Tag Archives: constitution

Obama called one of “America’s two vainest presidents” as he continues to “monopolize true democratic dignity denied to mere legislators”

“PROGRESSIVE PRESIDENTS HAVE UNEXCELLED INSIGHT INTO HISTORY’S PROGRESSIVE TRAJECTORY, AND (APPARENTLY) THUS SHOULD HAVE UNTRAMMELED FREEDOM TO ACT.”

America’s Newtonian Constitution might again function according to Madisonian expectations if a provoked Congress regains its spine and self-respect, thereby returning our constitutional architecture to equipoise. But this is more to be hoped for than expected. Even without this, however, the institutional vandalism of Barack Obama’s executive unilateralism still might be a net national benefit. It will be if the Republicans’ 2016 presidential nominee responds to Obama’s serial provocations by promising a return to democratic etiquette grounded in presidential self-restraint.

Mr. ZerobamaNot since the off-year elections of 1938, when voters rebuked Franklin Roosevelt for his attempt to pack the Supreme Court by enlarging it, has the electorate made constitutional equilibrium a central concern. James Madison, however, hoped institutional balance could be self-maintaining: “Ambition must be made to counteract ambition. The interest of the man must be connected with the constitutional rights of the place.”

He expected that the rivalries between self-interested branches would produce an equal and opposite reaction to a rival’s overreaching. This would hold the branches in a planetary balance akin to that of the solar system, preventing the concentration of legislative and executive power in the same hands, which he defined as tyranny.

Before conservatives had the disorienting delight of Ronald Reagan’s presidency, they had a healthy suspicion of executive power, and an inclination to favor congressional supremacy. (See “Congress and the American Tradition” by James Burnham, one of William F. Buckley’s collaborators in founding National Review.) Congress, however, has long since ceased to be a reliable custodian of its own powers.

And now it has permanent and deepening attention deficit disorder: It can neither control nor even maintain meaningful oversight over the sprawling government it has created. According to historian Morton Keller in “America’s Three Regimes,” members of early Congresses were more numerous than federal bureaucrats. Today there are many more than 535 executive departments, agencies and other entities that Congress funds without effective supervision and to which a harried, distracted Congress delegates discretion tantamount to legislative power. James Buckley, in his forthcoming book “Saving Congress from Itself,” reports:

“Shortly after my election to the Senate in 1970, I was handed a recently completed study of Congress that had concluded that the workload of the average congressional office had doubled every five years since 1935. … I can certify that during my own six years in office, I witnessed a sharp increase in the already frenetic pace of the Senate and an equally sharp decline in its ability to get very much done that could honestly be labeled ‘thoughtful.'”

There have been 1,950 senators since the Constitution was ratified, and none has done as much damage to the institution’s deliberative capacity as Harry Reid has done as majority leader. He has broken its rules in order to rewrite its rules, and has bent its procedures, all in the service of presidential preferences. He and his caucus exemplify how progressives, confident that they know history’s proper destination, are too results-oriented to be interested in institutional conservation.

America’s two vainest presidents, Woodrow Wilson and Obama, have been the most dismissive of the federal government’s Madisonian architecture. Wilson, the first president to criticize America’s Founding, was especially impatient with the separation of powers, which he considered, as Obama does, an affront to his dual grandeur: The president is a plebiscitary tribune of the entire people, monopolizing true democratic dignity that is denied to mere legislators. And progressive presidents have unexcelled insight into history’s progressive trajectory, and hence should have untrammeled freedom to act.

Courts will not try to put a bridle and snaffle on a rampaging president, and perhaps Congress cannot, even if it summons the will to try. So we are reduced to hoping for something Madison was reluctant to rely on — executive self-restraint in response to a popular demand for it.

Fortunately, Obama’s ongoing and intensifying assault on constitutional equilibrium is so gross it has produced something commensurately remarkable — growing public interest in matters of governmental processes. Obama, who aspired to a place in the presidential pantheon, will leave office with a status more like Chester Arthur’s than Franklin Roosevelt’s, but without an achievement as large and popular as Arthur’s civil service reform. Obama will, however, merit the nation’s backhanded gratitude if the 2016 Republican presidential nominee makes central to a successful campaign a promise to retreat voluntarily from his predecessor’s Caesarism.

 

[by George Will, writing for The Washington Post]

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As always, posted for your edification and enlightenment by

NORM ‘n’ AL, Minneapolis
normal@usa1usa.com
612.239.0970

 

 

 

 

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Atheists want Obama’s IRS to target and monitor churches…and IRS agrees!

