John Yoo

Visiting Fellow

John Yoo is a visiting fellow at the Hoover Institution, professor of law at the University of California at Berkeley School of Law (Boalt Hall), and a visiting scholar at the American Enterprise Institute. From 2001 to 2003 he served as Deputy Assistant Attorney General in the Office of Legal Council in the Justice Department of President George W. Bush. Professor Yoo is the author of a number of books, most recently of Crisis and Command: A History of Executive Power, From George Washington to George W. Bush.

John Yoo co-hosts the Pacific Century podcast with Michael Auslin, where they broadly address developments in China and Asia. They discuss the latest politics, economics, law, and cultural news, with a focus on US policy in the region.

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Recent Commentary


John Yoo Says President Trump Would Be 'Out Of His Mind' To Pardon Paul Manafort

interview with John Yoovia Fox News
Wednesday, March 13, 2019
Hoover Institution fellow John Yoo discusses Paul Manafort's sentence as well as the prospects for a pardon from President Trump.
In the News

Why Pelosi Really Hates Impeachment And Other Commentary

quoting John Yoovia New York Post
Tuesday, March 12, 2019
Why did Speaker Nancy Pelosi crush the hopes of Democratic voters by vehemently opposing impeachment? After all, notes Jonathan Turley at The Hill, “Democrats held out the prospect of impeaching President Trump as a top reason for giving them back control of the House.”

Border Security Officials Gearing Up For Record Number Of Migrant Families Trying To Enter US

interview with John Yoovia Fox News
Monday, March 11, 2019

Hoover Institution fellow John Yoo discusses whether President Trump's nation emergency declaration passes constitutional muster.

Analysis and Commentary

The Republican Party Needs Asian Voters

by Avik Roy, John Yoovia National Review
Thursday, March 7, 2019

In November 2015, then-radio-host Stephen Bannon was interviewing then-presidential-candidate Donald Trump. During the interview, Trump expressed concern that, owing to American immigration laws, many foreign students attending elite American universities were being forced to return home after graduation. “We have to be careful of that, Steve,” said Trump. “You know, we have to keep our talented people in this country.”

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The Pacific Century: Learning From Hanoi And The Trade Deal With China

interview with Michael R. Auslin, John Yoovia The Pacific Century
Wednesday, March 6, 2019

Why Hanoi was not a failure; and whether the focus of the US-China trade deal should be on the theft of American inventions instead of tariffs and trade deficits.

In the News

Race-Blind Or Discriminatory? NYC’s Plan To Diversify Elite High Schools Becomes Latest Fodder For Advocates Seeking Supreme Court Rollback On Affirmative Action

quoting John Yoovia The 74 Million
Wednesday, March 6, 2019

Speaking at a suit-and-tie gathering at the Harvard Club in midtown Manhattan, attorney John Yoo offered a message to New York City’s mayor and schools chancellor that could only be described as cocky: Thank you. Yoo was grateful for city officials, he said, for presenting “a case that’s going to be so easy for us to win.”

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Introducing The Pacific Century: China, North Korea, And The US

interview with Michael R. Auslin, John Yoovia The Pacific Century
Friday, March 1, 2019

The voyage begins when you push away from the shore.


John Yoo And Julian Epstein Agree: Cohen Hearing Was Both Good And Bad News For President Trump

interview with John Yoovia Fox News
Thursday, February 28, 2019

Hoover Institution fellow John Yoo discusses Michael Cohen's testimony.


Law Talk With Richard Epstein: Well Dressed

interview with Richard A. Epstein, John Yoovia Ricochet
Wednesday, February 27, 2019

Hoover Institution fellow Richard Epstein and John Yoo discuss whether Michael Cohen’s testimony will change anything about the case against Trump; can the president’s emergency measures to build a border wall stand up in court;  whether the Supreme Court’s blow against civil asset forfeiture actually represents a constitutional error; and is a group of states about to take down the electoral college?

In the News

Open Forum: Trump’s Wall Depends On Chief Justice John Roberts

quoting John Yoovia San Francisco Chronicle
Monday, February 25, 2019

John Yoo, professor of law at UC Berkeley, has published the thorough treatise, “The Law Will Be on Trump’s Side If He Declares an Emergency to Fund His Wall,” this month in the National Review. Pursuing Yoo’s argument to the end suggests the U.S. Supreme Court’s final decision will rest with Chief Justice John Roberts.