Saturday, December 08, 2007

not good 

Senator Whitehouse spill the beans on some super-secret legal opinions on which he got to take notes. Apparently he got to see these super-secret docs because he used the prerogatives of his office. Who knew US Senators were so powerful? Anyway, it turns out that the Office of Legal Counsel thinks roughly the following:

1. An executive order cannot limit a President. There is no constitutional requirement for a President to issue a new executive order whenever he wishes to depart from the terms of a previous executive order. Rather than violate an executive order, the President has instead modified or waived it.

2. The President, exercising his constitutional authority under Article II, can determine whether an action is a lawful exercise of the President's authority under Article II.

3. The Department of Justice is bound by the President's legal determinations.

Whitehouse dumbed it down a bit for those of us without the fancy educations necessary to wade through that thicket of legalese:

1. "I don't have to follow my own rules, and I don't have to tell you when I'm breaking them."

2. "I get to determine what my own powers are."

3. "The Department of Justice doesn't tell me what the law is, I tell the Department of Justice what the law is."

Wait till the rest of the Democrats get their hands on this! There's gonna be hell to pay!

Sometimes I wish we lived in a Banana Republic so we could at least vote on whether or not we want a dictator.

I have to say, I can't really understand the import of this since I was under the impression that OLC was part of DOJ. This would apparently mean that DOJ just told the President that the law is that the President tells DOJ what the law is? How does that work?

Anyway...there's plenty at this link if you're curious.


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