Wow: Obama issues “signing statement” rejecting budget cuts to White House “czars”

posted at 7:29 pm on April 15, 2011 by Allahpundit

You didn’t seriously think he was going to abide by the will of Congress, did you? Such is The One’s personal awesomeness that he can order the bombing of Libya without so much as a heads up to the legislature in advance. Surely he wasn’t about to be tripped up by a duly enacted bill that dares to cut off the money he uses for his auxiliary cabinet.

I have to say, of all the Bush policies recycled by Obama, this one’s my favorite just because it’s such a gratuitous offense to his base. You can spin many of the others on expediency grounds — he had to ramp up the drone strikes in Pakistan to crack down on terrorists, he had to keep Gitmo military tribunals going because the Republicans tied his hands — but this one’s pretty much a pure no-apologies betrayal. The bad news: Legally, it’s highly dubious. The good news: It should provoke another classic what-happened-to-the-Barack-I-knew Andrew Sullivan lament.

One rider – Section 2262 — de-funds certain White House adviser positions – or “czars.” The president in his signing statement declares that he will not abide by it.

“The President has well-established authority to supervise and oversee the executive branch, and to obtain advice in furtherance of this supervisory authority,” he wrote. “The President also has the prerogative to obtain advice that will assist him in carrying out his constitutional responsibilities, and do so not only from executive branch officials and employees outside the White House, but also from advisers within it. Legislative efforts that significantly impede the President’s ability to exercise his supervisory and coordinating authorities or to obtain the views of the appropriate senior advisers violate the separation of powers by undermining the President’s ability to exercise his constitutional responsibilities and take care that the laws be faithfully executed.”…

In other words: we know what you wanted that provision to do, but we don’t think it’s constitutional, so we will interpret it differently than the way you meant it.

Remember, one of the big advantages of using “czars” is that they perform cabinet-type functions without being subjected to cabinet-type confirmation hearings. Which means, in this case, not only is he reserving his right to skirt congressional scrutiny of important appointees, he’s reserving his right to force Congress to pay for it by ignoring their own funding strictures. He’s been using signing statements for a long time now, but I’m not sure there’s ever been an example this egregious.

Here’s your must-watch video of the day, from the thick of the campaign in May 2008. I’m going to call it, “Just Words.” Man, that Sullivan post is going to be epic. Exit question: If Congress sends him a bill funding the mission in Libya but demanding that he seek authorization within 60 days, is there any reason at this point to think he wouldn’t issue a signing statement accepting the money but rejecting the authorization requirement?


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Comment pages: 1 2

Boehner is naive in trusting this liar…. or maybe he is complicit?

ultracon on April 16, 2011 at 9:36 AM

Barack Mugabe and Moochbacca are at it again!!

abobo on April 16, 2011 at 10:24 AM

IMPEACH NOW!
Just for shear lunacy.

OkieDoc on April 16, 2011 at 10:24 AM

Waiting for the scathing editorials from the NYSlimes, WashComPost and numerous other liberal screeds about this imperial presidency and Obama’s unconstitutional actions. Waiting for the front page stories excoriating Obama for violating the rule of law and his duties as President by issuing these “unlawful” signing statements.
As for Mr. Obama’s seeking to evade the spending limitations, the new budget should include criminal provisions making it a felony for any person to not enforce the spending limitations, and a felony for any person to receive funds, salaries, payments, not specifically authorized in the budget/appropriations bills. Also make the venue for such criminal prosecution, where the employee resides, and authorizing states attorneys’ general to enforce these provisions (cause Holder would never prosecute such violations).
That would make the whole WH a criminal enterprise where the next Cabinet meeting would

eaglewingz08 on April 16, 2011 at 10:49 AM

Time to use congressional power – harrass -harass -harass. Supeona each and every czar and their underlings -if they don’t comply Jail they with Scooter Libby.

Don L on April 16, 2011 at 11:12 AM

This man is a sociopath

clnurnberg on April 15, 2011 at 7:44 PM

Rush mentioned once that a sociopath cannot tell the difference between his enemies and his friends. On the world stage this is certainly Obama.

