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Professor of LawCharles Tiefer
John and Frances Angelos Law Center, Room 1015

Administrative Assistant: Shavaun O'Brien
John and Frances Angelos Law Center, Room 1112


J.D., magna cum laude, Harvard University, 1977
B.A., summa cum laude, Phi Beta Kappa, Columbia College, 1974

Curriculum Vitae

Areas of Expertise

Government Contracts

Tiefer joined the faculty in 1995. Previously, he had served as solicitor and deputy general counsel of the U.S. House of Representatives for 11 years. He also taught as a visiting lecturer at Yale Law School and for a decade as an adjunct at Georgetown University Law Center.

He was an associate editor of the Harvard Law Review, a court law clerk for the D.C. Circuit, a trial attorney with the Civil Rights Division of the US Department of Justice, and an assistant legal counsel for the Senate. Professor Tiefer wrote Congressional Practice and Procedure (1989), the only treatise on Congressional procedure, and The Semi-Sovereign Presidency (1994), a book on separation of powers. He has published articles on legislation, separation of powers, international law and federal government operations in the Harvard Journal on Legislation, Yale Journal on Regulation, Texas International Law Journal, the Boston University Law Review and numerous other law reviews.

Professor Tiefer served in 2008-2011 as Commissioner on the Congressional chartered, federal Commission on Wartime Contracting in Iraq and Afghanistan. He took a lead role in two dozen televised hearings, and went on official missions to Iraq and Afghanistan, concerning wartime procurement. He is a member of the District of Columbia Bar.

Selected Publications

Books and Book Chapters

Government Contracting Law in the 21st Century (Carolina Academic Press, 2012)

The Semi-Sovereign Presidency: The Bush Administration's Strategy for Governing Without Congress (Westview Press, 1994) (hardcover and paperback)

Congressional Practice and Procedure, (Greenwood Press, 1989)

Website for the book Veering Right

Website for Commission on Wartime Contracting in Iraq and Afghanistan

Articles and Essays

Restrain “Risky Business”: Treat High-Risk Private Security Contractors as Inherently Governmental, 50 Harv. J. on Legis. 209 (2013).

Can the President and Congress Establish a Legislative Veto Mechanism for Jointly Drawing Down a Long and Controversial War?, 6 J. of Nat'l Security L. & Pol'y 131 (2012).

Could this Train Make it Through: The Law and Strategy of the Gold Train Case, Yale Journal on Human Rights Law and Development (2012)

Can Congress Make the President Step Up a War? 71 La. L. Rev. 391 (2011)

Can Appropriation Riders Speed Our Exit from Iraq? 42 Stan. J. Int'l L. 291-342 (published 2008)

Congress's Transformative "Republican Revolution" in 2001-2006 And the Future of One-Party Rule, 23 J.L. & Pol. 233-282 (2007) (published at U. Va.)

The Iraq Debacle The Rise and Fall of Procurement-Aided Unilateralism as a Paradigm of Foreign War, 29 U. Pa. J. Int'l L. 1-57 (Fall 2007)

Book Review: Limits of Law, Prerogatives of Power: Interventionism after Kosovo, by Michael J. Glennon 96 American Journal of International Law 489, (April 2002)

Letting Federal Unions Protest Improper Contracting Out 10 Cornell Journal of Law and Public Policy. 581 (Summer, 2001)

How to Steal a Trillion. 17 The Journal of Law & Politics. 409 (Summer, 2001)

The Reconceptualization of Legislative History in the Supreme Court, 2000 Wisc. L. Rev. 206 (2000)

The Specially Investigated President, 5 U. Chi. Roundtable 143 (1998)

Articles on Social Science Research Network