This comprehensive guide is the definitive source for researchers seeking an understanding of those who have occupied the White House and on the institution of the U.S. presidency. Readers turn to Guide to the Presidency for its wealth of facts and analytical chapters that explain the structure, powers, and operations of the office and the president’s relationship with Congress and the Supreme Court. The work is divided into eight distinct subject areas covering every aspect of the U.S. presidency.

Chapter 9 Unilateral Powers of the Presidency

Chapter 9 Unilateral powers of the presidency

The Constitution won ratification in part by being vague. Yet Article II wins out, as Edward Corwin once commented, as its “most loosely drawn chapter.”1 Its very first sentence provides one of the document's least specific but potentially most far-reaching grants of power: that “the executive power shall be vested in a President of the United States of America.” By contrast, the parallel language pertaining to Congress in Article I's vesting clause includes a key qualifier, that “all legislative powers herein granted shall be vested in a Congress.” Does the discrepancy imply that “the executive power” goes beyond the list of powers delineated in the rest of Article II, as claimed by proponents ...

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