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Alien and Sedition acts

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Alien and Sedition acts

With the US then engaged in an undeclared naval war with France, and French agents and spies known to be operating in the country, Congress declared that national security required passage of the Alien [Friends] Act, Alien Enemies Act, Naturalization Act (1798), and Sedition Act. Although enacted at a time when war with France seemed imminent, most of the laws were drafted so that they could also be used to muzzle Democratic party criticism of the Federalist party in the 1800 election.