Articles of Confederation With the New Constitution Essay

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Articles of Confederation with the new Constitution of 1787. We will see what were the strengths and weaknesses of the Articles vis-a-vis the Constitution and give specific instances that demonstrate the weakness of the Articles, in particular its financial issues.

Default and debt is an American tradition and it was initiated with gusto in the days following the Revolution when Dutch and French holders of American bonds found it impossible to get regular payments on the Continental notes that they held. Additionally, depression had struck the new nation in by the mid-1780s, raising questions arose about the nature of American democracy and the ability of the new government to function. Conservatives believed that the answer the nation's problems lay in a stronger national government. Most radicals believed it was up to the states to relieve the financial burden of the people. These sentiments fostered a movement for a new constitution. Political differences soon stimulated the creation of political parties ("The articles of," 2010).

Differences between the Articles and the Constitution

The Articles of Confederation had many flaws, many potentially fatal. With the drafting of a new Constitution in 1787, the founding fathers pointed many of these lessons and short comings and corrected them in the new federal Constitution. When the first Convention was called for initially in Annapolis in 1786, the founders only called for the altering and amendment of the Articles of Confederation. Few showed up in Annapolis in September 1786. Only New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Delaware and Virginia sent representatives, which led the convention to only recommend another convention in 1787. This new convention that was recommended for 1787 in Philadelphia became the Convention to draft the new Constitution ("Compare and contrast;," 2011).
In comparing and contrasting the two documents, eleven major differences existed between the Articles of Confederation and the Constitution. Though there are many, these are the most significant in how they brought about a change to the structure and power of both State and National Governments. These differences transformed the United States from a loose collection of 13 independent States into a nation of Thirteen States that retained their individual sovereignty while having a strong National Government. Several of the reasons why the Articles of Confederation failed are as follows (obviously, the Constitution has improved upon this)

Consenting Power to National Government

Type of National Government

Mode of Representation in National Government

Division of Powers in National Government

Powers of Congress

Revenue for Central Government

Enforcement of Federal Laws

Judiciary and resolution of Cases and Conflicts

Prohibitions to Congress

Prohibitions and Requirements of States

Amending Articles of Confederation and Constitution (ibid.)

Constitutional Convention and Ratification

The main questions addressed at the Constitutional Convention revolved around the controversies concerning the Virginia Plan and the New Jersey Plan and the sectional conflicts between states the drafting of the Constitution (Three-Fifths Compromise) that were compromised upon in order to effectively draft a constitution. We will further pay particular attention to Roger Sherman's plan, the Great Compromise, which broke the stalemate between the Virginia and New Jersey plans. We will also compare and contrast the debate over the ratification of the Constitution between the Federalists and the Anti-Federalists.

James Madison drafted the "Virginia Plan." Essentially it proposed a strong national government that would make….....

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