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Presentation on theme: "FEDERALISM."— Presentation transcript:


2 87,500 Governments! There are various ways of ordering relations between central governments and smaller units of government, ie: Unitary and Confederal. Federalism is also one of these ways Federalism simply means “divided government”

3 A Unitary System Central government gives power to sub-national governments and hold power through funding (counties, provinces, etc.). Local governments typically have only those powers granted to them by the central government, rather than any reserved powers. Examples are countries like France, Britain, Japan, Israel and the Philippines

4 A Confederal System Power is retained by local or regional governments. Example: The EU (European Union). Each country has ultimate power within the system although there is an EU parliament and other institutions that set a common European policy.

5 Defining Federalism What is Federalism? Intergovernmental Relations-
Definition: A way of organizing a nation so that two or more levels of government have formal authority over the land and people. Intergovernmental Relations- Definition: The workings of the federal system- the entire set of interactions among national, state and local governments.

6 A Federal System Divides power between the national and lower level governments. Each government has distinct powers that the other governments cannot override. Examples: Australia, Brazil, Canada, Germany, India, Mexico, and the United States.

7 Defining Federalism Unitary Confederate Federal Central
Holds primary authority Regulates activities of states Limited powers regarding states Shares power with the states State Little or no powers Regulated by central government Sovereign Allocate some duties to central government Shares power with the central government Citizens Vote for central government officials Vote for state government officials Votes for both state & central officials

8 The Flow of Power in Three Systems of Government

9 Why Federalism? It was a compromise between the large and small states
It also allows many functions to be farmed out to the states The size of a country makes federalism practical It allows more direct access to government Works well in the US where we have many political subcultures: races, wealth, religious, age, sexual preference Decentralizes our policies Which government should take care of which problem? States can solve the same problem in different ways. Decentralizes our politics More opportunities to participate



12 Separation of Powers and Federalism Reality Chart
1. Separation of Powers is the horizontal dispersion of power--BRANCHES. 2. Federalism is the vertical dispersion of power--LEVELS.

13 The Constitutional Basis of Federalism
The Division of Power The U.S. Constitution Laws of Congress Treaties State Constitutions State Laws

14 The Constitutional Basis of Federalism
States’ Obligations to Each Other Full Faith and Credit Extradition Privileges and Immunities

15 The Roots of the Federal System
The Framers worked to create a political system that was halfway between the failed confederation of the Articles of Confederation and the tyrannical unitary system of Great Britain. The three major arguments for federalism are: the prevention of tyranny; the provision for increased participation in politics; and the use of the states as testing grounds or laboratories for new policies and programs.

16 The Powers of Government
National Government - one of delegated powers. 3 types of delegated power: - enumerated (expressed) - implied - inherent

17 Enumerated powers - literally expressed
Article I, section 8 lay and collect taxes, duties, and imposts provide for the common defense and general welfare of the United States regulate commerce with foreign nations, and among the states, and with Indian tribes coin money and regulate the value thereof declare war

18 Implied Powers- not literally stated but reasonable implied
Article I, Section 8, clause 18 “necessary and proper clause” or elastic clause The necessary and proper clause has often been used to expand the powers of the national government.

19 Inherent powers Powers which belong to the national government by virtue of their existence For Example: Immigration is a national power and always has been!!

20 Reserved powers or State Powers (police powers)
Most of State powers come from the Tenth Amendment that says: "The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people."

21 Powers shared by the national and state governments
Concurrent powers Powers shared by the national and state governments

22 Denied Powers Article I, section 9 lays out powers denied to the central government. For example: give preference to ports of one state over another Article I, section 10 lays out the powers denied to the states. For example: enter into treaties, alliances, or confederations

23 The Evolution and Development of Federalism
The allocation of powers in our federal system has changed dramatically over the years. The Supreme Court in its role as interpreter of constitution has been a major player in the redefinition of our Federal system. McCulloch v. Maryland (1819) Gibbons v. Ogden (1824) Dred Scott v. Sandford (1857)

24 McCulloch v. Maryland (1819)
McCulluch was the first major decision by the Supreme Court under Chief Justice John Marshall about the relationship between the states and the national government. The Court upheld the power of the national government and denied the right of a state to tax the bank. The Court’s broad interpretation of the necessary and proper clause paved the way for later rulings upholding expansive federal powers.

