Effects of American Federalism to Administration of Public Programs and Services


Federalism is the division of power and accountability within the national government and other state governments. Through federalism, America achieves the control of constitutional powers through the representative form of its republican constitution. This enables it to perform various tasks while controlling the intimidation of liberty within the state. American federalism however is coupled with ambiguity and vitality and bends to the effect of internal and external forces.

Effects of American Federalism to Administration of Public Programs and Services

            Various approaches to the federalism in the U.S. have resulted to specific effects of management of public programs. For instance, the dual federalism approach applied during the era of President Bush and Clinton limits mostly the powers of both the state and federal government. Through this approach the national government is mandated to exercise power and control on a limited scope while the rest is left to the state government. For example, this approach allows the national government to deal with foreign policies and national security matters leaving the state governments with internal security matters. This approach is a challenge especially in the agenda setting stage in the policy process especially when the agenda concerns the national government. Such include foreign policy setting. There is usually a risk of underrepresentation where the decision makers do not represent the individual states’ interest. It would be more efficient for both levels of government to collaborate on vital issues for ultimate public representation. The approach also faces a vital challenge in policy formulation stage. For example, it would be difficult for the central government officials to enact policies that affect particular states without involving them (Denhardt, Denhardt and Blanc, 2013, p. 50).

Cooperative federalism approach for instance also affects the public service and policy administration. This approach calls for joint effort between the different levels of government in delivering services to the public. Through this approach, the state and federal authorities work collaboratively in all matters of the policy process. Although this may be observed as an efficient approach…

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