Social Studies - 2018-19

CE.7b - Federalism

The student will apply social science skills to understand the American constitutional government at the state level by

b) explaining the relationship of state governments to the national government in the federal system;

Adopted: 2015



The Constitution of the United States establishes the principle of federalism, which is the division of power between the states and the national government.

The expansion of the national government’s powers into areas traditionally reserved to the states has altered the relationship of states to the national government.


The Constitution of the United States establishes a federal form of government in which the national government is supreme.

The powers not given to the national government by the Constitution of the United States are reserved to the states.

The Constitution of the United States denies certain powers to both the national and state governments.

Some powers are shared between the national and state government (concurrent powers).

Primary responsibilities of each level of government

 National: Conducts foreign policy, regulates commerce, and provides for the common defense

 State: Promotes public health, safety, education, and welfare

Tensions exist when federal mandates require state actions without adequate funding.


Updated: May 16, 2018