In: Historical Events

Submitted By guitarzycki
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Pages 6
Articles of Confederation and the U.S. Constitution
The Birth of a Nation

Joseph J. Zarzycki

United States History – 405
Aimee James
June 1, 2014

At the end of the revolutionary war the free states of the Union desired some sort of control that would create a unified country. The first such control came from what was called the Articles of Confederation, essentially our first constitution. This document addressed many issues. How should power be divided between local and national governments? How should laws be made, and by whom? Who should be authorized to govern those laws? How could the government be designed to protect the individual rights of the citizens? The Articles of Confederation, as it turned out, were lacking in several key areas and would be considered a failure. After the shortcomings of the articles began to become apparent, the state delegates tried to revise them; but instead, constructed the Constitution.

When creating the Articles of Confederation, thirteen states formed a Confederation referred to as the “League of Friendship” in order to find a solution for common problems and concerns. The Articles of Confederation created a loose Confederation of independent states that gave limited powers to the central government. Each state, regardless of population, would have one vote in the house of Congress. Members of the one-house Congress agreed that the new government should be a unicameral legislature, without an executive branch or a separate judiciary. Under the articles, there wasn’t a strong independent executive. There did not exist a judicial branch so Congress, alone, had the authority to arbitrate disputes between states. Congress was responsible for conducting foreign affairs, declaring war or peace, maintaining an army and navy and a variety of other lesser functions. But the articles denied Congress the power…...

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