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Amerikaanse kongres in WW2 Vergeleke met ander wetgewende liggame

Amerikaanse kongres in WW2 Vergeleke met ander wetgewende liggame

As 'n Britse A Level Modern History -student, weet ek dat die Britse parlement tydens die Tweede Wêreldoorlog in 'n nasionale regering of 'n koalisie van alle partye saamgekom het, en met die uitsondering van 'n paar klein meningsverskille het hulle redelik verenig gebly totdat Duitsland oorgegee het in 1945.

Ek weet ook dat die Duitse Reichstag verenig was onder die Nazi's (al was dit 'n gedwonge eenheid), sowel as die Japannese en Sowjet -regerings was verenig in hul steun aan die oorlogspoging.

Dit ondersteun 'n basiese uitgangspunt dat hierdie nasies alles in hul vermoë doen om die oorlog te inspan, in die mate dat ideologie en filosofie in die meeste gevalle irrelevant was.

Ek weet egter nie van die VSA gedurende hierdie tyd nie. Ons hoor baie oor die sterk leierskap van FDR en Truman, maar ons hoor selde (in elk geval in Brittanje) iets oor die kongres gedurende hierdie tyd.

Was die partye verenig?

Ek voel uit my kennis van die Amerikaanse stelsel dat die partye sou voortgaan met partydige politiek en 'n groot deel van die oorlog geïgnoreer het, aangesien dit baie naby aan hulle gebeur het, maar ek kan my voorstel dat sekere komitees sou gewees het betrokke, (Senaat se weermag, intelligensie, ens.).

Het die kongres tydens die Tweede Wêreldoorlog solidariteit met die president getoon?


Het die kongres tydens die Tweede Wêreldoorlog solidariteit met die president getoon?

Nie regtig nie. Alhoewel die Kongres solidariteit betoon het ten opsigte van die oorlogspoging (en dit het moeite geneem), was interne politiek baie teen die president.

Die middeltermynverkiesings van 1942 was die eerste wat na die oorlogsverklaring gehou is. Die Demokrate het skaars daardie verkiesing gewen. Die Republikeine het 47 setels in die Huis gekry, 9 in die Senaat. Om die saak te vererger, het hierdie smal oorwinnings 'n aantal suidelike demokrate ingesluit wat slegs naamlik Demokrate was.

Die kongres het as gevolg van hierdie verkiesing verskeie belangrike New Deal -projekte gekanselleer. Die lys van gekanselleerde New Deal -projekte bevat die Civilian Conservation Corps (beëindig in 1942), en die National Youth Administration en die Works Progress Administration (albei beëindig in 1943).


Om uit te brei op (en effens korrek) David Hammen, was die CCC en WPA nie gesluit nie weens partydige politiek. Hulle is gesluit omdat die werkloosheid laag was weens die industrialisering van die oorlogspoging. Dit was programme wat ontwerp is om die hoë werkloosheid te bekamp en was nie meer nodig nie.

Wat die kongres betref, nee. Vanaf 1938-41 was die kongres die oorlog baie teë. Die Amerikaanse mense het gedink dit was nie ons stryd nie, en hulle was te verbrand van die Eerste Wêreldoorlog en het baie moeite gehad om na Europa of Asië te gaan. Die kongreslede wou dus hê Amerika moes buite bly. Hulle wou hê dat hul kiesafdelings gelukkig moes wees. U het 'n paar kongreslede in die Eerste Wêreldoorlog gehad wat gedink het ons moet gaan, maar die meerderheid wou buite bly. Dit is die rede waarom FDR 'n "cash and carry" -ooreenkoms gehad het en Amerikaanse vlieëniers en militêre adviseurs met die Britte en Franse gedeel het, sodat hulle die poging kon help sonder om betrokke te raak.

Pearl Harbor het Amerika se opinies verander en mense bymekaargemaak om betrokke te raak. Dus, vroeg in 1942, ondersteun die Kongres die poging. Toe het die middeltermyne begin, en die Demokrate het wel setels in die verkiesing verloor. Die Demokrate was nog steeds huiwerig om 'n volledige oorlogsverklaring uit te voer, terwyl die Republikeine dit as 'n noodsaaklikheid vir ons eie nasionale verdediging beskou het. Die mense (wat in '42 die oorlog meestal ondersteun het) was dus geneig om met die Republikeine te staan.

Na '42 het die Demokrate geleer uit hul verliese in die middeltermyn en besef dat 'n teenoorlogse standpunt hulle nie sou help om beheer oor hul setel in die '44 of '46 verkiesings te behou nie.

Interessante bron: Kyk spesifiek na die partyplatforms vanaf 1940 en daarna 1944. U kan die verandering sien in die Demokratiese platform van sterk teenoorlog tot matig, middel van die pad in 1944. UCSB-partyplatforms sedert 1840


Twee lyke, een tak

Ondertekening van die Grondwet Howard Chandler Christy, House Wing, 1940, oostelike trap

Die kongres is verdeel in twee instellings: die Huis van Verteenwoordigers en die Senaat. Die twee kongreshuise het gelyke, maar unieke rolle in die federale regering. Alhoewel hulle wetgewende verantwoordelikhede deel, het elke huis ook spesiale grondwetlike pligte en bevoegdhede.

Om die belange van beide die klein en die groot state te balanseer, het die Framers of the Constitution die mag van die kongres tussen die twee huise verdeel. Elke staat het 'n gelyke stem in die senaat, terwyl die verteenwoordiging in die Huis van Verteenwoordigers gebaseer is op die grootte van die bevolking van elke staat.

The Connecticut Compromise deur Bradley Stevens Oil on canvas, Amerikaanse Senaatversameling van 2006

Hierdie plan vir verteenwoordiging in die kongres, bekend as die Groot (of Connecticut) kompromis, is deur die afgevaardigdes van Connecticut ingevoer by die konstitusionele konvensie van 1787, Roger Sherman en Oliver Ellsworth.


Huis van Verteenwoordigers

Daar is 435 totale verteenwoordigers in die Huis, elke staat kry 'n ander aantal verteenwoordigers, afhangende van die bevolking. Bykomende afgevaardigdes sonder stemreg verteenwoordig die District of Columbia en die Amerikaanse gebiede, soos Puerto Rico, Guam en die Amerikaanse Maagde-eilande.

Lede van die Huis van Verteenwoordigers kies hul leier, bekend as die Speaker van die Huis. Die spreker is derde in die opeenvolging van die presidentskap, na die president en die vise -president.

Die Huis van Verteenwoordigers word beskou as die kamer van die kongres wat die naaste aan die mense is, of die meeste reageer op die behoeftes en opinies van die publiek. Om hierdie reaksie te verseker, kies mense elke twee jaar hul verteenwoordigers, en alle lede van die huis kan terselfdertyd herverkies word. Verteenwoordigers mag 'n onbeperkte aantal ampstermyne uitoefen.

Volgens artikel I, afdeling 2 van die Grondwet, moet verkose verteenwoordigers minstens 25 jaar oud wees en minstens sewe jaar lank 'n Amerikaanse burger wees. Hulle moet ook woon in die staat wat hulle in die kongres verteenwoordig.


Hierdie pos is deel van Onheil van faksie, 'n onafhanklike politieke wetenskap -blog met refleksies oor die partystelsel.

Mischiefs of Faction bied 'n simposium aan om die honderdjarige bestaan ​​te vier van Jeannette Rankin wat die eerste vrou geword het wat in die Amerikaanse Huis van Verteenwoordigers verkies is. Ons eerste pos bied 'n biografiese skets van Rankin se loopbaan, die tweede pos beklemtoon die ondergewaardeerde rol van vrouegroepe in die Amerikaanse beleid, ons derde pos verduidelik hoe vroulike kandidate belangstelling in politieke veldtogte kan wek, en ons vierde pos beklemtoon die vordering wat nog voorlê.

Soos die eerste pos in hierdie reeks aangedui het, het vroue se verteenwoordiging in die Amerikaanse kongres geleidelik toegeneem sedert Jeannette Rankin haar eed afgelê het in 1917. Vandag is daar 104 vroulike lede van die kongres, waaronder 21 vroue onder 100 senatore en 83 van 435 verteenwoordigers . Maar hoe vergelyk die Amerikaanse kongres se 19,4 persent vroue met ander lande regoor die wêreld?

