Frum Tells GOP to Raise Debt Ceiling — To Spare Obama Impeachment

Ben Johnson, The White House Watch

For most of his term, Barack Obama has been flirting with impeachment like Bill Clinton at a sorority on open bar night, but he may be set to go too far even by Washington’s standards. Administration officials suggested if Congress does not raise the debt ceiling, the president may (wrongly) invoke the 14th Amendment to force the nation to borrow money. Last Tuesday Rep. Tim Scott, R-SC, said such an overreach of executive power would be “an impeachable act,” and the next day Texas Republican Pete Olson said Scott is “not a lonely voice.” Although Timothy Geithner backed down by week’s end, it is not clear that his scheme — or the equally unconstitutional compromise Mitch McConnell offered — will not rise again, provoking a constitutional crisis. Even David Frum, the most assertive voice of Republican liberalization, has concluded House Republicans will at least rumble about impeaching Obama if he blatantly violates the Constitution. Flummoxed at the possibility, he has advised Republicans to shut up and raise the debt ceiling to prevent Obama from having to commit an impeachable offense.

Frum proffered his bizarre advice in an article published on his eponymous FrumForum entitled, “Can the Debt Crisis Lead to Impeachment?”

Frum correctly noted, “The debt-ceiling crisis is growing into an impending constitutional crisis.” He is far from alone in assessing the severity of Obama’s threatened actions. Stan Collender wrote last Tuesday, “A number of people I communicated with this past week thought that the president invoking the 14th Amendment to justify federal borrowing would lead to impeachment proceedings in the House, even if there is little chance that the Senate would ever vote to convict.” Georgetown Law School professor Louis Michael Seidman, who supports the president’s right to unilaterally borrow money in theory, has warned, “There would be a constitutional crisis.” Matthew Vadum of The American Spectator agreed this would be one of Obama’s many impeachable offenses.

Frum conceded….

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Republican Deals With Obama Are Killing Us

Floyd and Mary Beth Brown, FloydReports.com

Writing a syndicated column in 2011 is night and day different from when we started writing for publication in the 1990′s. The overriding change is the volume and immediacy of feedback. In the 1990′s we would receive the occasional letter applauding or challenging our thesis, facts and motives. Today we find our email inbox and comment sections so full it is difficult to read it all.

We take our readers seriously, and even if we don’t personally respond, we read and ponder their many times insightful thoughts. Ironically, as hard as we work to provide clarity through our own words, sometimes they fail to accurately convey our passion and hopes for America.

After last week’s column was posted, we were accused of hoping for the collapse of the country. We couldn’t be more misunderstood by a reader. We see collapse coming, and like Paul Revere we ride the countryside in the hope that the country will mobilize to meet the dangers.

Here are three reasons we are frightfully concerned about the future of the economy and country:

The first is the dedication of John Boehner to cutting deals with Barack Obama. The Republican majority wasn’t returned to Congress so that they could strike a mega-deal to balance the budget on the backs of the people. The growth of government must be stopped before it consumes what meager wealth the country has left. The current grand scheme as reported would increase taxes in exchange for budget cuts someday off in the future. We have seen how this bargain works. Taxes go up, but spending never goes down.

Second….

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Tim Pawlenty: We Need More, Bigger Unconstitutional Wars!

Ben Johnson, The White House Watch

In election years, candidates inevitably promise voters they will do more than their opponents. In practice that usually means increased debt-spending and expanding unconstitutional encroachments on liberty. Now one Republican presidential candidate has doubled-down on the most blatantly illegal action of this presidency, saying Barack Obama has not gone far enough in waging war-by-decree in Libya — and those who want to follow the Constitution are bead-wearing hippies bent on dragging America down in disgrace.

On Tuesday, former Minnesota governor Tim Pawlenty gave what he dubbed a “major” foreign policy speech to the Council on Foreign Relations. In it, Pawlenty pouted, “parts of the Republican Party now seem to be trying to out-bid the Democrats in appealing to isolationist sentiments.”

“America already has one political party devoted to decline, retrenchment, and withdrawal,” he said. “It does not need a second one.”

He fleshed out what he meant in the speech — calling on Obama to “commit America’s strength to removing Ghadafi” and recognize the rebels as Libya’s legitimate government. During a question-and-answer session afterward, TPaw agreed with President Obama that the War Powers Resolution “does not apply” to the war in Libya.

In March, Pawlenty told students at Vanderbilt University that getting Congressional authorization for a war, as required by the Constitution and the resolution, is “a very complex matter and it’s not something that lends itself to an easy answer.” He added, “we need to make sure we don’t tie the executive or the commander in chief’s hands so tightly that he or she can’t respond in an emergency quickly or in a situation that deserves and needs a quick response.” Pawlenty told the CFR on Tuesday he would consult with Congress “as a courtesy and gesture of respect.”