NORM ‘n’ AL Note:  THIS IS NOT YOUR GRANDFATHER’S U.S.A. ANYMORE, FOLKS.  IT IS TIME FOR YOU TO WRITE A LETTER TO YOUR ELECTED SENATORS AND REPS AND DEMAND (D-E-M-A-N-D) THAT THEY SUPPORT THE CONSTITUTION. BETTER YET, WRITE THE LETTER AND THEN CALL TO MAKE SURE THEY RECEIVED IT. (BE SURE TO SEND THEM A COPY OF THIS BLOG POST ALSO.) NOW PLEASE SEE BELOW.

The Holy Bible

If the Obama Administration’s IRS targeting of conservative groups wasn’t bizarre and draconian enough, the IRS is now planning to target, and far worse, monitor, churches.

The new IRS targeting program has been instituted at the behest of the angry atheist group Freedom From Religion Foundation (FFRF).

The IRS caved in before to the same FFRF that has tried, and notoriously failed, to strip “In God We Trust” from our currency, tear down World War II memorials, ban the National Day of Prayer, attack the Star of David in a Holocaust memorial, and even deny that Moses is depicted in the Supreme Court.

FFRF filed a lawsuit against the IRS in 2012 demanding that the Obama Administration delve deep into preaching from the pulpit to ensure that pastors, priests, and parishioners don’t say anything within the four walls of a church that could be construed as political.

Instead of refusing to impose a draconian monitoring program into the free speech of churches, the IRS caved, settling the case and agreeing with the angry atheist group that churches should be targets of federal IRS monitoring.  The worst part? The IRS is keeping the details of its settlement, agreeing to target churches, a secret.

As Fox News reported, this deal with the IRS not only violates the First Amendment but could lead to the IRS literally monitoring sermons on Sunday morning and challenging churches’ tax-exempt status if they take a religious position on issues such as abortion.

FFRF responded that these concerns are nothing more than the “hysterical disinformation machine that is Fox News Network.”

Nothing could be further from the truth.  This is a real and direct threat to the religious freedom and free speech of churches.

Churches have a constitutionally protected right to discuss issues of faith, even ones that might be considered political.  They do not loose their right to free speech just because they are churches.

In fact, the Supreme Court has made this very clear: “Indeed, in Anglo-American history, at least, government suppression of speech has so commonly been directed precisely at religious speech that a free-speech clause without religion would be Hamlet without the prince.”

The Supreme Court could not have been more clear when it held:

Adherents of particular faiths and individual churches frequently take strong positions on public issues, including . . . vigorous advocacy of legal or constitutional positions. Of course, churches, as much as secular bodies and private citizens, have that right.

An intentional, targeted campaign to monitor churches would violate the Constitution.  The constitutional protection outlined in the “Establishment and Free Exercise Clauses has prevented the kind of involvement that would tip the balance toward government control of churches or governmental restraint on religious practice.”  That is precisely what IRS monitoring of churches would bring about.

Targeting churches at the behest of religious opponents, angry atheists, is an abhorrent abuse of government power.

One can only image how a Lois Lerner, the former senior IRS official at the center of the IRS targeting scandal who called conservatives “a**holes,” “TeRrorists” (capitalizing the “R” to emphasize the point), and “crazies,” would implement the targeting of churches and which churches she would choose to monitor.

The IRS clearly hasn’t learned its lesson.  It’s gone from targeting the Tea Party to directly targeting churches.  This cannot stand.

It MUST NOT STAND.

[from a letter sent by the American Center for Law and Justice]

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As always, posted for your edification and enlightenment by

NORM ‘n’ AL, Minneapolis
normal@usa1usa.com
612.239.0970

 

 

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USA was designed by geniuses, but….

Designed by geniuses, but...

The following list has been attributed to comedian Jeff Foxworthy. Snopes says Foxworthy is not the author. The original compiler is a man named Fritz Edmunds.

 

1. If you can get arrested for hunting or fishing without a license, but not for being in the country illegally, you live in a country run by idiots.

2. If you have to get your parents’ permission to go on a field trip or take an aspirin in school, but not to get an abortion, you live in a country run by idiots.

3. If you have to show identification to board an airplane, cash a check, buy liquor or check out a library book, but not to vote on who runs the government, you live in a country run by idiots.

