A half-century-plus of government school victims has rendered We the People collectively, increasingly less and less capable of walking and chewing gum simultaneously.
The Barack Obama Administration has almost inarguably executed more unilateral sweeping power grabs than any previous presidency ever. Administration defenders lamely point to the number of Executive Orders issued: “GOP Slams ‘Imperial’ Obama After Fewest Executive Orders In 100 Years (CHART).” Which is technically true – but totally irrelevant.
Now that the dust has settled on the Supreme Court’s 2014 session, we can look at the decisions and conclude that the Administration received a serious smack down. Two big cases got most of the news coverage: Hobby Lobby and the National Labor Relations Board’s (NLRB) recess appointments. In both cases, the Administration lost. At the core of both, is the issue of the Administration’s overreach.
It was long the case that American presidents held less power on domestic issues than the Congress. The executive branch could only enact the laws of the legislature with a limited tendency to veto. The president’s real power lay in setting foreign policy, as he had much more freedom of action in that arena than on the home front wherein the checks and balances of the Constitution were in full force. That traditional balance has been overridden in the current political system. The fault for this breakdown of traditional magisteria of influence lies with both the executive and the legislative branches.