Federal System

Demonstrate knowledge of the federal system .

Explain how immigration policy created through executive order affects federal, state, and local lawmaking functions. What effects does this have on our federalist system of government? Does the political culture of a state or locality change how individual citizens or groups of citizens view immigration?


In the federal system of government, power is divided between the national government and state governments. Each level of government has its own separate and distinct powers and responsibilities. Immigration policy is an area where the federal government plays a significant role, and its decisions can have implications for the functioning of the federal, state, and local lawmaking functions.

When immigration policy is created through executive orders, it means that the President, as the head of the executive branch, is taking action to shape and enforce immigration rules and regulations without direct involvement from the legislative branch, which is responsible for making laws. This can affect the federal lawmaking function by bypassing the traditional legislative process and allowing the President to implement policy changes more swiftly.

At the state and local level, executive orders on immigration can have varying effects. State and local governments may choose to cooperate or resist federal immigration policies, depending on their political culture and the preferences of their constituents. Some states and localities, often referred to as sanctuary jurisdictions, may adopt policies that limit their cooperation with federal immigration authorities. They may choose not to detain individuals solely based on their immigration status or restrict the sharing of information with federal immigration agencies. On the other hand, some states may actively support federal immigration policies and work closely with federal authorities to enforce immigration laws.

The political culture of a state or locality can significantly influence how individual citizens or groups of citizens view immigration. Political culture refers to the shared beliefs, values, and attitudes that shape political behavior within a specific geographic area. In states or localities with a more welcoming and inclusive political culture, citizens may generally have more positive views of immigration and be more supportive of policies that promote immigrant integration. In contrast, areas with a more restrictive or anti-immigrant political culture may see greater opposition to immigration and policies that restrict or control immigrant entry and presence.

These varying perspectives on immigration can impact the political landscape, shaping the positions of elected officials and policymakers at different levels of government. Furthermore, the interplay between federal, state, and local actions on immigration can lead to legal and jurisdictional conflicts, as well as policy variations across different parts of the country. This highlights the complexity and dynamic nature of our federalist system, where multiple levels of government interact and influence each other’s policies and practices.



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