Announcing Our Upcoming 90 Day Study – Launching Monday, April 6

Constitutional Crisis – How Executive Overreach is Impeding Your Liberties and Undermining States’ Sovereignty: A Study on the Critical Erosion of Constitutional Checks and Balances.

This year’s 90 Day Essay Study will focus on examples of the dramatic expansion of executive branch power at the expense of both Congress and states’ sovereignty – and explain why this is happening. It is, of course, happening due to the breakdown of the Constitutional checks and balances, and the White House, Congress and the Supreme Court are all at fault.

Visit our website daily for essays by constitutional scholars and thought leaders as we explore this timely issue!  We invite you to join the dialogue and share your thoughts with us each day.

What examples of executive overreach do you want to see addressed in our study? Please leave your thoughts for topics below! 

As you may recall, our first 90 Day Study in 2010 focused on the Federalist Papers, and in the following years we divided the Constitution and related amendments into 90 parts, closely examining each clause. Our most recent study examined “The Classics That Inspired the Constitution and the Challenges it Faces Today.”  All 530 of our essays by 85 scholars are archived and searchable at this link: http://constitutingamerica.org/  Please check out our past studies, if you missed them.

We look forward to your thoughts, comments and participation!

Joyfully,

DualSignature

35 replies
  1. Ron
    Ron says:

    I highly recommend! If you believe Presidents are assuming powers the Constitution doesn’t grant them, but don’t understand why or how this is happening and can’t defend your point of view in a debate, this course will give you the tools. I’ve completed Constituting America’s four previous 90-day studies on the Constitution and have learned a lot that I’ve been able to use often in debates. Join me in this study.

    Reply
      • James Renwick Manship
        James Renwick Manship says:

        While looking at the only “President for Life” FDR, look at the Counter-Revolution to “this Constitution for the United States of America” that was effected during his first two terms, that is the creation of the mandatory membership in a labor union for “professionals”, called lawyers, the union being called the Bar. The Bar existed in England prior to this Constitution, but the wise Founding Fathers did NOT include the Bar in any aspect of this Constitution, not even saying “the assistance of LEGAL counsel”, rather the phrase used was “assistance of counsel”, legal, spiritual or otherwise defined as the citizen chooses.

        Reply
  2. Paul Hodson
    Paul Hodson says:

    Looking forward to reading some real solutions. I will reference Madison, who, ironically enough on April 6, 1796, included this in his speech on the House floor (debating the Jay Treaty):

    “It was a consolation, however, of which every member would be sensible, to reflect on the happy difference of our situation, on such occurrences, from that of Governments in which the constituent members possessed independent and hereditary prerogatives. In such Governments, the parties having a personal interest in their public stations, and not being amenable to the national will, disputes concerning the limits of their respective authorities might be productive of the most fatal consequences. With us, on the contrary, although disputes of that kind are always to be regretted, there were three most precious resources against the evil tendency of them. In the first place, the responsibility which every department feels to the public will, under the forms of the Constitution, may be expected to prevent the excesses incident to conflicts between rival and irresponsible authorities. In the next place, if the difference cannot be adjusted by friendly conference and mutual concession, the sense of the constituent body, brought into the Government through the ordinary elective channels, may supply a remedy. And if this resource should fail, there remains, in the third and last place, that provident article in the Constitution itself, by which an avenue is always open to the sovereignty of the people, for explanations or amendments, as they might be found indispensable.”

    Madison references three constraints, or checks, on an overreaching government. The first – the natural rivalry of responsibility between the “departments” (what we now call “branches”) of government. The second – adjustments brought about by the people themselves, through the normal election process (throw the bums out). The third, AND LAST, Constitutional provision, is that provided in Article V of the Constitution, the article which describes the two modes of amending the Constitution. The second mode, which has never been fully used, is the mode in which the sovereign people, through their state legislatures, may apply for a “convention for proposing amendments” (note: NOT a constitutional convention); this mode BYPASSES Congress, except for the call of the convention itself (time and place). The states themselves are the only “department” given unilateral power, by the Constitution, to amend the Constitution, should “explanations or amendments” be found to be necessary due to an overreaching federal government.

    The time is now for such action; the federal government is not going to discipline itself. I hope to see some vigorous, historically truthful debate on this solution which is hidden in plain sight in our Constitution.

    Please consider visiting the conventionofstates.com website as well for more information.

    Reply
  3. susan
    susan says:

    I look forward to the study and interesting in learning more. Thank you for the opportunity to learn more about the inner workings of our government and our Constitution.

