Page:Democracy in America (Reeve, v. 1).djvu/212

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rity. The Union was invested with the power of controling the monetary system, of directing the post-office, and of opening the great roads which were to establish a communication between the different parts of the country[1]. The independence of the Government of each State was formally recognised in its sphere; nevertheless, the Federal Government was authorized to interfere in the internal affairs of the States[2] in a few predetermined cases, in which an indiscreet abuse of their independence might compromise the security of the Union at large. Thus, whilst the power of modifying and changing their legislation at pleasure was preserved in all the republics, they were forbidden to enact ex-post-facto laws, or to create a class of nobles in their community[3]. Lastly, as it was necessary that the Federal Government should be able to fulfill its engagements, it was endowed with an unlimited power of levying taxes[4].

In examining the balance of power as established by the Federal Constitution; in remarking on the one hand the portion of sovereignty which has been

  1. Several other privileges of the same kind exist, such as that which empowers the Union to legislate on bankruptcy, to grant patents, and other matters in which its intervention is clearly necessary.
  2. Even in these cases its interference is indirect. The Union interferes by means of the tribunals, as will be hereafter shown.
  3. Federal Constitution, sect. 10. art. 1.
  4. Constitution, sect. 8, 9, and 10. Federalist, Nos. 30-36 inclusive, and 41-44. Kent's Commentaries, vol. i. pp. 207 and 381. Story, pp. 329 and 514.