Federalist v. Anti-Federalist: Then and Now The debate between the Federalists and Anti-Federalists was fierce during the Constitutional Convention. In the USA today, the debate still rages on as to how much power should be placed in the hands of the national and state governments. For example, some citizens or politicians may say the federal government does not have the ability to institute a healthcare plan that all the states must follow. That might be seen as an overreach of power 9anti-federalist argument), while some others might say it is well within the federal government’s powers (federalist argument).
TASKS: IN COMPUTER LAB
Find a present day news article that deals with an issue of state v. federal power. This article can deal with healthcare, education reform, taxes, debt, etc. It must be from within the past 25 years. NOTE: The terms “federalist” and “anti-federalist” are rarely used today. You will have to rely on your understanding of the terms (What do federalists think? What do anti-federalists think?) to find articles that work.
After you find the news article, your task is to print it out, and:
SOURCE IT (possible bias from this author or news source?), CONTEXTUALIZE IT (what’s going on in country at the time it was written that might influence this article?), and CLOSE READ IT (annotate the living daylights out of it!).
You need to understand what the purpose of this article is and what governmental powers are in conflict (federal v. state, or local v. state, or federal v. local, etc). Please record all of this information in your annotations on the article.
On a sheet of paper create a thesis that responds to the question:
How do we see the federalist/ anti-federalist debate at work in America today?
From there, write a response that:
Proves your thesis using at least 2 main facts (or well-reasoned inferences if clear facts are missing) from the article
CORROBORATES what you know about the Federalists’ v. Anti-federalists’ arguments of the 1780’s to what you discovered in your article from today. HOW IS THIS ARTICLE LIKE THE FEDERALIST/ ANTI-FEDERALIST DEBATES OF THE 1780s? (HINT: You may use your class notes, your Smith and Hamilton letters, and even page 184 in your textbook -go to the online one!- that gives you a snapshot of Thomas Jefferson and Alexander Hamilton’s reasons for being Anti-federalist/ Federalist to help you make the connections!)