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Drone Law Expansion Barron Lederman

Drone Law Expansion Barron Lederman

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689
 VOLUME 121 JANUARY 2008 NUMBER 3
©
2008
by The Harvard Law Review Association
 ARTICLE
THE COMMANDER IN CHIEF AT THE LOWEST EBB —FRAMING THE PROBLEM, DOCTRINE, AND ORIGINAL UNDERSTANDING
David J. Barron & Martin S. Lederman
TABLE OF CONTENTS
I. I
NTRODUCTION
......................................................................................................................
692
 
II. W
HY
 
THE
 
P
ROBLEM
 
I
S
 
N
OW
 
A
CUTE
 
 
AND
 
W
HY
 
I
T
 
W
ILL
 
C
ONTINUE
 
T
O
 
B
E
 
I
MPORTANT
..............................................................................................................................
698
 
 A. The Modern Preoccupation with the President’s Unilateral Authority To Use Military Force
.....................................................................................................................
699
 
B. The Bush Administration’s Theory of Preclusive Commander in Chief Powers........
704
 
C. The President’s Theory in Action......................................................................................
706
 
1
. Limitations on the Power To Detain Enemy Combatants.......................................
706
 
2
. Regulations Governing Treatment of Detainees........................................................
706
 
3
. Habeas Corpus Rights of Alien Detainees.................................................................
708
 
4
. Regulations of Electronic Surveillance.......................................................................
710
 
5
. Further Assertions of the Preclusive Commander in Chief Power........................
711
 
D. Structural and Historical Reasons Why the Question Is Now Prominent.................
712
 
1.
The Historical Trend of Increasing Executive Branch Assertions of Indefeasible Substantive Powers.................................................................................
712
 
2
. Armed Conflict Against Terrorist Organizations and Preexisting FrameworkStatutes............................................................................................................................
712
 
3
. The Criminalization of Wartime Conduct.................................................................
715
 
4
. Judicial Enforcement of Implied Statutory Restrictions..........................................
718
 
5
. Congressional Responses to Increasingly Aggressive Assertions of UnilateralPresidential Authority To Use Military Force...........................................................
719
 
III. T
HE
 
M
ETHODOLOGICAL
 
F
RAMEWORK
:
 
T
HE
 
C
ORE
/P
ERIPHERY
 
M
ETAPHOR 
 
AND
 
W
HY
 
THE
 
E
ASY
 
A
NSWERS
 
A
RE
 
T
OO
 
E
ASY
...........................................................
720
 
 A. The Core/Periphery Approach to Category Three Questions.........................................
726
 
B. Arguments that the President Lacks Substantive War Powers.....................................
729
 
1
. The Commander in Chief Clause Does Not Confer Substantive Powers.............
730
 
2
. The War on Terrorism Does Not Trigger Any Substantive War Powers..............
731
 
 
 
690
 
HARVARD LAW REVIEW 
[Vol.
121
:
689
 
C. Arguments that Congress Lacks Substantive Article I Powers.....................................
732
 
D. Arguments that Powers Are Shared but Congress (Almost) Always Prevailsat the Lowest Ebb................................................................................................................
737
 
1
. Congress Wins Whenever It Exercises One of Its Article I Powers.......................
737
 
2
. Congress (Almost) Always Wins Under the Separation of Powers Principle........
738
 
3
. The Power of the Purse Ensures that Congress Is Always Supreme.....................
739
 
 E. Arguments that the Commander in Chief (Almost) Always Prevailsat the Lowest Ebb................................................................................................................
741
 
1
. Conflating Inherent and Preclusive Executive War Powers...................................
741
 
2
. The Foreign Affairs Power...........................................................................................
743
 
3
. The President’s Constitutional Duty To Defend the Nation...................................
745
 
F. The Liberty-Enhancement Test..........................................................................................
748
 
G. Conclusion............................................................................................................................
750
 
IV. D
RAWING
 
L
INES
 
AND
 
D
EFINING
 
THE
 
S
PHERE
 
OF
 
P
RECLUSIVE
,
 
T
ACTICAL
 
D
ISCRETION
............................................................................................................................
750
 
 A. The Battlefield-Nonbattlefield Distinction......................................................................
753
 
B. The Positive-Negative Distinction....................................................................................
755
 
C. The Ex Ante–Ex Post and General-Specific Distinctions.............................................
756
 
D. Conclusion............................................................................................................................
759
 
V. T
HE
 
M
ODEST
 
AND
 
I
NCOMPLETE
 
L
ESSONS
 
FROM
 
S
UPREME
 
C
OURT
 
D
OCTRINE
................................................................................................................................
761
 
VI. T
EXT
,
 
S
TRUCTURE
,
 
AND
 
O
RIGINAL
 
U
NDERSTANDINGS
............................................
767
 
 A. Text and Structure..............................................................................................................
767
 