His speech and his attack on his fellow Republicans raises (at least) 15 questions this author would like to ask Gov. Pawlenty:

  1. You have stated the War Powers Resolution does not apply to the war in Libya. However, the administration’s best lawyers disagreed with your assessment. Attorney General Eric Holder reportedly sided with them. The highest legal scholar in the administration to hold to your view is Harold Koh, who advocates “transnationalist jurisprudence,” who once branded the United States a member of the “axis of disobedience,” and who often co-authors articles with members of the Center for Constitutional Rights — a pro-terrorist legal house founded by Marxists. How can a self-identified “conservative” find himself to the Left of Eric Holder? If elected, will you rely on the advice of Koh or others of his ideology?
  2. The Founding Fathers clearly placed the war-making power in the hands of Congress alone — in Article I, Section 8 of the Constitution as well as their deliberations before its passage and their practice following its adoption. Since the Constitution has not been amended, what legal precedent do you believe suspended and nullified the Founders’ intentions?
  3. Since you do not believe Congressional authorization is necessary to initiate hostilities, at what point, if any, would you consider Congressional authorization necessary to continue military interventions abroad in which American personnel or weapons were killing or attempting to kill foreign nationals (referred to as “hostilities” in the War Powers Resolution)?

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Bachmann Turns to Overdrive

Jeff Crouere, FloydReports.com

Minnesota Republican Congresswoman Michele Bachmann is now the “it” candidate in the race for president. In the last presidential debate, she looked poised and polished and made big news by stating that she had filed papers to officially launch her presidential campaign. She recently took the next step and formally announced her campaign for president in her hometown of Waterloo, Iowa.

With her impressive debate performance and enhanced media attention, Bachmann is now running second in the latest Iowa poll, only one point behind Mitt Romney, the former Governor of Massachusetts. Romney is the candidate of the country club Republicans or the establishment wing of the party. This RINO (Republican in Name Only) is a flip-flopper par excellence and the father of the Bay State’s socialized medicine program. He would be the worst potential GOP candidate to challenge Barack Obama, because he could not make effective arguments against the worst excess of the Obama administration.

On the other hand, Bachmann is the perfect candidate for she has a solid conservative voting record. She is also the Chairwoman of the Tea Party caucus in Congress and is close to the activists who are now driving the Republican Party

A Romney nomination would create serious problems for the Republican Party and may lead to a third party candidacy or a weakened turnout in the next election. Republicans need a massive get out the vote effort to overtake the incumbent, who will have the liberal media, Hollywood, the unions, and the special interest groups fully in his corner. He will also have possibly $1 billion in campaign money to harass the GOP candidate.

President Obama will not campaign on his credentials or accomplishments in office, because he does not have any. Instead, it will be a typical Democratic Party campaign of character assassination.

Bachmann has already experienced the slings and arrows from the mainstream news media. She has been a frequent victim of Chris Matthews’ viciousness on MSNBC. Over the weekend, she was called a “flake” by the supposedly objective Chris Wallace of Fox News….

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Wrong Boehner; Obama is Breaking the Law Right Now

by Ben Johnson, The White House Watch

Only in the liberal media can a weak entreaty to obey the law be considered an act of political warfare. The media have portrayed House Speaker John Boehner’s letter to Barack Obama, merely asking the president for another legal explanation for his war-by-decree in Libya, as “ratcheting up the pressure.” The New York Times correctly noted, “it is not clear if [Boehner’s Congressional] resolution and follow-up letter have any teeth.” It is actually a five-day pass to keep breaking the law.

The text of Boehner’s letter reads, “it would appear that in five days, the Administration will be in violation of the War Powers Resolution unless it asks for and receives authorization from Congress or withdraws all U.S. troops and resources from the mission.” After blasting the president’s “refusal to comply with the basic tenets of the War Powers Resolution,” Boehner invokes the Constitution – but not the section many legal scholars may have expected. Instead of noting what our Founding document has to say about the power to declare war, Boehner writes: “The Constitution requires the President to ‘take Care that the Laws be faithfully executed,’ and one of those laws is the War Powers Resolution, which requires an approving action by Congress or withdrawal within 90 days from the notification of a military operation.”

There are only four problems with Boehner’s letter: it’s wrong on the Constitution, it’s wrong on the law, it offers no consequences for wrongdoing, and it came 30 days too late. Obama is in violation of the War Powers Resolution right now.

The Constitution or Cronyism?

Democratic Congressman Brad Sherman of California gave a more accurate assessment nearly a month ago when he said Obama is “shredding the Constitution.” Today, the House passed an amendment Sherman authored to….

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