Marc Schulman

 


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Federalism and Interstate Commerce


The Constitution regulates the relations between the states.
The full faith and credit clause (Article IV, Section 1) requires that states honor federal Supreme Court judgments and other legal decisions.

Under Article IV, Section 2, states must extend the same rights to residents of other states that are extended to their own residents.

Finally, the extradition clause (Article IV, Section 2), states are required to extradite (hand over) any citizen who flees to their state to avoid prosecution or incarceration in another state.

 

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The necessary and proper clause is used to cover any governmental action not enumerated in the Constitution. Thus, it creates implied powers. These are powers that are not stated in the Constitution, but are implied by the government's need to carry out its functions. Strict Constructionists argue against the more liberal interpretation of this clause, claiming that Congress does not have the power to enact anything not enumerated in the Constitution. The issue came to a head in the case of McCullogh v. Maryland. Maryland claimed that the First Bank of the United States was unconstitutional, since its creation was not called for in the Constitution. The state proceeded to tax the Bank. John Marshall, writing for a unanimous Supreme Court, ruled that the actions of Maryland were unconstitutional, since it could not tax any part of the government. The Court also held that the Bank itself was constitutional under the "necessary and proper" clause.