History Articles of Confederation DBQ

History Articles of Confederation DBQ - Articles of...

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Articles of Confederation
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Robert Wu DBQ #2 Period 5 1/5/08 US I GL After signing the Declaration of Independence, members of the Second Continental Congress adopted the Articles of Confederation on November 15, 1777 to prove to the French that they possessed a legitimate government. Nevertheless, despite its initial intent, the Articles of Confederation did not provide the United States with an effective government. A major issue posed by the Articles of Confederation was that it gave more power to the states than to Congress after it was ratified on March 1, 1781. Due to past experience with British sovereignty, Americans favored a confederation rather than a federation where most power rested on the central government. As a result, Congress possessed few powers and there was no separation of power into the three branches of government we have today: legislature, executive, judicial. The absence of the Judicial Branch meant that land disputes between states could not be resolved, as state courts always sided with their own state. According to a map from John Blum’s The National Experience , the western land claims of states from 1781 to 1802 often overlapped, since Congress could not regulate state land boundaries (Document E). In addition, the amendment process proved impractical because unanimity between the states was necessary in passing amendments, and all bills of higher importance required the approval of
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nine out of thirteen states.
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