Author Topic: Is Barack Obama Plotting a Coup? by John Hinderaker  (Read 266 times)

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Offline mystery-ak

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Is Barack Obama Plotting a Coup? by John Hinderaker
« on: August 04, 2014, 08:58:21 AM »
http://www.powerlineblog.com/archives/2014/08/is-barack-obama-plotting-a-coup.php


Posted on August 3, 2014 by John Hinderaker
Is Barack Obama Plotting a Coup?

That seems like an awfully strong word, but it is the term that distinguished law professor Glenn Reynolds, no hysteric, uses to describe the Obama administration’s oft-reported plan to issue executive amnesty to five or six million illegal immigrants in violation of federal law. Glenn’s characterization is a fair one. When a tyrant asserts the right to rule by decree in a state that has formerly been subject to the rule of law, he is commonly described as carrying out a coup d’etat.

That is just what the Obama administration has done, and reportedly will continue to do. When Obama changed the Affordable Care Act by decree–to name just one example, substituting “2014″ for “2013″ in a critical provision of the statute–he acted as a tyrant. In his refusal to enforce the immigration laws, contrary to the Constitution which requires him to “take care that the laws be faithfully executed,” he has acted like a tinpot dictator, asserting the right to change or ignore the law by fiat. If he now directly nullifies Section 274(a) of the Immigration and Nationalities Act by legalizing, and issuing work permits to, five or six million illegal immigrants, thereby repealing federal law by decree, how else can we describe his action but as a coup? The Obama administration openly takes the position that the rule of law no longer applies.

Can you imagine the furor that would have resulted if President Nixon, in the midst of the Watergate crisis, had asserted the right to repeal or amend federal statutes by decree? No, actually, you can’t. Forget impeachment; he would have been escorted out of the Oval Office by the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs. What, then, makes Barack Obama special? How can he claim the right to rule by decree without suffering the same condemnation? Well, the answer is obvious: he is a Democrat. But is that really enough? No president, Democrat or Republican, has ever dreamed of asserting such unconstitutional authority.

I am one of many who have ridiculed the Democrats’ seemingly weird obsession with impeachment. But perhaps there is method to the Democrats’ apparent madness. If they know that President Obama is about to do something that obviously warrants impeachment–asserting the right to rule by executive decree, and repealing the nation’s immigration laws by fiat–perhaps it is shrewd on their part to preemptively attack the idea of impeachment and commit Republicans to the fact that they have no thought of any such thing. Then, when Obama makes his move, it will be harder for Republicans to switch gears and start talking about removing him from office. That strikes me as the most logical explanation for the Democrats’ well-coordinated, but seemingly pointless, anti-impeachment campaign.

Today, the White House started backing off on plans to issue an executive amnesty. Maybe, as Glenn Reynolds says, this is a sign that someone in the White House is in touch with reality. Perhaps a coup has been averted, on this subject at least. But eternal vigilance is the price of liberty, so let’s not let down our guard.

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Offline EC

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Re: Is Barack Obama Plotting a Coup? by John Hinderaker
« Reply #1 on: August 04, 2014, 09:15:02 AM »
Don't you have an equivalent to our "Vote of no confidence?" You must have, somewhere, the Founding Fathers were not that foolish and came from a Parliamentary system.
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Offline olde north church

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Re: Is Barack Obama Plotting a Coup? by John Hinderaker
« Reply #2 on: August 04, 2014, 09:51:00 AM »
Don't you have an equivalent to our "Vote of no confidence?" You must have, somewhere, the Founding Fathers were not that foolish and came from a Parliamentary system.

We call it Impeachment.  Those with the juice to do it are cowards, those with the desire to do it are crazy.  Or just seek to up their own bottom line.
Why?  Well, because I'm a bastard, that's why.

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Re: Is Barack Obama Plotting a Coup? by John Hinderaker
« Reply #3 on: August 04, 2014, 09:54:43 AM »
We call it Impeachment.  Those with the juice to do it are cowards, those with the desire to do it are crazy.  Or just seek to up their own bottom line.

It would be the next level down from impeachment, I think. Trying to equate the two systems is difficult.

