Executive power: Obama now substituting his own regulations for No Child Left Behind law

posted at 6:43 pm on February 9, 2012 by Allahpundit

Conn Carroll’s already covered the bases on this at the Examiner but let me quote the key bit from an analysis by the lefty think tank Brookings back in August when the waivers were first announced:

The White House has announced its plan to grant waivers of the provisions of No Child Left Behind (NCLB) to states that agree to put in place the education reforms favored by the administration. Thus states that agree, for example, to adopt the Common Core state standards for what students should learn and to evaluate teachers for tenure based on student test gains will be freed from the consequences facing schools that fail to meet adequate yearly progress goals under NCLB. The reforms the administration seeks as a condition of granting waivers are the same that it put forward in its Blueprint for reauthorizing NCLB, and that it advanced in its Race to the Top competition using the $5 billion in discretionary funds made available to it by Congress under the Stimulus Act…

It is one thing for an administration to grant waivers to states to respond to unrealistic conditions on the ground or to allow experimentation and innovation. Similar waiver authority has been used to advance welfare and Medicaid reform going back to the Reagan administration, and to allow a few districts and states to experiment at the margins of NCLB in the Bush administration. It is quite another thing to grant state waivers conditional on compliance with a particular reform agenda that is dramatically different from existing law. The NCLB waiver authority does not grant the secretary of education the right to impose any conditions he considers appropriate on states seeking waivers, nor is there any history of such a wholesale executive branch rewrite of federal law through use of the waiver authority.

In other words, the states are stuck trying to meet an impossible NCLB standard by 2014 and Congress is stuck trying to reach a compromise on revised standards before then. But rather than merely waiving the current standards until Congress has come up with something new, O’s actually going to impose new standards of his own as a condition of the waiver. He’s basically swapping out a federal law for his own policy, in other words. Just like he did in ignoring the War Powers Act to wage war in Libya, just like he did in ignoring the Recess Clause to appoint Cordray and the new NLRB commissioners. This strategy of bypassing Congress with unilateral executive action actually dates back nearly two years, well before the GOP took back the House, but he’s gotten more aggressive with it lately as our gridlocked Congress’s approval rating sinks ever deeper into the toilet. He’s making a bet here about the public’s view of separation of powers: So long as he can argue that he’s taking action towards a virtuous end — and education is as virtuous as it gets politically — voters will let him slide on the legal niceties. A war to avert a humanitarian disaster in Libya, a new consumer-protection advocate, relief for public schools from onerous, unrealistic federal regulations: The ends justifies the means in all three cases because that darned “do-nothing Congress” he’s running against refuses to see the light. You already know from yesterday’s poll on Gitmo how seriously the left takes its own rhetoric about the rule of law; O’s wagering that the rest of the electorate is in the same boat, ready and even eager to let the unitary executive cut through swaths of procedural “red tape” so long as it leads to a good outcome. Is he wrong?

Two clips here, one of today’s announcement and the other of Reason editor Nick Gillespie talking about separation of powers and the new waivers last August when they were first announced.


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Someone please help me out! When did I miss the Executive Order in which Obama made himself King and began to rule by Royal Decree???

parke on February 9, 2012 at 8:02 PM

Here’s a press release about the illegality of the federal takeover of education:

http://www.missourieducationwatchdog.com/2012/02/pioneer-institute-asks-is-us-department.html

The administration releasing states from NCLB mandates is a joke. What they are imposing on states via Common Core standards, curricula, and testing are not only unconstitutional, they are NCLB on steroids.

At least Congress voted on NCLB. Common core standards were adopted by states based on coercion from the DOEd with the threat of withholding Title I money.

manateespirit on February 9, 2012 at 8:25 PM

Law? We don’t need no sticking LAW! As Barry would say, “It’s GOOD to be The King!”

GarandFan on February 9, 2012 at 8:26 PM

Hey . . . he is the Emperor, so why should be worry about those cumbersome laws or that outmoded Constitution. Thank you enlightened voters, you really stuck it to us this time.

rplat on February 9, 2012 at 8:35 PM

If he gets a second term, he will be impeached. On any number of grounds. He will beg for it, mainly by his executive orders to bypass Congress. Repubs will have both houses of Congress, Øbama will go wild with his ‘progressivism’, and the only way to stop it will be impeachment.