4. If the government wants to ban stable, law-abiding citizens from owning gun magazines with more than ten rounds, but gives 20 F-16 fighter jets to the crazy leaders in Egypt, you live in a country run by idiots.

5. If, in the largest city, you can buy two 16-ounce sodas, but not a 24-ounce soda because 24-ounces of a sugary drink might make you fat, you live in a country run by idiots.

6. If an 80-year-old woman can be strip- searched by the TSA but a woman in a hijab is only subject to having her neck and head searched, you live in a country run by idiots.

7. If your government believes that the best way to eradicate trillions of dollars of debt is to spend trillions more, you live in a country run by idiots.
8. If a seven year old boy can be thrown out of grade school for saying his teacher’s “cute,” but hosting a sexual exploration or diversity class in grade school is perfectly acceptable, you live in a country run by idiots.

9. If hard work and success are met with higher taxes and more government intrusion, while not working is rewarded with EBT cards, WIC checks, Medicaid, subsidized housing and free cell phones, you live in a country run by idiots.

 

10. If the government’s plan for getting people back to work is to incentivize NOT working, with 99 weeks of unemployment checks and no requirement to prove they applied but can’t find work, you live in a country run by idiots.

11. If being stripped of the ability to defend yourself makes you more “safe” according to the government, you live in a country run by idiots.

If you are offended by this article,  you probably voted for the idiots who are running our country into the ground.
[from an article published by GODFATHER POLITICS]
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As always, posted for your edification and enlightenment by
NORM ‘n’ AL, Minneapolis
normal@usa1usa.com
612.239.0970

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Senate Democrats trying to eradicate the Constitution’s First Amendment (the “free speech” amendment). Warning: This is going to make you angry…

Harry Reid, Chuck Schumer and 38 other Members of the United States Senate have just thrown their full support behind SJ Res 19, an attempt to re-write the 1st Amendment to the United States Constitution and give Congress broad and open-ended authority to regulate ALL political speech. 

       No, we’re not kidding — and when it comes to this imminent threat to your 1st Amendment rights, The Washington Times, quite simply and unequivocally, writes: “They Are Serious.” 

       Reid and Company are threatening to bring SJ Res 19 to the floor of the Senate as many times as it may take to pass it.

       The 1st Amendment is clear: “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the government for a redress of grievances.” 

       But SJ Res 19 would turn the 1st Amendment on its head and give Harry Reid and his cohorts broad and undefined authority to regulate ALL political speech. 

       Here’s what SJ Res 19 actually says: “Congress shall have power to regulate the raising and spending of money and in-kind equivalents with respect to federal elections…” 

       As Lloyd Green put it recently in The Daily Beast, “In plain English that’s called censorship.” 

       But if you’re still asking what’s wrong with SJ Res 19, read it again carefully and pay attention to the phrase “in-kind equivalents.” According to Dictionary.com, in-kind means “paid or given in goods, commodities, or services instead of money.” 

       In other words, Harry Reid and his leftist cohorts aren’t simply granting politicians the authority to regulate the amount of money some rich guy can give a candidate for office but they’re trying to grant themselves the power to regulate anything, repeat, ANYTHING that YOU say or do that THEY determine may benefit a candidate for elective office… now or at any time in the future. 

       Let that sink in for just a minute. If you make a comment on a website or blog… if you talk politics to a group of friends… if you speak out against Obamacare or government scandals in any public setting… and THEY say it benefits a candidate for public office, THEY would have the power to regulate, fine, silence or possibly even jail you. 

       SJ Res 19 concludes: “Congress and the States shall have power to implement and enforce this article by appropriate legislation.” 

       In their push to pass SJ Res 19 and silence political dissent in this country, Harry Reid, Chuck Schumer and their partners-in-crime have been telling you they’re simply attempting to stop “The Koch [Brothers] bid for a hostile takeover of American democracy” or “allowing dark money to flood our elections.” 

       And the liberal media has been dutifully advancing that false narrative like obsequious dogs. Well, it’s a BIG FAT LIE. As the American Thinker writes: “The mainstream media, which excels in providing cover for progressives in growing the government to gargantuan proportions, has echoed the call by bemoaning ‘too much money in politics.'” 

       Be forewarned. You are being duped because Reid and Company are advancing a straw man argument to push a constitutional amendment that gives Congress broad and undefined authority to restrict ALL political speech. 

