Presidents have abused their powers by circumventing Congress with executive orders, which could be unconstitutional in many cases.
Presidential executive orders proliferated with Eisenhower starting in 1953, and have become commonplace instruments of presidents. Over the previous 60 years approximately 3,200 executive orders have been enacted, 1,830 by Republicans and 1,370 by Democrats.
President Obama is currently using executive orders to circumvent the Republican-controlled House of Representatives. He recently proclaimed “When I can act on my own without Congress, I’m going to do so”. He ordered an increase in the minimum wage for federal contractors and extended the deadline for the implementation of elements of Obamacare for one year. He lifted a ban that automatically prohibited people who provided “limited material support” to terrorists from entering the U.S.
The Supreme Court plans to review the Constitutional limits of the executive power, including the unprecedented number of Obama appointments made when Congress was in recess.
Although all presidents starting with Herbert Hoover have used executive orders, Obama is the first president to publicly proclaim this maneuver as an official part of administration policy. The Supreme Court might have to take action to halt our slide on the slippery slope to dictatorship.
Donald A. Moskowitz
Daily Lobo reader