Formal Power That A President Possesses
Very few would argue with the claim that the President’s role as Commander-in-Chief is the greatest formal power that a president possesses. Yet, in the Constitution, only Congress has the authority to formally “declare war.” Presidents for the last 60-70 years have openly stated that they do not need Congressional authorization to use the military to pursue America’s interests on the global stage. As proof, America has not formally declared war since WWII. So, Korea, Vietnam, Gulf War, Iraq War, Afghanistan, and now Syria have all been military exercises, but not wars in the Constitutional sense. Has the power of the President of the United States as Commander-in-Chief exceeded constitutional boundaries and should those powers be curtailed, given the constant state of war we find ourselves in? Or should the President’s military powers continue to expand to address the growing chaos in our world, despite the Constitution or in congruence with the Constitution? Explain your answer.
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