In 1787, the most respected and well-known people of the new nation of the United States came together to resolve problems of the first constitution, the Articles of Confederation. The Articles served as a written constitution for the people to put down their ideas during the years 1781 to 1789 but was plagued by numerous complications. The Articles gave the states sovereignty, freedom, and power to govern themselves but must limit power of the national government. This included the inability of the Confederation Congress to tax leading to the strenuous battle in alleviating the national debt and paying the United States' own soldiers. They were losing credibility as a nation because they couldn't pay back the other nations who had helped them in the Revolutionary War. They were being pushed around into treaties like the Jay-Gardoqui Treaty. They had the inability to raise an army to defend against Native American attacks and attacks from other nations. Civic virtue could no longer help rule the states into helping each other as was shown by the disunity in voting and Shay's Rebellion. These problems were found to be impossible to resolve without completely scrapping the Articles to create a whole new Constitution. During the Constitutional Convention, delegates agreed on created fundamental changes but conflicting interests of the states led to compromises which when presented to the states, a Federalist-Antifederalist battle for ratification ensued.
The principles of this new nation begin from the fundamental changes of federalism, separation of powers, and a system of checks and balances. Federalism is a form of government in which power is shared between the federal and state governments. This was instated to still give the states their power in ensuring the interests of their people whilst giving the federal government enough power to protect the liberty of the people through restraint.