Q:

What is the purpose of the elastic clause?

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Quick Answer

The elastic clause, also called the necessary and proper clause, was intended to provide Congress with the necessary means of passing laws in the best interest of the nation. It also helps to organize the government by giving Congress influence over other branches of government.

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Full Answer

The elastic clause was a subject of great debate prior to its ratification. Some members of Congress argued that it unfairly gave Congress unlimited powers, which defeated the purpose of the U.S. Constitution. Proponents of the bill argued that the elastic clause does not give Congress any more powers than already granted to it by the Constitution; rather, it defines them by putting into writing what was already implied.

The elastic clause was a way to make sure that Congress had the means to do what it had been charged to do through the Constitution. The clause was at the center of the debate between Thomas Jefferson and Alexander Hamilton about whether or not a national bank should be established when the United States was first formed. Jefferson argued that Congress did not have the constitutional right to establish a bank that would oversee all of the finances and debt for the nation. Hamilton argued that the elastic clause gave Congress that right.

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Related Questions

  • Q:

    How does the Elastic Clause of the Constitution function?

    A:

    According to U.S. Legal, the Elastic Clause provides Congress with the power to pass laws that are necessary and proper for Congress to uphold its power. The Elastic Clause gives Congress implied powers, meaning powers that are not explicitly stated in the United States Constitution.

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  • Q:

    How has the Elastic Clause been used?

    A:

    The Annenberg Classroom states that the "elastic clause" of the U.S. Constitution gives Congress the power to create any laws required to carry out the responsibilities that are specifically assigned to Congress in Article I, Section 8 of that document. The clause, which comes at the end of that section, has been used several times since it was established, according to the University of Missouri-Kansas City School of Law.

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  • Q:

    What does the Elastic Clause give Congress the power to do?

    A:

    The Elastic Clause gives the United States Congress the power to create any laws it deems are necessary for the country. The clause is also known as the Necessary and Proper Clause. It is located in Article I, Section 8 of the Constitution.

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  • Q:

    What are other names for the Elastic Clause?

    A:

    The Elastic Clause is also called the Necessary and Proper Cause, the Sweeping Clause, the Coefficient Clause or the Basket Clause. This clause is one of the most powerful clauses in the U.S. Constitution.

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