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Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Rule of Law Re-established in the USA (for now).

Faced with the severity of the constitutional crisis caused by George W. Bush, as a temporary emergency measure, Barack Obama has decided to suspend the normal US legislative process under which laws are written by the President and the Office of Legal Council. Instead he has a radical proposal to have congress write the laws.

“To ensure that all signing statements previously issue are followed only when consistent with these principles, executive branch departments and agencies are directed to seek the advice of the Attorney General before relying on signing statements issued prior to the date of this memorandum as the basis for disregarding, or otherwise refusing to comply with, and provision of a statute,” he wrote.

What a radical ? He is, as David Brooks argued, a Jacobin with no respect for the established order. He offered no arguments in support of his radical legislation by congress proposal.

However, constitutional scholars note that this is a temporary measure and that President Obama more or less promised that there will be new signing statements ending the dread revolutionary period of lawfulness (importantly he didn't mention the possibility of *gasp* vetoing legislation which he considers unconstitutional).

1 comment:

Michael Drake said...

The rule of law. How quaint.