To give you an example I am more familiar with:

Impeachment would be the equivalent of removing a CO for cause.
Vote of no confidence would be the equivalent of a platoon requesting their orders in writing.
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Offline olde north church

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Re: Is Barack Obama Plotting a Coup? by John Hinderaker
« Reply #4 on: August 04, 2014, 02:59:56 PM »
It would be the next level down from impeachment, I think. Trying to equate the two systems is difficult.

To give you an example I am more familiar with:

Impeachment would be the equivalent of removing a CO for cause.
Vote of no confidence would be the equivalent of a platoon requesting their orders in writing.

Not to my knowledge.
Why?  Well, because I'm a bastard, that's why.

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Re: Is Barack Obama Plotting a Coup? by John Hinderaker
« Reply #5 on: August 04, 2014, 04:48:57 PM »
Don't you have an equivalent to our "Vote of no confidence?" You must have, somewhere, the Founding Fathers were not that foolish and came from a Parliamentary system.

No.  The Founders were suspicious of the parliamentary system in part because it was, technically, still beholden to the king and because the executive and legislative powers were mixed - the prime minister, the main executive - is the head of the party that controls the legislative.

The Founders wanted full separation of the three branches and did not want one branch to be able to take the other down without a lot of effort.  A vote of no confidence in a parliamentary system brings down the executive; however, it is also a vote against the leadership of the legislative branch as well inasmuch as the prime minister is the head of the party in control.  Given that, a vote of no confidence in a parliamentary system is essentially a fight within the same party; the minority party on its own cannot force a successful vote of no confidence.

In the American system, the party that controls the legislative does not necessarily control the executive.  If the parliamentary vote of no confidence existed, there would be a real risk that the party controlling Congress might use it in a purely partisan manner to bully an executive of the other party.  The mechanism for resolving the situation would also be complicated.  Since the president is not also the leader of the party that controls Congress, holding new Congressional elections would not resolve the problem because a new slate of Congress would not result in the president being replaced (or in the people giving their own vote of confidence).  Since new Congressional elections would not be a solution, there would have to be a new presidential election.  That might replace the president with someone more amenable to Congress, or not.  It might also result in the re-election of the president whom Congress no-confidenced, leading to exactly the same impasse that caused the vote of no confidence in the first place.  It would also make it impossible for the people to hold Congress accountable for no-confidencing a president whom the people like - in other words, the people could not immediately punish Congress for voting no confidence on a president whom the American people preferred.


That is one of the real problems that resulted in so much opposition in Australia to replacing the Queen with a popularly-elected president.  I took a constitutional law course under Greg Craven back in 2000 and we had some interesting discussions about the subject.  Basically, the entire Australian system of government would have had to change in order for a popularly-elected president to work.  The argument he raised against simply replacing the Queen with a popularly-elected president was that such a president, having her/his own power base separate from parliament, would start to exercise the Head of State's prerogative on legislation to frustrate the prime minister and the party in control of parliament by refusing to consent to legislation for purely partisan reasons, no matter how good or necessary the legislation.  The Queen, as unelected head of state, and by very long-standing tradition, generally does not refuse consent to legislation unless the legislation is really horrible.
« Last Edit: August 04, 2014, 04:56:51 PM by Oceander »

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Re: Is Barack Obama Plotting a Coup? by John Hinderaker
« Reply #6 on: August 04, 2014, 05:01:21 PM »
Don't you have an equivalent to our "Vote of no confidence?" You must have, somewhere, the Founding Fathers were not that foolish and came from a Parliamentary system.

The considered it an it is called the vote.  Since the people approved the Constitution, only they can have a vote of no confidence to throw out politicians.  That kind of vote left to politicians was too dangerous for the framers.  Remember, it was politicians who voted for secession, not the people, and for that reason Lincoln did not accept their "new country."  That same kind of thing could happen if politicians can call for "no confidence."  It called government of the people, by the people, and for the people, at least at one time it was.
Abraham Lincoln:

There is no grievance that is a fit object of redress by mob law.
--January 27, 1838 Lyceum Address

Don't interfere with anything in the Constitution. That must be maintained, for it is the only safeguard of our liberties. And not to Democrats alone do I make this appeal, but to all who love these
great and true principles.
--August 27, 1856 Speech at Kalamazoo, Michigan

Let us then turn this government back into the channel in which the framers of the Constitution originally placed it.
--July 10, 1858 Speech at Chicago


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