Can the President Do That?

The first of three Conversations at Standish looks at when the U.S. chief executive's action are constitutional, and when they’re not.

Laura Wittern-Keller of History, center, launches the Conversation Series on Wednesday, followed by Paul Grondahl of the Writers Institute on Oct. 18 and atmospheric scientist Mathias Vuille on Nov. 4.

ALBANY, N.Y. (October 2, 2017) — This year’s “Campus Conversations in Standish” series kicks off with a discussion on how the U.S. Supreme Court decides whether or not a President’s actions are constitutional.

Laura Wittern-Keller of History will launch the first of this semester’s three Campus Conversations, beginning this Wednesday at 12:35 p.m. in the Science Library’s Standish Board Room. According to Wittern-Keller, the issue of whether or not a president is acting constitutionally is not new in America’s history.

“Objections to presidential actions have arisen many times in our history, but only in a few of those cases has the Supreme Court gotten involved,” said Wittern-Keller. “When it did, in a 1952 case that questioned Truman’s abilities as commander-in-chief during the Korean War, it set a precedent that is still followed today.

“On October 4, we will discuss what that precedent says and how it has since been applied to see what the justices might consider if another challenge case were to arise.”

Additional events in the series include discussions on “How the Standish Room & the Corning Tower Got Their Names: A biographer’s & ghostwriter’s tale,” led by Paul Grondahl, director of the NYS Writers Institute on Wednesday, Oct. 18, and “Toward Mountains Without Snow & Ice: How climate change will transform our mountain environments in the 21st Century,” led by Mathias Vuille of Atmospheric & Environmental Sciences on Wednesday, Nov. 8.

Launched by the University Libraries in Spring 2015 and held two to three times per semester, “Campus Conversations in Standish” feature the research and expertise of the University’s faculty and connect members of the UAlbany community and beyond in an exchange of ideas and perspectives. The Conversations are free and open to the public.

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