In a federal government, power is distributed between the federal or national government and the state governments, both of which coexist with sovereignty. Under federalism, the states are not subordinate to the central government but independent of it. Federal republics further distribute the power of the national government between different branches.Know More
National Paralegal College states that the purpose of a federal government is to allow the states a level of sovereignty, while centralizing government for affairs that affect the entire nation. Under federalism, the state and national governments typically handle different areas of politics. The federal government has authority over affairs like national security, war, coining money and international relations. The state governments are in charge of the affairs that most directly affect citizens: criminal law, birth, marriage and death records, traffic regulations and education. Whereas the Constitution only limits states insofar as they may not pass legislation contrary to what the Constitution dictates, the federal government is limited to only those actions that the Constitution specifically concedes to it.
USHistory.org describes federalism as a compromise between unitary government and a confederacy. As a result, although the states exist independently of the federal government, they are still ultimately subject to it. This distinguishes federal government from the confederate structure of the United States under the Articles of Confederation, according to which the national government was little more than an association of autonomous states.Learn more about Branches of Government
A federal democracy is a political system in which citizens have equal participation in government and government is divided into two sovereign levels, such as a national government and state governments. Because of the extensive geography and population of most federal states, federal democracies are representative in nature. Various countries in western society have adopted versions of federal democracy.Full Answer >
What makes federalism unique is that the distribution of power between state and national government is such that it is not clear who has the final authority. In practice, the tendency in most countries has been for the federal government to have the greater share of power.Full Answer >
According to the University of Texas at Austin, a plural executive system of government limits the power of the executive, which could be a president or governor, by distributing power across several elected leaders. The other elected officials are not required to answer to the executive. This protects the executive from abusing power.Full Answer >
A federal republic government is divided between two levels of independent sovereignty, the national government and the states (or provinces, in some countries). Unlike a unitary system, the states or analogous subdivision in a federal government are not dependencies of the national authority. A federal republic does not have a monarchy but rather some form of representative government.Full Answer >