Tag: Constitution

Promoted from the Ricochet Member Feed by Editors Created with Sketch. Dictator for a Week

 
Cincinnatus
Cincinnatus: Everybody’s favorite dictator. By the way, you also have to wear a toga for a week.

Let’s imagine that — a few years from now — the Ricochetti have mobilized a majority of American citizens who understand that the country is in serious trouble and have little trust in politicians to fix it. The result is the “Cincinnatus Amendment,” giving one citizen – elected by a supermajority of states or the popular vote – extraordinary power for exactly one week in order to restore Constitutional governance. This temporary dictator would control the executive branch and also have the legislative power of Congress. He is not, however, allowed to change the Constitution, remove federal judges, or change the current membership of Congress or Presidency, whose office holders will return to power next week.

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This month there was a Pew Research opinion poll (see story at Hot Air) that showed the new “Republican controlled” Congress was viewed by about 60% of Republicans as not representing their views on the key issues of federal spending, illegal immigration and SSM. The results were abysmal in comparison to the approval rating for […]

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We have just witnessed the U.S. Senate, which is nominally under the control of a Republican majority, vote to abdicate its power to “advise and consent” to a nuclear arms treaty with Iran. I am obviously referring to the Corker-Menendez bill that now goes to the House for consideration. The Senate filibuster rule is at […]

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It is times such as these where i think of two things. 1. The Federalist makes clear that the recourse to usurpation is men with guns. 2. I am under oath to protect this Constitution; and I struggle with that in modern life. Hat tip to Mark Levin Did you know there was an amendment passed today ? Preview Open

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Promoted from the Ricochet Member Feed by Editors Created with Sketch. The Constitutional Flaw That Doomed Our Federal System

 

Instead of watching helplessly as our republic devolves into crown government, let’s distract ourselves with a counterfactual. What if senators were appointed by state legislatures for indefinite terms?

The Senate was designed to preserve the federal nature of our system. Members of the House represent the people, but the Senators were to represent the states — really, state governments.

Promoted from the Ricochet Member Feed by Editors Created with Sketch. What the DHS Funding Battle Tells Us About the State of the Union

 

The continuing clash over DHS funding is the fourth such shutdown battle since Republicans took the House in 2011. First, there was the 2011 debt ceiling fight. Next came the 2012 fiscal cliff. Finally, we had the two-week shutdown of 2013. Now we have the fight over executive amnesty funding.

True to form, the Republicans will lose this battle like they lost the other three, and Obama will carry on unopposed with his strategic pincer movement: on one flank, a vast expansion of the welfare state through the annexation of what’s left of the private healthcare system; on the other, the ethnic and cultural transformation of the country through open immigration and the flouting of existing law. These two domestic objectives are manifestly incompatible with each other, openly mock the rule of law, and are deeply unpopular. Yet, over the remainder of his term, Obama will cement them into place irreversibly, making him the most consequential president since FDR.

Contributor Post Created with Sketch. Judge Rules Obama’s Immigration Action Unconstitutional

 

I sympathize with Judge Schwab on the merits, but disagree with his effort to reach out and decide the constitutionality of President Obama’s immigration order. Judge Schwab is right that President Obama’s order crosses the line from legitimate prosecutorial discretion (choosing where to allocate limited law-enforcement resources) in enforcing the laws into Congress’s power over legislation.

But I don’t think the question was properly raised. In this case, the executive branch is prosecuting the defendant, Elionardo Juarez-Escobar, for violating the immigration laws (he illegally re-entered the country after a deportation in 2005). This is not a case where the executive order applies, because the Obama administration is not allowing an illegal alien to remain in the country; rather, it is enforcing Congress’s laws here as written (for once). The executive order only applies to civil removal proceedings, while this case is a criminal one. There is no real dispute over the law, because regardless of whether the executive order is constitutional or not, it would make no difference in Juarez-Escobar’s case (in fact, the defendant here pled guilty).

Promoted from the Ricochet Member Feed by Editors Created with Sketch. A Surreal World

 

The temptation arises, when one has been away for too long, to unleash a tidal wave of prose that risks drowning all but the most hearty readers. And since, as Oscar Wilde observed, “I can resist anything except temptation,” I will do all I can to keep things snappy, but beyond that all bets are off. Besides which, my wonderful fiancé and her delightful mother are dining with a small group of Catholic ladies this evening, which gives me the perfect opportunity to relax with a delicious bowl of gumbo and a glass of smooth bourbon while trying to hone disparate thoughts for your enjoyment, or consternation, as the case may be.

I don’t know the extent to which my absence was conspicuous, but I, for one, certainly missed the company of the good people here at Ricochet. Now, lest you think I’ve been slouching into a full RNC-like stupor, and perhaps to help balance the productivity ledger, I should explain that I’ve spent the last six weeks or so finishing the book I swore to complete by the end of the year. The time to write being a precious and fleeting commodity, I elected to devote all of my energy to the book rather than split it between competing projects. A compilation of travel pieces, the book is pretty evenly divided between life as an over-the-road truck driver and life as an active duty military member deploying across the globe, with a few surprise chapters thrown in for good measure. The search is now on for a publisher.

Promoted from the Ricochet Member Feed by Editors Created with Sketch. Which Constitutional Amendment Is Most Critical to the Republic? No Picking the 21st, too Obvious

 

constitution

I know what you’re thinking: the First Amendment, of course! What else matters if we cannot freely express our opinions? I say balderdash. I’m constantly self-censoring my opinion, even with this constitutional protection. Just ask my wife.

I know, I know, now you’re thinking the Second Amendment. What better way to balance power between the government and the people? I say bah. In the age of character assassinations on Facebook and Twitter, do we really still need the second amendment?

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The hot question in politics that is currently being ignored by most media is not what the Republicans should do in the event of President Obama’s imperial decree that illegal aliens be issued work permits and social security cards and be exempt from deportation. The question is what are the Democrats in Congress going to […]

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Contributor Post Created with Sketch. Member Post

 

Article II of the US constitution begins: “The executive Power shall be vested in a President of the United States of America.” From this comes the theory of the unitary executive. As described by the Annenberg Institute, This theory holds that Congress cannot limit the president’s control of the executive branch because the Constitution sets […]

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Contributor Post Created with Sketch. Which Is Best for Liberty: The Presidency or a Parliament?

 

indexIn the Claremont Review of Books, I review a recent book by my friend, Frank Buckley, of George Mason Law School. His provocative argument is that the U.S. Constitution harms liberty because of the Presidency. He argues that parliamentary systems turn out to be more protective of individual rights.

That doesn’t seem right to me. I argue in response that the greater threat to liberty lies in unrestrained in majority democracy, where 50.1 percent of the people can legislative in any way it wishes — which is what happens in a parliamentary system, where there is no independent executive to check the legislature. But Buckley claims that the measure of freedom show that nations that have parliamentary systems have greater economic and political freedom than the U.S.

What do Ricochet readers think?

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Salon posted a 3,600 word piece setting a vision for a new constitution. It wanders across the left wing landscape, and the proposed constitution would enshrine many broad left-wing policy objectives (like environmentalism, an even more statist educational system, even more taxes on the rich, equitable division of power, FDR’s freedoms from). Although the piece is pretty vague about the details, […]

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I’d like to see the next president attack head-on the vexing and unconstitutional trend toward rule by administration. The fastest (and most terrifying) way to cure Congress forever of delegating its authority to the bureaucracy would be by giving them what they ask for good and hard. I’d like to see the next president take […]

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Former Senator Jim Talent posted at NRO’s The Corner this afternoon a very interesting discussion of the Quadrennial Defense Review. He started it with the following: Those familiar with the Constitution know that the federal government is given certain enumerated powers but in general is not required to exercise them. For example, Congress has the power […]

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The Grid Strategy was offered to the GOP in 2011-12 but ignored. Romney addressed everything thrown at him by the Press, and made no compelling arguments about anything. People stayed home. It will be worse in 2016 if we send another mealy mouthed politician instead of a Constitutional minded statesman with a robust and focused […]

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I have little respect for Ruth Bader Ginsburg as a judge, but occasionally she does have a point.  Suppose an employer’s sincerely held religious belief is offended by health coverage of vaccines, or paying the minimum wage or according women equal pay for substantially similar work? Preview Open

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