The Pompous Postmaster and Presidential Power: The Story of Myers V. United States

24 Pages Posted: 10 Nov 2005

See all articles by Jonathan L. Entin

Jonathan L. Entin

Case Western Reserve University School of Law

Date Written: November 2005

Abstract

Myers v. United States is one of the foundational cases on the constitutional law of presidential power. The case was argued twice in the Supreme Court, and the opinion was written by Chief Justice William Howard Taft, the only person ever to serve as President and on the Court. Indeed, Taft's experience is often cited in explanation of the expansive conception of presidential power embodied in the opinion. Yet there are many unresolved questions about this great case, not the least of which is why a dispute over the relatively minor position of a local postmaster should precipitate a constitutional confrontation. This paper seeks to illuminate the case by examining the background to Myers as well as the behavior of President Taft in dealing with the controversial removal provision that lay at the heart of the case.

Keywords: Constitutional Law, Executive power, Administrative Law

JEL Classification: K19, K23

Suggested Citation

Entin, Jonathan L., The Pompous Postmaster and Presidential Power: The Story of Myers V. United States (November 2005). Case Legal Studies Research Paper No. 05-39. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=845026 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.845026

Jonathan L. Entin (Contact Author)

Case Western Reserve University School of Law ( email )

11075 East Boulevard
Cleveland, OH 44106-7148
United States
216-368-3321 (Phone)
216-368-2086 (Fax)

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