Die Inter-Parlementêre Unie het die afgelope 20 jaar die aantal vroue in wetgewers wêreldwyd dopgehou, sodat ons die vordering van Amerikaanse vroue in vergelykende perspektief kon evalueer. Toe die IPU in 1997 vir die eerste keer data rapporteer, was 11,7 persent van die Huislede en 9 persent van die senatore vroue - vergeleke met 'n wêreldgemiddelde van onderskeidelik 12 persent en 10 persent. Die Verenigde State was dus tipies op die wêreldwye verhoog en was 41ste uit die 107 lande wat ondersoek is.

Twintig jaar later, terwyl die aantal vroue in die kongres inderdaad toegeneem het, het die syfers vir ander nasies vinniger gestyg. Vandag is die Verenigde State se 19,4 persent amper 4 persent onder die wêreldgemiddelde van 23,3 persent. Hierdie wêreldwye gemiddelde maskers is egter aansienlik uiteenlopend en word verlaag deur die teenwoordigheid van 'n aantal ontwikkelende lande met minder as 5 persent vroulike wetgewers. (Byvoorbeeld, daar is slegs een vrou onder die 26 parlementslede in Tonga.)

As ons die Verenigde State vergelyk met ander wêreldstreke wat meer ooreenstem met ons eie, kom daar skerp kontraste na vore, soos in die onderstaande figuur gesien word. In die Nordiese lande is geslagsgelykheid in verteenwoordiging amper bereik. 41,7 persent van die wetgewers is vandag vroue. In die res van Europa is die syfer 24,9 persent. Nader aan die huis bestaan ​​die gemiddelde wetgewer in Amerika uit 28,2 persent vroue. Afrika-wetgewers suid van die Sahara bevat ook meer vroulike verteenwoordigers as die Amerikaanse kongres-23,8 persent. Die Verenigde State is inderdaad 100 uit die 190 lande wat deur die IPU ondersoek is, agter Rwanda (61,3 persent vroue), Mexiko (42,6 persent), Afghanistan (27,7 persent) en die Verenigde Arabiese Emirate (20 persent).

Die relatief lae aantal vroue-kongres is verbasend, aangesien die Verenigde State relatief goed skaal op ander maatreëls vir die welstand van vroue, soos die Verenigde Nasies se geslagsontwikkelingsindeks. Wat is die rede vir hierdie teenstrydigheid? Vergelykende navorsing dui aan dat die belangrikste bepalende faktor vir vroueverteenwoordiging in wetgewers wêreldwyd die manier waarop kandidate gekies word om hul pos te kies en die struktuur van die stembrief waarop hulle verskyn, behels.

Sedert die 1980's het die gebruik van geslagskwotas vir elektiewe ampte oor die hele wêreld versprei, wat die toename in die politieke verteenwoordiging van vroue veroorsaak het (sien figuur 2). Kwotas behels die vasstelling van persentasies of getalle vir die politieke verteenwoordiging van spesifieke groepe, in hierdie geval vroue en soms mans.

Kwotas neem verskillende vorme aan, waaronder die daarstelling van spesiale setels wat vir vroue gereserveer is, formele kieswette aangaande die geslag van kandidate en vrywillige verbintenisse wat deur politieke partye gemaak is. Byvoorbeeld, in Uganda is daar 112 sitplekke in die parlement wat vir vroue gereserveer is, sodat slegs vroulike kandidate vir hierdie ampte mag optree. Die nasionale wetgewer bevat nou 'n derde vrou en is wêreldwyd in die topkwartiel.

In die Verenigde State bestaan ​​so 'n "gereserveerde setel" -kwota op geografiese basis: Twee setels in die senaat is vir elke staat gereserveer, en slegs kandidate uit 'n spesifieke staat mag kandidate vir sy senaatsitplek kry. Geslagsgelykheid kan maklik in die senaat bereik word deur verder te spesifiseer dat elke staat een manlike en een vroulike senator kan hê.

In sommige lande verplig die Grondwet of die kieswet dat partye geslagsgebalanseerde lyste van kandidate vir elektiewe ampte voorstel. In Spanje word elke geslag byvoorbeeld 'n minimum van 40 persent van die nominasies van 'n party se stembrief gewaarborg. Partye wat te min vroulike (of manlike) kandidate aanbied, mag nie tydens die verkiesingstyd op die stembrief verskyn nie. Hierdie kwota het die Spaanse vroueverteenwoordiging effektief verhoog tot 39,1 persent.

Die grondwet van Nepal bevat 'n soortgelyke kwota-bepaling wat vereis dat 'n derde van 'n party se kandidate vroue moet wees. In ander lande is kwotas nie in die wet vasgelê nie, maar eerder vrywillige beloftes van politieke partye. Dit is die geval in Duitsland, waar die parlement nou 37 persent vroue bevat, en kanselier Angela Merkel erken die rol wat haar party se "kworum" -beleid in haar politieke opkoms gespeel het.

Die Duitse saak bied ekstra nuttige insig in die redes vir die hoë vlak van manlike oorverteenwoordiging in die Verenigde State: die kiesstelsel wat gebruik word.

Baie lande wat geslagskwotas gebruik, het ook 'n proporsionele verteenwoordigende kiesstelsel. In teenstelling met die Verenigde State se "winner take all" -stelsel, waarin slegs een persoon op 'n slag verkies word, bevat PR-kiesstelsels distrikte met meer lede, met wenners toegeken op grond van die persentasie van die stemme wat elke party ontvang. Omdat daar onder die PR -stelsel meer as een wenner op 'n slag kan wees, kan 'n party terselfdertyd 'n man en 'n vrou kies om verkiesbaar te wees.

In plaas daarvan dat hulle gedwing word om 'n enkele kandidaat vir die stembrief te kies, benoem partye ranglys van kandidate, en kiesers kies die partylys van hul keuse tydens die verkiesing. Dan word setels in die distrik aan elke party toegeken op grond van hul stemdeel.

As die staat Washington byvoorbeeld PR gebruik om sy tien lede van die Huis van Verteenwoordigers te kies, sou die Demokrate en Republikeine elk 10 kandidate kies om op die stembrief te verskyn. As die Demokrate 60 persent van die uitgebrachte stemme en die Republikeine 40 persent sou wen, sou die voorste ses demokrate en vier beste Republikeine op die partyliste tot die kongres verkies word.

Geslagskwotas kan maklik gekombineer word met 'n PR -kiesstelsel omdat partye eenvoudig kieslyste volgens die kwota opstel. Byvoorbeeld, in Merkel se Christen -Demokratiese Unie -party word vroue ten minste een uit elke drie plekke op die kieslys van die party gewaarborg.

Die Amerikaanse wenner-neem-alles-stelsel is moeiliker om met 'n kwota te kombineer, aangesien daar slegs een wenner per kiesdistrik is, wat beteken dat kandidate nie deur mans en vroue gedeel kan word nie. (Gewoonlik manlike) posbekleërs word gereeld gekies om die enigste kandidaat van 'n party te wees.

Die impak van die PR- en wenner-neem-almal-kiesstelsels op vroue se politieke verteenwoordiging kan duidelik gesien word in Duitsland, waar 'n dubbele kiesstelsel gebruik word. Die helfte van die setels in die Bundestag word gekies via distrikte met een lid, soos in die Verenigde State, en geen geslagskwotas word gebruik nie. Die ander helfte van die setels in die Bundestag word verkies met behulp van PR, gekombineer met vrywillige geslagskwotas van die party. In die Duitse verkiesing in 2013 was die persentasie vroue wat deur die PR-vlak verkies is, meer as twee keer so hoog as via die wenner-neem-alles-vlak (sien figuur 3).

Daar is egter moontlike maniere om beleid vir regstellende aksie te kombineer met 'n kiesstelsel met 'n enkele lid-distrik. Politieke partye in die Verenigde Koninkryk het 'tweeling' -kiesdistrikte beoefen, twee veilige setels gekoppel en doelbewus 'n vroulike kandidaat in een en 'n manlike kandidaat in 'n ander gekies. Toe partye hierdie praktyk vir die eerste verkiesing in die nuutgeskepte parlement van Skotland aanvaar, is meer Skotse vroue verkies as wat hulle ooit Skotland se setels in die Britse parlement gewen het gedurende sy hele geskiedenis.

