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….

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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….

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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…

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more
.

Documents Show Elena Kagan’s Conflict of Interest on ObamaCare

Documents Show Elena Kagan’s Conflict of Interest on
ObamaCare

May 18th, 2011

Ben Johnson, The White House Watch

Documents uncovered by a legal watchdog group prove Supreme Court Justice
Elena Kagan was involved in the Obama administration’s legal defense of the
Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, otherwise known as “ObamaCare.”

Judicial Watch has released
a number of administration communiqués that show Kagan, who was then Solicitor
General, presided over the president’s response to lawsuits asserting the
government health care bill is unconstitutional.

On January 8, 2010, Brian Hauck, Senior Counsel to Associate Attorney General
Thomas Perrelli, wrote to Kagan’s deputy, Neal Katyal, asking for the office’s
assistance in “how to defend against the inevitable challenges to the health
care proposals that are pending.” Three minutes later, Katyal replied,
“Absolutely right on. Let’s crush them. I’ll speak with Elena and designate
someone.” After Katyal volunteered, Kagan responded, “You
should do it.”
[1]

A few hours later, Katyal updated Hauck, writing, “Brian, Elena would
definitely like OSG [the Office of Solicitor General] to be involved in this set
of issues.” Katyal added,”I will handle this myself, along with an Assistant
from my office, (Name RedactedBJ), and we
will bring Elena in as needed
.”(Emphasis added.)

The Justice Department continues to withhold a series of e-mails that would
disclose Kagan’s exact role in the negotiations. However, it has turned over the
Vaughn
index
, which describes the items being stonewalled in general terms. These
include….

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more
.

Muslims Aren’t Terrorists; You Are

Muslims Aren’t Terrorists; You Are

April 11th, 2011

Doug Book, FloydReports.com

With the election approaching, Barack Hussein Obama has spared no effort in
proclaiming his undying love of his country (the United States, we are told), his
veneration of the Constitution, his enduring
belief in the power of prayer, and the
firm conviction that Americans have the
right to keep and bear arms
.
But we proletarians who manifest such sentiments had best beware of the
Department of Homeland Security and its commandant, Big Sis Napolitano.
A proud assertion of patriotism
by Americans who actually mean it may well succeed in marking one as a
Suspected Domestic Terrorist
….
Read
more
.

The Liberals’ Gun Control Crusade Targets…the Amish?

The Liberals’ Gun Control Crusade Targets…the
Amish?

April 4th, 2011

Kevin “Coach” Collins, FloydReports.com

The double-talking liberal Democrats in Illinois have
voted down a Republican measure to demand that those attempting to vote produce
a photo ID. The arguments they made were the same shopworn nonsense they always
use: “Such
a law will discourage voting”
; “It
disadvantage minority groups”
; etc.
In spite of the ever-increasing movement toward photo identification
everywhere we look, these people are able to kill photo ID bills. They have the
votes in the Illinois legislature and fear their fraudulent voters will not
be able to
keep supporting them if the system were to become honest.
Gun Control is the Liberals’ Religion
The same liberal Democrats who fight to keep voters from having to produce
photo ID have now passed a new law that will demand photo ID for those
who want to exercise their Second Amendment right
to buy a gun.
For most of the comrades living in a socialist-leaning state like Illinois,
assaults on freedom like this are part of life. Nevertheless, not all of
Illinois’ citizens can merely shrug off this law….
Read
more.

The GOP’s Political Salvation: Impeachment?

The GOP’s Political Salvation: Impeachment?

