March questions


Please answer the following 7 short answer questions. Each question carries 15 points. Make sure you cite properly from the required readings. 

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1. “American Federalism was born in ambiguity, it institutionalizes ambiguity in its form of government, and changes in it tend to be ambiguous too.” Discuss. 

2. Discussions of American intergovernmental relations frequently include a discussion of federalism. Compare and contrast the two notions of intergovernmental relations and federalism.

3. What are unfunded mandates and how do they impact local and state governments?

4. Explain the powers listed for each Article of the Constitution state where those powers reside in the intergovernmental relations: (a) Article II

(b) Article III (c) Article IV (d) Article V

4. What legal and fiscal techniques or strategies have been employed by the national government to encourage acceptance of its regulatory standards? Please explain each technique and give examples of policies or legislation associated with the strategy.

5. Identify the key features of intergovernmental relations (IGR) in contemporary American politics and discuss their significance. 

6. What role has the Supreme Court played in defining contemporary IGR? 

7. What did Morton Grodzins mean when he describes the American system as one of decentralization by mild chaos?

** required readings are:

Stephens, Ross G., and Nelson Wikstrom. 2007. American Intergovernmental Relations: A Fragmented Federal Polity. Oxford University Press (ISBN: 978-0-19-517202-7).

O’Toole, L.J., and R.K. Christensen. 2013. American Intergovernmental Relations: Foundations,

Perspectives and Issues. 5th Ed., C.Q. Press (ISBN: 978-1-4522-2629-3).