The delegates initially seemed to accept the wide-ranging national authority the broad nationalists sought. But as the complexity of the new governing institutions took shape, the narrow nationalists gained ground with their arguments that the national government be granted only a limited range of additional policy tools, leaving most of the nation's policy authority in the states. The delegates defeated Madison's national veto of state laws, instead inserting the supremacy clause. They accepted the previously inconceivable notion that the national and state governments could share sovereignty, and they institutionalized this distinction when they defined “treason.” The Committee of Detail enumerated the powers of the national government and shifted the onus for exercising government authority from the state governments to the national government. The “necessary and proper” and the “general welfare” clauses added ambiguity to the division of authority.
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