       We’re not the only ones saying it. SJ Res 19 broadly states it; and some, fortunately, are starting to see the handwriting on the wall. The Wall Street Journal writes: 

       “The larger story here is how far the American left is willing to go to cripple their political opponents. They’re even willing to write a giant loophole into America’s founding charter so Congress can limit political speech. The Tea Party’s concerns about eroding liberty turn out to be more accurate than even its most devoted partisans imagined.” 

       And Cain.tv (the website of former Presidential candidate Herman Cain) echoes those sentiments. In an article entitled: “Politics: Chuck Schumer: Let’s Amend The Constitution So Congress Can Restrict Free Speech,” Cain.tv writes: 

       “When a US Senator is willing to be so brazen as to propose we amend the Constitution to weaken the First Amendment – and specifically to empower Congress to restrict free speech – what that really tells us is where the political landscape stands. Not long ago it would have been inconceivable that mainstream politicians hoping to remain in office would propose to take away basic First Amendment rights for the purpose of empowering politicians to impose new restrictions on same. At least in the reading of Sen. Schumer and others who back this proposed amendment, the political landscape has changed and it is now possible to propose such a thing without being flogged by the voters as a result.” 

       Well, as far as we’re concerned, it may be possible for them to make such tyrannical proposals but not without being flogged by the voters. It’s time to contact your elected senators and do some flogging. Better yet, call their offices and flog them verbally. Politely, firmly, but verbally and in person.

Chuck Schumer Actually Compares Conservative Political Speech To Pornography.
       You read that right. Schumer actually said: “I respect my colleagues’ fidelity to the First Amendment, but no amendment is absolute. Some support limitations on pornography. That’s a limitation on the First Amendment.” 

       But as Luke Wachob with The Washington Times writes: “[P]olitical speech today actually enjoys less First Amendment protection than does pornography. … Mr. Schumer’s view that political speech is no different from pornography… illustrates his appalling lack of respect for freedom of speech and the extreme recklessness of those who endeavor to replace the First Amendment with government control.” 

       Wachob adds: “It seems it’s time to close that pesky ‘freedom of speech’ loophole that lets citizens go unpunished for criticizing their government or elected officials” and he also says that those “who want to amend the First Amendment do not seem to want a discussion of its history. They simply want to make it history.” 

       Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell is calling this proposal “an all-out assault on the right to free speech” and “the ultimate act of radicalism.” 

       We couldn’t agree more.

[from PATRIOT UPDATE]

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As always, posted for your edification and enlightenment by

NORM ‘n’ AL, Minneapolis
normal@usa1usa.com
612.239.0970

 

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A big solution to a big, and still growing, problem…

COS logo

We see four major abuses perpetrated by the federal government.

These abuses are not mere instances of bad policy. They are driving us towards an age of “soft tyranny” in which the government does not shatter men’s wills but “softens, bends, and guides” them. If we do nothing to halt these abuses, we run the risk of becoming, as Alexis de Tocquevill warned in 1840, nothing more than “a flock of timid and industrious animals, of which the government is the shepherd.” (Alexis de Tocqueville, Democracy in America, 1840)

1. The Spending and Debt Crisis

The $17 trillion national debt is staggering, but it only tells a part of the story. If we apply the normal rules of accounting, the federal government owes trillions more in vested Social Security benefits and other programs. This is why the government cannot tax its way out of debt. Even if they confiscated everything, it would not cover the debt.

2. The Regulatory Crisis

The federal bureaucracy has placed a regulatory burden upon businesses that is complex, conflicted, and crushing. Little accountability exists when agencies—rather than Congress—enact the real substance of the law. Research from the American Enterprise Institute, shows that since 1949 federal regulations have lowered the real GDP growth by 2% and made America 72% poorer.

3. Congressional Attacks on State Sovereignty

For years, Congress has been using federal grants to keep the states under its control. Using these grants accompanied by mandates (which are rarely fully funded), Congress has turned state legislatures into their regional agencies rather than truly independent republican governments.

A radical social agenda and an erosion of the rights of the people accompany all of this.  While substantial efforts have been made to combat the social engineering and to protect peoples’ rights, we have missed one of the most important principles of the American founding.

4. Federal Takeover of the Decision-Making Process

The Founders believed that the structures of a limited government would provide the greatest protection of liberty. There were to be checks and balances at the federal level. And everything not specifically granted to Congress for legislative control was to be left to the states.

