Article 1, Section 8, Clause 1
James Madison, Preface to Debates in theCONVENTION OF 1787Farrand 3:547
At the date of the Convention, the aspect & retrospect of the pol: condition of the U. S. could not but fill the pub. mind with a gloom which was relieved only by a hope that so select a Body would devise an adequate remedy for the existing and prospective evils so impressively demanding it
It was seen that the public debt rendered so sacred by the cause in which it had been incurred remained without any provision for its payment. The reiterated and elaborate efforts of Cong. to procure from the States a more adequate power to raise the means of payment had failed. The effect of the ordinary requisitions of Congress had only displayed the inefficiency of the authy. making them; none of the States having duly complied with them, some having failed altogether or nearly so; and in one instance, that of N. Jersey, a compliance was expressly refused; nor was more yielded to the expostulations of members of Congs. deputed to her Legislature than a mere repeal of the law, without a compliance.
The Founders' Constitution
Volume 2, Article 1, Section 8, Clause 1, Document 2
The University of Chicago Press
Farrand, Max, ed. The Records of the Federal Convention of 1787. Rev. ed. 4 vols. New Haven and London: Yale University Press, 1937.
Easy to print version.