Britse partye het ook in alle distrikte 'kortlyste' vir alle vroue in diens geneem, met inagneming van slegs voornemende vroulike kandidate om te benoem vir 'n setel wat geopen word deur die aftrede van 'n posbekleër. Die gebruik van alle vroue-kortlyste deur die Arbeidersparty tydens die Britse verkiesing in 1997 het die aantal vroulike parlementslede byna verdubbel.

Hierdie doelbewuste stappe van politieke partye om die aantal vroue in die elektiewe amp te verhoog, is baie effektief omdat dit 'n ander hindernis vir vroueverteenwoordiging in die Verenigde State oorkom: die 'entrepreneuriese' stelsel om kandidate te kies deur selfbenoeming en voorverkiesings. Studies van voornemende kandidate dui daarop dat Amerikaanse vroue baie minder geneig is om hulself as gekwalifiseerd te verkies en minder geïnteresseerd is as hul manlike eweknieë. Gekwalifiseerde vroue sal dus minder verkiesbaar wees as mans en, soos hierbo getoon, is dit minder waarskynlik dat hulle in die kongres voorkom.

In Duitsland is gekwalifiseerde vroue ook minder geneig as hul manlike eweknieë om te sê dat hulle 'n politikus wil wees of 'n verkiesingsfunksie op 'n hoë vlak wil hê, maar geslagskwotas daar vereis dat partyleiers 30 tot 50 persent van hul partylyste moet vul met vroulike kandidate. As gevolg hiervan word Duitse vroue in partye met pariteitskwotas gereeld deur partyleiers gevra om vir 'n elektiewe amp te kies, word hulle opleidingsprogramme aangebied om hul selfvertroue en vaardighede aan te moedig, en uiteindelik eindig hulle meer gereeld as hul manlike eweknieë.

Kortom, die reëls vir die keuring en verkiesing van kandidate maak 'n groot verskil in die kans van vroue om genomineer te word en uiteindelik verkies te word. Sedert Jeannette Rankin se dag het Amerikaanse vroue ver gekom in die politiek, maar vroue elders het verder gekom, danksy meer geslagsgelykwaardige stelsels om verteenwoordigers te kies en te kies. As gevolg hiervan lyk die Verenigde State se kongres minder na Amerika as wat ander demokraties verkose wetgewers lyk soos die burgers wat hulle verteenwoordig.

Louise K. Davidson-Schmich is 'n medeprofessor in politieke wetenskap aan die Universiteit van Miami en die skrywer van Geslagskwotas en demokratiese deelname: keuring van kandidate vir keusekantore in Duitsland.

Miljoene wend hulle tot Vox om te verstaan ​​wat in die nuus gebeur. Ons missie was nog nooit so belangrik as op hierdie oomblik nie: om te versterk deur begrip. Finansiële bydraes van ons lesers is 'n kritieke deel van die ondersteuning van ons hulpbron-intensiewe werk en help ons om ons joernalistiek vir almal vry te hou. Oorweeg om vandag 'n bydrae tot Vox te maak vanaf slegs $ 3.


Distrik van Columbia

'N Ander kwessie van deurslaggewende belang vir swart kongreslede was die kwessie van verteenwoordiging en selfregering, of' tuisregering 'vir die stad Washington, DC. Sedert die ontstaan ​​daarvan na die Koshuiswet van 1790, is die hoofstad van die land bestuur deur 'n lappie lappende beheerliggame: 'n aangestelde burgemeester en 'n verkose stadsraad (beide 'n raad van raad en algemene raad) kortliks, 'n territoriale regering in 1871, toe die die stad is aangewys as die 'District of Columbia' as 'n presidensieel aangestelde kommissie en kongreskomitees. Na 1960, as gevolg van die nuwe swart meerderheid, het die kongresdebatte oor verteenwoordiging en die administrasie van die distrik weerklank gevind in die groter Afro-Amerikaanse gemeenskap.

/tiles/non-collection/b/baic_cont_4_cbc_white_house_nara_306_PSE_81_1330.xml Beeld met vergunning van die National Archives and Records Administration Gedurende die agt jaar van president Ronald Reagan, het hy een keer met die CBC vergader. Op die foto in die Withuis op 3 Februarie 1981, het die CBC Reagan se hulp gevra oor huishoudelike aangeleenthede.

Fauntroy bepleit onvermoeid 'tuisregering' in die District of Columbia. Die CBC, wat die onafhanklikheid van die oorwegend Afro-Amerikaanse bevolking wou verhoog, het by hom aangesluit. Fauntroy het toesig gehou oor 'n lobby -veldtog wat daarop gemik was om steun op te bou van blanke lede wat suidelike distrikte verteenwoordig het met 'n aansienlike swart kiesafdeling. Die poging het die oorhand gekry. In Desember 1973 het die kongres 'n kompromismaatreël aanvaar-die District of Columbia Self-Government and Governmental Reorganization Act-wat die distrik beperkte selfregering gegee het, waardeur burgers 'n burgemeester en 'n stadsraad kon kies. 100

Gedeeltelik gebaseer op die sukses van die 'Fauntroy-strategie', het die CBC later die Action-Alert Communications Network (AACN) geskep om steun van nie-swart wetgewers te mobiliseer oor 'n verskeidenheid beleidskwessies wat swart Amerikaners raak. 101 Omvat die National Black Leadership Roundtable en die Black Leadership Forum, het die AACN ingeskakel by 'n netwerk van nasionale swart organisasies wat geskik is vir voetsoolvlakveldtogte wat druk kan uitoefen op wit leiers met 'n groot Afro-Amerikaanse bevolking. "Ons organiseer ons om die politieke proses te beïnvloed, om op 'n baie noukeurige basis in koalisie uit te reik met diegene wie se belange saamval met ons s'n," het Fauntroy opgemerk. 102

Ander Afro-Amerikaanse lede het in latere dekades 'n sleutelrol gespeel. Julian Dixon, 'n inwoner van die distrik wat 'n huis in Los Angeles verteenwoordig het, het voorsitter geword van die subkomitee van die House Appropriations Committee in die District of Columbia. Gedurende die 1980's en 1990's was Dixon een van die stad se primêre bondgenote in die kongres tydens 'n era van begroting. In 1991, na Fauntroy se uittrede uit die huis, wen Eleanor Holmes Norton die verkiesing as afgevaardigde. Norton, 'n advokaat vir volle stemreg vir die kongres in die distrik, dien sedert die 102de kongres (1991-1993) as die afgevaardigde van die distrik.


Wat is die kongres?

Kongres is die wetgewende tak van 'n regeringstelsel met 'n kongresdemokrasie. In so 'n demokrasie is die uitvoerende gesag nie aanspreeklik teenoor die wetgewende gesag nie. Die hoof van die regering is ook nie 'n lid van die wetgewer nie. In die geval van 'n kongres kies mense hul kandidaat op grond van sy profiel, loopbaan en sy planne vir die toekoms van sy kiesafdeling.

In die geval van 'n kongres, het lede meer vryheid en is hulle nie verplig om die party te bereik nie, aangesien hulle nie die regering op dieselfde manier as parlementariërs kan benadeel nie. Die kongres is tweekamer met die Senaat en die Huis van Verteenwoordigers op die kongres. Die goedkeuring van 'n wetsontwerp is 'n lang proses op 'n kongres, en dit verg redelik swaar ondersteuning. Die Huis van Verteenwoordigers moet dit goedkeur. Die Senaat moet dit dan goedkeur. Uiteindelik moet die president dit goedkeur.

Die senaat het lede wat 'n lang termyn het en wat na aan die lede van die hoër huis is, in die sin dat hulle minder bekommerd is oor die openbare mening. Hulle verskil van die lede van die Laerhuis en die Huis van Verteenwoordigers, aangesien hulle moet veg vir die volgende verkiesing.


Wat is die kongres?

Om dinge duidelik te maak oor wetgewende liggame, is kongres die naam wat gesamentlik na die Huis van Verteenwoordigers en die Senaat verwys word. Dus is die Huis of die Huis van Verteenwoordigers een van die twee dele wat die kongres in die Amerikaanse politiek uitmaak, die ander is die Senaat. Hier is die vergelyking om dit eens en vir altyd te onthou.

