Republicans stand for small government and always have. Since the last great debate between states and the Federal Government, the Antebellum years, Republicans have favored state control over that of the Federal Government, harkening back to the Articles of Confederation more then to the Constitution. This means that Republicans tend to see the country as a set of independent nations (states) banding together in an allegiance to protect one another. This is versus the Democrats view of country, that of a strong government ruling over a nation that has been divided into groups like English Counties. It is the American tradition that local government exists, it is in fact that very right, the right to rule oneself, which sparked the American Revolution. Americans are no more likely to listen to a tyrant three thousand miles away then a dozen tyrants in Washington. It has always been the aim of Republicans to empower the States while weakening the Federal Government.

Now how is State control better then Federal control? For one it gives greater voice to the people. The ordinary citizen has more control over his own life. A state provides for the needs of its own citizens, taking into account local traditions, problems, and issues that occur only in that region. For example, over fishing is a problem in New England whereas it isn't one in say, Nebraska. Thus the Commonwealth of Massachusetts passes a specific law, only enacted in that state, concerning over fishing. This of course, limits the growth of a bureaucracy in Washington. If the Federal government had passed a national law concerning over fishing then agents would be paid by the government to police every port city and town rather then only those dealing with an over fishing problem. For the Founding Fathers it was important that each state have its own voice and its own government as they were fighting against the most oppressive government system: The Monarchy. To insure that individuals have more control over their lives it was made clear that each state or commonwealth has its own government in order to check the growth of the Federal Government. Thus state government acts as an insurance policy for the nation, if Washington ever got too strong then we will see the states voice their own protest against the incursion of Federal power.

Republicans always favor the individual over the group as an individual's rights are seen as the reason the Republic came about. This is why Republicans are often against government agencies and government aid. During the Great Depression the US government founded dozens of meaningless agencies whose soul purpose was to hire people and provide work. In that decade the Federal Government exploded as it grew to astronomical levels. Republicans have never seen it in the Federal Governments role to provide money for the poor or work for the unemployed. If it is in the interests of the State to provide Welfare, i.e. the state citizenry support such charity, and then they should enact the programs themselves. The Federal Government should not tax a hard working American to provide for those who would not work themselves. This is getting slightly off topic so I'll leave it at that.

A strong Federal Government is one that feels it can do and take anything. Strong government leads to Waco, Elian Gonzales, massive bureaucracy, and high taxes. Having two different governments does lead to some problems, especially with the growth of the Federal Government. Two sets of taxes have to be paid: one to the state, the other to the country. There are dozens of different police services, the ATF, FBI, State Troopers, and finally local Police. The former two are Federal run, the latter two state run. Who would you rather deal with, the ATF or the local cop? States should have the power to enact whatever laws they feel without the Federal Government stopping them. This is where we see the Supreme Court come into play. No longer is enforcing the Constitution the main cause of the Supreme Court, now it seems to be strengthening the Federal Government while weakening the States by striking down State laws through court rulings. Let's take abortion for example. Without getting into the merits of either side look at it this way, say one state supports abortion, they pass a law through the legislature and there.abortion is available to all. Now if another state wants to ban abortion, shouldn't it have the right to ban this within its own borders? Not any more, now no matter the leaning of the State Legislatures anywhere abortion is legal. In this case the Federal Government is making its job to decide for Americans everywhere, regardless of their input.

It comes down to your point of view. Is each state sovereign, joined together by common beliefs, or is it merely a division of a larger entity? Would you have your governor wield more power over you then the President? It is State government that created this country and it was State government that fanned the flames of Civil War, and it will be State government that will once again triumph over the Federal Government. More then anyone else Americans have always jealously guarded their Freedoms. We have never been willing to hand them over to anyone, not even our own countrymen. America is a large country full of diverse people with dozens of unique problems and issues. One gigantic national government could never serve everyone; it is up to the State to fix its own problems. Big government does nothing but pay dozens of useless Bureaucrats to sit in chairs in air-conditioned rooms. State Government is America's Tradition and it is her future as well.