Is the Act Protecting the Special Counsel Unconstitutional?

December 06, 2018


This episode examines the constitutionality of the Special Counsel Independence and Integrity Act – bipartisan legislation that, if passed, would impose regulations on firing a Special Counsel (such as Robert Mueller). Although the bill is stalled for now, legal thinkers continue to offer a range of views on its constitutionality. Joining host Jeffrey Rosen to explore both sides of the debate is Josh Geltzer of Georgetown, arguing that the bill is not constitutional, and Eric Posner of University of Chicago, arguing that it is.

BONUS: Hear Senator Chris Coons (D-DE) – one of the co-sponsors of the act – discuss it with Jeffrey Rosen on a special bonus episode, recorded the same day that Senator Mike Lee (R-UT) voted to stall the bill on the Senate floor.



Joshua Geltzer serves as the founding executive director of the Institute for Constitutional Advocacy and Protection, and as a visiting professor, at Georgetown University Law Center. He is also an ASU Future of War Fellow at New America. Geltzer was formerly senior director for counterterrorism and deputy legal adviser at the National Security Council, and previously served as counsel to the assistant attorney general for national security at the U.S. Department of Justice.

Eric Posner is Kirkland and Ellis Distinguished Service Professor of Law at the University of Chicago Law School. He teaches and writes in the areas of constitutional law, international law, and financial regulation. His books include The Executive Unbound: After the Madisonian Republic (co-written with Adrian Vermeule). He is also a fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences and a member of the American Law Institute.

​​​​​​Jeffrey Rosen is the President and Chief Executive Officer of the National Constitution Center, the only institution in America chartered by Congress “to disseminate information about the United States Constitution on a nonpartisan basis.” 

Additional Resources

Our Interactive Constitution is the leading digital resource about the debates and text behind the greatest vision of human freedom in history, the U.S. Constitution. Here, scholars from across the legal and philosophical spectrum interact with each other to explore the meaning of each provision of our founding document. 

This episode was engineered by Greg Scheckler and produced by Jackie McDermott, with research and booking by Lana Ulrich, Jackie McDermott, Madison Poulter, and Ben Roebuck.

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