Kongres = Huis van Verteenwoordigers (Huis) + Senaat

Die Huis van Verteenwoordigers in die VSA is die ekwivalent van die Britse Laerhuis. Dit bestaan ​​uit 435 lede wat in verhouding is tot die bevolking van 'n staat. Kleiner state het dus 'n kleiner aantal verteenwoordigers, terwyl diegene met 'n hoër bevolking 'n groter aantal verteenwoordigers het.

Die Huis van Verteenwoordigers vorm saam met die senaat die kongres wat die bevoegdheid het om wetgewing te voer oor aangeleenthede van openbare belang. Die stelsel om twee huise in die kongres te hê, toon 'n stelsel van kontrole en saldo's om te voorkom dat wetgewing haastig 'n wet word.


Kongres teenoor die president

Deur John G. Tower

Die president is die enigste orgaan van die land in sy eksterne betrekkinge, en sy enigste verteenwoordiger met vreemde lande.

Een van die oudste konflikte in die Amerikaanse regeringstelsel is die tussen kongres en die president oor die reg om buitelandse beleid te formuleer en uit te voer. Is die president alleen verantwoordelik vir die uitvoering van eksterne betrekkinge? Is die kongres 'n gelyke vennoot? Of het die Kongres die reg om die Amerikaanse beleid te vorm deur wetgewing in te stel wat die buigbaarheid van 'n president onderdruk? Dit is nie net debatpunte vir historici en konstitusionele advokate nie, maar kritieke kwessies wat aangespreek moet word as ons die suksesvolle uitoefening van Amerikaanse diplomasie in die 1980's wil sien. Ons doeltreffendheid in die hantering van die probleme wat voorlê, veral die Amerikaanse-Sowjet-kompetisie in die Derde Wêreld, hang in 'n beduidende mate af van ons vermoë om die teëstandsverhouding tussen die president en die kongres op te los.

Die stryd om beheer oor die buitelandse beleid het in die twintigste eeu sterk na vore getree, met Amerika se onwillige toetrede tot wêreldsake, twee Wêreldoorloë en 'n kleiner, maar meer komplekse, naoorlogse bipolêre wêreld wat gekenmerk word deur die toenemende onderlinge afhanklikheid van nasies. Die eerste belangrike kongresuitdaging teenoor die uitvoerende gesag se buitelandse beleidsvoorreg het gedurende die tussenoorlogse jare plaasgevind. Nadat die senaat in 1920 president Wilson se Versailles -verdrag verwerp het, het die kongres voortgegaan om hom te laat geld in die formulering van buitelandse beleid. Teen die dertigerjare kon 'n sterk kongres presidensiële inisiatief in die kritieke vooroorlogse jare voorkom. Die byna universele konsensus vandag is dat hierdie indringing deur die Kongres 'n ramp was en die Verenigde State verhinder het om 'n nuttige rol in Europa te speel wat die Tweede Wêreldoorlog kon voorkom.

Na die Japannese aanval op Pearl Harbor en ons toetrede tot die Tweede Wêreldoorlog, was die kongres en die president eens oor die rigting van die Amerikaanse buitelandse en militêre beleid. Kongresintervensie het amper opgehou.

Die tydperk na die Tweede Wêreldoorlog is gekenmerk deur 'n redelike balans tussen die kongres en die president in die besluitnemingsproses oor buitelandse beleid. Trouens, presidensiële buitelandse beleidsinisiatiewe is algemeen aanvaar en versterk deur tweeledige steun op Capitol Hill. Die Amerikaanse buitelandse beleid was redelik samehangend en konsekwent deur veranderende gelaatskleure van die politieke liggaam. Die Verenigde State word beskou as 'n betroubare bondgenoot en sy leierskap word algemeen aanvaar met 'n hoë mate van vertroue deur die nie-kommunistiese wêreld. Maar die relatiewe stabiliteit tussen die kongres en die president het in die vroeë sewentigerjare begin afneem met ontnugtering van die kongres oor die Viëtnam -oorlog. Teen die middel van die dekade was die twee takke vasgevang in 'n stryd om die beheer van die Amerikaanse buitelandse beleid. Die kongres het tot 'n mate gewen, en die balans tussen die kongres en die president het gevaarlik na die wetgewende kant geswaai met ongunstige gevolge vir die Amerikaanse buitelandse beleid.

As die balans nie gou herstel word nie, kan die Amerikaanse buitelandse beleid nie die kritieke uitdagings van die 1980's die hoof bied nie. Ons betree 'n era van vinnige verandering en toenemende onbestendigheid in wêreldsake. Politieke onstabiliteit en streekskonflik neem toe, veral in die Derde Wêreld. Ontwikkelende nasies in baie dele van die wêreld word verskeur deur burgeroorloë tussen pro-Wes en Sowjet-gesteunde faksies, ondermyn deur opstand wat deur ekstern ondersteun word, of onderworpe aan radikale of reaksionêre anti-Westerse druk. Die geïndustrialiseerde ekonomieë van die Weste is steeds meer afhanklik van 'n lewenslyn van hulpbronne uit 'n steeds kwesbaarder deel van die wêreld. Die Sowjetunie het 'n aggressiewe intervensionistiese beleid gevoer in sy periferie en in die buiteland, ondersteun deur sy opkomende vermoë om wêreldwye mag te projekteer en sy suksesvolle gebruik van minder direkte middele om mag te projekteer.

Ons is moontlik vandag in 'n situasie wat soortgelyk is aan dié van die laat dertigerjare, toe Amerika se onvermoë om 'n meer aktiewe rol in wêreldsake te speel, die Axis in staat gestel het om sy doelwitte te bereik sonder ernstige uitdaging. Gedurende hierdie tydperk het die kongres die president se hande vasgemaak, met rampspoedige gevolge. Nou is ons terug in dieselfde situasie en loop ons die risiko om dieselfde foute te maak. As die Verenigde State verhinder word om 'n aktiewe rol te speel in die stryd teen die betrokkenheid van Sowjet- en Sowjetunie in die Derde Wêreld, kan die 1990's 'n wêreld vind waarin die hulpbronryke en strategies belangrike ontwikkelende lande in ooreenstemming is met die Sowjetunie.

Wat is die regte balans tussen die kongres en die president in die formulering en implementering van buitelandse beleid? Alhoewel die meerderheid van die menings argumenteer vir 'n sterk uitvoerende gesag in die uitvoering van eksterne betrekkinge, bied die Grondwet self geen duidelike definisie oor waar wetgewende gesag eindig en presidensiële prerogatiewe begin nie. Dit lyk asof die Grondwet oorheersende oorlogsmagte in die uitvoerende en wetgewende tak het. Alhoewel dit die bevoegdheid verleen om oorlog te verklaar en die gewapende magte aan die kongres op te rig en te ondersteun (artikel I, afdeling 8), het die Grondwet ook die president van die opperbevelhebber van die gewapende magte gemaak (artikel II, afdeling 2). Nêrens in die Grondwet is daar ondubbelsinnige leiding oor watter tak van die regering die finale gesag het om eksterne betrekkinge te voer nie. Daar is nietemin die sterk implikasie dat die formulering en implementering van buitelandse beleid 'n funksie van die uitvoerende tak is, beide as 'n praktiese noodsaaklikheid en as 'n noodsaaklike saamhang van nasionaliteit.

John Jay voer hierdie punt aan in die Federalist Papers (nommer 64, 5 Maart 1788):

Die verlies van 'n geveg, die dood van 'n prins, die verwydering van 'n predikant of ander omstandighede wat ingryp om die huidige houding en aspek van sake te verander, kan die gunstigste gety in 'n ander rigting verander as wat ons wil. Net soos in die veld, so ook in die kabinet, is daar oomblikke wat aangegryp moet word terwyl hulle verbygaan, en die wat voorsit, moet in staat wees om dit te verbeter. So dikwels en so wesenlik het ons tot dusver gebuk gegaan onder die gebrek aan geheimhouding en versending, dat die Grondwet onverskoonbaar gebrekkig sou gewees het as daar nie aandag aan die voorwerpe gegee is nie. Die aangeleenthede wat in onderhandelings gewoonlik die meeste geheimhouding en die meeste versending vereis, is die voorbereidende en hulpmaatreëls wat in 'n nasionale siening andersins nie belangrik is nie, as wat dit die vergemakliking van die doelwitte van die onderhandeling vergemaklik. Hiervoor sal die president geen probleme ondervind nie, en as daar 'n omstandigheid sou wees wat die advies en toestemming van die senaat vereis, kan hy hulle te eniger tyd byeenroep.