Collusion among decision-makers in Washington, D.C., has replaced these checks and balances. The federal judiciary supports Congress and the White House in its ever-escalating attack upon the jurisdiction of the fifty states.

We need to realize that the structure of decision-making matters. Who decides what the law shall be is even more important than what is decided. The protection of liberty requires a strict adherence to the principle that power is limited and delegated.

We the People can do it!

Washington, D.C., does not believe this principle, as evidenced by an unbroken practice of expanding the boundaries of federal power. In a remarkably frank admission, the Supreme Court rebuffed another challenge to the federal spending power by acknowledging their approval of programs that violate the will of the Founders:

This framework has been sufficiently flexible over the past two centuries to allow for enormous changes in the nature of government. The Federal Government undertakes activities today that would have been unimaginable to the Framers in two senses; first, because the Framers would not have conceived that any government would conduct such activities; and second, because the Framers would not have believed that the Federal Government, rather than the States, would assume such responsibilities. Yet the powers conferred upon the Federal Government by the Constitution were phrased in language broad enough to allow for the expansion of the Federal Government’s role.

New York v. United States, 505 U.S. 144, 157 (1992).

What Does this Mean?

This is not a partisan issue. Washington, D.C., will never voluntarily relinquish meaningful power—no matter who is elected. The only rational conclusion is this: unless some political force outside of Washington, D.C., intervenes, the federal government will continue to bankrupt this nation, embezzle the legitimate authority of the states, and destroy the liberty of the people. Rather than securing the blessings of liberty for future generations, Washington, D.C., is on a path that will enslave our children and grandchildren to the debts of the past.

The problem is big, but we have a solution.  Article V gives us a tool to fix the mess in D.C.

We are approaching a crossroads.

One path leads to the escalating power of an irresponsible centralized government, ultimately resulting in the financial ruin of generations of Americans. The other path leads to the restoration of liberty and an American renaissance.

The correct path can be found within Article V of the United States Constitution.

COS text

Many people don’t know that there are two methods to propose amendments to the Constitution, both found under Article V.

  1. Congress can propose amendments to the Constitution at any time if 2/3 of both houses of Congress agree.
  2. A Convention of States can propose amendments if 2/3 of states submit applications for such a convention. These applications must all deal with the same issue (i.e., limiting the power and jurisdiction of the federal government).

The Founders knew the federal government might one day become drunk with the abuses of power. The most important check to this power is Article V. Article V gives states the power to call a convention for the purpose of proposing amendments to the Constitution.

By calling a convention of the states, we can stop the federal spending and debt spree, the power grabs of the federal courts, and other misuses of federal power. The current situation is precisely what the Founders feared, and they gave us a solution we have a duty to use.

After the states propose, debate, and vote upon the proposed amendments, they will be sent to the 50 state legislatures for ratification. Three-quarters of the states must agree for any of the proposed amendments to be ratified.

Congress has no authority to stop such a process. The Founders made sure of that.

We are approaching a crossroads. Which path will we choose?

We believe our strategy give us an almost certain chance of success.

Two goals separate our plan from all other Article V organizations:

1. We want to call a convention for a particular subject rather than a particular amendment. Instead of calling a convention for a balanced budget amendment (though we are entirely supportive of such an amendment), we want to call a convention for the purpose of limiting the power and jurisdiction of the federal government.

2. We believe the grassroots is the key to calling a successful convention.  The goal is to build a political operation in a minimum of 40 states, getting 100 people to volunteer in at least 75% of the state’s legislative district.  We believe this is very doable. Only through the support of the American people will this project have a chance to succeed.

Our Solution is Big Enough to Solve the Problem

Rather than calling a convention for a specific amendment, Citizens for Self-Governance (CSG) has launched the Convention of the States Project to urge state legislatures to properly use Article V to call a convention for a particular subject—reducing the power of Washington, D.C. It is important to note that a convention for an individual amendment (e.g. a Balanced Budget Amendment) would be limited to that single idea. Requiring a balanced budget is a great idea that CSG fully supports. Congress, however, could comply with a Balanced Budget Amendment by simply raising taxes. We need spending restraints as well. We need restraints on taxation. We need prohibitions against improper federal regulation. We need to stop unfunded mandates.

A convention of states needs to be called to ensure that we are able to debate and impose a complete package of restraints on the misuse of power by all branches of the federal government.

What Sorts of Amendments Could be Passed?

