Tag Archives: primaries

More Obama Lawlessness

In our previous article, we pointed out the unlawful actions of President Obama in his use of recess appointments. Two other unconstitutional practices of modern Presidents are the misuse of “signing statements” and “Executive Orders”, and Obama has abused this practice more so than any of our previous Presidents.

Signing Statements

In an era of multi-thousands page “comprehensive legislation” and “omnibus spending bills”, laden with irrelevant amendments that plunder our treasury and expand the control of government over our lives, Presidents started using Signing Statements to express their disapproval of segments of the legislation. Occasionally they will express in the statement their intention to not enforce certain portions of the bill because they either believe them to be unconstitutional or bad policy.

The Constitution is quite clear as to the duty of the President in respect to his approval or disapproval of legislation passed by Congress.

“Every Bill which shall have passed the House of Representatives and the Senate, shall, before it become a Law, be presented to the President of the United States: If he approve he shall sign it, but if not he shall return it, with his Objections to that House in which it shall have originated, who shall enter the Objections at large on their Journal, and proceed to reconsider it. If after such Reconsideration two thirds of that House shall agree to pass the Bill, it shall be sent, together with the Objections, to the other House, by which it shall likewise be reconsidered, and if approved by two thirds of that House, it shall become a Law. But in all such Cases the Votes of both Houses shall be determined by yeas and Nays, and the Names of the Persons voting for and against the Bill shall be entered on the Journal of each House respectively. If any Bill shall not be returned by the President within ten Days (Sundays excepted) after it shall have been presented to him, the same shall be a Law, in like Manner as if he had signed it, unless the Congress by their Adjournment prevent its Return, in which Case it shall not be a Law.” (Art. 1, Sec. 7, Para. 2)

A primary responsibility of the President is to defend the Constitution. When a President signs a bill he believes to be unconstitutional or contains amendments that are unconstitutional, he is not fulfilling that responsibility. The same is true if he allows the bill to become law by neglecting to sign it for a period of ten days. If a Signing Statement by the President indicates that he believes any part of the bill to be unconstitutional or that certain requirements of the bill are bad policy, therefore he does not intend to enforce those he disagrees with, he is confessing to an intention to commit an impeachable act. Article II, Section 3 requires of the President that … “he shall take Care that the Laws be faithfully executed”.

A bedrock principle of a constitutional republic is that all laws apply equally to everyone, not just the peons in the general public. If the President believes any part of a law to be unconstitutional, it is his responsibility to return it to Congress along with his clearly stated reasons why he believes it to be unconstitutional. Once a law is signed by the President it becomes the law of the land until it is either repealed by Congress or declared unconstitutional by a court. The President does not have the prerogative of deciding which laws he will or will not enforce. If Congress overrides the veto of an unconstitutional bill, the members of Congress who voted to override it should be noted by the voters and turned out of office in the next election. These same principles apply to many Executive Orders as well.

Executive Orders

The power of the President to issue “executive orders” is an implied power common to all executives in or out of government. Just as executive orders in the private sector apply only to those employees under the supervision of that executive, executive orders issued by the President are binding only on the employees of the Executive Branch of government. They are not legally binding on the Legislative or Judicial Branches. Neither are they binding on employees of state and local governments or on the public at large. To consider them so is a violation of the constitutional doctrine of “separation of powers”.

Any executive order enforced on the general population by the police powers of the state becomes a despotic decree and should not be tolerated in a constitutional republic. The first sentence of the body of the Constitution clearly states that,

All legislative powers herein granted shall be vested in a Congress of the United States, which shall consist of a Senate and House of Representatives.” (Art. I, Sec. 1)

Several of the Republican candidates have expressed their intent to issue executive orders — if elected — nullifying all or portions of laws already on the books. While this may sound good as a campaign promise and is well received by many conservatives; for the reasons stated above, it should be disturbing to all constitutional conservatives and possibly a dis-qualifier in the primary elections.

The unconstitutional use of recess appointments, signing statements and executives orders by Presidents are violations of the Constitution and of their oath of office. In fact, they are serious enough to be considered as impeachable offenses. More on this later.

Sestak debacle may be more important than it appears

The Joe Sestak affair offers another opportunity to peek underneath the curtain at the sleazy underbelly of Washington and Chicago politics.  On Friday both the White House and Rep. Joe Sestak released statements to the press, following the political tradition of releasing information concerning any potential political scandals at the start of a holiday weekend in the hopes that no one will be paying attention.

