From the National Constitution Center Bruce Ackerman is the Sterling Professor of Law and Political Science at Yale University. His latest book is We the People: The Civil Rights Revolution. Louis Fisher is Scholar in Residence at the Constitution Project. He previously worked for four decades at the Library of Congress as a Senior Specialist…Details
by Gene Healy, CATO Institute Today, six months after President Obama unilaterally launched our latest war in Iraq, five months after he expanded the war to Syria, four months after his administration thought up a name for the war, and three months after he promised to go to Congress for authorization, the president sent congressional…Details
Article I, Section 10, Clause 3 (I-10-3) of the Constitution forbids states from imposing any “Duty of Tonnage” without the consent of Congress.
During the Founding Era, tonnage was a levy imposed on the cargo capacity of ships entering or leaving harbors. As the Constitution’s words indicate, it was a species in a larger class of financial exactions known as duties.Details
As has been widely reported, House Speaker John Boehner has invited Israel’s Prime Minister Netanyahu to address the U.S. Congress. If Congress does host the speech, would it be unconstitutional? Peter Spiro at Opinio Juris suggests that it would. I agree.Details
The Constitution requires the President to “take Care that the Laws be faithfully executed.” This “take Care” language came from 18th century commissions and formal instructions by which higher officials delineated what lower officials were to do. The premier examples were royal instructions to colonial governors, but the Continental and Confederation Congresses used the same language in instructing civil and military officials.
The Constitution’s language is both a grant of enumerated power to the President and a mandatory duty imposed on him.
When the issue of federal power over states’ rights come into the forefront, Democrats are quick to cite the supremacy clause as beyond debate. Yet, Republicans often use the same talking points. When GOP policies need that extra “federal muscle,” Republicans imitate their political opponents and claim federal law as supreme without question.Details
Three years ago, a group of primarily government plaintiffs sued in federal district court to void Colorado’s Taxpayers Bill of Rights (TABOR). TABOR allows the people, not just the legislature, to vote on most tax increases, most debt increases, and some spending hikes.Details
It is widely expected Obama will issue an unconstitutional executive order and send U.S. National Guard troops to Liberia “to help contain the Ebola outbreak there,” according to NBC News. But is this constitutional?Details
In a letter written in 1783, Benjamin Franklin said, “In my opinion, there never was a good War, or a bad Peace.”
That kind of talk today probably would get Ben branded a terrorist or an associate of al-Qaeda, ISIS, or the latest enemy in the perpetual War on Terror. Lindsey Graham definitely would tell him to shut up and then send him to Gitmo.Details