This lesson will explore the implementation of the war-making power from the first declared war under the Constitution—the War of 1812—to the Iraq War. Using primary source documents, students will investigate how the constitutional powers to initiate war have been exercised by the legislative and executive branches of the Federal Government at several key moments in American history. They will also evaluate why and how the balance of authority in initiating war has changed over time. Students will assess and evaluate the current balance of power.
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