David Golove

Guest Author

Professor David M. Golove specializes in the constitutional law of foreign affairs and has written extensively in the constitutional history pertaining to that field. He is best known for a book-length article published in the Michigan Law Review, “Treaty-Making and the Nation: The Historical Foundations of the Nationalist Conception of the Treaty Power.” In this article, Golove comprehensively considers a question of constitutional law that has been controversial from the moment of the nation’s birth in 1776 and remains so today. Can the United States government, through its power to make treaties, effectively regulate subjects that would otherwise be beyond the reach of Congress’s enumerated legislative powers? For example, a treaty prohibiting the death penalty? He answers yes, and in doing so has produced both a major work of legal historical scholarship and an important legal and constitutional defense of federal power.

In 1995, an article by Golove in the Harvard Law Review (co-authored with Bruce Ackerman) dealt with another fundamental issue in foreign relations law: the undeniable fact that many international accords today are approved not through the treaty processes mandated in the U.S. Constitution, but by majority votes of both houses. In a subsequent article published in the NYU Law Review, Golove challenges the distinguished constitutional scholar Laurence Tribe, in a debate over the interpretation of the Treaty Clause which Golove defended in his Harvard Law Review article. Later writings include an article on the President’s authority to order military operations to implement a United Nations Security Council Resolution without authorization by Congress. This article focuses on the great public debate over ratification of the United Nations Charter, which Golove sees as having established a national consensus that altered pre-existing limits on the President’s powers. Golove has also written about the constitutional issues raised by so-called international delegations of governmental authority and the War on Terrorism. His most recent work, for a book project, focuses on the relationship between the international laws of war and presidential and congressional constitutional powers.

Golove received his B.A. from Berkeley in 1979 and has law degrees from Boalt Hall and Yale. He teaches in the fields of Constitutional Law and International Law. Professor Golove is a Co-Director of the NYU’s Center on Law and Security.

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