Second Amendment,Thomas Jefferson,checks and balances,liberty,Seventeenth Amendment,Constitution,virtue,George Washington
War and the Constitutional Separation of Powers Activity: Lincoln and Habeas Corpus in the Civil War
Have students work in pairs, small groups, or as a large group to read Handout A: Lincoln and Habeas Corpus in the Civil War, including passages from the U.S. Constitution and memoranda from President Abraham Lincoln in order to evaluate Lincoln’s actions and attitudes in suspending habeas corpus.
War and the Constitutional Separation of Powers Activity: Ex Parte Merryman
Using Handout B: Chief Justice Taney and the Merryman Ruling, have students work in small groups to evaluate the reasoning Taney applied in deciding this case related to Lincoln’s suspension of habeas corpus in the Civil War.
War and the Constitutional Separation of Powers Activity: Youngstown Sheet & Tube Co. et al. v. Sawyer
Using Handout C: Youngstown Ruling and Separation of Powers, students trace and evaluate the reasoning of both sides in the Youngstown Sheet & Tube Co. case regarding the president’s wartime powers to seize private property.
War and the Constitutional Separation of Powers Activity: War on Terror and Separation of Powers
Using Handout D: The War on Terror and Separation of Powers, students will summarize the Supreme Court’s decisions and reasoning in modern cases regarding the constitutional rights afforded to suspected terrorists in the War on Terror.
War and Constitutional Separation of Powers
The U.S. Constitution divides war powers between the president and Congress. The delegates to the Constitutional Convention were focused on creating a government powerful enough to protect liberty, but not so powerful that it would threaten liberty. They worked carefully to craft the war powers of the new government, knowing that history was full of examples of war, so that war powers were necessary, but also of rulers who had abused the power and endangered liberty in order to make war.