Spain vs. Usa: Differences in Government and Political Systems

Topics: United States, President of the United States, Separation of powers Pages: 9 (3333 words) Published: December 12, 2012
The United States of America vs. Spain
Differences in Government and Political Systems
Claire Hansen

There are a multitude of political systems around the world today. Regardless of similarities, each has its own unique qualities. This paper will discuss the differences and similarities of the political systems and government of both the United States of America and Spain. First, a short analysis of each countries history will be provided. This will give some background to the political, emotional and economical state of each country. This will lead to how the governments and political systems are now. Finally, there will be an analysis on the similarities and differences between both countries. The United States of America: History

July 4th 1776 has been noted as one of the most imperative, if not the most, dates in the history of the United States of America. Marking its independence from Great Britain, it also was the beginning of the creation of a federal government initially comprised of 13 states. This would eventually grow to the 50 states the country is now made up of. The original document binding the thirteen states together is known as the Articles of Confederation. Though it linked the previously known colonies together, it gave most of the young nations power to the individual states, leaving the national government extremely weak. The Founding Fathers decided to replace this document with one that would put more emphasis on the national government. The Constitution that was put into operation in 1789 called for these states to give up their sovereignty in order to form a central authority. Each state is required to submit themselves to this government. While the system is relatively organized and states are compliant to this now, initially there were problems. Before the Constitution was ratified the original 13 states initially had more power than the federal government. They each kept individual powers such as foreign policy and trade negotiations. For some time, many believed that the states were the supreme authority and had the right to nullify acts made by the federal government. This created immense tensions among the state and federal levels. After the adaptation of the Constitution, tensions began to subdue. Federalism was put into place, clearly defining the roles of national and state governments. Foreign relationships, declaration of war and the coining of money are all overseen by the national government while public health and safety, interstate trade, education and the ratification of the amendments are all under the state government. Each level has its own powers, but they also share some duties. These include the making and enforcement of laws, taxation and the borrowing of money. The United States of America: Civil War

January 1861 sparked the beginning of a tumultuous time for the United States of America. After Abraham Lincoln was named the 16th president of the young nation, South Carolina, along with six more states, left the union to form the Confederate States of America. Since the beginning of colonization, tensions were evident between the South and North states. The main issue concerning this secession, however, was that of slavery. Lincoln’s opposition to the advancement of slavery throughout the nation was the Confederation’s greatest concern. President Lincoln was adamant on avoiding warfare, but the Confederation had other plans. In April 1861, the attack on Fort Sumter officially started the Civil War. South Carolina overtook the Fort, which snowballed into a national crisis. The Emancipation Proclamation of 1862 was a shout to the world that choosing a side in the Civil War was taking a stand on slavery. It stated that all slaves that resided in rebelling states would be set free. After four long years of fighting and national suffering, the Civil War finally ended with General Pope Lee’s and his Confederate troops...
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