Department of Political Science and Economics
After earning his Ph.D. from Baylor University, where he studied American Politics and Political Theory, Burns joined Christendom’s department of Political Science and Economics in 2017. His teaching and research interests include American Constitutionalism (especially separation of powers), American Political Thought (particularly the American Founding and the Progressive Era), the presidency, the judiciary, and Ancient and Early Modern political theory. He is currently completing a book manuscript, based on his dissertation, which explores the relationship between William Howard Taft’s constitutionalism and progressivism. He is currently working on a number of smaller projects, including essays on The Federalist’s understanding of the United States as a commercial republic, the place of the president’s pardon power in the constitutional scheme, and the constitutional problems with the War Powers Resolution of 1973.
Ph.D., Baylor University, Political Science (2017)
M.A., Baylor University, Political Science (2014)
B.A., University of Dallas, Politics (2012)
Elective Courses Taught
PSAE 495 Statesmanship and the Civil War
PSAE 494 The American Presidency
PSAE 321 American Political Thought
PSAE 311 American Government (American Founding)
Core Courses Taught
PSAE 202 Catholic Social Doctrine
PSAE 201 Introduction to Political Theory
“Testing Holmes: Judicial Tests and Legal Pragmatism in Holmes’ Free Speech Opinions.” Constitutional Studies(forthcoming 2020).
Readings in American Government, 10thedition, co-edited with David K. Nichols and Mary P. Nichols. Dubuque, IA: Kendall Hunt Publishing Co. (forthcoming 2019).
“Chief Justice as Chief Executive: Taft’s Judicial Statesmanship.” Journal of Supreme Court History43, no. 1 (March 2018): 47-68.
“A Constitutionalist’s Defense of Prerogative: Taft’s Our Chief Magistrate and His Powers.”
Presidential Studies Quarterly 47, no. 2 (2017): 336-353.