President Obama's contempt for constitutionally established congressional legislative authority is made inescapably clear through an ever-expanding variety of lawless executive actions and regulatory abuses. While any serious appetite for impeachment or a government shutdown is unlikely, other aggressive pushbacks are virtually assured. Among these, expect to see a series of targeted riders attached to White House budget proposals.
Testifying before the House Judiciary Committee, George Washington University law professor and constitutional scholar Jonathan Turley called Obama's determination to rule by executive order "one of the greatest challenges to our constitutional system in the history of this country" — one that "threatens a fundamental change in how our country is governed."
That's exactly what is happening.
Fully contradicting constitutional limitations on executive branch authority that he himself admitted to on at least two dozen previous occasions, President Obama has obviously changed his mind. In February 2013 he said: "I'm not the emperor of the United States. My job is to execute laws that are passed, and Congress right now has not changed what I consider to be a broken immigration system."
Yet he now argues a need and legal right to circumvent legislative authority granted exclusively to Congress after all, because "Unfortunately, Washington has allowed the problem to fester too long."
But wait a minute. Why didn't he pass an immigration reform bill during the first two years of his presidency when Democrats controlled both houses of Congress? And if his plan was such an urgent priority, then why didn't he pitch it when he ran for reelection in 2012, and again prior to the 2014 mid-terms?
The new executive action will make dubious use of "prosecutorial discretion" which typically extends only to individual cases or for setting priorities due to limited enforcement resources. Accordingly, up to five million people who illegally entered our country will be allowed to stay and apply for workpermits…at least throughout his remaining two-year term of office.
While not officially offering a "path to citizenship", eligibility for food stamps, federal welfare or disability benefits, or tax credits under Obamacare, some of those affected may be eligible for public benefits provided by certain states.
President Obama has made at least 10 unauthorized changes to legislatively approved statutory language of his signature Affordable Care Act.
Included are a special subsidy for members of Congress and their staffs when they purchase insurance on ACA exchanges and numerous individual and employer mandate delays. And if changing its language wasn't enough to make it work, the Supreme Court must now determine if some of that language even means what it says.
That's a very big "if." Should the court decide that the law actually says what it means — namely that subsidies are to be available only "through an exchange established by the state" — then as many as 5 million people in 36 states relying on the federal exchange will suddenly lose those benefits.
Hell-bent to expand its global warming alarm-premised war on fossil energy, the Obama administration has bypassed Congress through a self-proclaimed "landmark" greenhouse gas pact with China by which they "intend" to reduce emissions after 2030 while the U.S. agrees to draconian near-term cutbacks. Principal responsibility for implementing this rule-by-regulation agenda falls upon unelected EPA officials to impose de facto laws through fiat.
Incoming Senate majority leader Mitch McConnell has pledged that his main goal upon taking the gavel will be to get "the EPA reined in." This priority is also championed by incoming Senate Environment and Public Works Committee chair James Inhofe, who recently pledged: "As we enter a new Congress, I will do everything in my power to rein in and shed light on the EPA's unchecked regulations."
This can be accomplished using the federal budget process to squeeze EPA's operations and tie measures to kill EPA rules to must-pass spending rules. A rarely used Congressional Review Act can also be applied to repeal EPA regulations.
Defiantly unchastened by the resounding repudiation of his policies evidenced by mid-term electorate results, this president's power grabbing agenda becomes ever more determined. For example, fully expect what amounts to a government regulatory takeover of the Internet to follow.
Speaking before the House Judiciary Committee last December, professor Turley warned that Obama's separation of power abuses have grown to the level that "he's becoming the very danger the Constitution was developed to avoid." This is completely at odds with what framers had in mind when they established Article II, Section 3 which says that it's the president's duty "to take care that the Laws be faithfully executed."
Larry Bell is an endowed professor of space architecture at the University of Houston where he founded the Sasakawa International Center for Space Architecture (SICSA) and the graduate program in space architecture. He is author of “Climate of Corruption: Politics and Power Behind the Global Warming Hoax,” and his professional aerospace work has been featured on the History Channel and the Discovery Channel-Canada. Read more of his reports - Click Here Now
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