Curriculum Guide · Courses
Congress and the Department of Justice Seminar: Conflict and Cooperation
Professors Nathan and Waldman
J.D. Seminar 242 | 2 credit hours
This seminar focuses on the unusual and complex relationship between the U.S. Congress and the U.S. Department of Justice. Under our unique system of checks and balances, the Congress funds, oversees, investigates and helps set the priorities of the Department of Justice, whose attorneys in turn from time to time investigate and prosecute Senators and Representatives for alleged violations of civil and criminal law. At times, the Department represents Congress and Congressmen in litigation and at other times the Department represents Executive branch interests in court against Congress and its members. The course addresses points of conflict that arise between the two institutions, including the invocation and scope of Executive privilege and the Speech or Debate clause and issues arising from searches on Capitol Hill, undercover investigations of Congress, the use of immunity for Congressional witnesses, the enforcement of Congressional subpoenas and the remedies for contempt of Congress, as well as related separation of powers issues. A paper will be required.
Prerequisite: Constitutional Law I: The Federal System or completion of Curriculum B courses.