Q:

What are the flaws in The Articles of Confederation?

A:

Quick Answer

Flaws in the Articles of Confederation included the lack of commerce regulation, ability to raise money through taxes, courts and an executive branch of the government. Additionally, the need for a unified government during the Revolutionary War caused issues such as slavery and western land claims to remain unaddressed.

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Full Answer

After the Declaration of Independence was adopted in 1776, the Second Continental Congress worked on drafting a constitution for the new nation. Because of the urgency of the need for a central government to coordinate the war effort, the Articles of Confederation focused on authorizing congressional powers such as the maintenance of an army and navy, the implementation of foreign policy such as treaties and alliances, the management of Indian affairs, the regulation of coinage and the creation of a postal service. However, without the power to raise taxes or regulate domestic or foreign trade, Congress was only able to raise money by requesting it of the states. This left Congress short of funds to run the government or pay off the nation's wartime debts.

After the war, various congressmen proposed revisions to the Articles of Confederation. However, amendments required the unanimous consent of the legislatures of all 13 states. Instead, a Constitutional Convention was called in Philadelphia in 1787 to create a new U.S. Constitution.

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Related Questions

  • Q:

    How was the Constitution a product of its time?

    A:

    According to the explanation of the Constitution on the official White House website, the Constitution was a product of its time in that it addressed various contemporary political concerns, such as the weakness of the Articles of Confederation. The integration of checks and balances into the political system was also an alternative to an overwhelmingly strong central government, such as that of the British monarch and Parliament.

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  • Q:

    What were some pros and cons of ratifying the constitution?

    A:

    The Constitution's framers intended to alleviate many of the inefficiencies of the Articles of Confederation, but in so doing, they created a system that many felt threatened the sovereignty of the states and the freedom of the American people. Those who favored ratification of the Constitution were known as federalists; those who opposed its ratification were known as anti-federalists.

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  • Q:

    What was America's first Constitution called?

    A:

    America's first Constitution was called the Articles of Confederation. The Continental Congress adopted the Articles of Confederation on November 15, 1777, although ratification of the Constitution by all 13 states did not take place until March 1, 1781.

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  • Q:

    What was the reason for the Constitutional Convention?

    A:

    The Constitutional Convention of 1787 met to rewrite the laws of the United States government as they were agreed upon under the Articles of Confederation. Drafted in 1777, the Articles of Confederation were the American people's first attempt at constructing a new federal government after breaking from Great Britain.

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