1
. The Designation of Presidential Superintendence of the Military..........................
767
 
2
. The Scope and Nature of the Commander in Chief’s Substantive Powers..........
770
 
B. Evidence of Original Understandings..............................................................................
772
 
1.
Evidence of the Understanding of the Office of “Commander in Chief”During the Revolutionary War.....................................................................................
772
 
2
. The Commander in Chief in Early State Constitutions...........................................
780
 
3
. Evidence from the Constitutional Convention..........................................................
785
 (a) Debates and Actions Pertaining Directly to the Commander in Chief Clause and the Direction of the Conduct of War..............................................
786
 (b) The Implications of Broader Structural Debates Concerning ExecutivePowers.....................................................................................................................
791
 
4
. Evidence from the States’ Ratification Process.........................................................
792
 (a) State Ratifying Conventions..................................................................................
794
 (b) Hamilton and
The
 
Federalist
................................................................................
796
 
C. Conclusion............................................................................................................................
800
 
VII.
 
C
ONCLUSION
.........................................................................................................................
800
 
 
 
691
THE COMMANDER IN CHIEF AT THE LOWEST EBB —FRAMING THE PROBLEM, DOCTRINE, AND ORIGINAL UNDERSTANDING
David J. Barron
& Martin S. Lederman
∗∗
 
Over the past half-century, discussions of constitutional war powers have focused on thescope of the President’s “inherent” power as Commander in Chief to act in the absenceof congressional authorization. In this Article, Professors Barron and Lederman arguethat attention should now shift to the fundamental question of whether and when thePresident may exercise Article II war powers in contravention of congressionallimitations, when the President’s authority as Commander in Chief is at its “lowest ebb.”Contrary to the traditional assumption that Congress has ceded the field to thePresident when it comes to war, the Commander in Chief often operates in a legalenvironment instinct with legislatively imposed limitations. In the present context, theBush Administration has been faced with a number of statutes that clearly conflict withits preferred means of prosecuting military conflicts. The Administration’s response,based on an assertion of preclusive executive war powers, has been to claim theconstitutional authority to disregard many of these congressional commands.This Article is the first of a two-part effort to determine how the constitutional argumentconcerning such preclusive executive war powers is best conceived. Professors Barronand Lederman demonstrate that, notwithstanding recent attempts to yoke the defense of executive defiance in wartime to original understandings, there is surprisingly littlehistorical evidence supporting the notion that the conduct of military campaigns is
 ––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––– 
 
 
Professor of Law, Harvard Law School.
∗∗
 
Visiting Professor of Law, Georgetown University Law Center. These articles grew out of aconversation that we began in
2004
with a group of our former colleagues from the Office of Le-gal Counsel, including Walter Dellinger, Vicki Jackson, Dawn Johnsen, Neil Kinkopf, TrevorMorrison, Randy Moss, Beth Nolan, Nina Pillard, Jeff Powell, Richard Shiffrin, Chris Schroeder,and Michael Small. We are very grateful to them for encouraging this project, and for their criti-cal insights. Professors Jackson, Johnsen, and Schroeder also gave us excellent editorial advice.We would also like to thank Sam Bagenstos, Jack Balkin, Jerome Barron, Patricia Bellia, PhilipBobbitt, Bradford Clark, David Cole, Noah Feldman, Jerry Frug, David Glazier, Phil Heymann, Juliette Kayyem, David Luban, Bill Marshall, Frank Michelman, Martha Minow, Gerry Neuman, James Oldham, Deborah Pearlstein, Rick Pildes, Jed Purdy, Mark Rosen, Laura Rosenbury, Lau-ren Rothfarb, Larry Tribe, Mark Tushnet, Adrian Vermeule, Robin West, John Witt, JulianZelizer, and Jonathan Zittrain; participants in the Duke Faculty Workshop, the Georgetown Uni-versity Law Center Faculty Research Workshop, the Harvard Law School Colloquium on Consti-tutional Law, the Harvard Law School Conference on the Commander in Chief, and conferencesat the Cardozo School of Law and the Vanderbilt Law School; as well as the students in theGeorgetown University Law Center Spring
2007
seminars in Current Issues in National SecurityLaw and Separation of Powers (in particular, Ateesh Chanda, Matthew Fisher, and Andy Silver),and the students in the Fall
2007
Public Law Theory Seminar at Washington University School of Law. Richard Fallon, Jack Goldsmith, David Golove, and Michael Seidman have provided usespecially thorough and invaluable guidance throughout this endeavor. Rich Chen, Meghan Mor-ris, Adam Pollet, Brishen Rogers, Shalev Roisman, and Phil Tedesco have provided outstandingresearch assistance. The extraordinary efforts of Jennifer Locke Davitt, Rhona Williams, andtheir colleagues at the Georgetown Law Library, and Janet Katz and her colleagues at the Har-vard Law Library, have been indispensable to these Articles.

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