The President

7 July 2017

& A ; National Security Essay, Research Paper

The President and National Security

The President? s function in National Security has been a subject of digesting argument in U.S. political relations from the Constitutional Convention to our present twenty-four hours state of affairs in Kosovo. About every American President has had to fight with this issue and trade with the Constitution? s separation of power between Congress and the Executive. The President and Congress portion the war-making powers, treaty-making and foreign policy powers, and among many others, the power to topographic point desired functionaries into certain offices. These powers, though disliked by many, are shared so as to protect the people of this state with our grass roots system of cheques and balances.

Most critics of shared powers focus on the countries of war-making and foreign policy. This struggle can be traced all the manner back to the battle between Hamilton and Madison.

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After what was said to be a series of failed Presidencies ( Johnson, Nixon, Ford, and Carter ) , one group of? modern Hamiltonians? wanted to? increase the power of the President explicitly. ? They hope to make their ends lawfully through statute law and constitutional amendments. Another group of Hamiltonians emerged informally after the Presidency of Ronald Reagan and the? Irangate? contention. Group members asserted that, ? The President and the President entirely, should exert sole authorization in at least four critical countries: the power to travel to war ; the power to both novice and transport out foreign policy ; the power to appoint functionaries to the highest stations in the state with merely the pro forma advice and consent of the Senate. ? ( # 6, p.57 ) They besides wanted the Congress to merely be able to do minor alterations to the President? s domestic budget policy. Other advocators of these places are seeking a more unitary province similar to those of modern parliamentary democracies like Great Britain. Many are covetous of the British Prime Minister? s ability to travel to war without a declaration or a ballot of Parliament. I believe that these critics are burying the ardent points our sires made when composing the fundamental law. The last thing they wanted was the President of the United States to hold the same unitary powers as the King or Prime Minister. That is why they elaborately built the system of cheques and balances, to protect us against a subdivision of authorities with excessively much power. I have chosen a few built-in pieces of American history to exemplify how Presidents have responded in the yesteryear to state of affairss affecting national security and how they dealt with, or circumvented Congress on the issue.

President George Washington set the case in point of Presidential response to domestic national security issues in the? Whiskey Rebellion? in 1795. Western Pennsylvanians refused to pay revenue enhancements on whisky and decided to revolt. Washington desired non the gore of his ain countrymen, but a peaceable decision to this rebellion. Not merely did Washington organize an ground forces, he led the ground forces himself, to do peace and quiet his people down. It was at this page in history that President Washington established the case in point to organize military personnels to convey domestic peace. Sixty-six old ages subsequently, President Abraham Lincoln was faced with a much graving tool job. States began to splinter from the Union, the South attacked Fort Sumter, and Lincoln had to contend back for the interest of national security and basically run the war entirely, besides suspending the Writ of Habeas Corpus. Lincoln? s enumerated powers during this war have been reveled and attempted by many recent Presidents, nevertheless people must recognize the context of his state of affairs and how it? s gravitation is uncomparable with any state of affairs since so.

In the 1930? s there was a seeable growing in the office of the Presidency. In Franklin D. Roosevelt? s foremost inaugural reference in 1932, he asked for wartime powers to run into a peacetime crisis:

I shall inquire the Congress for the one staying instrument to run into the crisis? wide executive power to pay a war against the exigency every bit great as the power that would be given me if we were in fact invaded by a foreign enemy. ( # 6, p.59 )

Congress backed his petition and from that minute on, faculty members and intellectuals have? denigrated the Congress and canonized the Presidency? ( # 6, p.58 ) . Presidents after FDR have followed suit taking to major events in the offices of Truman, Kennedy, Johnson, Nixon, and Reagan.

? [ Harry ] Truman both formalized and expanded the presidential term as an institution. ? ( # 3, p.301 ) He lead the epoch of the modern presidential term by larning some of import lessons which his replacements would hold to take into consideration in future traffics with Congress in affairs of military intercession. Truman seized steel Millss during the Korean War by trying to exert his prerogative power but was stopped by a Supreme Court determination and Congress go throughing the Taft-Hartley Act. Justice Robert S. Jackson? s agring Supreme Court sentiment set the phase for the Court to follow when weighing presidential powers against congressional action:

When the President takes steps incompatible with the expressed or implied will of Congress, his power is at it? s lowest wane, for so he can trust merely upon his ain constitutional powers minus any constitutional powers of Congress in the affair. Courts can prolong sole Presidential control in such instance merely by disenabling the Congress from moving upon the topic. Presidential claim to a power at one time so conclusive and obviating must be scrutinized with cautiousness, for what is at interest is the equilibrium established by our constitutional system. ( 2 )

Most unforgettably, nevertheless, was when he, without a declaration of war or a supportive congressional declaration, sent military personnels to halt an attacker in Korea. This was a baronial attempt though he paid in a heartfelt way? in the coin of public and congressional unfavorable judgment, ? ( # 3, p.298 ) and the war was subsequently dubbed? Truman? s War? .

President Truman besides institutionalized the presidential term when he helped to make the National Security Council in 1947 under the National Security Act. Later, the Council was placed in the Executive Office of the President. Originally, the NSC was? conceived by many legislators to be a cheque on the President? s liberty? ( # 3, p.302 ) in affairs of national security. However, Truman slightly usurped this impression by doing the staffs of the Council portion of the? president? s squad? . Since the Council? s? origin? under Truman, it? s map has been to rede and help the President on the issues of national security and foreign policies. The NSC besides serves as? the President? s rule arm for organizing these policies among assorted authorities agencies. ? ( 4 ) . In 1949, Truman added another member to his squad by doing the frailty president a statutory member O

f the National Security Council. Besides, as a affair of class, frailty presidents receive full national security briefings. Truman knew this was an of import determination protecting national security because the state was at hazard when he came into office due to him being kept in the dark as the frailty president. The constitution of the NSC was merely one more effort to separate the separation of powers between the President and Congress and reenforce our authorities? s system of cheques and balances. Quite perchance the best illustration of the on-going argument over the exclusivity of the powers of the President and Congress can be seen in the contention environing the War Powers Resolution.

