How would the United States of America be different if it had a consolidated, unitary government with no policy making authority in the states and localities?
Most were committed to the idea of limited govt.
They knew that power must be restrained, and to divide governmental power would prevent its abuse.
As colonies, the states had developed independently.
The development of a new nation brought with it paranoia.
States sought their sovereignty and autonomy.
States were initially reluctant to sent delegates, but the need for a strong central government was inevitable.
Federalism was needed because there was a massive problem within the states(trade).
Framers called for a federal system strong enough to unify states without stripping them of some of their power.
Very important in the ratification process.
If they failed, we never would have come together.
It is a division of powers where certain powers go to the National Govt., and some powers rest with the States .
Federalism’s major strength is that it allows local action in matters of local concern and national action in matters of wider concern.
Division of Power
Strong central govt. is the supreme authority.
50 states possess their own constitutions.
All must comply with the U.S. constitution.
Powers of National Govt.
Govt. of delegated powers.
Expressed- delegated to national govt.(also known as granted, enumerated)
Implied- not expressly stated in Constitution. (necessary and proper power)
Inherent- belong to national govt. because it is the govt. of sovereign state in world community. There are only a few. Regulate immigration, acquire territory, grant diplomatic recognition.
The Division of Powers Chapter 4, Section 1 2 3
Reserved powers are those that have been reserved specifically for the states or are of a traditionally state scope. These consist mostly of police powers, such as providing fire and police protection, establishment of health regulations, licensing, and education.
Exclusive Powers Can be exercised by Nat’l govt alone. Coin money, make treaties, and lay taxes on imports.
Concurrent Powers Both Nat’l and State govts. possess and exercise. Collect taxes, define crimes and take property for public use.
Three levels-local, state, national govt.
Local govt. serves as parts or subunits to various State govts.
Constitution is Supreme law of land.
It is enacted by the Supremacy Clause of the Const.
Nation’s Obligations to the State
Guarantee that every state have a Republican or representative form of govt.
Grants disaster relief to every state if needed.
Recognize the legal existence and physical boundary of each state.
Admitting New States
Gets permission from Congress by the enabling act.
State Constitution is formed.
Act of admission occurs when certain conditions are set. (Utah-polygamy ban)
Congress can not impose conditions of political nature on the states. (move capitals, etc.)
Grants-in-aid programs are grants of federal money or other resources to the States and/or their cities, counties, and other local units.
Even though the basis of federalism is the division of powers between levels of government, there is still much cooperation between them.
Revenue sharing , used between 1972 and 1987, gave an annual share of federal tax revenues to the States and their local governments .
Categorical grants are made for some specific, closely defined purpose, such as school lunch programs or the construction of airports or water treatment plants. There are usually conditions, or “strings,” attached to regulate the use of these funds.
Block grants are portions of money allocated to States to use for broader purposes, such as health care, social services, or welfare. Block grants often are granted with fewer strings attached.
Project grants are provided to States, localities, and sometimes private agencies that apply for them. They are used for a variety of purposes ranging from medical research to job training and employment programs.
States enter into compacts with the consent of Congress.
One example is the interstate compact between N.J. and N.Y. to create the N.Y. Port Authority.
More than 200 compact are now in force.
Full and Faith Credit
Full Faith & Credit Clause States – states recognize the laws, documents, & court proceedings of the other States.
2 exceptions to the clause:
(1) 1 State cannot enforce another State’s criminal laws. And,
(2) Full faith & credit need not be given to certain divorces granted.
Privileges and Immunities
The Privileges and Immunities Clause provides that no State can draw unreasonable distinctions between its own residents and those persons who happen to live in other States.
States cannot, for example, pay lower welfare benefits to newly arrived residents than it does to its long-term residents, Saens v. Roe , 1999.
However, States can draw reasonable distinctions between its own residents and those of other space, such as charging out-of-State residents higher tuition for State universities than in-State residents.