In a February, 2010 interview, Sestak claimed that the White House had offered him a “high-profile” White House job if he would end his plans to challenge party-jumping Arlen Specter for the Pennsylvania Senate Seat in the primary elections.  Interest in the incident has been dormant until this week when it suddenly bubbled to the surface as a national issue.

Early speculation was that the offer was for a job as Secretary of the Navy (Sestak is a retired Admiral). In the Friday statement released by the White House, WH Counsel, Robert Bauer refuted the claim, stating that the offer was only an unpaid position on a presidential advisory board. In return for the unpaid advisory position, Sestak would remain in his position as the Congressman of Pennsylvania’s Seventh Congressional District and not challenge Specter in the Pennsylvania Primary.

The Democratic hope is that by the job being only an unpaid advisory position the American people will consider it as no big deal and the whole affair will be quickly forgotten. In a blog post today, Kansas City Star editorial page columnist, Barb Shelly expressed that hope in a column titled “Sestak job offer scandal deflating rapidly”. In it she says, “I hear the sound of air leaking out of this scandal balloon. Political horse-trading isn’t exactly a novel concept in Washington, and it’s hard to equate an offer for an unpaid position, however prestigious, to bribery”.

Not so fast, Barb. Even if we accept the idea that the White House would consider the offer of a non-paying advisory job as an adequate bribe for a sitting Congressman with his eye on bigger things, there are still some questions that deserve answers. I will leave the political and legal wrangling to the Legal Eagles and Party Hit-men for now. An even more important issue for the American people is the perversion of the Constitution and the contempt for its requirements shown by the White House in making the offer. This aspect seems to be completely overlooked by the media and the political class.

Article I says, “1.6.4 No Senator or Representative shall, during the Time for which he was elected, be appointed to any civil Office under the Authority of the United States, which shall have been created, or the Emoluments whereof shall have been increased during such time; 1.6.5 and no Person holding any Office under the United States, shall be a Member of either House during his Continuance in Office.

The purpose of these two clauses is to maintain the separation and independent status between the branches of government. Clause 4 was sidestepped by Obama when he appointed Hillary Clinton to the office of Secretary of State by having her serve as Secretary at the same salary that was in place at the time of her election to the Senate. Only a few people raised the issue at the time and it was soon forgotten. The Sestak offer is a little more difficult to explain away.

If the rumor of  an offer of a job as Secretary of State is true and Sestak had accepted, it would have constituted an outright bribe that could not be defended. In taking the job, it would be necessary for Sestak to resign his house seat and withdraw from the Senate race making it a quid pro quo offer. Bribery is an impeachable offense under the clear language of Article II, Section 4 which states “The President, Vice President and all civil officers of the United States shall be removed from office on impeachment for, and conviction of treason, bribery or other high crimes and misdemeanors.”  Since the offer originated with Obama, he is the one that would be at risk of impeachment.

In denying the Secretary job offer and instead admitting to an offer that would let Sestak serve in the House while also holding an office in the Executive Branch, Obama is admitting to a clear violation of clause 5 above. The fact that the position is unpaid and only an advisory position is immaterial. The purpose of these two clauses is to prevent one branch of government from being in a position to coercively influence decisions made by another branch. Although there may not be a salary involved, serving on a board in the Executive branch would ultimately makes the President Sestak’s “boss” which is a clear violation of both the letter and the spirit of the Constitution.

While the “Sestak affair” may well be dismissed by the media and the Democrats as insignificant, like the sexually predatory inclinations of Bill Clinton, or the amateurish burglarizing of a political opponent’s office by Richard Nixon’s operatives, it could also be setting up the American people to endure another impeachment spectacle if the Republicans gain control of Congress in the November elections. In this case, it may be worth it because it would, at least temporarily, stop Obama’s headlong push of America into socialism and if successful, remove him from office.

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Taking Back Our Government

minute-man-2-litho2008 and 2009 will mark the most cataclysmic changes in American society since the revolution of 1776.  Our government will have been taken over in a bloodless coup.  Barack Obama will step into the White House on January 20th to take the helm of “The Socialist States of America”, the way having been prepared for him by President Bush, Henry Paulson and Ben Bernanke.

We will either take back the government over the next two to eight years or condemn another generation in the near future to the unpleasant choice of taking up arms against their own government or living in servitude.  Few of us can even imagine the dislocations in our lives and life styles that will take place over the next few years, as we make the transition from a free market, capitalist society to a socialist, centrally planned one.

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