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Vanderbilt Law Review

First Page

1543

Abstract

For two authors who come to such different conclusions, Professor Manning and I agree on a good deal. We agree that courts, in considering whether to consult legislative history in the course of statutory construction, must take heed of the special constitutional rule against congressional self-aggrandizement.' Thus, we agree that the Constitution forbids courts to give authoritative weight to post-enactment legislative history, because the effect of such a judicial practice is to permit Congress to delegate a very important power, the power to elaborate the meaning of statutes, to its committees or Members. We also agree, however, that Congress may, by express statement in a statute, validate legislative materials through incorporation by reference, thereby investing such materials with authority. Indeed, inasmuch as we agree that Congress might use such incorporation by reference in every statute it passes, I take it we agree that my hypothetical Interpretation of Statutes Act could function constitutionally if only Congress, in . . . (text missing)

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