In Article 1, Section 8, the Constitution lists many powers of Congress.  Are there powers that should be taken away from Congress?  If so, why? 

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enotechris eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Congress, as the legislative governmental branch, is granted specific and broad powers in the Constitution.  The Founders made these decisions as the legislative branch of government, composed of the representatives of the people, was to be the preeminent branch.

Current problems in government have arisen because Congress has failed to do what it ought, and done what it should not -- "To regulate commerce with foreign nations, among the several states..."  for example meant that Congress would do what was necessary to insure trade -- not establish a myriad of federal governmental agencies.  On the other hand, Congress should be the entity declaring war, but does not.

Congressional powers should not be taken away, but Congress should be exercising them as written.  When it oversteps its bounds, by design, the Executive and Judicial branches should provide a check on its power.  When it fails to do what is supposed to, We the People should vote someone else in who will.

pohnpei397 eNotes educator| Certified Educator

I do not think there are any powers given to Congress that need to be taken away.  I think there are some that are no longer relevant, but not really any that still matter but which Congress should not have.

The most obvious power that Congress does not really need anymore is the power to grant letters of marque and reprisal.  We no longer need privateers.  Of the others, what would we take away?  We can't take away the power to tax, we can't take away the power to borrow money, or to make laws about bankruptcies.  All of these are areas in which we need Congress to be able to act.