Since his second term began, President Obama has acted like a Third World dictator. His attitude has been that he’ll ignore Congress if they won’t do what he wants them to do when he wants them to do it. He’s re-written laws. He’s ignored others. Now he’s instructed Attorney General Eric Holder and the Justice Department to lie to judges. Charles Krauthammer has noticed President Obama’s lawlessness:
As a reaction to the crack epidemic of the 1980s, many federal drug laws carry strict mandatory sentences. This has stirred unease in Congress and sparked a bipartisan effort to revise and relax some of the more draconian laws.
Traditionally — meaning before Barack Obama — that’s how laws were changed: We have a problem, we hold hearings, we find some new arrangement ratified by Congress and signed by the president.
That was then. On Monday, Attorney General Eric Holder, a liberal in a hurry, ordered all U.S. attorneys to simply stop charging nonviolent, non-gang-related drug defendants with crimes that, while fitting the offense, carry mandatory sentences. Find some lesser, non-triggering charge. How might you do that? Withhold evidence — for example, the amount of dope involved.
In other words, evade the law, by deceiving the court if necessary. “If the companies that I represent in federal criminal cases” did that, said former deputy attorney general George Terwilliger, “they could be charged with a felony.”
George Will has noticed, too:
Explaining his decision to unilaterally rewrite the Affordable Care Act (ACA), he said: “I didn’t simply choose to” ignore the statutory requirement for beginning in 2014 the employer mandate to provide employees with health care. No, “this was in consultation with businesses.”
He continued: “In a normal political environment, it would have been easier for me to simply call up the speaker and say, you know what, this is a tweak that doesn’t go to the essence of the law…It looks like there may be some better ways to do this, let’s make a technical change to the law. That would be the normal thing that I would prefer to do. But we’re not in a normal atmosphere around here when it comes to Obamacare. We did have the executive authority to do so, and we did so.”
Serving as props in the scripted charade of White House news conferences, journalists did not ask the pertinent question: “Where does the Constitution confer upon presidents the ‘executive authority’ to ignore the separation of powers by revising laws?” The question could have elicited an Obama rarity: brevity. Because there is no such authority.
As Mr. Krauthammer explains, this isn’t about the merits of the policies:
The point is not what you think about the merits of the DREAM Act. Or of mandatory drug sentences. Or of subsidizing health care premiums for $175,000-a-year members of Congress. Or even whether you think governors should be allowed to weaken the work requirements for welfare recipients — an authority the administration granted last year in clear violation of section 407 of the landmark Clinton-Gingrich welfare reform of 1996.
The point is whether a president, charged with faithfully executing the laws that Congress enacts, may create, ignore, suspend and/or amend the law at will. Presidents are arguably permitted to refuse to enforce laws they consider unconstitutional (the basis for so many of George W. Bush’s so-called signing statements). But presidents are forbidden from doing so for reasons of mere policy, the reason for every Obama violation listed above.
President Obama isn’t interested in the rule of law. What he’s done by assuming imperial power at every turn is say he isn’t interested in governing within the Constitution’s framework.
It’s time for reporters to start calling him out, repeatedly, on his lawlessness. The reason he can’t get his agenda passed is because his agenda doesn’t have majority support. He’s wanted to radically transform America since before he was elected. He’s repeatedly ignored the Constitution’s limitations. He’s ignored established laws. He’s told his administration not to enforce immigration laws.
When liberals complained about President Bush’s “imperial presidency”, they were partially right but mostly wrong. President Bush overstepped in a couple areas. President Obama didn’t just overstep a little bit. He’s scrapped the Constitution’s framework whenever he’s deemed it essential to implementing his agenda or hiding his failures.
Prior to this administration, America was a nation of laws. This administration is an administration of lawlessness and abuses.
Tags: President Obama, Imperial Presidency, Third World Dictator, Lawlessness, Employer Mandate, Illegal Immigration, Dream Act, NSA, FISA Court, Warrants, Executive Fiat, Democrats, Constitution, George Will, Charles Krauthammer, Conservatism