The following are examples of amendment topics that could be discussed at a convention of states:

  • A balanced budget amendment
  • A redefinition of the General Welfare Clause (the original view was the federal government could not spend money on any topic within the jurisdiction of the states)
  • A redefinition of the Commerce Clause (the original view was that Congress was granted a narrow and exclusive power to regulate shipments across state lines–not all the economic activity of the nation)
  • A prohibition of using international treaties and law to govern the domestic law of the United States
  • A limitation on using Executive Orders and federal regulations to enact laws (since Congress is supposed to be the exclusive agency to enact laws)
  • Imposing term limits on Congress and the Supreme Court
  • Placing an upper limit on federal taxation
  • Requiring the sunset of all existing federal taxes and a super-majority vote to replace them with new, fairer taxes

Of course, these are merely examples of what would be up for discussion. The convention of states itself would determine which ideas deserve serious consideration, and it will take a majority of votes from the states to formally propose any amendments.

The Founders gave us a legitimate path to save our liberty by using our state governments to impose binding restraints on the federal government. We must use the power granted to the states in the Constitution.

America needs help!

The Grassroots

The leadership of the COS Project believes the success of a convention of states depends to a large extent on the American citizens. Our plan is as follows:

1. We seek to have a viable political operation that is active in a minimum of 40 states.

2. Our goal is to have local leaders–District Captains–in at least 75% of the districts in these states.

3. District captains will organize at least 100 people in each of these districts to contact their legislator to support a convention of the states, and turn out at least 25 people per district at legislative hearings.

Legislators must know that our grassroots team will have their backs if they support a convention of the states. A widespread grassroots organization has been missing from the Article V movement. CSG’s President, Mark Meckler, was the co-founder of the Tea Party Patriots—one of the largest tea party groups in the country. Michael Farris is the founder of the Home School Legal Defense Association. As such, he brings with him over 30 years of grassroots leadership and activism in all 50 states. We are rapidly building not only a staff for this project, but networking with like-minded coalition members who will support this project once they see it up and running.

We believe that our unique application strategy combined with strong grassroots support will guarantee the success of this Project.

Only one question remains. Will you help us?

NORM ‘n’ AL Note:  If you believe, like a majority of Americans, that this country is in dire need of help today, you owe it to yourself as a citizen and to the USA as the country to which you pledge your allegiance, to be part of that help. Visit ConventionOfStates.com now to learn more and to explore the many ways you can provide valuable assistance.

As always, posted for your edification and enlightenment by

NORM ‘n’ AL, Minneapolis
normal@usa1usa.com
612.239.0970

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Liberal law professor finally says it: “Obama is the very danger the Constitution was designed to avoid.”

A noted liberal Georgetown University law professor who represented members of Congress in a lawsuit over the Libyan war, has handled cases involving workers at the secret Area 51 military base, and has served as counsel on national security cases including those involving espionage, says Barack Obama is a danger – to the U.S. Constitution.

The comments from Jonathan Turley came during a House Judiciary Committee hearing this week.

Chairman Rep. Bob Goodlatte, R-Va., asked him: “Professor Turley, the Constitution, the system of separated powers is not simply about stopping one branch of government from usurping another. It’s about protecting the liberty of Americans from the dangers of concentrated government power. How does the president’s unilateral modification of act[s] of Congress affect both the balance of power between the political branches and the liberty interests of the American people?”

“Thank you, Mr. Chairman. The danger is quite severe. The problem with what the president is doing is that he’s not simply posing a danger to the constitutional system. He’s becoming the very danger the Constitution was designed to avoid. That is the concentration of power…”

Turley continued, “This Newtonian orbit that the three branches exist in is a delicate one but it is designed to prevent this type of concentration. There is two trends going on which should be of equal concern to all members of Congress. One is that we have had the radical expansion of presidential powers under both President Bush and President Obama. We have what many once called an imperial presidency model of largely unchecked authority. And with that trend we also have the continued rise of this fourth branch. We have agencies that are quite large that issue regulations. The Supreme Court said recently that agencies could actually define their own or interpret their own jurisdiction.”

Turley was appointed in 1998 to the prestigious Shapiro Chair for Public Interest at GW, and he has handled a wide range of precedent-setting and headline-making cases, including the successful defense of Petty Officer Daniel King, who faced the death penalty for alleged spying for Russia.

Turley also has served as the legal expert in the review of polygamy laws in the British Columbia Supreme Court. He’s also been a consultant on homeland security and his articles appear regularly in national publications such as the New York Times and USA Today.

