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Introductory Paragraph

After their triumph in the American Revolution, colonists came together as one to forge the United States of America and to reorganize the colonies after the war
Thesis: The Articles of Confederation failed

Economic Stability Threatened

The Articles did not give the government the ability to raise revenue effectively or to enforce a uniform commercial policy
The United States, under the Articles, advocated a "firm league of friendship"
o Each state would retain its sovereignty, freedom and independence
o Jurisdictions and rights also were protected
Despite this, the Articles limited the control of government to agree on the vital issues
o The document required unanimous consent of state legislatures for ratification or amendment
Congress was denied the power to control commerce by the Articles
o Foreign trade was not limited and thus imports flooded the American market
o American goods and services were threatened because their goods were more expensive then abroad

Western Lands

The Articles also limited the control of western lands by the government
The clause troubled officials because of its surrender of power to the states
o Congress allowed states to retain all land claims derived from their original charters
o But, states with definite western borders in their charters wanted other states to cede to the national government their land holdings west of the Appalachians
o Virginia refused to accept the Articles until 1781
Such states' decisions to refuse policies delayed the ratification of certain amendments and
o The Second Continental

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