Politics and Constitutionalism

The Louis Fisher Connection

Edited by Robert J. Spitzer

Subjects: American Government
Series: SUNY series in American Constitutionalism
Paperback : 9780791446409, 295 pages, May 2000
Hardcover : 9780791446393, 295 pages, May 2000

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Table of contents


1. Introduction

Robert J. Spitzer

2. The Last Word Debate Revisited

Neal Devins

3. Diplomacy, Foreign Affairs, and Coordinate Review

Michael J. Glennon

4. The Courts and the Political Branches: Interpretation, Accommodation, and Autonomy

Nancy Kassop

5. Judicial Power, Coordinate Construction, and Presidential Warmaking

David Gray Adler

6. The Supreme Court and Federalism: Yesterday and Today

Dean Alfange Jr.

7. Probing Government Secrecy: Louis Fisher and the Hidden Side of Government

Loch K. Johnson

8. Saving the Constitution from Lawyers

Robert J. Spitzer

9. Commentary

Louis Fisher

Appendix: Bibliography of Louis Fisher's Publications


Case Index

Subject and Name Index

Examines the work of Louis Fisher, renowned scholar of constitutional law and politics.


Politics and Constitutionalism presents a collection of eight original essays by leading political science and law scholars, organized to recognize and analyze Louis Fisher's prolific and important body of work. The essays explore the role of all three branches of government in shaping constitutional meaning and institutional behavior, noting that the courts do not have sole interpretive power. This principle is applied to such topics as the dynamic of key court rulings, federalism, war powers, diplomacy, government secrecy, and the impact of the legal community on constitutional interpretation. The book's contributors also turn renewed attention to the study of American institutions as the fountainhead of political analysis, a movement in which Fisher has been a pioneer. Fisher himself contributes a summative essay.

Contributors include David Gray Adler, Dean Alfange, Jr. , Neal Devins, Louis Fisher, Michael J. Glennon, Loch K. Johnson, Nancy Kassop, and Robert J. Spitzer.

Robert J. Spitzer is Distinguished Service Professor of Political Science at the State University of New York, College at Cortland, and author of The Presidential Veto, also published by SUNY Press.


"This volume demonstrates the value of multidisciplinary approaches to studying the Constitution and government. " — Political Science Quarterly

"There are relatively few books on interbranch conflicts and examining institutional conflict in constitutional terms. Too often such conflict is referred to as simply political conflict. This book makes an important contribution to the field. " — Shirley Anne Warshaw, author of Powersharing: White House–Cabinet Relations in the Modern Presidency

"It is refreshing and reassuring to see such finely wrought arguments made explicitly, though in a reasonably balanced and not narrowly defensive manner. " — James P. Pfiffner, author of The Strategic Presidency