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What Is Federalism

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What is Federalism?

Jennifer Siminski
Professor El-Yacoubi
POL 110
5 November 2013

In the beginning federalism was brought up by the framers. They wanted it to be a way of organizing the nation so that two or more ways of government can have a type of authority over the same people. The power is shared between the units of government. Federalism has held much tension over who should control policies, individual states or national government as a whole. To the framers, federalism was important in the design of the constitution. Federalism would foster custom-made laws that would fit the special needs of particular communities; they would do this by ensuring that all the activities of the public life would directly affect the people taking place within the states and their local governments. Also the people of the states would remain involved in the process of making laws at the local and state levels. They thought that if they kept the government close to the people, they would be more comfortable with it. One change that Hickok pointed out is that “Today the national government dominates the American political system.” (Hickok 1991) Another change that federalism has gone through is that the states and the national government’s relationship has actually changed because of the clashing of political interests, rather than changing by the political principles that are contained within the constitution. Another change that federalism has gone through is that these days congress can spend money for pretty much anything that they deem an advance for the general welfare. They even take it as far as using the funds for something other than they were intended to be used for. “The impact of foreign wars and the emergence of a truly national and international economy brought additional changes to the nature of American federalism.” (Hickok 1991) As the...

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