export business — which too would hurt the South. As Mason had forecast, this became a major sectional issue virtually from the minute the Constitution was implemented.