This chapter entitled “The Constitutional Structure of American Government” is one of my favorites because it is dynamic, interesting, and comprehensive. Students will be introduced to a number of important concepts including the Supremacy Clause, dual sovereignty, and American Federalism. Nearly every slide in this module contains current and active links to a wide variety of high-quality scholarly and journalistic resources that augment the concepts being addressed.
Many students have heard of the Supremacy Clause but are unsure of what it means or the purpose and intent of this section of the US Constitution. This module presents, in a very clear manner that utilizes a number current and historical examples, the principle of dual sovereignty, the separation of powers, and the unique role of the national and state governments in our federalist system. Examine numerous court cases, including the “ObamaCare” ruling, US v Lopez (1995), and many other examples that illustrate the tension that can exist between these different entities of government. In addition, students will be introduced to the concepts of express, reserved, and concurrent powers and will be able to provide examples of each.
Finally, many slides in this chapter are equipped with notes for Instructors designed to assist users in maximizing the potential of each slide. This is a superb introduction to the structure of our system of government.
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