Patterico's Pontifications


What Mike Lee Should Have Said About Income Inequality

Filed under: General — Patterico @ 7:53 am

Confronted with Barack Obama’s jabbering about income inequality, Mike Lee took to the airwaves last night to declare that the horrible problem of inequality is Obama’s fault.

Mark Levin the other night highlighted a much more effective response to accusations of income inequality, from Margaret Thatcher. If you haven’t seen it before, it’s worth the minute of your time it takes to watch it:

What the honorable member is saying, is that he would rather the poor were poorer, provided the rich were less rich. . . . Yes, he would rather have the poor poorer, provided the rich were less rich.

That’s the response, Sen. Lee. That’s the response.

Ted Cruz on Obama’s Imperial Presidency

Filed under: General — Patterico @ 7:42 am

This op-ed is gold from start to finish. Three cheers to Texas for electing this guy.

Of all the troubling aspects of the Obama presidency, none is more dangerous than the president’s persistent pattern of lawlessness, his willingness to disregard the written law and instead enforce his own policies via executive fiat. On Monday, Mr. Obama acted unilaterally to raise the minimum wage paid by federal contracts, the first of many executive actions the White House promised would be a theme of his State of the Union address Tuesday night.

The president’s taste for unilateral action to circumvent Congress should concern every citizen, regardless of party or ideology. The great 18th-century political philosopher Montesquieu observed: “There can be no liberty where the legislative and executive powers are united in the same person, or body of magistrates.” America’s Founding Fathers took this warning to heart, and we should too.

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Above: King Obama

Cruz goes on to detail how Obama has unilaterally decided to “cease enforcing the laws: in areas like immigration, “federal welfare law, drug laws and the federal Defense of Marriage Act.” But Cruz saves his biggest guns for Obama’s rewriting of clear statutory directives in ObamaCare: delaying the employer mandate; changing who the law applies to; twisting the law’s language to exempt Congressional staffers from ObamaCare; and forcing companies to create plans the laws declare illegal.

In the more than two centuries of our nation’s history, there is simply no precedent for the White House wantonly ignoring federal law and asking private companies to do the same. As my colleague Democratic Sen. Tom Harkin of Iowa asked, “This was the law. How can they change the law?”

Similarly, 11 state attorneys general recently wrote a letter to Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius saying that the continuing changes to ObamaCare are “flatly illegal under federal constitutional and statutory law.” The attorneys general correctly observed that “the only way to fix this problem-ridden law is to enact changes lawfully: through Congressional action.”

The problem is that many citizens, not being steeped in constitutional history or in the Supreme Court’s views on these matters, simply assume that if Obama’s actions are illegal, a court will come along and say so. Under the standing rules developed by the courts, however, this is unlikely to happen. The cure for these power grabs lies in the separation of powers: Congress can withhold money from a rogue executive — or, in extreme cases, impeach him.

As I noted yesterday, Congress cannot order around people with guns. Only the executive can do that. So if the executive accomplishes power grabs, then we’re headed that much closer to being ruled by a king: a guy who gets to make the rules by himself . . . and enforce them.

I don’t want a King Obama. And as Cruz notes, it should not be a partisan issue. If Ted Cruz were elected president, Democrats probably would not want a King Cruz. So honest Democrats should stand up with me and Ted Cruz and say “no more” to these power grabs.

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