Attack of the Clones ushered in the "beginning of the end of the Republic" and the introduction of an era of major changes for the galaxy. Before the Clone War, the Republic had access to a vast fortune from the commerce guilds and trade factions. Senator's like Amidala and Orn Free Taa could lavish amongst large wardrobes and penthouse apartments: factions had the money to create large armies and pay large amounts of money for bounty hunters. In TPM the Republic is beginning to crumble, commercially, under its own weight. In TPM, the Senate tries to impose taxes on the Trade Federation because the Republic can't support itself. "In order to rein in the Trade Federation, as well as raise funds for an overburdened government, the Republic approved the taxation of outlying trade routes." - Trade Federation, Star Wars.Com In AotC, Anakin mentions that investigations into the Trade Federation are halted because they threaten the monies of the Republic. "The Jedi have not been allowed to investigate. It would be too dangerous for the economy, we were told." - Anakin, Attack of the Clones, scene 38 So what happens when the Trade Factions and Commerce Guilds split from the Republic and their monies start to dwindle in Episode III under the duress of the Clone Wars? We can only assume that in Episode III the Republic will be scrambling to keep itself alive. Already in AotC and TPM we know that money is an issue for the Republic. Now, with the major commerce guilds jumping ship, the Republic can only crumble under the stress of its own size. We know that by ANH the wealthy gowns of senators begin to resemble Leia's simple white gown; starships will need to reuse metals from older starships and get a more plate like finish - a time of change in the galaxy. So what hints will this change give up for the story of EpisodeIII? It suggests that in order to keep the ideals, and security, of the Republic alive, former systems of the Republic will have to align themselves to a single body with a single purpose by handing over their treasuries. Collecting tax will now come under the jurisdiction of a commerical Empire - created to fuel a large military power that will protect any system that may come under attack from Confederate forces. LANDO: So, you see, we are a small operation, we don't fall into the...uh...jurisdiction of the Empire. LEIA: So you are part of the Mining Guild then? LANDO: No, not actually. Our operation is small enough not to be noticed...which is advantageous for everybody since our customers are anxious to avoid attention to themselves. - Empire Strikes Back, Cloud City Alderaan, being a major player (commercially?) within the Galaxy, may begin by lending it's wealth to an Empire. This may be the chance for Palpatine to declare himself Emperor and then slowly strip away the foundations of the Republic embedded in this commercial Empire. After all, a commerical Empire - like a committee, needs a head of proceedings. It would then make sense for a Rebellion to begin with systems that believe that their alliance with the Empire no longer brings them protection at the end of the Clone Wars - especially if they defeat the confederacy and are simply funding their own civil war. Theory A: Money.