Zivotofsky v. Kerry

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Zivotofsky v. Kerry
Court Supreme Court of the United States
Date decided June 8, 2015
Case Opinions
majority written by Anthony Kennedy
joined by Ginsburg, Breyer, Sotomayor, Kagan


In 2015, the State Department (executive branch) didn't recognize Jerusalem as being a part of Israel.


What is the extent of the powers of POTUS in foreign affairs?

Can the President recognize a foreign nation without input from Congress?


The President has the sole power to recognize a foreign sovereign.


Justice Anthony Kennedy wrote, "Despite the importance of the recognition power in foreign relations, the Constitution does not use the term “recognition,” either in Article II or elsewhere. The Secretary [of State] asserts that the President exercises the recognition power based on the Reception Clause, which directs that the President “shall receive Ambassadors and other public Ministers.”