Monday, September 12, 2016


In the episode "A More Perfect Union", Peter Sagal travels across the United States to consult with those who believe in states’ rights and those who believe in a strong central government. Sagal encounters a medical marijuana dispensary owner in Oakland, California. Although legal in California, the federal ban on medical marijuana ceases to lift; therefore the Oakland owner fears for his life as he could be subject to the death penalty at any moment. Subsequently, Sagal stops at a historical epitome of federalist power, the Hoover Dam. Here, Peter Sagal interviews Cort Ancman, who briefly explains how it was solely the federal government who possessed the power to build the dam. A centralist approach of determining the constitutionality of the Hoover dam would be the Commerce Clause. The dam not only ensures control of flooding and irrigation but also the generation of hydroelectric power to neighboring states, which remains expanding Nevada's economy.

Reflection: This video presents the conflicting principles between state and federal rights, similarly to what we learned in Gooru. State and federal rights have sparked controversy well throughout American history. A notable case that outlined a feud over state/federal rights was McCulloch v. Maryland. The case established the supremacy of the national government over state. Moreover, the Court held that Congress had implied powers under the elastic clause.

 You know you love us. Xoxo, Government Girls.
(Jenn Carhuamaca)

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