petefrt on February 9, 2012 at 8:38 PM

In Georgia Mr Obama did not come to court although he had been issued a subpoena by the court. His attorney did not come to court either. I did go, and saw the table for the defense was empty. No defense was presented. The court was ignored by Mr Obama. How far does this man have to go in his destructive behavior before action is taken to remove him from office? I do not believe Mr Obama is legally President. If he is who he claims, he is not a natural born citizen as Mr Obama Sr was not an American citizen. But I also think that there is no birth certificate in Hawaii. I think we know nothing about this man except that he is a secretive man, a man who is destroying the United States bit by bit while Congress and the courts are silent unless forced to speak as Judge Malihi was, and then he rendered a statement that was absurd considering that the defense did not present a case. By ignoring the court and getting away with it, the court system acknowledges Mr Obama is above the courts, and answerable to no one. Mr Obama is acting like a dictator, and he is being allowed to do so. Judge Malihi’s statement concluded “For the purposes of this analysis, this court considered that President Barack Obama was born in the United States. Therefore, as discussed in Arkeny, he became a citizen at birth and is a natural born citizen.” No evidence was presented that Mr Obama was born in Hawaii. Evidence was presented in one of the three different cases before Judge Malihi that the birth certificate being shown on The White House web site is a forgery made up of several layers pressed together so as to appear to be a single document. A witness was heard who explained how such a document can be created, and he spoke about the signs that the document on the web site is a forgery. Judge Malihi ignored this testimony. The Judge goes on to say that based on his “consideration”, Mr Obama is a natural born citizen, but two of the cases before Judge Malihi demonstrated that to be a natural born citizen under the US Constitution, both parents had to be American citizens at the time of the birth. Although Mr Obama ignored the court, if Judge Malihi says he “considers” Mr Obama was born in Hawaii, it seems he is accepting Mr Obama’s story told to the public that his father was a citizen of Kenya, and was never an American citizen, in which case the Judge blatantly ignored the evidence presented by two of the cases before him. It was a sham. When reporting on what happened before Judge Malihi it is important to tell that Mr Obama ignored a subpoena, did not show up, and did not send an attorney, or present any defense. And Judge Malihi showed he did not need to. I say Mr Obama is not President of the United States, but he is a man above the laws of the United States, beyond the US Constitution. I call that a dictator. What do you call it?

RasThavas on February 9, 2012 at 8:39 PM

Congress is as much to blame as the Jugeared Jesus. They have handed him unprecedented (and unconstitutional) powers on a silver platter.

I only hope that the Supremes put the brakes on this power-crazed malignant narcissist while we still have a semblance of the separation of powers that has served us well for better than two centuries.

hillbillyjim on February 9, 2012 at 8:43 PM

Someone please help me out! When did I miss the Executive Order in which Obama made himself King and began to rule by Royal Decree???

parke on February 9, 2012 at 8:02 PM

Oh, around January 2009.

I figure he will try granting citizenship and voting rights to illegals, as well as abolishing the electoral college before too long.

Eren on February 9, 2012 at 8:47 PM

RasThavas on February 9, 2012 at 8:39 PM

I know all about this. It would been much more relevant if the prosecution could have presented a case with the participation of the defense. Unfortunately this was not to be and the judge failed to uphold his responsibility.

Here is a little levity I posted on another thread. If nothing it made my dad feel better. At 80 he needed it.

Funny story, slightly off topic but my dad is a graduate of Columbia college. Yes the same one obama supposedly attended. The have been harassing him for money for months and he ignored the flyers and calls until today. He is more than sickened by what is happening

He had the son of an immigrant from the DR and had a nice exchange with him. Yes I was a graduate of columbia, I was in the Korean war, and I understand how you need money. I needed it too back in 1950 when the credits were $15. Finally the kid asked for a donation and my dad said I will give you a sizable donation if you release the transcripts of the president. My dad went on to say there is no reason I can see why you have my name and my unlisted phone number and you can’t do this. The caller very seriously responded that he is not even sure Obama would know how to find columbia on the map. They concluded by my father saying call me back when you have them, otherwise lose my number.

FLconservative on February 9, 2012 at 8:53 PM

FLconservative on February 9, 2012 at 9:08 PM

liberal4life on February 9, 2012 at 6:49 PM

Did you get your name because you are a liberal and are radically against abortion?

Conservative4Ever on February 9, 2012 at 9:21 PM

No one is doing anything about all his power grabs, everyone has been intimidated by the 1st black president who has shown he is little more than a common thug. America is finished plain and simple, so much for the healing!

dmann on February 9, 2012 at 9:35 PM

FLconservative on February 9, 2012 at 9:08 PM

Tell your dad I like the cut of his jib.

