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Articles of Confederation: The First Governing Systems of the USA Essay

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Updated: Feb 22nd, 2022

The Articles of Confederation were the first governing systems of the United States of America, having been ratified on March 1, 1781. It offered access to digital materials at the Library of Congress, a few print bibliographies, and links to other external websites. This system had granted the states much authority. The first Constitution of the United States was significantly compromised by the Articles of Confederation (Brinkley, 267). They established a loose confederation of sovereign states and an unstable central government handing over power to the state governments. A vibrant federal government’s need became clear and later led to the 1787’s Constitution Convention, which drafted the current constitution, replacing the Articles of Confederation (Brinkley, 274). The system did not succeed because it led the states to demand a new Constitution. The United States’ economy faltered so much under the Articles (Brinkley, 265). This is because the federal authority could neither regulate commerce nor enforce tax laws. The country’s economic state worsened, and thus, the Articles of Confederation failed.

American leaders noticed that the country required a new and more robust constitution shortly after the Revolutionary War. Delegates, drawn from the 12 states convened in Philadelphia between May and September 1787, revised the Articles of Confederation (Brinkley, 268). Since the framers of this document were not all of one mind, they did not have a debate on most of the provisions. The convention was put in place since the system proved insufficient to cope with the growing nation’s challenges. Some of the contentious issues were slavery, taxes, trade, representation, foreign affairs, and division of power between the government branches. Ten months of private and public discussion were needed to secure ratification by the nine states. Even then, North Carolina and Rhode Island held out until after the Bill of Rights was adopted.

The American constitution has been the jurisprudence for over two millennia, making it so controversial. Two approaches to the document usually determine where judges meet in these disputes. Strict construction of the constitutions is the philosophy of constitutional interpretation, which states that the constitution should be interpreted and used based on an accurate reading of the text (Brinkley, 275). On the other hand, loose construction of the constitution states that the legal interpretation needs to apply knowledge from outside the constitution’s text, like political circumstances, scientific findings, and history. The framers were not accurate enough because they did not foresee the problem that the Bill of Rights would cause.

Work Cited

Brinkley, Douglas. American Heritage History of the United States. New World City, 2015.

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IvyPanda. "Articles of Confederation: The First Governing Systems of the USA." February 22, 2022. https://ivypanda.com/essays/articles-of-confederation-the-first-governing-systems-of-the-usa/.

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IvyPanda. 2022. "Articles of Confederation: The First Governing Systems of the USA." February 22, 2022. https://ivypanda.com/essays/articles-of-confederation-the-first-governing-systems-of-the-usa/.

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IvyPanda. (2022) 'Articles of Confederation: The First Governing Systems of the USA'. 22 February.

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