Constitution Daily

Smart conversation from the National Constitution Center


Video: Ken Burns and Lynn Novick talk about the Vietnam War

October 13, 2017 By NCC Staff

Filmmakers Ken Burns and Lynn Novick discuss their visceral, immersive documentary on the Vietnam War in a special National Constitution Center event.

On this day, FDR approves funding the Manhattan Project

October 9, 2017 By NCC Staff

On this day in 1941, President Franklin D. Roosevelt orders Dr. Vannevar Bush to move forward with a top-secret project that led to the world's first atomic bombs. Over the following four years, the Manhattan Project was shrouded in secrecy, despite more than 100,000 people working on it.

Was the Vietnam War unconstitutional?

September 20, 2017 By Lyle Denniston

This is the second of several articles that Constitution Daily will publish on the constitutional legacy of the war in Vietnam, with each article focused on a theme that is being explored in episodes this week and next of the PBS documentary, “The Vietnam War,” by Ken Burns and Lynn Novick.  This article is keyed to the broadcast tonight, on the Vietnam conflict as it unfolded in 1966 and 1967.  The remaining Constitution Daily articles will appear next week.

Hamdan v. Rumsfeld: Applying the Constitution to Guantánamo prisoners

June 29, 2017 By NCC Staff

On June 29, 2006, the Supreme Court ruled that the Bush administration's use of military commissions to try suspected terrorists was illegal.

Looking at America’s forgotten War of 1812

June 18, 2017 By NCC Staff

On June 18, 1812, President James Madison signed a resolution, approved in Congress, declaring war against Great Britain. Over the next two and half years, both sides engaged in bitter contests, and the war ended with much unchanged between the two nations.

The origins of the Memorial Day holiday

May 29, 2017 By NCC Staff

But many people, Memorial Day is the symbol of summer’s start, or a chance to get a good bargain on a car. What’s lost is its original meaning to more and more people.

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?

On this day 100 years ago, America enters World War I

April 6, 2017 By Chris Calabrese

On April 6, 1917, Congress approved President Woodrow Wilson’s declaration of war against Germany, thus plunging the nation into World War I.

‘War against war’: Americans for peace in World War I

April 6, 2017 By Michael Kazin

In this commentary, Michael Kazin of Georgetown University reveals the diverse coalition of Americans that opposed U.S. entry into World War I.

How to end a filibuster: World War I and the origin of the cloture rule

April 4, 2017 By Will Englund

In this commentary, Will Englund of the Washington Post tells the little-know story behind the Senate's cloture rule.

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