Federalism in General

The second option in Article V is one of the tools the Founding Fathers included in the 1787 Constitution to enable states to protect their interests.  Numerous other provisions in the US Constitution also set forth the Founders’ intent to establish a system of government that involves dual Sovereignty… a sovereign federal government that continues to honor the sovereignty of the individual states.

In addition to the Federalist Papers which dealt with the importance of Article V, the following research sources provide guidance on the concept of American Federalism:


The Federalist Society – A web site dedicated to related law and public policy studies.

TheFederalist.com is a searchable web site dedicated to news about federalism issues.

Utah Valley University Offers Federalism CourseThe Utah State Legislature commissioned the Utah Valley University (UVU) to create a Federalism Curriculum as a way to educate legislators and attorneys about the American form of federalism.

The UVU course consists of six 10-minute video modules (followed by a quiz) taught by top federalism scholars.  The free course is available to all legislators, attorneys and the general public by clicking on the “Federalism Curriculum” tab.

Public Attitudes toward Federalism: The Public’s Preference for Renewed Federalism – September 2014 – by John Samples and Emily Ekins, published by the CATO Institute as Policy Analysis No. 759. For much of its history, the United States had a notably decentralized government structure. Since the 1930s, the national government has undertaken new efforts to regulate the economy and society and to redistribute resources.  This report says that voters now are more supportive of decentralized policymaking on many issues where they previously supported a stronger national role.

Thirteen Proposals to Return Sovereignty to the States – January 2014 – by the Federalism Committee of the American Legislative Exchange Council.

A Convention of the States Is Necessary to Fix America’s Most Difficult Problems – November, 2017 – by Chris Talgo of the Heartland Institute.  He says “It is far-fetched to believe at this point Congress would ever propose an amendment to address the nation’s most vexing problems.  Amendments that would require a balanced budget or institute term limits seem unlikely to originate from those who believe they would personally be harmed by such proposals.  Hence, there is a great need for a convention of the states to propose such amendments.”