If you thought the end of the Obama presidency would see a return to the constitutional framework under which Congress writes the laws and the president signs and enforces them, think again. Hillary Clinton now says that if she’s elected president and Congress doesn’t bow to her whims, it would be her patriotic duty to bypass the legislative branch.
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“If Congress won’t act,” the Wall Street Journal quotes her while campaigning in Waterloo, Iowa, “then I will ask the Treasury Department, when I’m there, to use its regulatory authority, if that’s what it takes.”
Clinton continued, “This is not about only about fairness. This is about patriotism.”
The late Venezuelan socialist strongman Hugo Chavez, and his successor Nicolas Maduro, couldn’t have said it better themselves. Left-leaning demagogues have always seen it as their duty to bypass the democratic process if they can’t get their way.
Of course, Clinton would only be doubling down on the same anti-constitutional efforts her predecessor, Barack Obama, implemented. Fortunately, the U.S. Supreme Court, as well as some lower courts, have stopped or stalled several of President Go-It-Alone’s efforts.
Remember when Obama decided that he, contrary to the Constitution, was entitled to decide when the Senate was in session in order to announce some recess appointments to the National Labor Relations Board? The Supreme Court knocked down that power grab unanimously.
Then last year, Obama decided he could use an executive order to grant a type of amnesty to an estimated 5 million illegal immigrants. A federal judge blocked Obama’s action, and the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals upheld that decision.
And then there are Obama’s agreements with other countries—e.g., limits on carbon emissions with China, the Iran nuclear deal, and now the Paris climate change agreement—which he refuses to call treaties because he cannot get the constitutionally mandated two-thirds vote in the Senate.
Now Clinton is warning that she plans to do Obama one better in ignoring the Constitution if Congress refuses to pass her agenda.
It is hard to overstate how destructive these actions are to our constitutional process. The Founding Fathers included three separate but equal branches of government for a reason.
And if Obama and Clinton are willing to ignore Congress, how long before they do the same with the courts?
If Clinton is elected president, she will have to take the oath of office to “preserve, protect, and defend the Constitution of the United States.” If she fully intends to expand Obama’s efforts to bypass Congress when it won’t play her game, that means Clinton’s first act as president will be perjury.