Framers designed a federal system of government, wherein the national and state governments share power and derive all authority from the people, to remedy many of the problems experienced from the Articles of Confederation.
Under the Articles, the United States was governed as a confederation, whereby the national government derived all its power from the states. This arrangement led to a weak national government.
The new system of government also had to be different from the unitary system of Government, where local and regional governments derived all their power from a strong national government.
Framers feared centralizing power in one government or institution, so they made both the state and the federal governments accountable to each other.
All the powers specifically stated in Article I, Section 8, of the Constitution are called Enumerated Powers.
They have the authority to coin money, conduct foreign relations, provide for an army and navy, and declare war.
In addition, Article 1 section 8, contains the necessary and proper clause (elastic clause), which gives Congress the authority to enact laws “necessary and proper” for exercising any of its enumerated powers. These powers derived from the enumerated powers and the necessary and proper clause is called Implied Powers.
The constitution also clearly set out the federal government’s right to collect duties and excises. They also wanted to avoid the financial problems experienced by the national government under the Articles of Confederation.
Allowing this new national government to collect tariffs, or taxes on imported goods, was one way to assert this power. And giving the national government exclusive power o do so eliminated the financial wars between states that had occurred under the Articles.
Article IV of the federal constitution underscores the notion that the national government is the...