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Blog: Imperial President?


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I'm beginning to think that President Barack Obama believes he is an "Imperial President," that he has to answer to no one else, and that there are no other branches of government.

The campaign critic of extending executive power has now issued more than 100 Executive Orders. In 2007, then Senator Obama said about the Bush Administration, "These last few years we've seen an unacceptable abuse of power at home. We've paid a heavy price for having a president whose priority is expanding his own power."

Apparently the once critic, President Obama has changed his mind and decided his is the "Imperial Presidency." He has even launched a campaign to find ways to expand his executive authority, and reportedly senior White House aides meet weekly, in private, to discuss policies and laws the President can implement without the authorization of Congress.

Just last week, he once again used executive authority to thwart the will of Congress by granting temporary legal status to hundreds of thousands of illegal immigrants. His actions are in complete contrast to the actions taken by Congress. In 2010, Congress rejected the "DREAM" Act that incorporated the actions President Obama now allows through his Executive Order. In fact, since its initial introduction in 2001, the "DREAM" Act has never been approved by Congress. Additionally, Congress rejected comprehensive immigration reform legislation in 2006 and 2007.

This is another in a long history of Executive Orders and executive policy decisions the President has made outside the wishes of Congress and the law.

Earlier in his Administration, President Obama also decided he would choose not to enforce some immigration laws, putting a priority on some, and dismissing others. At the same time, he decided to sue the State of Arizona for enforcing laws he would not have the Federal Government enforce. Again, President Obama was stepping outside of our representative government, dismissing States' rights, and enforcing and not enforcing laws based on his personal views.

Another example of his "Imperial Presidency," was when he announced last year that the Justice Department would not enforce the Defense of Marriage Act, a bill signed into law by President Bill Clinton in the 1990's. In fact, Attorney General Eric Holder and President Obama took it upon themselves to decide that the DOMA was unconstitutional. The last I checked the President and his Attorney General are not the Supreme Court and should not be making that determination.

And let us not forget that President Obama announced appointments to the National Labor Relations Board, and most notably the Director of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau which the Senate would not confirm, during a so-called congressional recess. This position requires Senate confirmation, yet the "Imperial President" Obama decided the Senate was in recess, when in fact, the Senate legally was in pro forma session for the very purpose of preventing presidential appointments without Senate confirmation. The legality of this appointment is now being challenged.

Time and time again, this Administration has extended the authority of the Executive Branch either without or in defiance of Congressional action. Most notably, the overly zealous regulators at the Environmental Protection Agency have made major policy decisions, which the Congress had rejected, to implement the will of the President. Congress rejected, for example, in three instances the President's Cap and Trade legislation, and yet the EPA continues to put forward rules and regulations to impose it administratively.

In fact, since 2009, the EPA has published in the Federal Register more than 1,800 pages of final rules relating to greenhouse gases, and more than 700 pages of proposed rules regarding the Clean Air Act are currently pending. This is a complete regulatory overreach by this Administration to implement policies Congress has already rejected.

As a sworn defender of our Constitution and chief executive officer of the federal government, the President must enforce the laws of this land. The American people believed they were electing a President, not an Emperor. President Obama should respect all branches of the government and must abide by and enforce the laws of this great nation, and not change them, at will, without authorization of a duly elected Congress.

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