Federalism in the United States Essay

September 21, 2021 by Essay Writer

Federalism is a government political system, which has both local units and states and national government. The system has powers to come up with final decisions based on some governmental practices. It is a government system with the national as well as state levels sharing political supremacy. The local units or states and the national government function autonomously.

The power assignments of the national government comprises of both implied and expressed powers. Article I, Section 8 presents the majority of the expressed authorities. The Implied powers permit the central government to come up with decisions, which are not part of the expressed powers.

There is also the Necessary and Proper Clause in Article I, Section 8. Inherent Powers clause under Article I, Section 8 gives powers, which are acknowledged by every sovereign nation. State Governments powers clause was delegated to the national government through the Tenth Amendment. Through this, the national government has extended the capacity of governmental activities on a grand scale (Gerston 234).

There are other clauses under Article I, Section 8, like the Concurrent Powers clause, which provide powers shared by the national government with state governments. These include; the power to generate and implement laws, the police power, the power to levy tax, and the power to establish courts with limitation of extent.

Prohibited Powers at the same time concerns both the state and national governments. For example, there is a prohibition of export taxation for national government. On the other hand, the State governments are restricted from carrying out foreign policy as well as from coining money (Ginsberg, Theodore, Lowi &Weir 337).

The Supremacy Clause of Article VI authorizes the national government activities to be supreme. It also gives provision that any conflict involving legitimate practices of the national government with a state ought to be resolved in support of the national government. Similarly, the Interstate Relations under Article IV tries to resolve possible problems among states by specifying some clauses.

These clauses include full faith and credit clause, which ensure that the states ought to honor activities of other states. There are also the Privileges and immunities that require citizens of one state not to treat those from other states as aliens. For example, it gives a provision that when a citizen of a given state visits another state, he or she should get reception as a citizen of the state. The clause also plays a crucial role in interstate extradition.

It ensures that when a person is suspected to have done a crime in a given state and escape to another state, he should be extradited to the alleged crime scene state. In addition, the Article plays another role under Interstate compacts. It ensures the compacts between states to be permitted by Congress. This occurs when the compact changes the power connection between the national government and states (Zavodnyik, 108).

The McCulloch v. Maryland Supreme Court decision was necessary in expansion of national government powers. This case advanced a constitutional issue relevant to the national government powers. In this case, the Chief Justice John Marshall’s verdict confirmed national authority. The Congress power is not firmly restricted towards expressed powers. For example, Marshall held there were implied powers for Congress to execute the expressed powers.

Additionally, Marshall upheld the doctrine of supremacy through the decision that states would not override federal practices by taxing them. Gibbons v. Ogden case provides the national government precedent to control various economic activities. There was expanded explanation of what would be taken as interstate trade. Eventually, this description would permit Congress the authority to control broader economic activities compared to the past (LaCroix, 213).

The New Deal, as well as Cooperative Federalism, emphasized an extended duty for the national government. It encouraged the cooperation between the states and national government. The New Deal for instance responded to the Great Depression. This was through Franklin D. Roosevelt’s social-welfare programs intended to ease the unfavorable economic period. However, Dual federalism directed that programs like aid for the poor were completely not the federal duty (Gerston 187).

Works Cited

Gerston, Larry. American Federalism: A Concise Introduction Armonk. New York, United States: M.E. Sharp, 2007. Print.

Ginsberg, Benjamin, Theodore J. Lowi, and Weir, Margaret. We the People: An Introduction to American Politics. New York: W.W. Norton & Co Press, 2009. Print.

LaCroix, Alison. The Ideological Origins of American Federalism. Cambridge, Massachusetts, United States: Harvard University Press, 2010. Print.

Zavodnyik, Peter. The Rise of the Federal Colossus: The Growth of Federal Power from Lincoln to F.D.R. California: Santa Barbara Press, 2011. Print.

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