Fordham Law Review Symposium on April 16 & 17: The Adequacy of the Presidential Succession System in the 21st Century


The Fordham Law Review is organizing this event along with former Fordham Law School Dean John D. Feerick, a preeminent scholar on the Twenty-Fifth Amendment, and former Senator Birch Bayh, framer of the Twenty-Fifth Amendment.

The event is a two-day symposium, bringing together leading thinkers and experienced practitioners in the area of presidential succession: Former Senator Birch Bayh, who, as framer of the Twenty-Fifth Amendment and chairman of the Senate Subcommittee on Constitutional Amendments, oversaw the hearings and debate on the topic; those who were on the front lines in developing the presidential succession structure (Fred Fielding, former White House Counsel to Presidents Ronald Reagan and George W. Bush, and Benton Becker who served as Counsel to President Ford); those who have written on the subject from a variety of perspectives (Professors Akhil Amar, John Feerick, Edward Foley, Joel Goldstein, Robert Gilbert, and Rose McDermott); Dr. John Fortier and Norman Ornstein, whose work on the Continuity in Government Commission has evaluated the adequacy of this system in a post-9/11 world; Constitutional Law scholars Dean William Treanor, Professor James Fleming, and Robert Kaczorowski; as well as Bill Baker, President Emeritus of WNET.ORG.

The Fordham Law Review will publish the symposium in its December 2010 issue.

Among a number of topics that will be discussed are the ambiguities in the existing constitutional provisions (for example, can presidents invoke the inability provision of the Twenty-Fifth Amendment to temporarily step down during moments of political crisis?); analysis of the constitutionality of the current Succession Act, which puts members of Congress in the line of succession; recommendations for handling a double vacancy in the Presidency and Vice Presidency and the constitutionality of current proposals for dealing with such a dilemma; important gaps and conflicts at various stages of transition (for example, disability or death prior to election or inauguration and potential conflict of interests arising in confirmation hearings of an appointed Vice President); and the constitutionality of informal—extraconstitutional and extrastatutory—arrangements between Presidents and their Vice Presidents, members of their cabinet, and members of Congress.

Friday, April 16 from 9:30 to 5:00 and Saturday, April 17 from 9:30 to 1:00
Fordham Law School
McNally Amphitheatre
140 West 62nd Street
New York, NY 10023
This event is free and open to the public.
Full Schedule here.

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