Die Hooggeregshof het die uitvoerende gesag in buitelandse betrekkinge kragtig gehandhaaf. In 1935 het Justice Sutherland, in die geval van U.S. v. Curtiss-Wright Export Corporation et al. (299 U.S. 304), het 'n reeks vorige hofbeslissings aangehaal waarin aangevoer word dat die bevoegdhede van 'interne soewereiniteit' by die individuele state lê, maar die van 'eksterne soewereiniteit' is by die nasionale regering.

[Daar is fundamentele verskille] tussen die bevoegdhede van die federale regering met betrekking tot buitelandse of eksterne aangeleenthede en die met betrekking tot binnelandse of interne aangeleenthede. . . . Nie net . . . is die federale mag oor eksterne aangeleenthede van oorsprong en wesenlike karakter anders as dié van interne aangeleenthede, maar die deelname aan die uitoefening van die bevoegdheid is aansienlik beperk. Op hierdie uitgestrekte eksterne gebied, met sy belangrike, ingewikkelde, delikate en veelvuldige probleme, het die president alleen die mag om as 'n verteenwoordiger van die nasie te praat of te luister. Hy sluit verdrag met advies en toestemming van die senaat, maar hy alleen onderhandel. Op die gebied van onderhandeling kan die senaat nie binnedring nie, en die kongres is self magteloos om dit binne te val.

Dit is baie duidelik dat, in die handhawing van ons internasionale betrekkinge, verleentheid-miskien ernstige verleentheid-vermy moet word en sukses vir ons doelwitte bereik moet word, die kongreswetgewing wat deur middel van onderhandeling en ondersoek binne die internasionale gebied effektief moet word. 'n mate van diskresie en vryheid van statutêre beperking aan die president verleen wat nie toelaatbaar sou wees as binnelandse sake alleen betrokke was nie.

Benewens die grondwetlike, geregtelike en historiese argumente teen die ingryping van die kongres in buitelandse beleid, is daar 'n nog duideliker kwessie oor die doeltreffendheid van die kongres se betrokkenheid by buitelandse beleid. To the extent that Congress often represents competing regional and parochial interests, it is almost impossible for it to forge a unified national foreign policy strategy and to speak with one voice in negotiating with foreign powers. Because of the nature of the legislative process a law may be passed in response to a certain set of events, yet remain in effect long after the circumstances have changed. The great danger of Congressional intervention in foreign affairs is that enacted legislation becomes an institutional rigid "solution" to a temporary problem.

The President, along with the Vice President, is the only officer of government who is elected by and responsible to the nation as a whole. As such, only he possesses a national mandate. As head of the Executive Branch, the President can formulate a unified foreign policy, taking into consideration how each aspect of it will fit into an overall strategy. He and his advisers can formulate their strategy with the necessary confidentiality not only among themselves, but between the United States and foreign powers. The President has the information, professional personnel, operational experience, and national mandate to conduct a consistent long-range policy.

The legislative body, on the other hand, is elected to represent separate constituencies. Congress must of necessity take a tactical approach when enacting legislation, since the passage of laws is achieved by constantly shifting coalitions. This serves us well in the formulation of domestic policy, where we proceed by voting on one discrete piece of legislation at a time. Although many of us may have our own long-term strategies in mind as we vote on specific legislative matters, the overall effect is a body of legislation passed piece by piece by a changing majority of legislators. We build domestic policy one step at a time to the end that the final product of domestic legislation is reflected in a consensus of various coalitions. If we later find out we have made an error in a specific piece of domestic legislation, we can change it. For example, if we determine that we have underfunded housing subsidies we can increase them the next year. But the process by which generally accepted domestic policy is arrived at does not lend itself to the formulation of a long-term, coherent, foreign policy. Once we alienate a friendly government, perhaps through shortsighted legislation, it may take years for us to rebuild that relationship and recoup the loss.

A foreign policy should be an aggregate strategy, made up of separate bilateral and multilateral relationships that fit into a grander scheme designed to promote the long-term national interests. With a comprehensive design in mind, those who execute foreign policy can respond to changes in the international environment, substituting one tactic for another as it becomes necessary, but retaining the overall strategy.

In 1816, the Senate Foreign Relations Committee put the argument this way:

The President is the constitutional representative of the United States with regard to foreign nations. He manages our concerns with foreign nations and must necessarily be most competent to determine when, how, and upon what subjects negotiation may be urged with the greatest prospect of success. . . . The Committee . . . think the interference of the Senate in the direction of foreign negotiations are calculated to diminish that responsibility and thereby to impair the best security for the national safety. The nature of transactions with foreign nations, moreover, requires caution and unity of design, and their success frequently depends on secrecy and dispatch.

Five hundred and thirty-five Congressmen with different philosophies, regional interests and objectives in mind cannot forge a unified foreign policy that reflects the interests of the United States as a whole. Nor can they negotiate with foreign powers, or meet the requirement for diplomatic confidentiality. They are also ill equipped to respond quickly and decisively to changes in the international scene. The shifting coalitions of Congress, which serve us so well in the formulation and implementation of domestic policy, are not well suited to the day-to-day conduct of external relations. An observer has compared the conduct of foreign relations to a geopolitical chess game. Chess is not a team sport.

The 1970s were marked by a rash of Congressionally initiated foreign policy legislation that limited the President's range of options on a number of foreign policy issues. The thrust of the legislation was to restrict the President's ability to dispatch troops abroad in a crisis, and to proscribe his authority in arms sales, trade, human rights, foreign assistance and intelligence operations. During this period, over 150 separate prohibitions and restrictions were enacted on Executive Branch authority to formulate and implement foreign policy. Not only was much of this legislation ill conceived, if not actually unconstitutional, it has served in a number of instances to be detrimental to the national security and foreign policy interests of the United States.

The President's freedom of action in building bilateral relationships was severely proscribed by the series of Nelson-Bingham Amendments, beginning with the 1974 Foreign Assistance Act (P.L. 93-559). This legislation required the President to give advance notice to Congress of any offer to sell to foreign countries defense articles and services valued at $25 million or more and empowered the Congress to disapprove such sales within 20 calendar days by concurrent resolution. In 1976, the Nelson-Bingham Amendment to the Arms Export Control Act (P. L. 94-329) tightened these restrictions to include advance notification of any sale of "major" defense equipment totaling over $7 million. Congress is now given 30 days in which to exercise its legislative veto.

The consequence of these laws is that for the past seven years every major arms sale agreement has been played out amidst an acrimonious national debate, blown out of all proportion to the intrinsic importance of the transaction in question. Often the merits of the sale and its long-term foreign policy consequences are ignored, since legislators are put into the position of posturing for domestic political considerations. The debate diverts the President, the Congress and the nation from focusing on vital internal matters. Finally, because arms sales debates command so much media attention, legislators are inclined to give impulsive reaction statements before they have an opportunity for informed deliberation. They thereby often commit themselves to positions that, on cool reflection, they find untenable but difficult to recant.

The recent debate over the sale of AWACS (Airborne Warning and Control System) surveillance aircraft to Saudi Arabia is a classic case in point. Under such circumstances, it becomes extremely difficult for elected legislators to ignore constitutent pressures and decide an issue on its merits. For example, Congressman Dan Rostenkowski (D-Ill.) said following the House vote to reject the AWACS sale that he voted against selling AWACS to Saudi Arabia for political reasons, despite his view that the sale should go through on its merits.

Such a situation raises the possibility that should the Congressional decision do ultimate violence to our national interest, the nation whose perceived interests have been sustained by successful lobbying will pay a price later. My colleague, Senator William Cohen (R-Maine), who opposed the sale on its merits, felt compelled to vote for it because he feared its defeat would precipitate an American backlash against Israel:

If the sale is rejected, [Israel] . . . will be blamed for the dissolution of the peace process . . . when the crisis comes, . . . when everyone is pointing an accusatory finger looking for a scapegoat, I do not want to hear any voices in the United States say-if only they had not been so intransigent, if only they had agreed not to interfere, if only they had not brought this mess-this death-upon themselves.

