PrF:MVV255K Constitution of the US - Course Information

MVV255K Executive Power under the Constitution of the United States

Faculty of Law
Spring 2018
Extent and Intensity
0/1/0. 5 credit(s). Type of Completion: k (colloquium).
Prof. Michael Paul Seng (lecturer), doc. JUDr. Ing. Michal Radvan, Ph.D. (deputy)
doc. JUDr. Ing. Michal Radvan, Ph.D.
Faculty of Law
Contact Person: Mgr. Věra Redrupová, B.A.
Supplier department: Faculty of Law
Timetable of Seminar Groups
MVV255K/01: Mon 12. 3. 13:30–15:00 025, 15:05–16:35 025, Tue 13. 3. 13:30–15:00 025, 15:05–16:35 025, Wed 14. 3. 8:00–9:30 025, Thu 15. 3. 13:30–15:00 025, M. Seng
Course Enrolment Limitations
The course is only offered to the students of the study fields the course is directly associated with.

The capacity limit for the course is 30 student(s).
Current registration and enrolment status: enrolled: 26/30, only registered: 0/30
Fields of study the course is directly associated with
there are 37 fields of study the course is directly associated with, display
Course objectives
This course will examine the background for some of the legal issues currently being raised in the United States about the role of the President in the American constitutional system. Article II of the United States Constitution sets forth the constitutional provisions governing the office of the President and executive power. Very few cases involving executive power have been resolved in the courts. Much of executive power in the United States has been defined by historical practice. The Trump administration has raised new questions about executive power and the role of the President in the United States. This course will explore some of these issues.
Learning outcomes
At the end of the course, students will know:
The basic theory of the American presidential system In what circumstances executive power can be challenged in court
The relationship between the President and Congress
How the powers of the American President differ when the President is acting domestically or internationally
The powers of the President over national security issues
The power of the President to curtail important individual liberties
How the office of the President has evolved in the United States
  • Class I
  • 1. The Election and Qualifications of the United States President -- The Electoral College; The Emoluments Clause
  • 2. The Power of the Courts to Review Executive Action
  • Readings:
  • Marbury v. Madison, 5 U.S. 137 (1803)
  • Wright v. Allen 468 U.S. 737 (1984)
  • Zivotofsky v. Clinton, 132 S.Ct. 1421 (2012)
  • United States v. Nixon, 418 U.S. 683 (1974)
  • Class II
  • 1. The Domestic Power of the President
  • Readings:
  • The Steel Seizure Case, 343 U.S. 579 (1952)
  • Schechter Poultry v. United States, 295 U.S. 495 (1935)
  • Contractors Ass’n of E. Penn. v. Shultz, 442 F.2d 159 (3d Cir. 1971)
  • Morrison v. Olson, 487 U.S. 654 (1988)
  • 2. Presidential Power over Foreign Affairs and National Security
  • Readings:
  • United States v. Curtis Wright, 299 U.S. 304 (1936)
  • The Prize Cases, 67 U.S. 635 (1863)
  • Hamden v. Rumsfeld, 126 S.Ct. 2749 (2006)
  • Zivotofsky v. Kerry, 135 S.Ct. 2076 (2015)
  • Class III
  • 1. The President and Individual Liberties
  • Readings:
  • Pentagon Papers Case, 403 U.S. 713 (1971)
  • Bivens v. Six Unknown Agents, 403 U.S 388 (1971)
  • Harlow v. Fitzgerald, 457 U.S. 800 (1982)
  • Clinton v. Jones, 520 U.S. 681 (1997)
  • 2. Removal and Succession
  • Readings:
  • Nixon v. United States, 506 U.S. 224 (1993)
  • Students should read the assigned cases (see Syllabus) in advance of class and be prepared to discuss them.
Teaching methods
lectures, discussions
Assessment methods
Students will be evaluated on their ability to analyze an American constitutional issue or judicial opinion. Each student will prepare a three-page paper analyzing one of the assigned cases or issues that the student chooses or another topic chosen by the student that is approved by the instructor. Papers will be written in English and will be due three weeks after the conclusion of the class.
Language of instruction
Further Comments
The course is taught only once.
The course is also listed under the following terms Spring 2019.
  • Enrolment Statistics (Spring 2018, recent)
  • Permalink: https://is.muni.cz/course/law/spring2018/MVV255K