Local Constitutional Scholar Weighs In On No-Fly Zone In Libya

PITTSBURGH (KDKA) — As no-fly zone operations continue in Libya, critics say President Obama should have consulted more with Congress before committing U.S. troops to the campaign.

Now a local expert is weighing in on the debate. Ken Gormley is dean of Duquesne University’s law school.

“These types of decisions have been made by these presidents time and time again in this country,” he said.

Gormley is a constitutional scholar and says Congress and the Executive often battle over military action overseas.

“There has been this tension between Congress and the President, but generally when it comes to committing troops — because these are fast moving situations, decisions have to be made quickly — it has been presidents making this decision, not the Congress,” he explained.

Article II of the Constitution does make the president Commander in Chief, but article I gives only Congress the power to declare war.

The last official war declaration was World War II 70 years ago.

“Unless you have a circumstance like Pearl Harbor or something like that, it is unlikely that these types of decisions are going to be made that swiftly,” Gormley said.

That means the Commander in Chief can send troops anywhere until Congress cuts off funding for the mission.

“That’s where they can eventually trump the president if he commits troops in a way they believe is a mistake,” Gormley said.

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  • The Little O

    Obaba, you still here , I thought they would have impeached you by now

  • Sara Sams

    Obama dont come with legal papers but he can pick and choose what he does with our nation. We as the voters should be able to Impeach his A$$ for all the cruel mean things he has done to this country..Is it 2012 yet ???

  • chevelle64

    and reagan made decision to send billions in weapons and cia training to taliban which included bin laden, wise choice

  • swin

    I guess I can conclude that we therefore have not fought a war since world war II.
    This professor got it all wrong. Harry Truman violated the constitution when he started the war in Korea. Instead of impeaching his a–, congress let him get away with it. Since then every war has been illegal. And now you get professors who can’t figure this out and think it’s OK for the president to play Matt Dillon on his own. Short and simple, the founding fathers NEVER intended one man in this country to have that much power than he can start his own wars. The United States Army is NOT the private police force of the president. As a friend of mine said, when a president has that much power he is no longer a president, he is a king.

  • swin

    We need to pull all our troops out of Afghanistan and Iraq, from all our bases around the world, from our state militias and border patrols and send them all to fight on the ground with the Libyan freedom fighters. Mohammed Washington,
    Ahmed Jefferson, Abdul Madison, and Yassir Adams need our help.

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