Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Obama Ignoring The Constitution

First, a 7th grade Civics lesson:  the Executive Branch of our government is in charge of enforcing the laws that the Legislative Branch passes.  If a statute becomes a law, it's because the Legislative Branch has passed it in both Houses and the President has signed it into law.   This is the way the Government is supposed to function under our Constitution.

Apparently Obama was not present in 7th grade Civics class or somehow missed that basic information in his Harvard Doctoral Constitutional law class (whether he attended or even passed these courses is a carefully guarded secret)!   Either that or he is flouting the Constitution intentionally.

First, it was Obama saying that he won't enforce immigration rules for young illegals (haven taken the oath to protect the Constitution), now Obama unilaterally has decided that there is no need for the provision, enacted by Bill Clinton and bi-partisan Congress, to require able-bodied welfare recipients to find some kind of work.   This was termed welfare-to-work and it pushed down welfare rolls dramatically in the 1990s.  Personally, I thought that the welfare "problem" was solved for good in this country.

From the Detroit News
In a blatant challenge to the legislative branch, Obama by executive order tossed out the Clinton-era welfare reform that required able-bodied aid recipients to work, saying the federal government will no longer enforce the law.

This follows the president's unilateral rewrite of immigration law, using an executive order to implement elements of the DREAM Act, which Congress refused to adopt. He also has thumbed his nose at the No Child Left Behind Act, and has put in place cap-and-trade carbon rules that were specifically rejected by Congress.

He can't do these things, by any reading of the Constitution. And yet he is. Because Congress, whose powers he is usurping, hasn't risen to stop him.

The Constitution separates powers between the legislative, administrative and judicial branches to more effectively limit government authority, and thus protect individual liberty.

Obama apparently does not recognize those constitutional limits on his power.

He is doing these things under the rallying cry of "We Can't Wait," contending that the gridlock in Congress caused by Republican gamesmanship is impeding his agenda.

But this is how the founders intended government to work. The responsibility is on the president to forge a working relationship with Congress. Obama's inability to do that does not give him the power to act unilaterally, even if it were true that the opposition wants to see him fail.
From Mitch McConnell, explaining the original law and what has happened in the Richmond Times-Dispatch
In 1996, President Bill Clinton worked with Republicans in Congress to reform our nation's costly and ineffective welfare programs. Upon signing the bipartisan bill into law, Clinton noted that the measure would "[restore] America's basic bargain of providing opportunity and demanding, in return, responsibility." And he was right. Most would agree that the measure has been a great success.....
Building on successful state programs, like our groundbreaking legislation here in Virginia that I was honored to carry in the legislature as a delegate, Congress strengthened the welfare safety net by adding a requirement that individuals receiving financial support must also look for and find work. It's known as "welfare-to-work" for short. And while some were concerned that the measures in this reform were too tough, their doubts were soon erased.
Welfare caseloads that had remained unchanged for 40 years were quickly cut in half. The poverty rate among welfare recipients, especially children, plummeted. The percentage of single mothers with a job grew from 58 to 75 in less than a decade. Millions of Americans were moving off the welfare roll and moving up life's ladder.
Over the course of 16 years, welfare reform has proven to be a historic achievement. But, ignoring this record, the Department of Health and Human Services last month announced that it would allow states to propose programs that did not comply with federal work requirements. With a stroke of a pen, decades of bipartisan efforts to tie welfare to work were undone, and the heart of welfare reform was gutted.
As a candidate, the president claimed that he supported welfare-to-work policies. He once professed that work should be "a centerpiece of any social policy." He has now apparently changed his mind.
It's time for Congress and the voters to pay attention to this bad behavior and give him a good firm "Civics Lesson" to this "Chavista" president.  Please pass this on to your concerned friends.

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