During his presidential term, Richard Nixon instituted an even greater sum of centralisation in the White House than Truman, therefore increasing the sum of grey country in separating the separation of powers and the exclusivity of the power of the Executive. ? Nixon reasoned that as holder of the Executive power, a President can travel beyond his enumerated powers and take whatever stairss are necessary to continue the state? s security, even if his actions might be unconstitutional. ? ( # 6, p.124 ) It is clear that since the early mid-thirtiess, Congress has delegated much power to the president, deliberately or non. The War Powers Resolution was an act of Congress to seek to recover some of it? s lost powers. However, in 1973 Nixon vetoed the proviso and every President since has disregarded or blatantly ignored it.

The War Powers Resolution was a joint declaration passed under article I, subdivision 3, the? notification clause, ? by both the House and the Senate and so sent to President Nixon where he vetoed the measure. It was a declaration and non an act because Congress passed it over his veto with a ace bulk ballot. Besides, it was a declaration because it non merely affected the Executive subdivision, but it besides? provided for congressional action and precedence processs with regard to a Presidential study or congressional concurrent declaration, and amended the regulations of the House and Senate to transport them out. ? ( # 6, p.62 ) This declaration is frequently misunderstood as taking power from the President and spread outing the power of Congress. This, in fact, is a false belief because the declaration clearly states that

Nothing in this joint declaration ( 1 ) is intended to change the Constitutional authorization of the Congress or of the President, or the commissariats of bing pacts ; or ( 2 ) shall be construed as allowing any authorization to the President with regard to the debut of United provinces Armed Forces into belligerencies or into state of affairss wherein engagement in belligerencies is clearly indicated by the fortunes which authorization he would non hold had in the absence of this joint declaration. ( # 6, p.62, )

Under Section 3 of the War Powers Resolution, ? the President in every possible case shall confer with with Congress before presenting United States Armed Forces into belligerencies? . ? However, no President has of all time? consulted? Congress before presenting armed forces into belligerencies, they have merely? informed? . This means that if he has merely 30 proceedingss to react to a foreign missile menace he may exert his powers as Commander in Chief of the military to present armed forces into belligerencies without congressional action. This is in conformity with the declaration where he is given these powers in a? ? national exigency created by onslaught upon the United States, it? s districts or ownerships, or it? s armed forces. ? ( subdivision 2 ( degree Celsius ) ( 3 ) ) . He must merely describe to Congress in three fortunes found in subdivision 4 within 48 hours?

Section 4 ( a ) . In the absence of a declaration of war, or in any instance in which United Armed Forces are introduced & # 8212 ;

( 1 ) into belligerencies or into state of affairss where at hand engagement in belligerencies is clearly indicated by the fortunes ;

( 2 ) into the district, air space or Waterss of a foreign state, while equipped for combat, except for deployments which relate entirely to provide, replacing, fix, or preparation of such forces ; or

( 3 ) in Numberss which well enlarge United States Armed Forces equipped for combat already located in a foreign state. ( subdivision 4 ( a ) , War Powers Resolution )

These illustrations clearly show that the War Powers Resolution does non curtail the President? s given powers under the fundamental law, nor does it increase the powers of Congress. The declaration merely sets more distinguishable guidelines for each subdivision to follow. This is after all what has been needed all along, something to unclutter up the grey country between the powers of Congress and the Executive in affairs of national security.

Pious criticized the Executive subdivision? s disclaimer of the War Powers Resolution as the most recent illustration of? presidents? playing a shell game, claiming to move harmonizing to jurisprudence yet distributing with statutory jurisprudence at their convenience in national security matters. ? ( 5 ) In concurrency with this statement, the President needs to take every attempt to hold the backup of Congress and the American people when directing the military into belligerencies so he doesn? Ts make the same error Truman did when he sent military personnels into Korea. ? He needs to hold Congress and the people with him on the takeoff so they are accountable with him on the forced landing. ? ( # 6, p.70 ) By the Executive taking these powers into his ain custodies he is bearing a duty that no 1 adult male can manage by himself. The statements against the War Powers Resolution favor a move to a unitary province, or a? plebiscitary Presidency? . If these shared powers were taken from Congress and changed to a unitary power entirely held by the President himself it would destruct the system of cheques and balances on which this state was founded. This could non be expressed more articulately than by the words of James Madison who warned in Federalist, No. 47, that? the accretion of all powers legislative, executive, and bench, in the same custodies, whether of one, a few, or many and whether familial, self-appointed, or elected, may rightly be pronounced the really definition of dictatorship. ?


1.Hamilton, Madison, et al. , The Federalist Papers ( New York: Penguin Books, 1961 )

2.Ibid. , 343 U.S. 570 at 637 ; and Richard M. Pious, The American Presidency ( New York: Basic Books, 1979 ) , 64-69.

3.Milkis, Sydney M. & A ; Nelson, The American Presidency: Beginnings and Development, 1776-1993 ( Washington DC: CQ Press, 1993 )

4.National Security Council, hypertext transfer protocol: //

5.Pious, Prerogative Power and the Reagan Presidency, 510 n. 27

6.Shuman, Howard E. , & A ; Thomas, The Constitution and National Security ( Washington DC, National Defense University Press, 1990 )

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