Abstract

http://ssrn.com/abstract=2232354
 


 



Inadvertent Implications of the War Powers Resolution


Michael A. Newton


Vanderbilt University - Law School

2012

Case Western Reserve Journal of International Law, Vol. 45, No. 1, 2012
Vanderbilt Public Law Research Paper No. 13-9

Abstract:     
The constitutional infirmity of the War Powers Resolution has been uniformly demonstrated by more than four decades of bipartisan experience. The Resolution manifestly fails to eliminate the healthy interbranch tensions that are in our constitutional DNA with respect to military deployments. In its context, the override of President Nixon’s veto represented little more than a stark act of congressional opportunism. The President’s veto message was prescient in warning that the Resolution is “dangerous to the best interests of our Nation.” This article suggests that the act represents an attempted abdication of the enumerated obligation of Congress to oversee military operations via the appropriations power. It describes reasons why our republic would be well served by clear-eyed reassessment of the War Powers Resolution. It spawned three serious defects: 1) it displaced good faith dialogue between the co-equal branches with after the fact litigation, 2) it highlights American political will as the weakest strand of otherwise formidable military capacity, and 3) it creates a perverse inventive to reverse engineer military operations based on statutory language in ways that undermine strategic objectives. American lives and interests are ill-served by these inadvertent implications.

Number of Pages in PDF File: 25

Keywords: War Powers, checks and balances, executive oversight, budgeting, appropriations, constitutional law

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Date posted: March 13, 2013 ; Last revised: April 12, 2013

Suggested Citation

Newton, Michael A., Inadvertent Implications of the War Powers Resolution (2012). Case Western Reserve Journal of International Law, Vol. 45, No. 1, 2012; Vanderbilt Public Law Research Paper No. 13-9. Available at SSRN: http://ssrn.com/abstract=2232354

Contact Information

Mike A. Newton (Contact Author)
Vanderbilt University - Law School ( email )
131 21st Avenue South
Nashville, TN 37203-1181
United States
(615) 322-2912 (Phone)
HOME PAGE: http://law.vanderbilt.edu/newton
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