Common Sense was immensely popular in disseminating to a very wide audience ideas that were already in common use among the elite who comprised Congress and the leadership cadre of the emerging nation, who rarely cited Paine's arguments in their public calls for independence.  The pamphlet probably had little direct influence on the Continental Congress' decision to issue a Declaration of Independence , since that body was more concerned with how declaring independence would affect the war effort.  Paine's great contribution was in initiating a public debate about independence which had previously been rather muted.
Neither can any state acquire such an authority over other states in virtue of any compacts or cessions. This is a case in which compacts are not binding. Civil liberty is, in this respect, on the same footing with religious liberty. As no people can lawfully surrender their religious liberty by giving up their right of judging for themselves in religion, or by allowing any human beings to prescribe to them what faith they shall embrace, or what mode of worship they shall practise, so neither can any civil societies lawfully surrender their civil liberty by giving up to any extraneous jurisdiction their power of legislating for themselves and disposing their property.  :78–79
Paine died in June 1809, and to drive home the point of his tarnished image, the New York Citizen printed the following line in Paine's obituary: "He had lived long, did some good and much harm." For more than a century following his death, this was the historical verdict handed down upon the legacy of Thomas Paine. Finally, in January 1937, the Times of London turned the tide, referring to him as the "English Voltaire"— a view that has prevailed ever since, with Thomas Paine now regarded as a seminal figure of the American Revolution.