25 Gibbons v. Ogden (1824) The Gibbons case centered on the conflict between the states and the powers of Congress. Could New York grant a monopoly concession on the navigation of the Hudson River? The Hudson River forms part of the border between New York and New Jersey and the U.S. Congress also licensed a ship to sail the Hudson. The main constitutional question in Gibbons was about the scope of Congress' authority under the Commerce Clause. In Gibbons, the Court upheld broad congressional power over interstate commerce.

26 Dred Scott v. Sandford (1857)
The Supreme Court articulated the idea of concurrent powers and dual federalism in which separate but equally powerful levels of government is preferable, and the national government should not exceed its enumerated powers. The Taney Court held that Mr. Scott was not a U.S. citizen and therefore not entitled to sue in federal court. The case was dismissed and Scott remained a slave. Taney further wrote that Congress had no power to abolish slavery in the territories and slaves were private property protected by the Constitution.

27 The Dispute over the Division of Power
The Civil War ended the idea that a state could lawfully leave the Union, but it did not end the discussion over division of power, (federalism), between the national and state governments. This discussion can be viewed as progressing through three stages: 1. Dual Federalism – the national and state governments as equal sovereign powers 2. Cooperative Federalism – the idea that states and the national government should cooperate to solve problems 3. New Federalism – The goal here is to restore to the states some of the powers that have been exercised by the national government since the 1930s.


29 Intergovernmental Relations Today
Fiscal Federalism Definition: The pattern of spending, taxing, and providing grants in the federal system; it is the cornerstone of the national government’s relations with state and local governments.

30 Intergovernmental Relations Today
Fiscal Federalism: The Grant System: Distributing the Federal Pie Categorical Grants: Federal grants that can be used for specific purposes. They have strings attached Project Grants- based on merit Formula Grants: amount varies based on formulas Block Grants: Federal grants given more or less automatically to support broad programs. Grants are given to states & local governments

31 Intergovernmental Relations Today
Fiscal Federalism… The Scramble for Federal Dollars At least $300 billion in grants every year Universalism- a little something for everybody The Mandate Blues Mandates are the “strings” attached to federal money Unfunded mandates are requirements on state & local governments- but no money

32 Understanding Federalism
Advantages for Democracy Increasing access to government Local problems can be solved locally Hard for political parties / interest groups to dominate ALL politics Disadvantages for Democracy States have different levels of service Local interest can counteract national interests Too many levels of government- too much money

33 Understanding Federalism

34 Understanding Federalism
Federalism and the Scope of Government Which level of government is best able to solve the problem? Which level of government is best able to fund solutions to the problem?

35 Federalism as a Partisan Issue
“New Federalism.” Beginning with President Richard Nixon (1969–1974) the Republican Party championed devolution, or the transfer of powers from the national government to the states. They called this policy federalism, a new use of the term. Under current conditions liberals may have pragmatic reasons to support states’ rights in some instances, such as in gay rights issues.

36 Federalism and the Supreme Court
Reigning in the Commerce Power Gun Free School example, feds regulate and area that had nothing to do with commerce; violence against women act, effect on commerce not enough to justify regulation of non economic conduct State Sovereignty and the Eleventh Amendment state employees could not sue state for violating federal act; Tenth Amendment Issues Brady handgun and violence prevention act, cannot have federal leg mandating what state employees have to do

37 Continuity and Change Federalism as outlined at Philadelphia in 1787 has evolved considerably over time. Initially, the states remained quite powerful, and the national government was small and weak. Over time the national government became progressively stronger. However, we have a Court today that is more interested in reinvesting power in the Tenth Amendment and in the states.

38 Federal Preemption from 1900 to the Present

39 The Staircase of Federalism

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