Washington Times Columnist to Obama:Resign!

Ben Johnson,The White House Watch

The pages of The Washington Times today reflect the nation’s
disenchantment with Barack Obama’s presidency. The op-ed section contains an
article by Jeffrey T. Kuhner,president of the Edmund Burke Institute for American
Renewal
,entitled,“Don’t
Go on Vacation —Just GO.”

Last September,Kuhner called
for Obama’s impeachment.
This year,he’s taken a new tack:Telling Obama to
quit:

Mr. Obama is the most arrogant,self-absorbed and self-obsessed president in
U.S. history. Nothing is ever his fault. He blames everyone and everything for
America’s economic woes –Tea Partyers,Wall Street,Japanese earthquakes,insurance
executives,oil companies,millionaires and corporate jet owners. He lashes out at
imaginary enemies without ever taking personal responsibility. In his mind,he is
–and always will be –the Anointed One.

There is only one solution:Drive him from office. Americans should forge a
mass grassroots movement demanding that Mr. Obama step down –immediately.
Through bumper stickers,picket signs,posters,T-shirts and rallies,tens of
millions of citizens should express the same message:Leave. It is highly
unlikely he will step aside,but such a movement would cripple the president’s
authority and possibly blunt him from doing further harm. It also would puncture
his boundless ego. A widespread manifestation of no confidence would break him
–politically,morally and psychologically –in order to save America. Mr. Obama is
out of his depth. He lacks the character,intelligence,skills and experience –the
basic competence –to be the leader of the free world.

Resign,Mr. President.

Of course,Obama resigning is as likely to occur as Bill Clinton entering a
monastery;they both love the thrill they get from their self-indulgent pursuits
too much to forsake them for their own good,much less the nation’s.
However,there is some value in his analysis.

A growing number of Democrats are sick of Obama,too. Contrary to what some
people believe,political parties are not primarily dedicated to promoting ideals
or ideologies. They are dedicated to power:getting it,exercising it,keeping
it,and denying it to their enemies. Democrats understand this better than
Republicans,in part because Democrats are the statist party,in part because
Republicans believe in the transcendent values the Left denies. Democrats are
happy Obama is president;they generally agree with him even when they are afraid
to say so;and they hope he will be re-elected in 2012. But they saw the
monumental butt-thumping the American people gave them in 2010,and they aren’t
willing….

Read more.

The Budget Control Act Of 2011 Violates Constitutional Order

Herbert W. Titus and William J. Olson,FloydReports.com

 

In a Constitutional Republic of the sort that we thought we had,the process
by which laws are made is at least as important as the laws that are enacted.
Our Constitution prescribes that law-making process in some detail,but those who
voted for the “Budget Control Act of 2011″(“BCA 2011″) were wholly unconcerned
about trampling upon required constitutional processes on the way to the nirvana
of “bi-partisan consensus “to avert a supposed crisis. At least two titles of
the bill now being rushed through Congress are unconstitutional.

First,the “Debt Ceiling Disapproval Process”in BCA 2011 Title III
unconstitutionally upends the legislative process.

The
Constitution’s Article I,Section 8,Clause 2
vests in Congress the power “to
borrow Money on the credit of the United States.”As two of America’s leading
constitutionalists,St. George Tucker and Joseph Story,observed,the power to
borrow money is “inseparably connected”with that of “raising a
revenue.”Thus,from the founding of the American republic through 1917,Congress
—vested with the power “to lay and collect taxes,duties and imposts,”—kept a
tight rein on borrowing,and authorized each individual debt issuance
separately.

To provide more flexibility to finance the United States involvement in World
War I,Congress established an aggregate limit,or ceiling,on the total amount of
bonds that could be issued. This gave birth to the congressional practice of
setting a limit on all federal debt. While Congress no longer approved each
individual debt issuance,it determined the upper limit above which borrowing was
not permitted. Thus,on February 12,2010,Congress set a debt ceiling of $14.294
trillion,which President Obama signed into law.

However,a different approach was used when BCA 2011 was signed into law on
August 2,2011. Title III of the Act reads the “Debt Ceiling Disapproval
Process.”Under this title Congress has transferred to the President the power to
“determine”that the debt ceiling is too low,and that further borrowing is
required to meet existing commitments,”subject only to congressional
“disapproval.”For the first time in American history the power to borrow money
on the credit of the United States has been disconnected from the power to raise
revenue. What St. George Tucker and Joseph Story stated were inseparable powers
have now by statute been separated.

Under the new process established by this bill,if the President determines,no
later than December 31,2011,that the nation’s debt is within $100 billion of the
existing debt limit and that further borrowing is required to meet existing
commitments,the debt limit automatically increases. The President need only to
certify to Congress that he has made the required determination. Once the
President acts,the Secretary of the Treasury may borrow $900 billion “subject to
the enactment of a joint resolution of disapproval enacted”by Congress.

But this is not all. Title III also provides that if Congress fails to
disapprove the debt ceiling increase in the amount of $900 billion,the President
may again certify to Congress that he has determined that the debt subject to
the new ceiling is within $100 billion and that further borrowing is required to
meet existing commitments. So the Secretary of Treasury is authorized to borrow
another $1.2 trillion. Indeed,the Secretary may borrow even more —up to $1.5
trillion if a proposed balanced budget amendment has been submitted to the
states for ratification. As was true of the first round of ceiling raising and
borrowing,the President and Secretary of the Treasury are constrained only by
the possibility of a congressional resolution of disapproval which,itself,is
subject to veto by the President.

By giving the President the authority to increase the debt ceiling and to
determine that borrowing is necessary to meet the nation’s commitments,this
bill….