March
25th, 2011

Ben Johnson, FloydReports.com

So far, the first person to seriously raise the issue
of impeaching Barack Obama over his
illegal,
unconstitutional war in Libya
is Dennis
Kucinich
. That means the man whose ideas may do the most to unite the
Republican Party is a Democrat.
To be clear, impeachment is a constitutional remedy for a president intent
upon violating its strictures. Unfortunately, it is also a political act, which
means politicians must feel they have sufficient support before undertaking it.
Many authorities have stated the Libyan intervention rises to the level of an
impeachable offense. However, it might simultaneously be the perfect storm
necessary to pluck Obama out of office, splinter the Democratic coalition, or
weld Republicans together.
Months into the new Republican Congress, the GOP Establishment worries it
will not be able to corral the Tea Party. Despite pseudoconservative attempts
to order Tea Party members around
and establishment
promises to “co-opt them,”
this citizens’ uprising induces fear and loathing
in the political class on both sides of the aisle.
To mollify their constituents, Congressional Republicans have tried to prove
they are serious about the Constitution and cutting the deficit. They have
passed bills requiring members to cite specific constitutional authorization. To
date, the Beltway Republicans’ miniscule budget cuts not satisfied the
disaffected populist movement.
What might work? Impeachment.
King Obama’s
war-by-decree
was launched with zero constitutional authority. Obama did not
obtain a declaration of war, nor even a Congressional “authorization of
force”….
Read
more
.

Rush Limbaugh: “We Have an Increasingly Lawless President”

Rush Limbaugh: “We Have an Increasingly Lawless
President”

February 1st, 2011

Joe Kovacs, WorldNetDaily
PALM BEACH, Fla. – Radio host Rush Limbaugh is warning that the Obama
administration might continue to force implementation of its health-care law
that was ruled unconstitutional yesterday, saying, “We have an increasingly
lawless president.” “We do know that this regime violated and ignored a federal
court order on their drilling moratorium in the Gulf of Mexico. So we have an
increasingly lawless president,” Limbaugh said on his program this afternoon.
Asking himself rhetorically if he meant to say that, he repeated himself: “We
have an increasingly lawless president.”
Limbaugh said the Obama administration is “saying they’ll continue to
implement this law. … For the gazillionth time, the judge did not say that they
can continue to implement it while it’s appealed.”
“I think there is abject panic over this ruling,” he continued. “This is the
linchpin. This is the foundation of the new America. They were hoping to sneak
in this ability [that] the federal government mandate people have
something.”

20th Amendment: Obama’s Presidency Null and Void

20th Amendment: Obama’s Presidency Null and
Void

January 21st, 2011

DrKatesView

The Twentieth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution reads in part:

Section 3. If, at the time fixed for the beginning of the term of the
President, the President elect shall have died, the Vice President elect shall
become President. If a President shall not have been chosen before the time
fixed for the beginning of his term, or if the President elect shall have failed
to qualify, then the Vice President elect shall act as President until a
President shall have qualified; and the Congress may by law provide for the case
wherein neither a President elect nor a Vice President elect shall have
qualified, declaring who shall then act as President, or the manner in which one
who is to act shall be selected, and such person shall act accordingly until a
President or Vice President shall have qualified.

Barack Hussein Obama never qualified for the Presidency under the Twentieth
Amendment to the Constitution and must immediately step down. Because the
failure to qualify was known to Barack and Michelle Obama, Biden, the Democratic National
Committee
, former Speaker Nancy Pelosi, Governor Abercrombie and the State of Hawaii at a minimum, the entire process of
certification of the 2008 vote of the Electoral College on January 8, 2009, was
fraudulent and is thus retroactively null and void.  It matters not that the
‘process was completed’ if the underlying information used to complete the
process was known to be fraudulent, and further, that there was a conspiracy to
hide this information from the public.
No  Obama Executive Order, military order, appointment at any level of
government, signed legislation, treaty negotiations, foreign agreements, or
military, foreign or domestic actions can be presumed legal.  Obama’s words are
meaningless and do not represent the views of the United States.  Moreover,
active espionage is underway the longer Obama remains occupying the White House
and learning the intricacies of national defense and security.
Speaker Boehner and Representative Issa, there is no need for hearings or
investigations….
Read
more
.