Federalism and Conflicts
The United States operates under a unique system of federalism in which power, authority, and responsibility are divided or shared between the federal government and the state, tribal, and local governments. This decentralized or fragmented system helps the government remain responsive at the grass-roots level and avoid totalitarianism, but also contributes to inherent conflicts between and among federal, state, and local laws. One reason that conflicts occur is because the Constitution is somewhat vague about how the powers of the federal, state, and local governments are divided or shared. Another reason is because the interests and needs of federal, state, and local governments related to policy areas, such as education and healthcare, often overlap. For this Discussion, you explore federalism and how it sometimes contributes to conflicts between and among federal, state, and local laws. Later in the week, you explore how such conflicts are resolved.
To prepare for this Discussion:
With these thoughts in mind:
Post by Day 4 a brief description of the policy area you selected. Then explain how federalism contributed to a conflict between federal and state laws or state and local laws related to the policy area you selected. Be specific.
Be sure to support your postings and responses with specific references to the Learning Resources.
Read a selection of your colleagues’ postings.
Respond by Day 6 to at least one of your colleagues’ postings in one or more of the following ways:
Return to this Discussion in a few days to read the responses to your initial posting. Note what you have learned and/or any insights you have gained as a result of the comments your colleagues made.