Constitution Daily

Smart conversation from the National Constitution Center

Article II

The Emancipation Proclamation’s other anniversary

September 22, 2017 By NCC Staff

President Abraham Lincoln altered the course of the Civil War and American society when the Emancipation Proclamation was issued in 1863. But the Proclamation had its roots in a key announcement made on September 22, 1862.

The Gulf of Tonkin Resolution and the limits of presidential power

August 7, 2017 By Scott Bomboy

It was 53 years ago today that a joint session of Congress approved the Gulf of Tonkin Resolution, an act that led to the Vietnam War’s escalation and the eventual passage of another act seeking to curb presidential powers.

Attorney General removals rare, but not unprecedented

July 26, 2017 By Scott Bomboy

The apparent conflict between President Donald Trump and his Attorney General, Jeff Sessions, has led to speculation that Sessions could be leaving his position soon. Such an action would be unprecedented if Sessions were actually fired, but there have been several occasions where past Attorneys General left office under pressure.

The man whose impeachment vote saved Andrew Johnson

May 16, 2017 By NCC Staff

After being impeached, President Andrew Johnson survived his 1868 Senate trial by just one vote. And to this day, how that vote was cast remains shrouded in controversy.

James Comey and the definition of a ‘constitutional crisis’

May 12, 2017 By Jeffrey Rosen

Writing in The Atlantic, National Constitution Center president and CEO Jeffrey Rosen explores various definitions of a constitutional crisis and how they help us understand President Trump's firing of the FBI director.

Podcast EXTRA: Is the firing of James Comey a constitutional crisis?

May 11, 2017 By NCC Staff

Josh Blackman of the South Texas College of Law in Houston and David Cole of the American Civil Liberties Union discuss what President Trump's firing of the FBI director means for our constitutional system.

Happy 219th anniversary to the U.S. Navy Department

April 30, 2017 By NCC Staff

The United States Navy actually has two birthdays—one in October, and one today. So what is the difference between the two days and why is it constitutionally important?

Happy 228th birthday to First United States Congress

April 6, 2017 By NCC Staff

On this day in 1789, the First Congress under our current Constitution met in its first joint session in New York and undertook an important order of business: confirming George Washington’s election as President.

The Alaska purchase: Folly or good fortune?

March 30, 2017 By NCC Staff

On this day in 1867, United States Secretary of State William Seward signed a deal acquiring Alaska, an agreement that was ridiculed by some as “Seward’s Folly” and opposed in the House.

Appointment of Defense secretary highlights obscure rule, role of military in democracy

February 11, 2017 By Chris Calabrese

General James Mattis received a waiver allowing him to take the job, despite his recent retirement. Is this good for democracy?

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