The Federal System Of Government Essay

1679 Words Dec 12th, 2016 7 Pages
Federal systems of government are generally characterized by government powers being divided or shared between a national government and smaller administrative units such as states, cantons, and provinces among others. These systems’ primary aim is to combine the unitary system’s myriad advantages with those of the confederate system. The U.S. has a federal system of government, which is secured in the U.S. Constitution. The Constitution defines the relationship between the two principal federal units- the federal government and the state governments. As Gerston notes, the U.S. adopted federalism to solve the political problems that the Articles of Confederation presented. For instance, the Articles empowered the Continental Congress to declare war as well as sign treaties, but failed to grant it the power to collect taxes in order to raise an army. In addition, any major decisions by the Continental Congress needed an unanimous vote (Gerston 24-25). Since its inception in the late 18th century following the adoption of the Constitution, American federalism has gradually evolved to what it is today. Accordingly; this paper assesses how federalism in the U.S. has evolved, and highlights its impact to states and localities. Though the U.S. still uses federalism since its instatement, the practical application of federalism has changed over time. This change has been characterized by important events shaping the balance between the federal government and the state…

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