How Federalism Has Evolved Essay

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How Federalism Has Evolved When the forefathers created the Constitution and laid down the outline for the government of the United States, they gave the federal government far more power than they originally had. However, a main goal of theirs was to maintain the power of the states. The Federalists supported this change. The anti-Federalists, on the other hand, were strictly opposed to it and protested it bitterly. They feared that a central government with so much power would take away power from the states, and through the states, the people. While a strong central government did create a higher power than previously existed, measures were taken to ensure that the people retained their rights. As the years progressed, the government took…show more content…
Anti-Federalists hated this bank and said that the government could not do anything that was not listed specifically in the Constitution. It was ruled, in favor of the Federalists, that the government had certain “implied powers” given by Article 1, Section 8, or the elastic clause. This clause “concluded… that Congress has the power to ‘make all laws necessary and proper for carrying into execution the foregoing powers’” (qtd. in Edwards, Wattenberg, and Lineberry 71). After this case, the federal government used this clause to gain more and more power, such as with the New Deal and other Progressive movements. In doing this, the spheres began to melt together, and dual federalism was replaced with cooperative federalism. This was justified by saying that it was necessary in order to keep with the changing of the times, but instead the government is slowing taking more and more power for itself and taking it away from the states. Another broadly interpreted clause in the constitution--the commerce clause--has made the federal government much too strong and taken away the rights that should be left to the states and the people that live

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