The United States was founded on the principle that Congress alone has the power to take the nation to war. This founding principle has failed. In its place now stands the modern principle that the Executive holds the power to initiate, wage, and conclude warfare. This modern principle, which is irreconcilable with the intent of America’s Founders, is a problem that must be remedied. And while this problem may be most pronounced in the twenty-first century, a possible solution comes from the most unlikely of places: fourteenth century England. In the 1300s, England developed qui tam legislation, a novel legal system of holding government officials accountable. This Note argues that this system, which enabled private citizens to sue officials on behalf of the public, should be used to limit expansive executive war power. Tracing the development of executive war power and the history of qui tam legislation, this Note offers a framework in which presidential war power can be limited through existing qui tam laws or through passing new legislation.
Lewis, Nicholas R.
"A Fourteenth Century Solution to a Twenty-First Century Problem: Using Qui Tam Legislation to Limit Executive War Power,"
Georgia Law Review: Vol. 57:
2, Article 9.
Available at: https://digitalcommons.law.uga.edu/glr/vol57/iss2/9