Articles of Confederatin vs. US Constitution

Essay by ZSmeltz18Junior High, 9th gradeA-, May 2008

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The United States has had two constitutions in its history. The first of the two was the Articles of Confederation, otherwise known as simply the Articles. The Articles were a weak form of central government that barely unified the thirteen United States. The almost immediate failure of the Articles of Confederation led to the Constitutional Convention, where our nation’s new constitution, the United States Constitution, was born. The Constitution is a much stronger and more structured form of central government. It contains some of the same things as the Articles, but it also addresses the weaknesses of them. This is what makes the document so powerful.

Although the Articles of Confederation were not all bad, its weaknesses most definitely out shined its strengths. The only branch that the Articles created was the legislative branch, simply known as Congress. Congress carried out the jobs and duties of today’s legislative and executive branches.

States could choose however many representatives that wanted to send to Congress. The problem was that each state had only one vote in Congress no matter how many people they sent. This became a major issue since it was hard for the members of the same state to agree on a number of issues. Another huge problem was that a passage of any measure required not a simple 7 vote majority, but instead it required 9 out of 13 votes. Also, the Articles could not be amended unless all 13 states approved the amendment. These two setbacks made it very hard for Congress to get many things accomplished. Another problem with the Articles was that Congress had no power to collect taxes in order to raise money. This was a huge blow to the nation’s economy since they were in so much debt after the closing of...