Congress no longer passes laws, it merely enacts broad policies. Contrary to the dictates of our Constitution vesting law-making authority in Congress, most of our laws are now established in the form of rules created by unelected bureaucrats within the ever-growing array of agencies under the control of the President.Â This evolving practice of “leaving the details” to administration agencies is unconstitutional because it shifts the balance of power of our tripartite system from co-equal branches to executive dominance.
How very sad that the accelerating practice should be fully acquiesced in by Congress itself, so busy running for office that it cannot be bothered with the hard work or the political risk of hammering out the details of the legal policies it passes. As Speaker Pelowsi so revealingly stated regarding Obama Care: “We have to pass the law in order to know what is in it.”
If, as is often argued in support of current practice, matters have become so complicated that detailed lawmaking is no longer feasible for Congress and must be delegated to others, then the Constitution requires those delegated be answerable to Congress, not the President. Following passage of “policy laws”, congressional employees should be tasked to promulgate rules consistent with the new policies and, when completed, submit them to Congress for final review, debate, and enactment.
President Obama, who was very fond of referring to President Bush as ‘King George’, is exercising unprecedented power through agency rule-making. Those who favor his actions on the merits should realize that rigid adherence to constitutional separation of powers is more important than situational goals, no matter how laudable they may be. Expansions of executive power granted to Mr Obama will be difficult, if not impossible, to deny to his successors.
In the final analysis, Americanism is not about being liberal or conservative but about preserving individual liberty through constitutional fealty.