LAW 2848 - Foreign Affairs and the Constitution
This course examines how U.S. law both constrains and is constrained by U.S. foreign relations and the foreign policy-making process. The course focuses on the constitutional allocation of responsibility among the executive, legislative and judicial branches in matters relating to foreign affairs, including war, treaty-making and spending powers. Unique aspects of the lawmaking process in the foreign relations context are illuminated through historical case studies to include, among others, the use of force in Grenada, Panama, the Persian Gulf, Somalia and Haiti; the Iran-Contra Affair; and the controversy surrounding interpretation of the Anti-Ballistic Missile Treaty. The involvement of state and local governments and of private actors in foreign affairs is also considered from a constitutional pragmatic. Finally, the course examines how treaties, international instruments and international law in general interact with domestic legal mechanisms, and how the national security context affects such individuals’ rights as those provided under the First and Fourth Amendments. All topics address the need for possible reform of foreign relations law as the United States continues to move forward in the post-Cold War era. A paper is required.
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