John Fund, writing on National Review Online, quotes a Democrat political operative who has worked for Ted Kennedy and John Kerry. She said, among other things, the following:
There is a special Congress that we're dealing with right now that has the lowest popularity rating in history and Republicans who overwhelmingly would oppose taking any action. The president of the United States cannot be handcuffed by the same Republicans that are holding the rest of the country hostage on every other issue. That is wrong.
One of the core principles of the Constitution is the separation of powers which in turn leads to checks and balances -- i.e. no single part of the government can run roughshod over citizens' rights. The three branches of government -- Legislative, Executive, and Judicial -- each have different powers, but all are required to follow the Constitution.
In the Constitution, the Legislative branch has the power to declare war, not the Executive branch. Yet Democrats are now declaring that Obama can attack Syria, effectively providing al Qaeda with an air force in Dennis Kucinich's term, without Congressional approval.
The statement by the Democrat consultant above, part of a set of Democrat talking points on why Obama doesn't have to work with Congress on Syria the way Bush had to work with Congress on Iraq -- double bonus points to everyone who remembers that the Democrat Senate voted in favor of the liberation of Iraq in 2002 -- is a clear statement that Democrats agree with Obama when he says that he shouldn't have to work with Congress.
But the amazing thing is the same Democrats who have, for 40+ years, whined about Nixon's "imperial" presidency are now saying that if Congress does not agree with the President, the President can just ignore the Constitution and any other laws the President -- so long as he's a Democrat -- doesn't like and do whatever he happens to feel like.
We've seen this disdain for the rule of law from Democrats a lot lately:
- The HHS mandate is a clear attack on the right to religious liberty enshrined in the Constitution.
- Obama's refusal to enforce DOMA before the Supreme Courts ruling just because Obama felt the law wasn't right is a clear violation of his oath of office.
- Jerry Brown's refusal to defend the law of California because he didn't like it in the case of Prop 8 is a clear statement that Jerry doesn't feel compelled to follow the law.
- The illegal delays in implementing Obamacare, which always just happen to push off the negative impacts of Obamacare until after the next election.
In one sense it's refreshing to see the Democrats admit that they feel they are not in fact bound by the Constitution. In another it's insanely scary that one of two political parties in the US, and the one that controls the Senate and the Presidency, feels the law of the land doesn't apply to them.
The purpose of the Constitution is to protect the rights of citizens from the power of government. If the Democrats can ignore the Constitution, then all Americans need to be aware that they no longer have any rights that Democrats are not willing to grant them. For while the Democrats don't control the Congress, if Obama can do anything he likes, such as removing peoples religious liberty via the HHS mandate, then Democrats effectively can deny Americans any rights that Democrats don't think we should have.
Democrats seem to see no problem with that. Perhaps as the infamous judge from New Mexico said, giving up our rights is, in the eyes of Democrats, the price we pay for citizenship.
You can read more of tom's rants at his blog, Conversations about the obvious and feel free to follow him on Twitter