View Poll Results: Is the U.S. Air Force Constitutional?

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  • Yes, it is an implied power

    26 81.25%
  • No, it is not mentioned in the Constitution

    2 6.25%
  • Other/Don't know

    4 12.50%
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Thread: Is the U.S. Air Force Constitutional?

  1. #1
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    Is the U.S. Air Force Constitutional?

    Quote Originally Posted by Article 1, Section 8 of the U.S. Constitution
    The Congress shall have power
    [...]
    To raise and support armies, but no appropriation of money to that use shall be for a longer term than two years;

    To provide and maintain a navy;

    To make rules for the government and regulation of the land and naval forces;
    Obviously, the Founding Fathers had no idea that airplanes would ever exist, so there is no mention of an Air Force in the Constitution, even though it mentions both an Army and a Navy.

    Does this mean that keeping an Air Force without amending the Constitution to allow such is unconstitutional? When I learned about the Constitution in grade school, the Air Force was frequently cited as an "implied power" in the Constitution, since the Constitution makes rules for a military and since the Founders couldn't foresee the importance of airplanes. I'm especially interested in how strict Constitutionalists view this issue.

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    Re: Is the U.S. Air Force Constitutional?

    It could be so construed. The AF was at first part of the Army, and so no challenge to the Constitution.

    It may have been much more correct of the government in the late 1940's to have amended the Constitution to create the Air Force.

    On the other hand, a very loose interpretation of the term "army" might embrace almost any military organization.
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    Re: Is the U.S. Air Force Constitutional?

    It could be so construed. The AF was at first part of the Army, and so no challenge to the Constitution.

    It may have been much more correct of the government in the late 1940's to have amended the Constitution to create the Air Force.

    On the other hand, a very loose interpretation of the term "army" might embrace almost any military organization.
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    Re: Is the U.S. Air Force Constitutional?

    Does naval forces only apply to wet navy? So a dry navy, aka, space navy isn't Consitutional?

    As for the 2 year rule, well, that's pretty much ignored. We even have house representatives press releasing 5 year military contracts they helped craft.

    BOCCIERI ANNOUNCES 5-YEAR MULTI-MILLION DOLLAR MILITARY CONTRACT FOR WILL-BURT COMPANY | Congressman John A. Boccieri, Representing the 16th District of Ohio

    Lockheed Wins 10-Year Contract Worth up to $5B - ABC News

    Going on a strict consitutionalist, what the founders were thinking, it should be. Whatever that is not explictly allowed in the COTUS is prohibted.
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    Re: Is the U.S. Air Force Constitutional?

    Quote Originally Posted by Dav View Post
    Obviously, the Founding Fathers had no idea that airplanes would ever exist, so there is no mention of an Air Force in the Constitution, even though it mentions both an Army and a Navy.

    Does this mean that keeping an Air Force without amending the Constitution to allow such is unconstitutional? When I learned about the Constitution in grade school, the Air Force was frequently cited as an "implied power" in the Constitution, since the Constitution makes rules for a military and since the Founders couldn't foresee the importance of airplanes. I'm especially interested in how strict Constitutionalists view this issue.
    Dunno, its a good question. I guess personally, I'd feel a little bit more comfortable if there was a Constitutional Amendment; but there are also some good arguments that "army and navy" could be seen as "whatever military forces are needed".

    I'm not going to lose sleep over the Air Force... but we've already got oodles and scads of gov't agencies that are nowhere authorized by the Constitution. We'd be better off if we'd stuck to a strict literalist interpretation.

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    Re: Is the U.S. Air Force Constitutional?

    I think we all know the answer to this?
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    Re: Is the U.S. Air Force Constitutional?

    We sorta have this branch of our Government that interprets the Constitution for modernity.

    There is much that the founding fathers could not foresee (Air Force, Internet, Mass Production.... Alaska) so we require the keepers of the Constitution to understand the intent with-which the founders wrote and apply that same model to situations.

    Basically,

    If the Air Force was unconstitutional it would be the job of the Justice system to say-so.

    I don't think it is necessary to add it to the Constitution. something Constitutional does not warrant an amendment.
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    Re: Is the U.S. Air Force Constitutional?

    Quote Originally Posted by obvious Child View Post
    Does naval forces only apply to wet navy? So a dry navy, aka, space navy isn't Consitutional?
    The precedence for this was established by Naval Construction Contract 1701 (NCC 1701.)


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    Re: Is the U.S. Air Force Constitutional?

    Quote Originally Posted by Dav View Post
    Obviously, the Founding Fathers had no idea that airplanes would ever exist, so there is no mention of an Air Force in the Constitution, even though it mentions both an Army and a Navy.

    Does this mean that keeping an Air Force without amending the Constitution to allow such is unconstitutional? When I learned about the Constitution in grade school, the Air Force was frequently cited as an "implied power" in the Constitution, since the Constitution makes rules for a military and since the Founders couldn't foresee the importance of airplanes. I'm especially interested in how strict Constitutionalists view this issue.
    The Air Force was part of the United States Army; therefore, it is perfectly legal.

  10. #10
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    Re: Is the U.S. Air Force Constitutional?

    It is constitutional since the President is commander and chief and he can organize the military as he sees fit.


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