One of the most significant yet underappreciated lessons of the history of impeachment is that it was intended as a tool to strengthen the nation’s security.
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Law professor and former deputy assistant attorney general John Yoo this week declared, “What the framers thought was that the American people would judge a president at the time of an election. They would never have wanted an impeachment within a year of an election.”
In the course of researching a book, I’ve come across many episodes that Benjamin Wittes and I like to call “Weird War Powers $h*t.” One of my favorites is a story about American constitutional war powers and actual $h*t. It’s a story about very expensive bird-$h*t, or guano, and how one of the 19th century’s most important thinkers on war powers nearly stumbled the nation, figuratively speaking, into a giant pile of it.
Daniel Webster and War Powers
In the early 1980s, Soviet intelligence began Operation Infektion—a campaign to erode trust in the U.S. government by orchestrating a series of scientific papers and news articles arguing that the U.S. government created the HIV/AIDS virus.
On April 16, President Trump vetoed S.J. Res. 7, a joint resolution directing the United States to end support for the Saudi-led military campaign against Houthi rebels in Yemen. The veto was the second of Trump’s presidency and the second time a U.S.
When the Mueller investigation began in May 2017, many people hoped that it would shed light on what was perhaps the central question regarding Russia’s intervention in the 2016 U.S. election: whether the Trump campaign actively colluded with the Russian government’s interference operation.
Today is the 195th birthday of the Monroe Doctrine. On December 2, 1823, President James Monroe proclaimed in his Seventh Annual Message to Congress that the United States would oppose any European efforts to colonize or reassert control in the Western Hemisphere:
Jhesus-Maria, King of England, and you, Duke of Bedford, who call yourself regent of the Kingdom of France, you, Guillaume de la Poule, count of Suffort, Jean, sire of Talbot, and you, Thomas, sire of Scales, who call yourselves lieutenants of the Duke of Bedford, acknowledge the summons of the King of Heaven. Render to the Maid here sent by God the King of Heaven, the keys of all the good towns which you have taken and violated in France. She is here come by God’s will to reclaim the blood royal.
The 19th Annual Grotius Lecture at the ASIL Annual Meeting: Civil War Time from Grotius to the Global War on Terror
Next week is the annual meeting of the American Society of International Law in Washington DC. For nearly 20 years, the meeting has begun with the distinguished Grotius Lecture, which takes place on the opening night of the conference. The Grotius Lecture is co-sponsored by ASIL and (I’m pleased to add) my law school, Washington College of Law.
John Hay had a fascinating tenure as Secretary of State from 1898 – 1905. This was a period known for the increase in the power of the President, especially at the hands of Teddy Roosevelt. Not coincidentally, U.S. power abroad also increased during the time, often through policies designed or implemented by John Hay.