On this day in 1792, President George Washington exercised the first presidential veto of a Congressional bill, the Apportionment Act of 1792.
Washington sought opinions from his closest advisors: Edmund Randolph, Thomas Jefferson, Alexander Hamilton, and Henry Knox. Though the opinions of the four men were split, the President ultimately deemed the Act unconstitutional, despite his concerns that his veto may make it appear that he was “taking side with a Southern party.”
In another first, George Washington made this powerful statement at his first inaugural address about where true power and control is found:
“No people can be bound to acknowledge and adore the invisible hand which conducts the affairs of men more than the People of the United States.”