President oversteps his bounds

Posted: Monday, March 12, 2007

Part of the legitimacy of our Constitution is that any literate citizen can compare it to government conduct and judge whether public officials are keeping their oaths of office. So consider:

Our Constitution’s Article I, Section 8 concludes with “The Congress shall have the power ... To make all Laws which shall be necessary and proper for carrying into Execution the foregoing Powers and all other Powers vested by this Constitution in the Government of the United States, or in any Department or Officer thereof.” Article II, Section 3 emphasizes this for a President with the words “he shall take care that the laws be faithfully executed.” Thus we are a nation of laws, not of official judgment or executive discretion.

A President has specified constitutional powers to ensure the quality of congressionally created law. As Chief Executive, he “shall recommend to their (Congress’s) consideration such measures as he shall judge necessary and expedient” (ref. Article II, Section 3.) He also has (Article I, Section 7) veto power.

So why isn’t Congress using all its Section 8 law-making and regulatory powers to make national security and use of the military by our President properly successful? Why is Congress passing so many laws and resolutions (like the Iraq war resolution) that leave committing the nation to action and expense to presidential judgment and discretion? Why is our President openly expanding enforcement of Executive Orders in preference to U.S. law, and justifying this with legal trickeries, new law signing statements and visible fear mongering?

Yet we’re to believe our leaders know best for our protection — even though national problems reveal ignorance and prejudices obviously cultivated by foreign nations and special interests.

Stuart Thompson


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