Skip to main content
Unpublished Paper
The Evolution of the Suspension Clause at the Constitutional Convention
ExpressO (2008)
  • Michael L Rosin
The Habeas Corpus Suspension clause originally proposed at the Constitutional Convention limited the suspension power to Congress. At the end of August 1787 the Committee of Five consciously removed this limitation at the same time it extended the limit on military appropriations from one year to two years. The debate on the Convention floor makes it clear that the Convention was concerned that Congress would not meet often enough for one year military appropriations to be adequate. Although there is no recorded debate on the change to the Suspension clause, it seems reasonable to infer that the Convention made the change for a similar reason, that Congress would not be in session when the public safety might require the suspension of the privilege of the writ of habeas corpus.
  • habeas corpus suspension
Publication Date
February 22, 2008
Citation Information
Michael L Rosin. "The Evolution of the Suspension Clause at the Constitutional Convention" ExpressO (2008)
Available at: