Photo Credit: WNDEver since President Obama was elected in 2008, his administration has taken on the appearance of an “imperial presidency” while Congress has acted as a tableau of figureheads. Americans need look no further than Obama’s executive actions concerning the delay in the ObamaCare mandates, the recess appointments, and his changes in the immigration laws. President Obama had no qualms in his recent State of the Union address in declaring that he will use the power of the pen and will sidestep Congress whenever and wherever possible. American Thinker interviewed Constitutional scholars, Senator Mike Lee (R-UT) and law professor Elizabeth Price Foley about this Constitutional crisis.
Both feel that what President Obama has been doing regarding his executive actions is unprecedented, not so much for the quantity of executive orders issued but the quality. He is using his power to change laws and amend legislation, which is completely unconstitutional. Senator Lee noted that it is important to make a distinction on the type of executive orders, since many are benign and do not violate any principle of Constitutional law. Professor Foley agrees, pointing out that this president is willing to act “directly contrary to what the law says. You can have 10,000 executive orders and every one of them can be perfectly constitutional or conversely you can have two that are totally unconstitutional. Which presidential action is worse? Of course, the latter.”
The president’s blatant action can be viewed in the context of ObamaCare, his recess appointments, and his “Dream Act” implementation. Those interviewed cite Obama’s unilaterally altering the Affordable Care Act over twenty times, for blatant and obvious political reasons. Just recently he delayed the employer mandate on ObamaCare as long as an employer does not lay off or reduce the hours of workers in order to avoid the burdensome regulation. The Obama administration says it will require employers to certify, under penalty of perjury, that they have not taken an action that they have every legal right to take, a breathtaking abuse of power.
Foley says there are a number of abuses, “In the announcement to delay the mandate this administration specifically thanked the efforts of various Democrats who are facing very difficult elections. Obama also defied the language of the law because the act states, ‘The amendments made by this section shall apply to months beginning after December 31, 2013.’ In other words, the provisions of Obamacare become fully effective in 2014, as a matter of duly enacted federal law. While the president does have substantial discretion about how to enforce a law, he has no discretion about whether to do so. These rules, including the requirement that an employer must sign under the penalty of perjury that they have not reduced their workforce to avoid obligations of the law are rules that ‘King Obama’ has set down. He is preventing employers from engaging in perfectly lawful behavior, the hiring and firing of employees. Look at this scenario: an employee who just lost their job complains to the Department of Justice. The DOJ can then intimidate a business and even file criminal contempt charges. This intimidation and cost factor to defend oneself is huge.”
Read more from this story HERE.