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Power is shared by a powerful central government and states or provinces that are given considerable self-rule, usually through their own legislatures.
One central government controls weaker states. Power is not shared between states, counties, or provinces.
| Confederal System
Weak or loose organization of states agrees to follow a powerful central government. Nations can choose to follow or not follow the lead of the weak central government. Examples: The Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS), formerly known as the Soviet Union. Also, Switzerland's canton system and the Confederate States of America (1861-1865).