In some cases Congress allows a sale to go through, but only after a series of trivial and humiliating restrictions are placed on the purchasing nation. This tends to negate whatever goodwill the sale was designed to achieve. For example, in 1975 the President agreed to sell HAWK surface-to-air mobile missiles to Jordan. After a national brouhaha filled with many insults to King Hussein and questions about the stability of his regime, the sale finally went through, but only in "compromise" form—we took the wheels off. Presumably, HAWK missiles without wheels would allow the Jordanians to use them in fixed positions to protect the capital and key military locations, but prevent them from moving the missiles to the front line to be used against Israel. King Hussein later asked then Secretary of State Henry Kissinger why Congress had insisted on such a trivial point. It was never a question of whether the HAWKs would be mobile or not—we knew the Jordanians would be able to buy the wheels on the international market if they decided to violate the terms of the sale. The end result was that rather than cement our friendly relations with Jordan, we succeeded in humiliating a longtime friend.

Such actions are not soon forgotten. In his recent visit to Washington, King Hussein indicated that Jordan is considering turning to the Soviet Union for its new air defense missiles. This attitude clearly stems in part from his unhappiness over Congressional restrictions on U.S. arms sales to Jordan. According to a State Department spokesman, the 1975 HAWK missile sale "still rankles" in Jordan.

Die Turkish Arms Embargo was a case where Congress tied the President's hands in negotiations. After the Turkish invasion of Cyprus on July 19-20, 1974, the Administration became involved in negotiations aimed at reconciling our two NATO allies, Greece and Turkey. After two days, a cease-fire was achieved, with Turkey controlling 25 percent of Cyprus.

Yet Congress was moving on a path of its own. On August 2, the House introduced two measures demanding the immediate and total removal of Turkish troops from Cyprus. After the second Turkish assault on August 14, the Senate Foreign Relations Committee prompted a State Department inquiry into possible Turkish violations of U.S. arms restrictions.

At one point, Prime Minister Ecevit of Turkey privately communicated his willingness to settle on terms representing a significant improvement over the status quo. The Administration was concerned that Congressional action would make it harder for Turkey to follow a conciliatory policy and thus destroy any hopes of a negotiated settlement. In an attempt to discourage a Turkish embargo, the White House invited several of my colleagues to attend briefings on the possibility of negotiations. Even after being shown evidence that a negotiation likely to improve Greece's position was in the making, these Congressmen continued to call for an arms embargo soon, all hopes for a negotiated settlement vanished. On September 16, Ecevit's moderate government collapsed, and on October 17, the Congress imposed a Turkish arms embargo on a "very, very reluctant" President Ford. The embargo began on February 5, 1975 by that time, Turkey controlled 40 percent of the island. On June 17, 1975, Turkey responded to the embargo by placing all U.S. bases and listening posts on provisional status. On July 24, 1975, the House rejected a motion to partially lift the embargo two days later, Turkey announced it was shutting down all U.S. bases and posts on its territory.

Thus, instead of reaching an agreement with a moderate Turkish government that controlled one-quarter of Cyprus, the United States had severely strained relations with an angry Turkish government that controlled two-fifths of the island. Furthermore, the aid cutoff weakened Turkey militarily, jeopardizing the southern flank of NATO and putting at risk our strategic listening posts in that country.

In a society such as ours, with its heterogeneous mix of various national and ethnic groups, strong lobbies are inevitable. But to submit American foreign policy to inordinate influence by these groups—often emotionally charged—is to impair a President's ability to carry out a strategy which reflects the interests of our nation as a whole. The Nelson-Bingham Amendments and the Turkish Arms Embargo were two pieces of legislation conducive to such a situation.

A second major area where Congressional intervention contributed to foreign policy disasters was the series of anti-war amendments. Throughout the early 1970s Congress proposed a series of acts aimed at forcing the United States into early withdrawal from Southeast Asia and cutting off American aid to Vietnam, Laos and Cambodia. Die Cooper-Church Amendment, which became law in early 1971, cut off funds for U.S. troops, advisers and air support in and over Cambodia. Die Eagleton Amendment (1973) called for American withdrawal from Laos and Cambodia. Die McGovern-Hatfield Amendment (1970-71) set deadlines for American withdrawal from Indochina. Even though these two latter anti-Vietnam amendments did not become law, the pattern was clear by the early 1970s. My Senate colleagues would introduce one amendment after another, making it clear to the North Vietnamese that we would eventually legislate ourselves out of Vietnam. The Administration lost both credibility and flexibility in the peace negotiations. By making it clear to the North Vietnamese that Congress would prevent the President from further pursuing the war, or from enforcing the eventual peace, Congress sent a clear signal to our enemies that they could win in the end. The North Vietnamese were encouraged to stall in the Paris Peace Talks, waiting for American domestic dissent to provide them with the victory their military forces had been unable to achieve. After the Paris Agreements, aid to South Vietnam was throttled.

Finally, on July 1, 1973, we destroyed any hope of enforcing the Paris Peace Accords. Die Fulbright Amendment to the Second Supplemental Appropriations Act for FY 1973 prohibited the use of funds "to support directly or indirectly combat activities in . . . or over Cambodia, Laos, North Vietnam and South Vietnam." As I said in Congressional debate over the Eagleton Amendment, the forerunner to the Fulbright Amendment:

It has tremendous significance because it marks the placing on the President of an . . . inhibition in the conduct of foreign relations, in the negotiating of agreement and treaties, and in the implementation and enforcement of those agreements once arrived at. . . . What we have in effect done in the Eagleton Amendment is said to [the North Vietnamese]: 'You may do whatever you please. Having concluded this agreement, we intend to walk away from it, and we don't care whether you violate those provisions or not.'

I believed then and still believe that our failure to enforce the Paris Accords was a principal contributor to Communist victory in Indochina and the resulting horrors we have seen since in Laos, Cambodia and Vietnam. Reasonable men may argue whether or not we were right in being in Vietnam in the first place. I remain convinced that we made many mistakes that led us there, and that our direct involvement was ill conceived. But to deny a President the military means to enforce a negotiated agreement guaranteed that all the sacrifices that came before it would be in vain. Just because a peace agreement is signed or a cease-fire agreed to is no guarantee that both sides will live up to it. After World War II we enforced the peace with Germany and Japan by occupation forces. We guaranteed the Korean cease-fire by the continued presence of U.N. troops at the Demilitarized Zone. The Fulbright Amendment prohibited our enforcing the Paris Accords. We bought a settlement in Vietnam with 50,000 American lives that gave South Vietnam, Cambodia and Laos a chance to survive—a chance that was thrown away when we refused to be guarantors to that settlement.

Die War Powers Act (P.L. 93-148) is probably the most potentially damaging of the 1970s legislation, although we have yet to experience a crisis where its effects are felt. The War Powers Act (1973) grew out of Congress' frustration with the war in Vietnam and its desire to prevent such a situation from ever happening again. Although President Nixon vetoed the Act on October 24, 1973, terming it "unconstitutional," his veto was overridden two weeks later by the House and Senate.

The act provides that before American troops are introduced "into hostilities or into situations where imminent involvement in hostilities is clearly indicated by the circumstances" the President is to consult with Congress "in every possible instance." The President must notify Congress and submit a report within 48 hours after armed forces are sent abroad, "setting forth the circumstances necessitating the introduction of U.S. forces" and the "estimated scope and duration of the hostilities or involvement." After this initial two-day period, the President has 60 days to withdraw those forces or receive Congressional authorization for an extension, or a declaration of war.

This act jeopardizes the President's ability to respond quickly, forcefully and if necessary in secret, to protect American interests abroad. This may even invite crises. Although the act does not specify whether the report to Congress must be unclassified, there remains the possibility that a confidential report would become public knowledge. In many cases the more urgent the requirement that a decision remain confidential, the greater the pressures for disclosure. Thus, by notifying Congress of the size, disposition and objectives of U.S. forces dispatched in a crisis, we run the risk that the report may get into the public domain. If this information becomes available to the enemy, he then knows exactly what he can expect from American forces and thus what risks he runs in countering American actions. This removes any element of surprise the U.S. forces might have enjoyed and eliminates any uncertainties the adversary might have as to American plans.

