Obama's ignorance of the law

Barack Obama continues to embarrass himself with serious misreading of the law and the Constitution. But the media is not interested in pointing any of this out to voters, who are fed the line he is a brilliant legal thinker.

In my AT article "Barack Obama, Legal Scholar"  I noted that Senator Obama, former President of the Harvard Law review who touts his years as a constitutional law lecturer at the University of Chicago Law School, has repeatedly flubbed legal questions. He has misstated the law, has a serial habit of misjudging the constitutionality of various laws and has otherwise displayed  somewhat surprising gaps in his knowledge of the law (that mirror the gaps in his resume and records). He has done it yet again, as noted in today's New York Sun. When reflecting upon the selection of Sarah Palin as John McCain's running mate, Barack Obama commented,

"John McCain's new veep nominee seems like a very engaging person, a nice person. But I've got to say, she's opposed - like John McCain is - to equal pay for equal work. That doesn't make much sense to me."

As Diana Furchtgott-Roth writes in the Sun:

Does Mr. Obama, once a student president of the Harvard Law Review and later a teacher of law at the University of Chicago, not know the law?

Women have had a legal guarantee of equal pay for equal work since the Equal Pay Act of 1963, and have the right under that Act to sue employers.

Can the Democratic candidate really be this clueless about such an important anti-discrimination statute?

Charitably she offers another interpretation:

Or, perhaps Mr. Obama does know that women have a statutory guarantee of equal pay for equal work, but wants to change that to equal pay for equal worth. That has been the more sweeping, and nebulous, formulation of some feminists.

A difference of two letters, if written into law, would open a new regulatory exercise, one that seeks to compare jobs traditionally held by women - teacher aide, librarian, dental hygienist -- to jobs traditionally held by men, such as electrician, auto mechanic, and truck driver. It asks, essentially, whether a home health aide should be paid as much as a snowplow driver.

"Equal worth" would spawn immense opportunities for trial lawyers, who have contributed millions to the Democratic 2008 campaigns, as well as past Democratic elections.

The second alternative would create a regulatory scheme that would be Rube Goldbergish in its mindless complexity. Obama has sponsored two bills designed to do just that: The Fair pay Act and the Fair Pay restoration Act (also known as the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act). These would impose a mix of burdens on the government and on businesses in America; The Fair Pay Act might also illegally require employers to inquire into the sex, race and national origin of its employees.

Or does Barack Obama also not know this aspect of the law, either?

When Democrats attack George Bush for ignoring the law, do they appreciate the fact that their own candidate -- who attended Harvard Law School, and became President of the Law Review and who touts his years as a lecturer at one of the nation's premier law schools -- does not even seem to know the laws of the land, as he has shown repeatedly over the past year?

Ed Lasky is news editor of American Thinker.