The Fundamental Issue of Presidential Power

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5 Responses

  1. Dan Solove on the FISA violations

    Great post by GW Law School prof Dan Solove on President Bush’s violations of FISA. He’s quite right: the civil-liberties violations here are

    actually less worrisome than the President’s vision of his own infallibility and

    the executive

  2. Francis Fuller says:

    I argue that Bush needs to assume imperial presidential power, not in order to fight terrorism, but to inhibit any review of his competence. It was not until the week immmediately prior to 9/11 that there was a formal review of the threat from bin Ladin; this review had been requested by Clarke at the time of the inaugauration. Bush has supressed the threat notification contained in the Presidential Daily Brief of August 8th 2001 and the fact that Tenant, and others, sought adminstrative action on this threat.

    Futher to this, there is evidence that Bush was planning for a war in Iraq prior to 9/11. Hussein’s Iraq has no documented connection with bin Laden or Al Queda and 9/11 provides no justification for the Iraqi invasion and occupation.

    My belief is that Iraq constitues an illegal war, one that runs against the conventions of principled states, a war that could only be justified through presidential deception of the American people. Bush has greatly compromised the national security of the United States, has involved the military in “nation building” contrary to his own position pre-election and shows absolute and complete contempt for the constitution he was sworn to uphold.

    Clinton comitted a faux pas and was impeached. Bush constitutes a threat to the American nation. He was re-elected.

  3. Garrett says:

    A very interesting read. Being a youth, I’m only just beginning to question how the world functions. This was very interesting for me read. I’d be interested to read a study of how that gradual change took place.

  4. Bruce says:

    Good points Dan. The Administration’s “inherent authority” argument is almost Jacobean in its scope. Compared with James I, George III wasn’t nearly so extreme, as the Framers were well aware — and yet they still thought him (or, more accurately, the “King-in-Parliament”) dangerous.

    There is another feature of modern society the Framers didn’t anticipate, which is the press as an institutional check on government. Of course, that only works if the information is available, which rigorous enforcement of secrecy laws could thwart.

  5. Herman says:

    Any of you see Professor Laurence Tribe’s great letter to Congressman Conyers about whether Bush’s spying program is legal? It can be found here:

    In addition Professor Tribe and 13 other legal experts (including one former FBI director, Professors Epstein & Stone of the University of Chicago, and Marty Lederman) wrote a much longer letter showing that Bush’s warrantless spying is indeed without warrant. This letter can be found here: