The Law: Another No to Nixon

Faced with what he considered a profligate Congress, Richard Nixon transformed an occasional practice of former Presidents into a tactic of confrontation. Claiming he had a presidential right of impoundment, Nixon simply refused to spend at least $16 billion appropriated by Congress for a variety of projects. In 1973 the Supreme Court, aware that it might soon face more serious tests of presidential power, ducked the issue. Last week, with those problems behind them, the Justices turned to an impoundment-related suit and by a 9-to-0 vote delivered one more resounding no to the Nixon doctrine of Executive power.

The case involved Nixon's...

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