One Of The Six Basic Principles Of The Constitution: Federalism



One of the six basic principles of the Constitution is federalism. Federalism is a system of government in which power is shared by the national and state governments, which came into existence when the United States declared its independence in 1776. A federal system is different from a confederation, where states have most of the power, and it is different from a unitary system, where the central government is in charge. A written constitution divides the powers of the government on a territorial basis. The division is made between a central, or national, government and several regional or local governments. Each level of government has its own area of powers and no level ...

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to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people."
Therefore, federalism produces a dual system of government. It provides for two basic levels of government, each with its own authority and each operates over the same people and territory at the same time.

Federalism's major strength is that it allows local actions in matters of local concern and national action in matters of wider concern. Federalism allows for Local traditions, needs, and desires to vary from one State to another. For example, most forms of gambling are legal in Nevada but against the law in most other states. Most states do not bus students free of charge but New Jersey does. These are just few of the many illustrations of this point.

Federalism allows and encourages local choice in many matters. It also provides for the strength that comes from union. Foreign affairs and national defense offer useful ...

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had no power in these matters, and the central government had no executive or judicial branch. Congress exercised the legislative powers and committees of Congress carried out the laws as well. The central governement was weak however, because it lacked the power to tax or regulate citizens directly and had to depend on the state governments to do so.

The regional governments maintain partial autonomy after bewing subsumed into the larger central government . The central government is responsible for matters of mutual concern to all regions, such as foreign affairs, defense, and currency, while the regional governments are entrusted with authority over other matters such ...

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Added: 5/8/2007 11:43:30 AM
Category: Government
Type: Premium Paper
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