Donald Trump’s contempt for the US Constitution rightfully made the news this week. Still, another dimly-understood feature of that document offers a needed back story to the former president’s remarks.

Because the Founders deeply feared political factionalism, they did not even mention political parties in their new blueprint for governing. Yet before the ink was dry on their new Constitution, proponents of the document’s two most influential champions coalesced to form our “first political party system.”

Mark Banker is a retired teacher and active historian. He can be reached at