WND reported that it was at the same hearing that Michael Cannon, director of Health Policy Studies for the Cato Institute, said there is “one last thing to which the people can resort if the government does not respect the restraints that the Constitution places of the government.”

“Abraham Lincoln talked about our right to alter our government or our revolutionary right to overthrow it,” he said.

“That is certainly something that no one wants to contemplate. If the people come to believe that the government is no longer constrained by the laws then they will conclude that neither are they.”

Cannon said it is “very dangerous” for the president to “wantonly ignore the laws, to try to impose obligations upon people that the legislature did not approve.”

Several members of Congress also contributed their opinions in an interview with talk show host Sean Hannity.

Months earlier, WND reported on the opinions of several other leading legal experts specifically on the issue of impeachment, based on Obama’s extra-constitutional activity.

Those sharing their thoughts include Bruce Fein, the legal scholar who is best known for having drafted articles of impeachment against former President Bill Clinton for perjury after he lied under oath about having sexual relations with an intern. Fein also drafted articles of impeachment against former President George W. Bush and former Vice President Dick Cheney. In 2011, he drew up formal articles of impeachment against President Obama for his use of military action against Libya without congressional authorization.

Another was Herbert Titus, counsel to the law firm William J. Olson, who previously taught constitutional law, common law and other subjects for 30 years at five different American Bar Association-approved law schools. From 1986 to 1993, he was the founding dean of the College of Law and Government at Regent University. And before that, he was a trial attorney and special assistant U.S. attorney with the Department of Justice.

Also Louis Fisher, who is scholar in residence at the Constitution Project. Previously he worked for four decades at the Library of Congress as senior specialist in separation of powers and specialist in constitutional law. During his service with CRS, he was research director of the House Iran-Contra Committee in 1987, writing major sections of the final report. Fisher is author of dozens of books specifically on constitutional law.

These experts all agreed that on one point or another, the Constitution might not bend far enough to permit Obama’s actions.

For example, on the issue of Obama’s “hit list,” those people Obama has ordered killed by drone attacks on the premise they are terrorists.

Said Fein, “Some people argue, ‘Well, he’s only killing terrorists.’ Oh really? How do you know? There’s no accountability. Was Mr. al-Alwaki’s son, a 16-year-old teenager having dinner, a terrorist? So whenever the president says someone’s a terrorist, are they convicted? If the president says conservatives are terrorists, is he going to kill them?”

Titus told WND, “It’s quite remarkable that Congress has basically abandoned this issue to the president, primarily by not addressing the issue in the National Defense Authorization Act not only in 2012 but also in 2013, where it basically gives the president carte blanche to detain any person that he suspects to be guilty of aiding people involved in terrorism. The fact that Congress won’t take a stand on that indicates that it wouldn’t intervene in the president’s use of drones to assassinate people he suspects are actively engaged in acts of terrorism even inside the United States.”

He continued, “Basically, Obama is claiming the right to be the prosecutor on the grounds that the whole world is a war zone. I think it’s an impeachable offense because he’s neither using the civilian courts nor is he bringing them before our military courts. What the president has done is simply defined the whole world as a battleground.”

On the issue of Obama’s decision to appoint dozens of “czars” to lead government functions – without congressional oversight, Fisher said, “That is a big deal. A lot of people say, ‘Well, that’s been going on a long time.’ In our form of government, citizens vote for representatives, and representatives pass laws. You have people heading departments, and they’re confirmed. There’s an understanding that we will call you up whenever we need to. So there’s accountability through that process.

“Congress passed legislation saying there’d be no funds for three czars, and they were named in the bill. Obama signed it into the law, but in the signing statement, he said that’s unconstitutional because he has the ‘prerogative’ to get the advice he needs to implement statutes. Well, c’mon Obama. You don’t have a prerogative to bring into the White House anybody you want at any salary. It’s all done by law. It goes back to 1978 where Congress passed legislation saying you have this number of people and these are their salaries and Congress can increase or decrease that at any time.

“I think Obama had no idea what he was doing when he was using the word ‘prerogative.’ He can get all the advice he wants in the private sector, but Congress decides how many aides the president will have and what salaries they get.”

[from WND.com]

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As always, posted for your edification and enlightenment by

NORM ‘n’ AL, Minneapolis
normal@usa1usa.com
612.239.0970

 

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