Donald Trump Ordered Syria Strike Based on a Secret Legal Justification Even Congress Can’t See
by Jon Schwarz
Posted April 17, 2018
On Friday night, President Trump ordered the U.S. military to conduct a bombing attack against the government of Syria without congressional authorization. How can this be constitutional, given the fact that Article I, Section 8 of America’s founding document declares that “The Congress shall have Power … To declare War”?
The deeply bizarre and alarming answer is that Trump almost certainly does have some purported legal justification provided to him by the Justice Department’s Office of Legal Counsel — but no one else, including Congress, can read it.
The Office of Legal Counsel is often called the Supreme Court of the executive branch, providing opinions on how the president and government agencies should interpret the law. More…