Ron Paul: “A crucial policy that a president could enact to bring speedy improvements to government is ordering the bureaucracy to respect the 10th Amendment and refrain from undermining state laws.”Details
The media, Congress, and the American public all seem to have accepted something that is patently untrue: namely, that foreign policy is the domain of the president and not Congress. This is absolutely not the case and directly contrary to what our founding fathers wanted.Details
Presidential power has been on a pathway of expansion beyond what the Constitution outlined, and what a government of, by, and for the people requires, since George Washington was president.Details
The merest glance at Americaâ€™s founding suggests that no one really wanted full-bore elective despotism…Details
In reading the Constitution, we can plainly see that Congress possesses the power â€œto regulate commerce with foreign nations, to raise and support armies, to grant letters of marque and reprisal, to provide for the common defense,â€ and even â€œto declare war.â€ Congress shares, with the President, the power to make treaties and to appoint ambassadors. As for the Executive, the President is assigned only two powers relating to foreign affairs; commander-in-chief of the armed forces, and the power to receive ambassadors.
The United States Constitution, which is the supreme law of the land in our country, delegates the power to declare war to the Congress and the power to wage war to the President. What that means is that only the Congress, as representatives of the People and of the States, can determine whether or not the nation goes to war. If the People, through Congress, decide that the nation shall go to war, the President then, and only then, has the authority to wage it.
Unless the country is being invaded, if the congress does not declare war against another country, the president is constitutionally barred from waging it, no matter how much he desires to do so. This is, again, shown clearly in the following statements:Details
by Bob Barr
Testimony before the House Judiciary Committee, July 25, 2008
Mr. Chairman and distinguished Members of this Committee, on which I was privileged to serve throughout my eight years as a Member of the House of Representatives, it is an honor to appear today to speak on the importance of the separation of powers in the federal government as a tool for protecting the peopleâ€™s liberties. Many vital issues confront our nation, but few are more important than repairing and maintaining the constitutional bulwarks that guarantee individual liberty and limit government power.
Mr. Chairman, today I appear as a private citizen, and also as a former Member of this Committee and as a once-again practicing attorney. I am also honored to be serving as the presidential nominee of the Libertarian Party.
It is axiomatic that no matter how much power government has, it always wants more. While the executive branch under George W. Bush has taken this truism to new heights, it is not unique in its quest for power. Unfortunately, the other branches of government have failed to do enough to maintain the constitutional balance. Particularly disturbing has been Congressâ€™ recent reluctance, in the face of aggressive executive branch claims, to make the laws and ensure that the laws are properly applied. This failure has inhibited the operation of the separation of powers, necessary to provide the checks and balances which undergird our system of constitutional liberty.Details
Although the founders wrote the US Constitution to limit the powers of the federal government, politicians from both sides of the aisle take the position that their power is far beyond what was ever imagined.
And now, John McCain’s new advisor, Michael Goldfarb, is making the claim that the executive branch has “near dictatorial powers”Details
by Ivan Eland
More memos recently have surfaced that were written early in the Bush administration by John C. Yoo from the Justice Department’s Office of Legal Counsel — the man who gave us the administration’s horrifyingly narrow definition of torture. As difficult as it is to believe, the recently released memos are even scarier than the original torture memo.
Yoo boldly asserts that the president’s power during wartime is nearly unlimited. For example, he argues that Congress has no right to pass laws governing the interrogations of enemy combatants and the commander-in-chief can ignore such laws if passed, and can, without constraint, seize oceangoing ships.Details
George Bush has formally presented an expansion of NAFTA to Peru. And, under FastTrack “rules,”Congress cannot amend the legislation.
What does this mean? Well, it’s quite simple. Under Fast Track, the president has the authority to ignore the will of Congress in negotiating new trade agreements.Details
by Rep. Ron Paul Recently, the General Accounting Office studied nineteen instances where the President issued so-called â€œsigning statements.â€ In such statements, the President essentially begins the process of interpreting legislation â€“ up to and including declaring provisions unconstitutionalâ€”hence often refusing to enforce them. The GAO study found that in nearly 1/3 of the cases…Details