Article I, Section 8 of the U.S. Constitution grants Congress the power "To regulate Commerce with foreign Nations,” but modern U.S. presidents increasingly exercise power in the area of commerce with foreign nations, including tariffs. Where do presidents derive their tariff power from, if not from the text of the Constitution? Can Congress delegate such powers to the executive? Could Congress reclaim their tariff powers?
Michael Barone, Senior Political Analyst at the Washington Examiner, explores the history of tariffs and their delegation to the president from Congress.
As always, the Federalist Society takes no particular legal or public policy positions. All opinions expressed are those of the speaker.
Related Links & Differing Views:
Vox: “Why Trump can raise steel tariffs without Congress”
USA Today: “Congress should act now to limit Trump's power to wage trade wars and impose tariffs”
Forbes: “Time To Take Away The President's Power To Impose Tariffs”
NPR: “Republican Sen. Mike Lee Discusses Bill That Would Curb Trump's Authority On Trade”
National Review: “Congress Handed to the President the Power to Level Tariffs”
Wikipedia: “Tariff in United States history”