War Powers: The Politics of Constitutional Authority [NOOK Book]

Overview

Armed interventions in Libya, Haiti, Iraq, Vietnam, and Korea challenged the US president and Congress with a core question of constitutional interpretation: does the president, or Congress, have constitutional authority to take the country to war? War Powers argues that the Constitution doesn't offer a single legal answer to that question. But its structure and values indicate a vision of a well-functioning constitutional politics, one that enables the branches of government themselves to generate good answers ...

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War Powers: The Politics of Constitutional Authority

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Overview

Armed interventions in Libya, Haiti, Iraq, Vietnam, and Korea challenged the US president and Congress with a core question of constitutional interpretation: does the president, or Congress, have constitutional authority to take the country to war? War Powers argues that the Constitution doesn't offer a single legal answer to that question. But its structure and values indicate a vision of a well-functioning constitutional politics, one that enables the branches of government themselves to generate good answers to this question for the circumstances of their own times.

Mariah Zeisberg shows that what matters is not that the branches enact the same constitutional settlement for all conditions, but instead how well they bring their distinctive governing capacities to bear on their interpretive work in context. Because the branches legitimately approach constitutional questions in different ways, interpretive conflicts between them can sometimes indicate a successful rather than deficient interpretive politics. Zeisberg argues for a set of distinctive constitutional standards for evaluating the branches and their relationship to one another, and she demonstrates how observers and officials can use those standards to evaluate the branches' constitutional politics. With cases ranging from the Mexican War and World War II to the Cold War, Cuban Missile Crisis, and Iran-Contra scandal, War Powers reinterprets central controversies of war powers scholarship and advances a new way of evaluating the constitutional behavior of officials outside of the judiciary.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

Winner of the 2014 Richard E. Neustadt Award, Presidents and Executive Politics Section of the American Political Science Association

"Zeisberg has written a sophisticated, painstakingly researched analysis focusing on the age-old question of the proper allocation of war powers between Congress and the president."--Choice

"War Powers is an important entry into a vital substantive area where the concerns of scholars connect to real world problems that impact leaders and citizens across the globe. The author's creative and ambitious account deserves further development, defense, and elaboration, including its application to separation of powers contexts well beyond struggles over war."--Bruce Peabody, Congress and the Presidency

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781400846771
  • Publisher: Princeton University Press
  • Publication date: 7/21/2013
  • Sold by: Barnes & Noble
  • Format: eBook
  • Edition description: Core Textbook
  • Pages: 288
  • File size: 2 MB

Meet the Author

Mariah Zeisberg is assistant professor of political science at the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor.
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Table of Contents

Chapter 1: Who Has Authority to Take the Country to War? 1
Chapter 2: Presidential Discretion and the Path to War: The Mexican War and World War II 54
Chapter 3: "Uniting Our Voice at the Water's Edge": Legislative Authority in the Cold War and Roosevelt Corollary 92
Chapter 4: Defensive War: The Cuban Missile Crisis and Cambodian Incursion 146
Chapter 5: Legislative Investigations as War Power: The Senate Munitions Investigation and Iran-Contra 184
Chapter 6: The Politics of Constitutional Authority 222
Acknowledgments 263
Index 265
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