RasThavas on February 9, 2012 at 9:35 PM

So I take it the libs and dems who are not renting their clothes in outrage over this “executive decision”, by bypassing the Congress will be okey-dokey when this is published in 2013:

“The (2012 Republican) White House has announced its plan to grant waivers of the provisions of Affordable Care Act (Obamacare) to states that agree to put in place the health insurance reforms favored by the administration.”

Man, If a republican wins in 2013 it is going to be great to test out these newly improved and expanded Executive Powers and see how cool the left is with them when their Messiah is no longer in charge.

Opposite Day on February 9, 2012 at 9:37 PM

smart power…

The disaster known as “no child left behind” must be eradicated along with the memories of the Bush years

liberal4life on February 9, 2012 at 6:49 PM

Yeah, we all know the LAST thing you libs want are the schools to produce self reliant, EDUCATED young adults who won’t need to depend on liberals.

wildcat72 on February 9, 2012 at 6:50 PM

Gotta give this Democrat Drone credit, it’s admitting outright that it favors Government-Sponsored Brainwashing.

Del Dolemonte on February 9, 2012 at 9:50 PM

FLconservative on February 9, 2012 at 9:08 PM

Tell your dad I like the cut of his jib.

RasThavas on February 9, 2012 at 9:35 PM

I will. He was Navy and the son of Greek immigrants. He will appreciate your comment.

FLconservative on February 9, 2012 at 9:51 PM

the Imperial Presidency rolls along…

what watery tart tossed him a sword making him king?

mittens on February 9, 2012 at 9:59 PM

what watery tart tossed him a sword making him king?

mittens on February 9, 2012 at 9:59 PM

Monty Python. But I think the answer is Hillary.

FLconservative on February 9, 2012 at 10:05 PM

How long is this Congress going to put up with Barack Obama doing an end-around it?

Murf76 on February 9, 2012 at 10:23 PM

You’ve got to give Obama credit where it’s due — where some panty waste GOP leader (like those in the Senate) would mope around about how they can’t get anything done because of there are rules that can’t be pushed, Obama at least is willing to throw stuff at the wall and see if it sticks.

It wasn’t so long ago where Presidents used to regularly impound money that they feel didn’t need to be spent to help balance budgets. That was mostly fine with Congress (outside of typical pontifications to the contrary) until the Budget Act of 1974 when the Dems said the President has to spend everything they tell him to spend. Go figure — it wasn’t long afterwards that deficits and the debt started to skyrocket. Constipated Stupidity has consequences.

A fiscally strong President with 16 trillion in debt might challenge that law by saying “Nope, aren’t spending money on that program”, “I’m tweaking this program here to save money”… Then let the Constitution get tested… If Congress wants to go there…

drfredc on February 10, 2012 at 12:14 AM

NCLB should have been repealed long ago (yuck yuck – because it’s truly an Obamanation against education, along with the Federal Department of Education’s existence, and though whatever Obama ‘s true objective is, he should have followed the process to try to make this change. He needs to follow the law and follow the constitutional power process verses just stomping on them.

wubu on February 10, 2012 at 1:22 AM

“O’s actually going to impose new standards of his own as a condition of the waiver. He’s basically swapping out a federal law for his own policy, in other words.”

Mmmmmmmm….. love the smell of mangled separation of powers in the morning.

Smells….like….a fascist dictatorship.

Yes indeed- destroying the constitution, one executive branch edict at a time. That’s-

Winning the future, the soetero way!

Let’s move!

GrassMudHorsey on February 10, 2012 at 6:35 AM

drfredc on February 10, 2012 at 12:14 AM

I have no idea what you just said. Was that American or Russian?

BrideOfRove on February 10, 2012 at 7:04 AM

That’s-
Winning the future, the soetero way!
Let’s move!
GrassMudHorsey on February 10, 2012 at 6:35 AM

Catchy. And it has a beat I can’t dance to ;-)

BrideOfRove on February 10, 2012 at 7:07 AM

So long as he can argue that he’s taking action towards a virtuous end — and education is as virtuous as it gets politically — voters will let him slide on the legal niceties.

That’s always turned out swell, wherever it’s tried in the world, hasn’t it?

MNHawk on February 10, 2012 at 8:45 AM

We used to be a country of laws and freedom. I kinda miss that.

NotEasilyFooled on February 10, 2012 at 9:32 AM

One more reason to eliminate the DoEd entirely. If we reduce the government to its mandated Consitutional powers and duties, thingsa like this don’t happen.

GWB on February 10, 2012 at 10:40 AM

Failing public schools?

Thank a teacher’s union today.

Good Lt on February 10, 2012 at 11:08 AM

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