States' rights

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States' rights refers to the historic rights of the several states in their relationship with the federal government. The concept of states' rights, and their alleged violations at the hands of the federal government, was a central dynamic leading up to the Civil War. There, the Confederacy believed that the Union abridged the rights of the southern states by seeking to end slavery, among other things.

Further, the term refers to the continued question of federalism in modern United States politics.

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