This seminar addresses advanced issues raised by the interaction of the three branches of the federal government. In particular, the seminar will build on the separation of powers issues covered in the Constitutional Law I course by addressing some of those issues in greater depth and dealing with other separation of powers issues that tend to receive less attention because they do not result in justiciable controversies. Specific areas of study will include the political question doctrine, the invocation of executive privilege in Congress and the courts, executive immunity from the criminal and civil process, congressional subpoena power over executive branch documents, the effect of impeachment on the separation of powers, the issues raised by the executive branch's refusal to defend the constitutionality of acts of Congress, and judicial review of executive branch efforts to address foreign terrorism.
Students will be expected to prepare an outline, draft, and final version of a 25-page paper on a topic covered in the seminar and chosen in consultation with the instructor. Participation in class discussions will factor into final grades. Photocopied sets of reading materials for the seminar will include cases, statutes, legislative hearings, interbranch correspondence and other materials.