Constitutional politics

1. A central issue in constitutional politics involves whether the authority granted in Article II exhausts the powers of the President. To what extent does the President enjoy inherent powers and extraordinary powers in times of emergency? Scholars disagree on this important question. Discuss the theories of presidential power. Discuss the Supreme Court’s acceptance or rejection of these theories by relying on cases that were discussed in this unit. Be specific. To which theory (or theories) has the Supreme Court subscribed, and why? To which theory (or theories) did the Framers probably subscribe, and why? 2. Consider the four approaches to constitutional interpretation discussed Chapter 2 (on judicial review). a. Which approach best characterizes Justice Stevens’ opinion of the Court in U.S. Term Limits, Inc. v. Thornton (1995)? Explain. b. Which approach best characterizes Justice Thomas’s dissent in the same case? Explain. 3. How did Wickard v. Filburn (1942) impact federalism? 4. Is the decision in Granholm v. Heald (2005) consistent with the decision in Philadelphia v. New Jersey (1978)? Compare and contrast these two cases.

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