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date: 14 April 2021

Abstract and Keywords

This chapter focuses on federalism as a foundational principle in the U.S. Constitution. It first considers some of the perennial questions and tensions that have shaped federalism over the centuries, with particular emphasis on federalism compromises embedded in the Constitution, such as those related to constitutional design, the nature of the Union, federalism’s values, law and politics, and the judiciary. It then examines federalism’s constitutional structure and its historic transformations, with special reference to dual federalism, federal extent and national operation, and the jurisdiction of the federal judiciary. It also explores rights within the context of the federal structure, including citizenship, the Civil War constitutional amendments, and the rights revolution after the New Deal. Finally, the chapter discusses “cooperative” federalism arrangements in the New Deal era and the unresolved tensions surrounding federalism.

Keywords: federalism, Constitution, judiciary, constitutional structure, dual federalism, rights, citizenship, constitutional amendments, New Deal, cooperative federalism

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