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The Constitution places extremely heavy and borderline burdensome limits on the legislative and law enforcement powers of the federal government. Since around the turn of the twentieth century these lawful limits have largely been ignored by those in power in the federal government.

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Q: Does the constitution limit authority and power suffciently or insuffciently?
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What does the constitution do to limit government?

The constitution sets boundaries to limit what the government can & cannot do.

Does the Constitution limit the nation's debt?

No. In the U.S., the Constitution places all authority for borrowing and spending in the hands of Congress. The Constitution does not place a limit on the amount that the country may borrow. Because it was inconvenient for Congress to get involved every time the Treasury needed to issue a security, Congress passed a law in 1917 which allows the Executive Branch, specifically the U.S. Treasury, to borrow money as necessary, provided that the total amount borrowed remains within a limit set by Congress. Currently (July 2011), that limit is set at $14.3 trillion.

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Through the grants of power in the U.S. Constitution, the Framers sought to empower government and limit it. This was accomplished through the federalism system of government which distributed authority between the national and individual state governments.

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