Wednesday, November 19, 2014

The President Is Going to Cut Down a Law or Two Tomorrow

Sure, I agree. We all like rational stuff. Even if the House doesn't like the current Senate bill, they can always amend it, or just pass their own. What are they waiting for?

Maybe they're waiting for the new Congress to be sworn in. Maybe they're waiting for Christmas. Either way, it doesn't matter why Congress is choosing not to act; that's entirely beside the point. If the President doesn't like the lack of immigration reform bills in the Congress, maybe his party should start winning some elections. Or maybe the President could have done something for the two years he had a super-majority in Congress.

But all of this talk about the President's action and the Congress' reaction also misses the point of this being bad precedent.

The President shouldn't do what he's about to do. There's no broad public support for it. It's against the specific will of the majority of the legislative branch. The legal basis is unsound. There's no national crisis at hand that cries out for drastic action. In fact, the President is actually creating a crisis with this defiant move. It's also not a permanent fix, either. It's theater. But it's theater that sets a horrible precedent of cutting down laws by Presidential order.

But you know...I don't put 100% of the blame on the President. I blame us. The entire Democratic party is thrilled at the idea of this executive action, and it is actively encouraging him to do this. A little less than half of the electorate is excusing the means because they like the end result. There's plenty of blame to go around. The President is going to announce that he's going to ignore some laws tomorrow, and it won't really register for much of the citizenry here in our young little republic.

At the end of the day, we have to have laws that mean things. If the law can just be altered (and non-enforcement is altering the law) then what is left? I know I use this clip all the time, but it's relevant once again.

You start cutting down a little bit of the law here, a little bit of the law there, and pretty soon, a cold wind is blowing, and the Devil will turn 'round on you. Where do you hide then?

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