Congressional Control Over Defense and Delegation of Authority in the Case of the Defense Emergency Response Fund
Armed Forces & Society, Vol. 32, No. 1, pp. 105-122, October 2005
Posted: 1 Mar 2010
Date Written: October 2005
Emerging theories of civil-military relations take a more nuanced look at the role of the actors involved, particularly noting the critical role of the legislature in modern democracies. An important tool of control for the legislature is the power of the purse, so circumstances of delegated spending authority by the legislature to the military are worthy of study. This study investigates a series of supplemental appropriations enacted by the U.S. Congress to pay for the war on terrorism and situates the story in the current literature on civil-military relations. The case describes an episode in which the legislature was willing to delegate authority, how the executive responded, and the circumstances under which the legislature returned to traditional forms of oversight.
Keywords: civil military relations, defense budget, congressional oversight, appropriations
JEL Classification: D73, H56, H61
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation