Articles of Confederation

Advantages and Weaknesses

The Articles -- Advantages

  • The Articles of Confederation created a legislature to create and amend laws for the states.
  • The federal government could raise an control a unified army for the states.
  • The federal government could handle foreign affairs on behalf of the states.

The Articles -- Weakness

  • There was no Executive or Judicial branches in the government.
  • The federal government could not enforce the laws it created, and the states often just ignored them if they didn't like them.
  • The government could not impose taxes on the states.
  • The government required the approval of 9 states to pass a law, and the approval of all 13 states to amend one.
  • The nation's economy suffered as the states began to heavily tax one another, hurting trade.

Why did they make such a weak government?

The states had just fought the Revolutionary War to escape an oppressive, all-powerful government, and they wanted to make sure they didn't develop the same thing by giving the government too much power.