    Reply
  4. Nan Nicoll
    Nan Nicoll says:

    This is a very timely study. The administrative government is totally suffocating our Constitutional law and must be substantially diminished. I will learn a lot of how to get that done I hope with this 90 day study.

    Reply
  5. Joseph Lacerenza
    Joseph Lacerenza says:

    Not since 1776 has the United States faced such peril as it does now , for these are the times that try men’s souls on the alter of political combat in an effort to reestablish Constitutional Controls.

    Reply
  6. Arthur Bedford
    Arthur Bedford says:

    Paul Hodson has nailed it! The Framers of our Constitution gave us this second method, a convention of states, contained in Article V just for this purpose. They are probably “spinning in their graves,” wondering why we haven’t used this tool. It is ironic that there are groups within the conservative camp that claim to love the Constitution but hate this part. They claim that the Constitution is not the problem. In fact, however, the improper aggregation of power by the federal government arises indirectly from the Constitution itself. The Constitution permits the federal judiciary to be its final interpreter. Accordingly, the Constitution, as interpreted by the Supreme Court today, is a major problem. The people, through their state legislators have the opportunity to restore the Constitution to the Framers’ intents by calling for an Article V Convention of States to limit the power and jurisdiction of the federal government.

    Reply
  7. LARRY Austin
    LARRY Austin says:

    I am 64 yrs. old and have never in entire life, been more worried about our nation, it’s freedoms,and the very nature of our current occupants! We as a nation of free people “MUST” find a way to inform our fellow Americans of the dangers of uninformed voters.We must sound the alarm pronto!!! I don’t mean to sound like a crazy nut, but I am so worried about our current state of affairs and the future for my grand children. I am so happy to find this effort of yours! Please keep it up and thank you again!!!!

    Reply
  8. Don Hawkes
    Don Hawkes says:

    Executive overreach is an issue which the States must address. It als must address Judicial , Legislative and Bureaucratic overreach . The entire national government is involved in practices which exceed the limitations placed upon it by the States with a duly ratified Constitution and is therefore an example of lawlessness and tyranny. The States must rectify this situation by nullification and interposition.

    According to the philosophy of government expressed by our nation’s founding fathers in the Unanimous Declaration, a government that does not secure the unalienable God-given rights of the people is illegitimate and it is the duty of the people to alter or abolish it and establish one that will perform that legitimate duty.

    Reply
  9. kent matlock
    kent matlock says:

    Responsibility for our nations decline rests squarly on the shoulders of those who have been running this country in the same destructive way they’ve ran it for decades. This is the reason things are gettingrseand worse. In an ongoing effort to create personal wealth and to assure they can continue to do so, career politicians have undermined the entire political and economic system, hence our entire nation to the point of collapse. This nation simply cannot survive by allowing congress to continue to legislate in favor of whatever corporation and/or special interest donates enough money to assure those career politicians remain in power.we the people no longer have a voice to protect our best interests. What’s worse is we’ve grown to believe we are powerless to defend ourselves or our country. We need a convention of states for only one thing. To invoke term limits for congress and senate. Then we can begin the long process of taking the government out of the hands of a few and putting it back into the hands of the people of this nation. We s to have forgotten that this nation rose to greatness because we had a government for the people, by the people. A government that didnot include corrupt, career politicians who refer to bribery as lobbying and exclude themselves from following laws they create for everyone else.

    Reply
  10. Prof JD
    Prof JD says:

    i would like your thoughts on the use of regulatory agencies, such as the EPA and FCC, to restrict commerce, impose “fees” (essentially taxes in some cases), and take huge tracts of land away from state use and reserve them for the federal government. Misuse of the IRS is another area that would require a very large investigation.

    Reply
  11. Ralph Howarth
    Ralph Howarth says:

    Tom Woods and Kevin Gutzman’s work “Who Killed the Constitution” is a great source. Kevin happens to know little known SC Chief Justice Marshall switch from Federal constraint doctrine during the ratification era and did an about face in his infamous decision in Marbury v. Madison 1803.

    Reply
  12. Ralph Howarth
    Ralph Howarth says:

    Here is a recess appointment topic that happens to open with Watergate where SCOTUS took original jurisdiction on the topic of executive privilege and decided that it is not absolute. Then the article segues into some of President Obama’s recess appointments to the NRLB that were overturned in lower federal courts and those decisions upheld by SCOTUS.

    http://www.forbes.com/sites/michaelbobelian/2014/06/28/supreme-courts-rebuke-of-presidential-power-should-not-be-overstated/

    Reply

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