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confederation constitution

The Articles of Confederation and the Constitution are two contrasting documents written by the Founding Fathers. The documents are very different from one another yet they share a few rare similarities. The weaknesses of the Articles of Confederation prompted Congress to scrap them and begin again with the Constitution. Not all problems were solved by the Constitution, but they were significantly reduced. In any case, the Constitution, the foundation of America, has stood for centuries with very few revisions. Comparing the Articles of Confederation and the Constitution is difficult because the two documents are so innately different. However, there are several notable similarities. In both documents, the United States had a representative government. States would elect a number of officials to assemble in Congress which was headed by a president. This assembly had the power to arbitrate between states. Interestingly, Congress was given power to conscript a navy but not an army. Perhaps they were more concerned about attack by sea than by land.

Differences are much more readily found when comparing the Articles and the
Constitution. The biggest difference between the two was that the states were sovereign under the Articles of Confederation whereas the Constitution gave the federal government sovereignty. Under the Constitution, the three-branch, checks and balance system of governing was established. Among other drastic changes, Congress was given power to levy taxes. The Presidential seat was vested with enough power to balance out the legislative and judicial branches. This compares to the Articles in which the President was merely a figurehead leader.
The Legislature was divided into two houses, the Senate and the House of Representatives. Two Senators from every state were elected and House Representatives were chosen by population. This system resolved the dispute between the large and small states. The Articles of Confederation gave each state only one vote regardless of size. All of these changes that came with the Constitution confirmed the growing movement towards modern day democracy. After the war, the states felt much more like United States and were more willing to cooperate as a nation.

The leaders of the new nation decided to rewrite the document which was the supreme law of the land because the Articles of Confederation were weak. Before the Constitution, the federal government had hardly any power and was unable to feasibly accmoplish anything. The success of the Articles relied on ʻmutual friendshipʼ between the states. Scattered throughout the document are words such as: ʻgenialʼ ʻconvenientʼ and ʻgeneral interest.ʼ Although the Constitution was not flawless, many of the faults of the Articles were resolved. The introduction of the three branch system was an original invention of the Founding Fathers. This structure has worked extremely well so that no one person or branch has too much power. The establishment of the national judicial system and Executive branch proved invaluable.

In conclusion, The Articles of Confederation and the Constitution differ in many areas. The complete overhaul of the Articles was due to the progressive ideas that were discussed by the Founding Fathers. There ideas manifested themselves in the Constitution which has been the cornerstone of American ideology since its inception. Despite being challenged in countless ways, the innovation of our Founding Fathers is still intact, guiding America through good and bad times.

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