It is interesting to speculate on just how damaging the legislation could prove to be at some future point. For that matter, what if the Iranian rescue attempt had gone somewhat differently? On April 26, 1980, President Carter reported to Congress the use of armed forces in the unsuccessful attempt to rescue American hostages in Iran on April 24, in full compliance with the 48-hour notification requirement of the War Powers Act. In this case, the rescue operation was over by the time the report was submitted, so there was no longer a need for secrecy nor a need for Congress to consider whether forces should be authorized or withdrawn. But what if the rescue attempt had bogged down or been planned as a longer effort? No doubt the details would have gotten out almost immediately, leaving little doubt in the minds of the Iranians just what the Americans were up to. While the framers of the War Powers Act intended it to prevent another Vietnam, their legislation has the effect of severely limiting the President's ability to respond quickly, forcefully and in secret to a foreign crisis.

In addition to the questionable wisdom of the reporting and consulting requirements of the War Powers Act, there are also doubts as to whether the legislative veto contained in the act is constitutional. Section 5 of the Act allows Congress the right to terminate any use of force, at any time, that has not been specifically authorized by either a declaration of war or similar legislation, by a concurrent resolution passed by a simple majority of both Houses. The legislative veto contained in the War Powers Act would appear to be in violation of Article 1, Section 7 of the Constitution. This so-called presentation clause clearly stipulates that an act can become law only if it is passed by a majority of both Houses of Congress followed by the President's assent, or by a two-thirds vote in each Chamber to override the President's veto.

After the Indochina debacle, there was a raft of Vietnam-syndrome legislation that sought to prevent the President from getting us involved in "future Vietnams." Die Tunney Amendment to the Defense Appropriations Act of 1976 (P.L. 94-212), which passed the Senate on December 19, 1975, prohibited the use of "funds appropriated in this Act for any activities involving Angola other than intelligence gathering."1 My colleagues feared that President Ford's attempts to offer minimal assistance to the pro-West UNITA (National Union for the Total Independence of Angola) and FNLA (National Front for the Liberation of Angola) factions would somehow embroil us in "another Vietnam." The domestic debate over whether we should become involved in Angola sent a clear signal to the Soviets and their Cuban proxies. They knew that the risk of U.S. intervention was low, and the possibility of continued U.S. assistance to the pro-Western factions slim.

Although the Soviet-Cuban airlift halted temporarily in December with President Ford's stern warning to the Soviet Ambassador, the airlift resumed with a vengeance following passage of the Tunney Amendment on December 19, 1975. The number of Cubans in Angola doubled as they began flying in fresher troops for what was to become an all-out offensive against pro-Western forces. By January the Soviet Union had increased its military assistance to the MPLA (Popular Movement for the Liberation of Angola) and stationed Soviet warships in the vicinity of Angola. They began extensive ferrying operations for Cuban troops. It was clear that the United States had lost whatever leverage it might have had to persuade Soviet leaders to reduce Soviet and Cuban involvement in Angola.

With Angola the Soviet Union entered a new phase never before had it or its surrogate Cuban army attempted such large-scale operations in Africa or anywhere else in the Third World. Their successful intervention in Angola bestowed on the Soviet Union and Cuba the image of dependable allies and supporters of radical movements in southern Africa. The United States by contrast was portrayed as having lost its taste for foreign involvement after Vietnam, and as being domestically divided over a foreign policy strategy. The moderate black African states lost confidence in America's willingness to stem the tide of Soviet involvement in the region.

After being reduced to sporadic guerrilla engagements for over a year, in July 1977 the pro-West UNITA faction declared its intention to renew the fight. Following this announcement, the Soviets and Cubans increased their efforts. As of late 1979, there were some 19,000 Cuban troops, 6,000 Cuban civilian technicians and 400 to 500 Soviet advisors in Angola. Although the guerrilla war continues, the Clark Amendment prohibits the United States from offering any aid to the pro-Western faction. The Clark Amendment prevents us from responding to Soviet and Cuban involvement in Angola, and leaves open to them the mineral-rich, strategically important region of southern Africa.

Finally, two of the most damaging Congressional intrusions into national security policy were the Senate Select Committee to Study Governmental Operations with Respect to Intelligence Activities (the so-called Church Committee) en die Hughes-Ryan Amendment to the Foreign Assistance Act (P.L. 93-189). As vice-chairman of the Church Committee (1975-76) I sought to limit the damage to our intelligence community, although to little avail. By conducting a public inquiry into the CIA we exposed not only its supposed blunders and malfeasance but also important information as to how the CIA is organized, how it gathers intelligence and what kinds of sources and methods it uses.

The Hughes-Ryan Amendment, which became law on December 30, 1974, prohibited any CIA activities abroad that are not directly related to intelligence gathering, "unless and until the President finds that each such operation is important to the national security of the United States and reports, in a timely fashion, a description and scope of such operations to the appropriate committees of Congress." By 1977 information about covert intelligence activities was available to eight Congressional committees, for a total of 200 members or roughly 40 percent of Congress.2

This, plus the Church Committee hearings, confirmed to our adversaries that clandestine operations would be severely curtailed in the future. It sent a signal to our adversaries that they could proceed with impunity in the "back alleys of the world." These actions also shook the confidence of those friendly states which had cooperated with us in intelligence gathering, and caused many of them to reassess their relationship with the U.S. intelligence community. They feared Congressional investigations of the CIA would expose their own intelligence sources and methods. In private conversations with officials of friendly intelligence agencies, I have been told that the Church Committee raised doubts about the wisdom of their cooperating with the United States in the future. This has also adversely affected our cooperation with countries that for political reasons take a publicly hostile attitude toward the United States, but who privately cooperate with us on some matters of mutual interest. They fear the publicity generated by a Congressional investigation would expose what is essentially a private relationship, and lead to unfavorable domestic political consequences for them. Finally, either through leaks or publicly released data, the Church Committee titillated the press with daily helpings of some of our nation's most treasured secrets.

If we are to meet the foreign policy challenges facing us in the 1980s, we must restore the traditional balance between Congress and the President in the formulation and implementation of foreign policy. To do so, much of the legislation of the past decade should be repealed or amended.

Many in Congress are coming to this conclusion and are working toward a reversal of the imbalance. The 1980 modification of the Hughes-Ryan Amendment to require notification of covert actions to only the two Intelligence Committees is one such step, as is the Senate's October 22, 1981, vote to repeal the Clark Amendment. Further efforts in this direction are essential if we are to have the maximum flexibility required to respond to a fast-changing world.

In addition to reversing much of this legislation, we should also look at new legislation which may be appropriate. There are strong arguments in favor of creating an unspecified contingency fund for economic and military assistance. One of the consequences of the 1970s legislation was that such funds which had previously existed were either abolished or severely curtailed. Reestablishment of such funds would grant the President the flexibility he needs to be able to respond quickly to help new friends that emerge unexpectedly, or old friends who are suddenly endangered. While disbursement of these funds should be made with appropriate notification to Congress, the inevitable delays involved in waiting for new Congressional authorization should be avoided.

For example, when Zimbabwe became independent on April 18, 1980, the new government was strongly anti-Soviet, pro-West and in need of economic assistance. On the day he took office, President Mugabe invited the United States to be the first nation to establish diplomatic relations with and open an embassy in Zimbabwe. We responded with a pledge of economic assistance, but due to the lack of funds for such contingencies, were able to grant only $2 million. We had to wait almost ten months, until the next appropriations cycle could be completed, to grant Zimbabwe the amount of economic assistance it needed.

We face a similar situation in northern Africa today. In the confusion cast over the area in the wake of the Sadat assassination, Libyan President Qaddafi has heightened threats against the anti-Soviet government of Sudan. The Libyan army appears to be on an alerted posture. Were Libya to attack Sudan tomorrow, there is very little the United States could do right away to assist President Nimeiry.

As legislation now stands the President has certain limited flexibility to grant military assistance to respond quickly to unplanned situations. The Foreign Assistance Act of 1961, as amended, permits the President, in the interests of national security, to draw on U.S. military stocks, defense services, or military education and training, up to $50 million in any fiscal year for foreign use. In 1981 the Reagan Administration requested that new contingency funds totalling $350 million be established for emergency economic and military assistance. As of mid-November 1981 Congressional action on this request is still pending, although it appears that both Houses are moving to reduce significantly the size of these contingency funds.

