While the Constitution of the United States created a system of separation of powers and checks and balances, a debate on which branch of government ultimately has the power to begin a war has emerged. This debate has led to the increase of presidential influence over war policy in the post-Vietnam era. The purpose of this study is to determine what conditions, if any, assist Congress in effectively constraining presidential war policy.

To ascertain the conditions that assist Congress in constraining the president, a case study analysis of the war in Iraq through the presidency of George W. Bush, 2001-2008, will be employed. This study concluded that Congress was not able to effectively control executive war policy during the War in Iraq through traditional tools like appropriations control, or restrictions on the scope or duration of the War in Iraq.


Moskowitz, Eric


Political Science


Politics, Government, President, Congress, War, War in Iraq

Publication Date


Degree Granted

Bachelor of Arts

Document Type

Senior Independent Study Thesis



© Copyright 2015 Robert H. Friedhoff