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A ‘Constitutional Scholar’ Who Doesn’t Understand the Constitution

April 12, 2012 | Filed Under Barack Obama, Constitution, Democrats/Leftists, Ethics, Frank Salvato, Liberals, President | Comments Off

-By Frank Salvato

In a stunningly arrogant move, President Obama, the leader of one of the co-equal branches of the United States Government, intimated that should the United States Supreme Court rule the individual mandate included in the Patient Protection and Affordability Care Act is unconstitutional, they would be executing an act of “judicial activism. A more inappropriate and coercive comment has not been uttered in recent history by the President of the United States. Mr. Obama’s politically and ideologically motivated comments stand as testimony to not only his lack of constitutional literacy, it stands as a demented tribute to his audacity.

During a Rose Garden press conference, Mr. Obama, egregiously applied the notion of judicial activism to any decision that would invalidate any portion of the health insurance law commonly referred to as “Obamacare,” questioning how an “unelected group of people” could overturn a law approved by Congress. “I’m confident that the Supreme Court will not take what would be an unprecedented, extraordinary step of overturning a law that was passed by a strong majority of a democratically elected Congress,” Obama said. At the time of passage, it should be noted, Progressive Democrats controlled both the House and the Senate in numbers that did not require a bi-partisan effort. In fact, not one Republican voted for the final legislation.

Mr. Obama continued, “I’m confident that this will be upheld because it should be upheld,” describing the law as “constitutional.”

There is only one thing wrong with everything that the President said during this press conference regarding Obamacare and the United States Supreme Court: The President of the United States does not have the authority to declare legislation constitutional or unconstitutional. That power is exclusively the domain of the United States Supreme Court and, therefore, the decisions handed down by that body are legitimate simply because they exist. Of course, a real constitutional scholar would know this. Therefore, Mr. Obama is either trying to strong-arm the United State Supreme Court in the court of public opinion; he is pathetically devoid of any real constitutional knowledge; or both.

Mr. Obama often plays fast and loose with the truth when the truth inhibits the potency of his statements, his recent statements that the United States has only two percent of the world’s oil supply is a perfect example. Investor’s Business Daily points out, in no uncertain terms:

“When you look at the whole picture, it turns out that there are vast supplies of oil in the US, according to various government reports. Among them: At least 86 billion barrels of oil in the Outer Continental Shelf yet to be discovered, according to the government’s Bureau of Ocean Energy Management; About 24 billion barrels in shale deposits in the lower 48 states, according to Energy Information Administration; Up to 2 billion barrels of oil in shale deposits in Alaska’s North Slope, says the US Geological Survey; Up to 12 billion barrels in ANWR, according to the USGS; As much as 19 billion barrels in the Utah tar sands, according to the Bureau of Land Management…”

The column goes on and on proving the President either grossly in error on his statistics or willfully misleading in an effort to win a political argument with egregious “facts.”

Where the issue of Mr. Obama being a constitutional law professor is concerned, we see a bit of a stretch as well. The University of Chicago Law School bestowed the official title of “senior lecturer” to Mr. Obama. Whereas the school uses “senior lecturers” to teach classes, they are not officially professors. Perhaps this is why Mr. Obama doesn’t recognize the three branches of the United States of America as co-equal. Maybe this is why he routinely side-steps the authority of the Legislative Branch in legislating through regulatory control or deeming Congress “not in session” in his use of the recess appointment. Maybe this is why he believes he can declare his signature legislation, the one achievement he holds above all else from his tenure as President of the United States – Obamacare, constitutional in his usurpation of the exclusive authority of the United States Supreme Court to decide the constitutionality of legislation brought before them.

Or maybe it is something quite different. Maybe it is a Progressive arrogance, a political Progressive arrogance, an audacity, as it were, that leads him to believe that his empirical presidency has the power to disregard the United States Constitution, the American system of government and the fact that there are three branches of government in the United States and that we have a government of laws, not of men, as John Adams said so potently in the run up to the signing of the Declaration of Independence.

A true constitutional scholar would understand the constitutional reality of the Separation of Powers and the constitutional concept of “checks and balances” that maintains the balance among the three co-equal branches of government.

So, We the People really should be incredibly alarmed at Mr. Obama’s statement that a striking of the individual mandate included in Obamacare would equate to “judicial activism.” The statement is not only uneducated and absurd; it is either a warning sign that we have a constitutionally illiterate President or a Progressive activist who would just assume spit on the Constitution than try to understand it. We the People should be alarmed that we have a President who would place his ideology and agenda above the people he is supposed to serve.
____________
Frank Salvato is the managing editor for The New Media Journal . He serves at the Executive Director of the Basics Project, a non-profit, non-partisan, 501(C)(3) research and education initiative. His pieces are regularly featured in over 100 publications both nationally and internationally. He has appeared on The O’Reilly Factor, and is a regular guest on The Right Balance with Greg Allen on the Accent Radio Network, as well as an occasional guest on numerous radio shows coast to coast. He recently partnered in producing the first-ever symposium on the threat of radical Islamist terrorism in Washington, DC. His pieces have been recognized by the House International Relations Committee and the Japan Center for Conflict. He can be contacted at oped@newmediajournal.us


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