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Question: What is the Federal government?
Answer: Any department of the United States three branches of the government as defined in the US Constitution are referred to as the United States Federal Government. These include the US Supreme Court, the US Congress and the President and offices of the Executive branch. The Executive branch constitutes the largest part of the federal government. With over 2 million employees (not including the Post Office) the Federal Government is the nation's largest single employer.
Federal governments are formed by "federations" of several different states that combine together when they require centralized authority for certain centralized functions - usually defined by a written constitution.
The United States is considered the first modern federation. After gaining independence from Britain, the U.S. adopted the Articles of Confederation in 1781. Although this was the first step towards federalism, congress was limited as to its ability to pursue, economic, military, and judiciary reform. In 1787, the founding fathers convened the Philadelphia Convention and wrote our US Constitution. When the US Constitution was adopted in 1789, the U.S. was officially a federation.
Other nations that have established federal governments include: Switzerland (1848); Canada (1867); Germany (1949); Australia (1901); Austria (1949).