Thursday, January 05, 2012

Bully For Him!

As Jonathan Chait points out at the linked article,
So, recognizing that Congress is simply treating every negotiation as a zero-sum contest undertaken with the goal of defeating him, Obama has abandoned any hope of negotiation or legislative progress.
The question must still be asked, what took him so long?
When the minority leader in the Senate has stated, without apology or retraction, that the primary aim of the party is to make Obama a one-term President, the gloves should have come off right there and then. Granted, McConnell said that while the Democrats controlled both houses of Congress, so it could be construed as hyperbole, still you have to be an idiot to believe that, given half an opportunity, which Republican literally were, there would be little compunction to press that agenda.
Apparently, Obama is an idiot. Certainly, he's had ample other opportunities to simply ignore these pro-forma "sessions" of Congress and place advisors, judges and other officials into offices that desperately begged for leadership.
Again, Chait: "[A]llowing Congress to functionally eliminate full-passed laws simply by denying the president any appointments to carry them out is a dangerous precedent that Obama would be derelict if he allowed to stand."
A violation of the Constitutional separation of powers: the legislature having legally passed a bill that the president signs into law cannot void that bill later by refusing to administer it. Administration falls under Article II of the Constitution proper.
Interestingly, any legal challenge to Obama's action (the US Chamber of Commerce has already threatened this) would likely be denied under Section 3.2 of Article II, which states a President may declare Congress adjourned if the parties cannot sort out an adjournment date.
So again, the question needs to be asked, for Christ's sake, why hasn't this been done earlier?
It's not like there was some grand agenda that required the felicitations of the Republicans. It's not like now there's a suddenly clear path. It's as if this lumbering giant woke up and said "Oh. Get in my way, willya?"
Thinking on this just makes me angrier and angrier. What say you?