Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Obama Undermining Rule of Law

In recent blogs Courts Uphold Constitution and Spank Obama and Obama Ignoring The Constitution, I've complained that Obama Administration has been either selectively enforcing laws (not his prerogative),  trying to use administrative 'ploys' at the EPA and other agencies, or using executive orders to circumvent the law.

Yes, the Republicans have been obstructionist to say the least, but the "party of no" must oppose the party of "never can say no."  The big problem with Obama is that he's such a political novice that he is totally unaccustomed and incompetent in handling the normal 'political process'.  He has proven himself to be an extremely poor negotiator.  He also creates problems for himself by being so polarizing and insulting to the opposition and to anyone else who does not hold his political positions.  Worse, his ideas are always so 'tired' and predictable. Obama is a "Jimmy Carter" redux and now we're finding out what a 2nd Carter administration looks like: more of the same.  Sigh.

Eric Cantor has commented with more detail about the administration's effort to 'stretch' his authority in his article Cantor Takes Obama to Task for 'Imperial Presidency' which was published before the election on October 23rd 2012.  He says:
“When ‘laws’ are created without going through Congress; when laws are selectively executed; when an administration intervenes into the normal judicial process and diminishes an individual's property rights; and when the normal regulatory process is circumvented, the rule of law is eroded.”
That’s exactly what has happened under Obama, Cantor says.
“While administrations of both political parties have been known to test the bounds of the limits of their power, the breadth of the breakdown in the rule of law in recent years has reached new levels,”
Numerous examples of the President trying to avoid the normal law-making process include the following (no indentation to save space):

Ignoring Advise & Consent, such as through recess appointments (these recess appointments have just been struck down; see Courts Uphold Constitution and Spank Obama)

Creating laws outside of the Congressional process, such as changing the unionization process, telling businesses where they are allowed to locate, imposing propaganda mandates on employers, telling federal contractors who they have to hire, regulation of hydraulic fracturing, establishing a national ocean regulatory policy, creating a new land regulation program, global warming regulations, network neutrality regulations, auto efficiency mandate, claiming the power to define what constitutes religious employment, draconian regulation of coal;

Ignoring the Plain Letter of the Law & Failing to Faithfully Execute the Law, such as waiving work requirements under welfare; the contraception mandate and the rights of religious employers, expansion of the refundable tax credit providing for premium assistance, Medicare Advantage quality bonus demonstration, medical loss ratio requirement for health insurers, termination of Yucca Mountain nuclear waste repository, rewriting bankruptcy law, failing to defend the Defense of Marriage Act, recognition of Jerusalem, lobbying for abortion overseas, halting the airport screening partnership program, expedited airport screening for members of the Armed Forces, DREAM Act deferred action, administrative amnesty for illegal immigrants, withholding critical information about counterfeit goods, Medicare Solvency Requirements;

Circumventing the Normal Regulatory Process, such as abuse of sue and settle tactics, re-write of coal regulations, abuse of guidance documents, refusing to disclose regulatory agenda, failing to list essential health benefits, Gulf drilling moratorium; banning uranium mining in Arizona;

Government By Waiver, such as education policy by waiver and healthcare law waivers;

Creating New Programs Not Authorized by Congress, such as the National Network for Manufacturing Innovation, new “super” agencies, the healthcare Independent Payment Advisory Board, and the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau.

“This is no way to govern. The President has set a precedent that even his supporters should find troubling. . . . The Founding Fathers wisely gave the President many powers, but making law was not one of them.”

Indeed.

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