In supporting such discretionary authority and appropriations, and urging the repeal of the excessively restrictive legislation of the 1970s, I am in effect proposing a return to the situation that prevailed in the 1950s and 1960s.

At that time the Congress did provide discretionary authority and substantial contingency funds for the use of Presidents Truman, Eisenhower, Kennedy and Johnson. Each of these Presidents employed his authority to act quickly and decisively in ways which, on balance, served the national interest—especially in new and unforeseen situations emerging in what we now call the Third World. The basic authority of the Congress to appropriate funds for the armed forces and foreign activities remained constant. Indeed, the Congress from time to time expressed its views forcefully as to the desirability of support for nations that acted in ways prejudicial to American interests. (An early example of such legislation was the Hickenlooper Amendment, which for many years expressed Congress' general opposition to continue aid to countries that nationalized private American companies without adequate compensation.) The crucial difference is that such expressions of Congressional sentiment almost invariably contained a saving clause that permitted the President to go ahead if he certified to the Congress that the action was necessary for overriding national security reasons. This is a perfectly sound and reasonable practice, and one that avoids the immense complications and possible unconstitutionality of the legislative vetoes introduced by the various amendments of the 1970s.

In short, what I propose above is vastly more effective than the present situation, sounder from every constitutional standpoint, and fully in keeping with past precedents.

Finally, in reconsidering the legislation of the 1970s, it is useful to reexamine it and its causes in a more dispassionate light than that of the period. At the time, much of this legislation was considered a necessary response to counter the excesses of the presidency. Since the Vietnam War had never been formally declared by Congress, it was seen as the President's war. Watergate, along with the war, was considered to be the result of a Presidency grown too authoritarian. If the war were ever to end, and if future Vietnams were to be prevented, the President's foreign policy authority would have to be proscribed. As Arthur Schlesinger put it, the theory "that a foreign policy must be trusted to the executive went down in flames in Vietnam. . . . Vietnam discredited executive control of foreign relations as profoundly as Versailles and mandatory neutrality had discredited congressional control."3

If this legislation was motivated by an "Imperial Presidency," whose ultimate manifestation was an undeclared war, then the motivation is flawed. Blame for Vietnam can be laid at many doors: a series of American Presidents, and those in the civilian leadership who advocated gradual escalation and limited rules of engagement. But Congress was not blameless. The war in Vietnam, while undeclared by Congress in a formal sense, had de facto Congressional support. Beginning in the mid-1960s the Administration sent defense authorization and appropriations bills to Congress—legislation which clearly designated certain men and monies for the war effort. Year after year Congress acquiesced in the Vietnam War, by authorizing and appropriating resources for it. As former Senator J. William Fulbright remarked, "It was not a lack of power which prevented the Congress from ending the war in Indochina but a lack of will." With waning public support for a war which seemed to drag on forever, many in Congress and the media looked to a single explanation-for a scapegoat who could be held accountable for an unpopular war. Blame for the war in Vietnam was attributed to the usurpation of power by the President.

In the early 1970s Congress reversed itself and belatedly attempted to use its appropriation authority to end the war. While this was certainly within its prerogative, the timing was of questionable wisdom. Our efforts to disengage from Vietnam and to negotiate with the North Vietnamese were made more difficult by Congressional intervention. Congressional action made a settlement all the more difficult to achieve and, ultimately, impossible to enforce. The view that the Vietnam War discredited forever Executive control of foreign policy was an emotional reaction, driven by the passion of the moment. Because of it, Congress embarked on a course to limit not only President Nixon's flexibility, but also that of future Presidents. Congress prescribed a cure for a nonexistent disease. The lasting effect was that Congress institutionalized its foreign policy differences with the President by legislating permanent solutions for a temporary situation.

As Cyrus Vance said at the 1980 Harvard commencement, "Neither we nor the world can afford an American foreign policy which is hostage to the emotions of the moment." The authority to conduct external relations should not vacillate between Congress and the President as a result of failed or unpopular initiatives. The whole point of a written constitution and body of judicial opinion is to establish a consistent mechanism for apportioning authority. Whereas the Constitution confers on the Senate the duty of advice and consent in the making of treaties, on the Congress the power to appropriate monies for armed forces and to declare war, and special authority in the field of trade, it confers on Congress no other special rights in the field of external affairs.

The cumulative effect of this legislation is that, as the United States enters a period when the greatest flexibility is required of an American President to deal with fast-changing situations in the world, Congress has inhibited the President's freedom of action and denied him the tools necessary for the formulation and implementation of American foreign policy. We know that the Soviet Union maintains clandestine operations which are well organized, well disciplined, well financed, well trained and often well armed, in virtually every Third World country. They are in a position to exploit many restive political situations which they may or may not originate. To inhibit the United States in its ability to conduct covert operations, to provide military assistance to pro-West governments or groups, and to respond quickly to military crises is to concede an enormous advantage to the Soviet Union and its proxies.

It is my sincere hope that Congress will reexamine its role in the conduct of foreign policy and repeal or amend, as necessary, the legislation of the 1970s. The end towards which we should work is to do whatever is necessary to strengthen America's ability to formulate and implement a unified, coherent and cohesive foreign policy to face the challenges of the 1980s.


Congress still on track to be among least productive in recent history

Congress made big news last week when it managed to pass a bill that both keeps the government running through Dec. 11 and authorizes the Obama administration to arm and train Syrian rebels to fight the Islamic State. The vote, unlike so many in Congress, blended party lines: 176 Republicans and 143 Democrats voted for it in the House 44 Democrats, 33 Republicans and one independent in the Senate. That was arguably the biggest accomplishment of the short September sitting, as the 21 other measures (most not yet signed into law) that made it through Congress mainly ran toward the relatively noncontroversial — reauthorizing existing programs, extending advisory committees, and other tinkering around the edges of statute law.

Even so, the current Congress remains on pace to be one of the least legislatively productive in recent history. As of Monday, 165 laws had been enacted since January 2013, 124 of which were substantive by our deliberately generous criteria (no post-office renamings, commemorative-coin authorizations or other purely ceremonial laws). Both those figures are the lowest of any Congress in the past two decades over an equivalent timespan.

Twenty other bills, by our count, are headed to President Obama’s desk, but they won’t count as becoming law until he signs them. And Congress isn’t scheduled to return for its lame-duck session until Nov. 12 (although, as National Journal pointed out, the House has been in session for 117 days this year, more than it’s typically worked in recent election years).

Congress has much unfinished business to tackle when it does reconvene, but what are the chances it will end its term in a blaze of legislative activity? Not good: Based on data going back to 1995, Congress on average has passed about 60% of all its laws by this point in its two-year term. If the current Congress fits that pattern, it will end its term with about 275 laws to its credit — the fewest of any Congress in the post-World War II era, according to Vital Statistics on Congress (a joint production of The Brookings Institution and the American Enterprise Institute).

Of course, there are other ways to measure congressional productivity: Congress may be passing fewer laws, but the ones it is passing are getting longer.

According to Vital Statistics, the 112th Congress (2011-12) passed only 283 laws (the record-lowest to date), but those laws filled 2,495 pages in the statute book — an amount comparable to the page counts from the late 1940s to the early 1970s, when Congresses regularly passed more than twice as many laws per session. Fifty years ago, for instance, the 88th Congress enacted 666 laws that averaged just 3 pages each, compared with 16.78 pages apiece for the 72 laws passed last year by the current Congress. (Indeed, some argue that excessively detailed laws hinder government from actually doing anything.)


Party Divisions of the House of Representatives, 1789 to Present

Political parties have been central to the organization and operations of the U.S. House of Representatives. As this chart demonstrates, the efforts of the founding generation to create a national government free of political parties proved unworkable. Parties demonstrated their worth in the House very quickly in organizing its work and in bridging the separation of powers. Within a decade House parties absorbed the various state and local factions.

The chart below emphasizes the traditional two-party structure of the United States, with third-party affiliations in the Other column. Additionally, the numbers of Delegates and Resident Commissioners are reflected in the “Del./Res.” Column for reference. This chart does not address the party affiliation of these Members as they do not hold voting privileges on the House Floor.

The figures presented are the House party divisions as of the initial election results for a particular Congress. This means that subsequent changes in House membership due to deaths, resignations, contested or special elections, or changes in a Member’s party affiliation are not included.


Kyk die video: Eastern Front WW2 Short Animation (Desember 2021).