The Rise of the Federal Colossus: The Growth of Federal Power from Lincoln to F.D.R.: The Growth of Federal Power from Lincoln to F.D.R.
The Rise of the Federal Colossus: The Growth of Federal Power from Lincoln to F.D.R. offers readers a front-row seat for the critical phases of a debate that is at the very center of American history, exploring such controversial issues as what powers are bestowed on the federal government, what its role should be, and how the Constitution should be interpreted.
The book argues that the critical period in the growth of federal power was not the New Deal and the three decades that followed, but the preceding 72 years when important precedents establishing the national government's authority to aid citizens in distress, regulate labor, and take steps to foster economic growth were established. The author explores newspaper and magazine articles, as well as congressional debates and court opinions, to determine how Americans perceived the growing authority of their national government and examine arguments over whether novel federal activities had any constitutional basis. Responses of government to the enormous changes that took place during this period are also surveyed.