Induction and retention rates of volunteers in the armed forces have declined over the past few years. As a result, some influential political leaders have quietly voiced support for a growing call by several military observers to renew the military draft. This report analyzes this proposal by reviewing previous conscription practices in the United States. Chapter One provides essential historical background information related to conscription in this country. Chapter Two reviews the legal dissension surrounding the constitutional validity of such a coercive policy. Chapters Three and Four provide an analysis of the relationship between the nation¹s citizenry, the military institution, and conscription policy. Chapter Five summarizes the impression past conscription policies have left on our society, and proposes an alternative policy‹Universal National Service‹that could alleviate the concerns of both proponents and opponents of conscription. The report concludes with recommendations for legislative leaders in transitioning to a Universal National Service policy.