The Imperial Presidency 2.0

March 14th, 2012

As Harvard law professor Jack Goldsmith states at the outset of his new book, “war and emergency invariably shift power to the Presidency. Permanent war and permanent emergency threaten to make the shift permanent.” Many believe that that 9/11 and the actions of the Bush administration, many of which were continued by the Obama administration, makes the idea of Presidential accountability impossible. But in his provocative new book Power and Constraint: The Accountable Presidency After 9/11,Goldsmith makes the contrary argument. He says that post-9/11 American Presidents are more accountable for their national security decisions than ever before. My conversation with Jack Goldsmith: