Lecture: Dual Federalism: Narrator: Listen to part of a lecture in an United States government class. Professor: United States has what's called a Federal Government. In a federal system of government, the power to make laws and regulations is divided between a national government and smaller political units. States in the states. There's two view of how those powers should interact with one another. One view is called Dual Federalism. Dual Federalism holds that the national and state governments both have clearly defined powers, though the national government's power is quite limited. The other perspective, is Cooperative Federalism. Cooperative Federalism asserts that the national government's power over the state is not so clearly limited. In fact, that it's not clearly defined. At times national and state governments work together cooperatively, but the national government can also impose its power over the state. Why the competing points of view, after all, the United States Constitution spells out the powers of the national government, but the Constitution is a relatively short document. A lot of it is open to interpretation. In fact, those who wrote it wanted it that way, to allow some flexibility. So actually passages in the Constitution could support either views of federalism. So, from time to time, there's clashes between dual and cooperative applications of federalism. And when that happens, the United States Supreme Court, the country's highest court, decides who has the power in a given situation; the state government or the national government. And decisions made by the Supreme Court are binding on the entire nation. Throughout much of U.S. history, until the 20th century, Supreme Court decisions generally favored Dual Federalism. Deciding that the National Government should not infringe on state power. (*)But, there were a few early Supreme Court decisions that did favor national power. One such case, was McCulloch v. Maryland in 1819. McCulloch v. Maryland addressed the question of whether the national government had power to establish a bank. The Supreme Court said yes, it could establish a bank, a national institution. The court further ruled that this national bank could not be taxed by the state in which it was located. This decision supported the Cooperative Federalist view. Another significant early case favoring Cooperative Federalism, Gibbons v. Ogden was decided in 1824. In Gibbons v. Ogden, the State of New York wanted to give one steamboat company the (exclusive) right to ferry passengers across the river between New York and the neighboring State of New Jersey. The Supreme Court ruled that New York could not make decisions affecting the interests of another state, that a business affecting two states came under the power of the National Government. So again, a Supreme Court ruling favored national power. But these cases were really exceptions. You wouldn't see an overall shift towards Cooperative Federalism until the 1930's. To explain the timing of this shift, let's consider the economy at that time. In the decades leading up to the 1930's, the U.S. economy became increasingly interdependent. What do I mean by that? Well there were major population shifts from rural farming areas to cities, where factorys were springing up. So, rather than growing their own food, people bough it at grocery stores. This in turn relied on distant farms for the food they sold. Those farms which might be in a different state where the equipment in factories in yet in another state. That's just one example of economic interdependence. Everyone played a part in an expanding economic network. In 1929 a stock market crash sent the nation's economy into a depression, known as the Great Depression. A U.S. economic independence meant that the prices in one sector of the economy, the finance industry, rippled through the entire economy. Unemployment became widespread. Now, helping the unemployed and others in need had always been the responsibility of state governments. But suddenly, those governments no longer had the resources to help. So the Supreme Court began supporting laws that gave the national government more power. For example, in 1935, a national law gave employees in all states the right to bargain collectively and dispute between labor and management. In the past, the high court had viewed such laws as infringing on the rights of states to regulate businesses. But now, they saw it differently. This trend away from Dual Federalism and towards Cooperative Federalism has continued, but a dynamic tension between the two also continues. And this tension, this struggle between the opposing views, is actually very useful because it prevents either the national government or state governments from gaining too much power.