Review of Josh Chafetz, Congress’s Constitution: Legislative Authority and the Separation of Powers, Presidential Studies Quarterly

The autumn issue of Presidential Studies Quarterly carries my review of Josh Chafetz’s engaging and erudite book, Congress’s Constitution. The essay begins:

How should we understand Congress’s power vis-à-vis the other branches of government? This is no academic matter, as indicated by the recent interbranch battles concerning the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act and expenditure of appropriated funds on a border wall. Josh Chafetz of Cornell Law School tackles this big question in Congress’s Constitution. He structures his inquiry by first advising readers on how to think about interbranch conflict, and whether Congress can be expected to be an active contestant in such battles (Chapters 1 and 2). Chafetz then spends the great portion of his book laying out the powers of Congress and explicating how they can and have been used (Chapters 3 through 8). He concludes with a ringing defense of the virtues of our separation-of-powers system and Congress itself.

Wiley has the review behind a pay wall at

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