American Elephants


For Obama, Progress Is When He Makes The Rules by The Elephant's Child

President Obama convened his cabinet for a rare meeting on Tuesday, to ask for their help in devising a new round of executive orders to do what he wants. “We’re gong to have to be creative about how we can make real progress,” he said.

House Speaker John Boehner (R-OH) said last week he was planning to file a lawsuit against Mr. Obama’s use of executive actions to bypass Congress and legislate from the White House. “The Constitution makes it clear that the president’s job is to faithfully execute the laws. In m view, the president has not faithfully executed the Law,” Speaker Boehner told reporters.

Mr. Obama’s reaction is to blame Republicans for not doing what he wants, and say he will just move ahead on his own.”We’re always going to prefer working on a bipartisan basis to get things done,” Mr. Obama said in one of his more absurd statements. He has made no effort to work with Republicans, and simply expects them to do his bidding. If they don’t, he calls them names.

The Supreme Court has ruled against the administration 20 times, unanimously. Senator Ted Cruz explains. When the president’s own appointees unanimously reject the administrations call for broader federal power, it’s pretty clear that the administration’s view of federal power knows no bounds.

Administrative power has an old and dark history. As early as the Middle Ages, English kings were expected to rule through acts of Parliament and the acts of the law courts. Kings liked the legitimacy of this regular mode of governance, but couldn’t always get what they wanted from Parliament. They justified it as the prerogatives of a king, or absolute power. Constitutional law developed to preclude any such illegal power. Americans knew the English experience with absolute power and feared any recurrence of it in America. Our Constitution precludes extralegal power by placing legislative powers in Congress and judicial power in the courts.  The Constitution emphasizes that “All legislative Powers herein granted” are vested in Congress. It’s a recurring problem.

With immigration legislation dead for the year in Congress, the president said he would use his executive authority to boost border security and would consider additional steps to change the nation’s immigration policies. He faces pressure from immigration activists to grant work permits to millions of undocumented immigrants. He will probably attempt to make adjustments to deportation policy that will shield some illegal immigrants from deportation.

Mr. Boehner blamed the president for the House’s inaction. “In our conversation last week, I told the president what I have been telling him for months: the American people and their elected officials don’t rust him to enforce the law as written. Until that changes, it is going to be difficult to make progress on this issue.”

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