FDR v. The Constitution

The Court-Packing Fight and the Triumph of Democracy

Author: Burt Solomon

Publisher: Bloomsbury Publishing USA

ISBN: 9780802719577

Category: History

Page: 352

View: 8317

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In the wake of Franklin Delano Roosevelt's landslide re-election of 1936, the popular president-never anything but self-confident-unaccountably overreached. Deeply frustrated by a Supreme Court that had blocked many of his New Deal initiatives, FDR proposed to enlarge it from 9 justices to 15. The now-famous "court packing scheme" divided Roosevelt's own party and inflamed the country at large, and it failed-humiliatingly for FDR-because the president could persuade neither the public nor the Senate of its virtues. And yet, ironically, he could claim ultimate victory, for the Court that emerged from the revolution of 1937-its majority shifted from conservative to liberal-lasted for the next 68 years, until the recent Bush appointments have tilted it back. Historian Burt Solomon, deeply steeped in Washington's lore, skillfully chronicles one of the great set pieces in American history, illuminating the inner workings of the nation's capital as the three branches of our government squared off. The Supreme Court has generated many fascinating and dramatic stories, but none more so than that of the 168 days during which one of our greatest presidents attempted to outmaneuver the Constitution-an action that inevitably calls forth parallels with the present.
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FDR and Chief Justice Hughes

The President, the Supreme Court, and the Epic Battle Over the New Deal

Author: James F. Simon

Publisher: Simon and Schuster

ISBN: 1416578897

Category: History

Page: 480

View: 2194

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By the author of acclaimed books on the bitter clashes between Jefferson and Chief Justice Marshall on the shaping of the nation’s constitutional future, and between Lincoln and Chief Justice Taney over slavery, secession, and the presidential war powers. Roosevelt and Chief Justice Hughes's fight over the New Deal was the most critical struggle between an American president and a chief justice in the twentieth century. The confrontation threatened the New Deal in the middle of the nation’s worst depression. The activist president bombarded the Democratic Congress with a fusillade of legislative remedies that shut down insolvent banks, regulated stocks, imposed industrial codes, rationed agricultural production, and employed a quarter million young men in the Civilian Conservation Corps. But the legislation faced constitutional challenges by a conservative bloc on the Court determined to undercut the president. Chief Justice Hughes often joined the Court’s conservatives to strike down major New Deal legislation. Frustrated, FDR proposed a Court-packing plan. His true purpose was to undermine the ability of the life-tenured Justices to thwart his popular mandate. Hughes proved more than a match for Roosevelt in the ensuing battle. In grudging admiration for Hughes, FDR said that the Chief Justice was the best politician in the country. Despite the defeat of his plan, Roosevelt never lost his confidence and, like Hughes, never ceded leadership. He outmaneuvered isolationist senators, many of whom had opposed his Court-packing plan, to expedite aid to Great Britain as the Allies hovered on the brink of defeat. He then led his country through World War II.
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The American State from the Civil War to the New Deal

The Twilight of Constitutionalism and the Triumph of Progressivism

Author: Paul D. Moreno

Publisher: Cambridge University Press

ISBN: 1107067715

Category: History

Page: N.A

View: 1458

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This book tells the story of constitutional government in America during the period of the 'social question'. After the Civil War and Reconstruction, and before the 'second Reconstruction' and cultural revolution of the 1960s, Americans dealt with the challenges of the urban and industrial revolutions. In the crises of the American Revolution and the Civil War, the American founders - and then Lincoln and the Republicans - returned to a long tradition of Anglo-American constitutional principles. During the Industrial Revolution, American political thinkers and actors gradually abandoned those principles for a set of modern ideas, initially called progressivism. The social crisis, culminating in the Great Depression, did not produce a Lincoln to return to the founders' principles, but rather a series of leaders who repudiated them. Since the New Deal, Americans have lived in a constitutional twilight, not having completely abandoned the natural-rights constitutionalism of the founders, nor embraced the entitlement-based welfare state of modern liberalism.
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Constitutional Review in Europe

A Comparative Analysis

Author: Maartje de Visser

Publisher: Bloomsbury Publishing

ISBN: 1782252444

Category: Law

Page: 528

View: 5007

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Constitutions serve to delineate state powers and enshrine basic rights. Such matters are hardly uncontroversial, but perhaps even more controversial are the questions of who (should) uphold(s) the Constitution and how constitutional review is organised. These two questions are the subject of this book by Maartje de Visser, which offers a comprehensive, comparative analysis of how 11 representative European countries answer these questions, as well as a critical appraisal of the EU legal order in light of these national experiences. Where possible, the book endeavours to identify Europe's common and diverse constitutional traditions of constitutional review. The raison d'être, jurisdiction and composition of constitutional courts are explored and so too are core features of the constitutional adjudicatory process. Yet, this book also deliberately draws attention to the role of non-judicial actors in upholding the Constitution, as well as the complex interplay amongst constitutional courts and other actors at the national and European level. The Member States featured are: Belgium, the Czech Republic, Finland, France, Germany, Italy, Hungary, the Netherlands, Spain, Poland, and the United Kingdom. This book is intended for practitioners, academics and students with an interest in (European) constitutional law.
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The American Senate

An Insider's History

Author: Neil MacNeil,Richard A. Baker

Publisher: Oxford University Press

ISBN: 0199710112

Category: Political Science

Page: 472

View: 5580

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Winner of the Society for History in the Federal Government's George Pendleton Prize for 2013 The United States Senate has fallen on hard times. Once known as the greatest deliberative body in the world, it now has a reputation as a partisan, dysfunctional chamber. What happened to the house that forged American history's great compromises? In this groundbreaking work, a distinguished journalist and an eminent historian provide an insider's history of the United States Senate. Richard A. Baker, historian emeritus of the Senate, and the late Neil MacNeil, former chief congressional correspondent for Time magazine, integrate nearly a century of combined experience on Capitol Hill with deep research and state-of-the-art scholarship. They explore the Senate's historical evolution with one eye on persistent structural pressures and the other on recent transformations. Here, for example, are the Senate's struggles with the presidency--from George Washington's first, disastrous visit to the chamber on August 22, 1789, through now-forgotten conflicts with Presidents Garfield and Cleveland, to current war powers disputes. The authors also explore the Senate's potent investigative power, and show how it began with an inquiry into John Brown's raid on Harpers Ferry in 1859. It took flight with committees on the conduct of the Civil War, Reconstruction, and World War II; and it gained a high profile with Joseph McCarthy's rampage against communism, Estes Kefauver's organized-crime hearings (the first to be broadcast), and its Watergate investigation. Within the book are surprises as well. For example, the office of majority leader first acquired real power in 1952--not with Lyndon Johnson, but with Republican Robert Taft. Johnson accelerated the trend, tampering with the sacred principle of seniority in order to control issues such as committee assignments. Rampant filibustering, the authors find, was the ironic result of the passage of 1960s civil rights legislation. No longer stigmatized as a white-supremacist tool, its use became routine, especially as the Senate became more partisan in the 1970s. Thoughtful and incisive, The American Senate: An Insider's History transforms our understanding of Congress's upper house.
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The Oxford companion to the Supreme Court of the United States

Author: Kermit Hall,James W. Ely,Joel B. Grossman

Publisher: Oxford University Press, USA

ISBN: N.A

Category: Law

Page: 1239

View: 8696

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The second edition of this authoritative guide on the impact of the Supreme Court's decisions on American society includes updated entries on key cases over the past thirteen years, as well as a fully revised treatment of areas of constitutional law.
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