Free Essay Comparing the Articles of Confederation and the Constitution

Published: 2022-10-24
Free Essay Comparing the Articles of Confederation and the Constitution
Type of paper:  Course work
Categories:  United States Constitution
Pages: 4
Wordcount: 943 words
8 min read

States were Sovereign

Sovereign means having supreme people to rule and make governance policies. The articles of confederations gave the state supreme power over the federal government. The states had more governance powers such as collecting taxes, making policies and regulating commerce. However the United States Constitution took more of the states' powers and gave it to the federal governments. The constitution made federal government more powerful than states taking away their sovereignty. Article1 Section 1 states "All legislative Powers herein granted shall be vested in a Congress of the United States, which shall consist of a Senate and House of Representatives." This article took all powers of legislation and gave it to the federal government. All states are required to implement all policies made by the Senate, which makes the federal government more powerful than states.

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No Independent Executive

Executive means having power and mandate to make decisions. The articles of confederation did not have a position in the executive branch. The president under the articles of the federation was a ceremonial position under confederation congress. This created problems since the president could not make the ultimate decisions. At the same time, there was no ultimate succession plan for a presidential position. This problem was solved by the constitution, which created independent arms of government that is, the executive, judiciary and the legislature. The executive is under the president of the United States. Article II, Section I states that "The executive Power shall be vested in a President of the United States of America. He shall hold his Office during the Term of four Years, and, together with the Vice President, chosen for the same Term, be elected..."

No Federal Courts - All Laws Enforced by State Courts

A federal court is a judicial system under a federal government that is independent of all other arms of government. The articles of confederation did not establish federal courts. There was no judicial power system on the articles of confederation; the law was dependent on the states. The Congress had no means of implementing the legislative act. It that states could ignore the law and the Congress could not hold them accountable. However, the constitution solved the problem by establishing a judicial system under article two of the constitution. The judicial system implements interpret and help in implementing it article III, section I states, "The judicial Power of the United States shall be vested in one Supreme Court, and such inferior Courts as the Congress may from time to time ordain and establish. The Judges, both of the supreme and inferior Courts, shall hold their Offices during good Behavior, and shall, at stated Times, receive for their Services a Compensation, which shall not be diminished during their Continuance in Office" article III continues to explain the role of the judiciary and its limits.

No Taxing Power Given to Congress

Tax is a charge imposed by the government on particular goods, income, service or activity to raise revenue. Under the articles of confederation, Congress had no powers to regulate trade or raise t=funds through taxation. The Congress could only raise funds by borrowing from the states, a foreign government or selling western lands. This created a problem in financing congress operations. However, the constitution solved this problem giving the Congress power to lay and collect tax, duties as per the article I section 8 clause1

Congress had no Power over Interstate or Foreign Commerce

Interstate commerce means trade among states while foreign commerce incorporates foreign trade. In the articles of confederation, Congress had no power to control interstate or foreign commerce. This created a problem in which trade was not standardized nor was the US protected from international trade. However, the constitution solved the problem by introducing the commerce clause which gives Congress power to regulate interstate and foreign commerce. This is found in article I, section 8, clause 3 of the constitution.

Congress Consists of One Body and Each State had One Vote

Congress means a representation of society by coming together for a common goal such as political benefits. Under the articles of confederation, Congress was one body. Despite the population or delegates of a state, each state had one vote on national matters. On the contrary, the constitution under article I created two houses under congress; the Senate and the House of Representatives. The House of representatives has members depending on the population of a state while the Senate has two delegates from each state despite the population size. In the Senate, every state receives two votes.

Amended only by Approval of ALL the States

Amend means to modify a regulation to acceptable parameters. Any amendment to be made under the articles of confederation was to be approved by all states. This created barriers to making critical law amendments. However the constitution under article section 3, a bill is passed by the two-thirds of the majority in both the House of Representatives and Congress.

Congress has only Specific, Delegated Powers

Delegated powers meant the authority power that was only defined by a set framework. The Congress under articles of federation had specifically delegated powers which were identified. Other roles of powers were vested in the states. However, the constitution under article I section8, delegated powers were given to the federal government.

Only State Governments Act Directly on the People

Only the states acted directly on the people. The federal government had no power over the people directly. The Constitution solved the problem under article III section2, which gave the federal government to act directly with the people under the reasonable mandate given by the constitution. The states still have specific regulated jurisdiction on the people.

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