Federal and State Sovereignty Essay Example

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Fеdеrаl and Stаtе Sоvеrеignty

Fеdеrаl and Stаtе Sоvеrеignty

The concept of dual sovereignty between the federal government and the state governments entails the implication that more than one sovereign for instance a state government and the federal government can prosecute a person, for the same crime, without infringing the ban against double jeopardy. This is more so if the person’s act go against the laws of both sovereigns in one way or the other. The dual sovereignty concept is based on the common law that depicts that crime is an offense against the sovereignty of a government. This therefore translates to the fact that an individual commits two discrete offences when they violate the dignity and peace of two sovereigns (Davidson, 2007). The State and Federal law have the power to directly act upon individuals.

The issue of President Obama initiating a military campaign against the Islamic State (ISIS) has provoked debate on the constitutional power of the president to this. Some think that the President has surpassed his war powers authority. While the president argue that a declaration of war is not needed for the bombing in Libya, attacks in Yemen and Pakistan as well as airstrikes on ISIS, some assert that the president has the power to use deadly force against ISIS following the endorsement for the use of military force passed by Congress in 2001. Nonetheless, critics of the military actions suppose that the president has exceeded his war powers authority (National Public Radio, 2015). They argue that the threat associated with ISIS has not come to a level of using military force.


Davidson, N. M. (2007). Cooperative localism: Federal-local collaboration in an era of state sovereignty. Virginia Law Review, 959-1034.

National Public Radio (2015, April 7). Debate: Has The President Exceeded His War Powers Authority? Retrieved fromhttp://www.npr.org/2015/04/07/398065156/debate-has-the-president-exceeded-his-war-powers-authority