Regardless of the kind of federalism current the Constitution does provide some very specific powers to both the states and the federal government. These powers are traditionally divided into three categories.
Reserved powers are those that have been granted specifically to the states or are of a traditionally state scope. These consist mostly of police powers, such as providing fire and police protection, establishment of health regulations, licensing, and education.
Granted powers, also known as express, enumerated, implied, delegated, and inherent powers, are those specifically listed in Article 1, Section 8, such as the power to coin money, to raise an army and navy, to provide for patent and copyright protections, to establish a post office, and to make treaties and war with other nations. An express, delegated, or enumerated power is one specifically listed; an implied or inherent power is one that exists to carry out an express or enumerated power. For example, Congress can raise an army; this implies the ability to specify regulations concerning who can join the army.
Concurrent powers are those held to some extent by both the federal and state governments. Both, for example, have taxation power, the ability to construct and maintain roads, and other spending for the general welfare. Many things are denied of both or either levels of government. States, for example, have no authority to coin money or wage war. Neither may pass a bill of attainder or any ex post facto law. Much of the Bill of Rights applies restrictions to both states and the federal government, while all of the Bill of Rights applies restrictions to the federal government. Note that the Bill of Rights originally had no effect of restriction on the states, but judicial interpretation of the 14th Amendment's due process clause has incorporated much of the upholding of civil rights to the states. - U.S. Constitution online.
As you can clearly read, the Federal Government DOES NOT hold supreme power over the States! Only in enumerated (or specific) areas!
Article 14 was enacted only after Lincoln's War of Aggression.
Article 10 of the Bill of Rights reads The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people.
Federalism in the United States has evolved quite a bit since it was first implemented in 1787. In that time, two major kinds of federalism have dominated political theory.
"The first, dual federalism, holds that the federal government and the state governments are co-equals, each sovereign. In this theory, parts of the Constitution are interpreted very narrowly, such as the 10th Amendment, the Supremacy Clause, the Necessary and Proper Clause, and the Commerce Clause. In this narrow interpretation, the federal government has jurisdiction only if the Constitution clearly grants such. In this case, there is a very large group of powers belonging to the states, and the federal government is limited to only those powers explicitly listed in the Constitution.
The second, cooperative federalism, asserts that the national government is supreme over the states, and the 10th Amendment, the Supremacy Clause, the Necessary and Proper Clause, and the Commerce Clause have entirely different meaning. A good illustration of the wide interpretation of these parts of the Constitution is exemplified by the Necessary and Proper Clause's other common name: the Elastic Clause.
Dual federalism is not completely dead, but for the most part, the United States' branches of government operate under the presumption of a cooperative federalism. The shift from dual to cooperative was a slow one, but it was steady.
In from 1789 to 1861 the federal Government operated more under the dual federalism than the cooperative kind. You look at government with todays view, and are trying to apply it to a system that was much closer to the Founder's intent. We are a Republic</> which means the government is supposed to be governed by the people! This is why we have the Bill of Rights.
By the way Amendment #9 of the Bill of Rights states 'The enumeration in the Constitution, of certain rights, shall not be construed to deny or disparage others retained by the people. So you were incorrect in your assertion that the Federal Government's powers were broad and supreme
The Supremacy Clause gives supreme power to the feds.
The Militia Act of 1792 requires that U.S. law operate in all the states. The Judiciary Act of 1789 requires that civil controversies between the states be submitted to the SCOTUS.
So was secession a civil act, or a criminal act?