- Mark J. Rozell
- and Clyde Wilcox
Even as most Americans fix their gaze on the actions of the federal government, states and localities are the cornerstones of the US federal system. “What state and local governments do” explains that states are free to design their own governments so long as their structure does not violate the US Constitution. All states have designed their governments to somewhat resemble the national government, with an elected governor, elected legislatures, and state supreme courts. However, each of these structures can operate in different ways, with different powers from state to state. The governments of the Native American reservations and those of the five permanently inhabited US territories are also discussed.