Alexander Hamilton’s focus in Essay #32, Concerning the General Power of Taxation, is about the power of the Federal government to levy taxes on citizens in all states and argues for a balance between state and federal powers to levy taxes.
He discusses the concept of “concurrent” and “exclusive” powers.
- Concurrent powers are those that both the states and federal government share.
- Exclusive powers are those that only the states or the federal government can exercise.
Hamilton argues for “concurrent powers” – that both the Federal and state governments can levy taxes, but the states can tax imports and exports only with the consent of Congress.
In his argument, Hamilton favors a balance by protecting the authority of states to impose taxes directly on their inhabitants, thus ensuring that states remain relevant and effective
Credit for the summary and analysis of Essay #32 is given to Brittany Nelson and Christopher Higgins (second revision 09/15/2011). Weinbloom, Elizabeth ed. “The Federalist Papers Essay 32 Summary and Analysis”. GradeSaver, 30 December 2011 Web. 30 January 2019.