Read more.

Golfing While the Constitution Burns

Golfing While the Constitution Burns

Ben Johnson, The White House Watch

 

When Barack Obama and John Boehner played golf this weekend, they played
on the same team
. How appropriate.

Barack Obama has violated the Constitution’s war-making power – reserved by
Article I, Section 8,
to Congress – from the moment he sent American troops into harm’s way without
Congressional approval. He has been violating the War Powers Resolution since at
least the 60th day of that campaign. And he has violated the most
liberal reading of that act – the one Boehner has adopted as his own – since
this weekend. Yet despite the letter
Boehner authored last week, which the media presented as an “ultimatum,”
Obama has neither obtained Congressional authorization nor removed our troops.
Boehner’s
letter weakly supplicated
“I sincerely hope the Administration will
faithfully comply with the War Powers Resolution,” but at least it seemed to set
this weekend as a definitive cut-off point.

The “deadline” has come and gone, and Obama has not answered the most burning
questions of the mission’s legality to anyone’s satisfaction. Instead, the
president has thumbed his nose at Congress in general, Boehner in particular,
and the American people at large, and the Speaker-cum-caddy has made no
meaningful response whatsoever.

Obama insists the American role in Libya is too diminutive to constitute
“hostilities,” so his action is perfectly legal. White House spokesman Jay
Carney repeated
his boss’s party line at Monday’s press conference, stating, “the War Powers
Resolution does not need to be involved because the ‘hostilities’ clause of that
resolution is not met.” However, soldiers in Libya are receiving an additional
$25
a month in “imminent danger pay.”
American drones still rain missiles down
upon military targets. NATO is alternately
bombing
Muammar Qaddafi’s home
and killing the innocent Libyan civilians they are
purportedly protecting. (We had to kill the civilians in order to save them?)
NATO admitted (at
least
) one of its bombs went off target on Sunday, killing
nine civilians in Tripoli
, while allied bombs allegedly killed
15 civilians in Sorman on Monday
.

Not to worry, though; Defense Secretary Robert Gates said over the weekend,
in a confidence-builder worthy of Churchill, “I think this is
going to end OK.”
Gates, who once
opposed
the Libyan adventure, has pulled
a 180
on the matter.

Even Obama’s short-term fellow Illinois Senator, Dick Durbin, agrees
Libya more than rises to the level of hostilities.

So, too, we have learned, do the best legal minds of Obama’s administration
(not a coveted nor much-contested title, I assure you). In overruling
his own lawyers, Obama rejected the
considered conclusions
of Jeh C. Johnson, the Pentagon’s general counsel,
and Caroline Krass, the acting head of the Justice Department’s Office of Legal
Counsel (OLC). The New York Times reported
it is “extraordinarily rare” for any president to overrule the OLC. “Under
normal circumstances, the office’s interpretation of the law is legally binding
on the executive branch.”

But then, nothing in the Obama administration transpires under “normal
circumstances.”

Two former OLC lawyers outlined precisely how unusual the dismissal was….

Read
more
.

Obama, the New Caesar

Obama, the New Caesar

June 17th, 2011

Jeffrey T. Kuhner, The Washington Times

President Obama has crossed the Rubicon. He now believes – and acts – as if
he is above the law; the Constitution no longer applies to him. This is the real
meaning behind the U.S. military intervention in Libya
. Mr. Obama is
abrogating the linchpin of our democracy: the rule of law.

He
is violating the War Powers Act
. Passed in 1973, the law clearly stipulates
that the commander in chief can only deploy U.S. forces for 60 to 90 days
without congressional approval. He must then receive authorization from
Congress. If he does not, he
is usurping legislative authority
and expanding
the prerogatives of the executive branch
– concentrating power in his
hands
, especially the
most important act of all: war
. In short, by flagrantly
transgressing the War Powers Act
, Mr. Obama
has sparked a constitutional crisis
.

House Speaker John A. Boehner, Ohio
Republican, is demanding that the Obama administration explain why it has passed
the deadline
without seeking or getting congressional approval for the
Libyan campaign. The White House’s response: Get lost. The administration sent a
report to lawmakers defending the NATO-led Libyan war. For Mr. Obama, the War
Powers Act does not apply because U.S. forces apparently are not engaged in
“sustained hostilities” with troops loyal to strongman Col. Moammar Gadhafi.
Moreover, U.S. air and missile strikes are only being conducted in a
“supporting” role. Hence, there is no need to have congressional buy-in.

This is postmodern humanitarian interventionism. According to the liberal
apparatchiks in the White House, Mr. Obama can bypass Congress simply by
redefining “hostilities.” War is no longer war. It is whatever Mr. Obama says it
is – or isn’t. George Orwell warned that the perversion of language is the first
step on the dark road to authoritarianism.

Mr.
Obama’s policy contravenes our national interest, is inept, immoral and
illegal
. This is why members of Congress are in open revolt. A bipartisan
group of lawmakers led by Rep. Dennis J. Kucinich, Ohio Democrat, and Rep.
Walter B. Jones, North Carolina Republican, have filed a lawsuit demanding that
the courts force Mr. Obama to end the intervention in Libya. They are right. It
is time Congress reined in an out-of-control administration. There is a growing
alliance between conservative constitutionalists and anti-war liberals…

In addition, the hypocrisy of the liberal establishment is stunning. For
years, progressives, such as Mr. Obama, railed against President George W. Bush.
He was denounced as a “fascist” dictator and compared to Adolf Hitler for his
wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. “Bush lied, people died,” went the slogan. Yet,
regardless of whether one supported those campaigns or not, Mr. Bush received
congressional authorization…

Read
more
.

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