PoSc 301 State and Local Gov Notes Chap 2

PoSc 301 State and Local Gov Notes Chap 2 - Chapter Two...

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Chapter Two – Power and Responsibility can be divided up into three ways 1. unitary government 2. confederacy 3. federal system Unitary System – one in which all government is derived from a central authority In the US states function as unitary systems Confederacy – a league of sovereign states in which a limited central government exercises few independent powers Federal System – a means of dividing the power and functions of government between a central government and a specified number of geographically defined regional jurisdictions Advantages of Federalism 1. A federal system helps manage social and political conflict (disperses power) 2. federalism promotes administrative efficiency (no large central bureaucracy, but there are coordination problems) 3. federalism encourages innovation (customization and experimentation) 4. a federal system maximizes political participation in government (local government) James Madison serperated the problem in terms of factions “Politcal differences and self interest led to the formation of factions” Three political devices were placed into the US constitution to control factions 1. system of representative government 2. division of government into three branches 3. the government was structured as a federal system “harmonious frustration” US started with the articals of donfederation – problem was that states were too strong Constitutional Convention – Madison middle ground Virginia Plan – proposed a strong central government spearheaded by a powerful bicameral congress based on population New Jersey Plan – one house legislature with equal representation Great Compromise (Conn Compromise) – the lower house should be based on population Enumerated powers – those powers expressidly given to the national government Concurrent Powers – those powers granted by the constitution to both the national and state government Federalists favored – nation centered federalism (the federal government is dominant over the states)
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PoSc 301 State and Local Gov Notes Chap 2 - Chapter Two...

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