As also mentioned, it looks like Congress needs to “harass, harass, harass” as was mentioned by Don L. Make it unprecedented.

scotash on April 16, 2011 at 11:55 AM

But we were told by the right bloggers that only one of the positions were filled, so basically it was a dumb point to win and the Republicans won nothing by having the rider.
WoosterOh on April 15, 2011 at 7:41 PM

It’s all so confusing.

What I find the most egregious, the most … unbelievable (and yes, I’m leaving out an adjective) is that this was something Obama NEGOTIATED. He AGREED to this, as part of give and take. And all along, he was going to give his middle finger to the deal.
lizzieillinois on April 16, 2011 at 12:17 AM

Exactly.

Buy Danish on April 16, 2011 at 12:38 PM

The most transparent POTUS ever spares no expense when trying to stay as opaque as possible.

reaganaut on April 16, 2011 at 12:39 PM

The most transparent POTUS ever spares no expense when trying to stay as opaque as possible.
reaganaut on April 16, 2011 at 12:39 PM

It’s transparently clear that he’s a backstabbing p.o.s. and cannot be trusted – literally – from one day to the next. There is something sociopathic about his behavior.

Buy Danish on April 16, 2011 at 1:04 PM

We have been invaded by a force determined to change the country into what he thinks it should be and the will of the people be damned. Ariel Durant said,”A great civilization cannot be conquered from without until it destroys itself from within.” Barry Soetero is making that happen and to hell with the wishes of the citizenry.

volsense on April 16, 2011 at 3:52 PM


The latest.

pambi on April 16, 2011 at 4:02 PM

What I find the most egregious, the most … unbelievable (and yes, I’m leaving out an adjective) is that this was something Obama NEGOTIATED. He AGREED to this, as part of give and take. And all along, he was going to give his middle finger to the deal.
lizzieillinois on April 16, 2011 at 12:17 AM

He’s a double-crossing liar, even by today’s standards. He begs for our contempt.

petefrt on April 16, 2011 at 4:26 PM

Barry issues statement on November 7, 2012, rejecting the election result saying he will not abide by it.

bayview on April 16, 2011 at 7:40 PM

Judicial Watch has been building case after case against the abuses of the ObaMao administration. The czars are just one area where they are pursuing litigation. Contribute to the worthy work that Judicial Watch is doing. (Eric Holder’s injudicious DoJ is just another target of their litigation.

onlineanalyst on April 16, 2011 at 10:14 PM

He begs for our contempt.

petefrt on April 16, 2011 at 4:26 PM

He has no need to beg.

Dino64 on April 17, 2011 at 10:09 AM

Contribute to the worthy work that Judicial Watch is doing.

onlineanalyst on April 16, 2011 at 10:14 PM

Done.

Good idea. I donate to Judicial Watch when I can. It was about time for me to make another small contribution.

petefrt on April 17, 2011 at 10:27 AM

Barry issues statement on November 7, 2012, rejecting the election result saying he will not abide by it.

bayview on April 16, 2011 at 7:40 PM

I wouldn’t doubt it…

theaddora on April 17, 2011 at 10:51 AM

Think of all the money we’ll save once Congress is Obsoleted.

You’d think these bozos would know when their job was at stake.

orbitalair on April 17, 2011 at 4:57 PM

The President has well-established authority to supervise and oversee the executive branch, and to obtain advice in furtherance of this supervisory authority,

Yes, and he can be replaced also!

BigMike252 on April 18, 2011 at 9:27 AM

The House should pass a bill ending the option of signing statements, and then refuse all other business until it is signed into law. When the left wants to argue about their obstuctionism, they simply respond that by the last signing statement, Obama has exposed himself to be an unfair negotiating partner.

Possible quote? “Reagan said ‘Trust but verify.’ The President has now verified that he is untrustworthy.”

dcman98 on April 18, 2011 at 12:49 PM

I’m not surprised that Mr Obama is bitterly clinging to his czars. After all, I think we can all agree that Mr Obama is America’s Laziest President Ever and he desperately needs these czars to do the job we are paying this rat bastard to do in the first place.

CatchAll on April 18, 2011 at 1:49 PM

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