One of the perks of sitting in the Oval Office is having the authority to set national policy on topics as far ranging as civil liberties and gun control.
The executive order is a tool afforded to the president that has long been used to direct government agencies to do certain things. While the Constitution doesn’t specifically grant this authority, according to a 1999 report prepared for Congress, presidents from George Washington forward have used orders to conduct business.
President Barack Obama’s use of the executive order, however, has drawn fire from critics. In some cases, false claims have been made about the number of orders he’s issued since taking office. One rumor, which has been squelched, claimed Obama had signed 900 executive orders before finishing his first term in office. The real number as of September 2012, according to FactCheck.org, was 139.
Rumors aside, Obama has upped the ante on executive orders in Read more…
America’s new national identification system is coming. President Obama and a bipartisan group of senators want to enact a national identification card that would link to a database containing your name, Social Security number, and biometric information such as pictures and fingerprints. The Washington Post editorial board wants one too.
Two points are central to their argument: 1) this identification system is a necessary, effective, and appropriate way to control illegal immigration, and 2) it will be used strictly for employment purposes. Both claims lack any credibility.
Is it necessary?
The Post claims there are only two ways to end illegal immigration: border security or a national ID. But that’s not true. If we simply created an accessible legal avenue for entry, such as we had during the early 1960s, illegal immigration could be eliminated. The same amount of border enforcement with hundreds of thousands of fewer border crossers would secure the border and end illegal immigration.
Is it effective?
“If illegal immigrants can’t get jobs, they won’t come to this country,” The Post editors reason. That’s largely true, but a national ID mandate does Read more…
President Barack Obama will consider using executive orders among the steps to curb gun violence following last month’s mass shooting at a Connecticut elementary school, Vice President Joe Biden said.
“The president and I are determined to take action,” Biden said at the start of a meeting with gun-control advocates and groups representing victims.
“We haven’t decided what that is yet,” Biden told the Weekly Standard. “But we’re compiling it all with the help of the attorney general and the rest of the cabinet members as well as legislative action that we believe is required.”
Biden called it a moral issue, adding that “it’s critically important that we act.”
Today’s session of an administration panel led by Biden was the first of two scheduled this week. A meeting tomorrow will Read more…
A frightening report prepared by Russia’s foreign military intelligence directorate (GRU) circulating in the Kremlin today states that the United States has moved even closer to becoming an all-out police state after President Obama issued a secret order yesterday allowing US military forces to begin conducting raids against American civilians.
According to this GRU report, an American law called the Posse Comitatus Act prohibits US Army and Air Force personnel and units of the National Guard under federal authority from acting in a law enforcement capacity within the United States. The US Navy and Marine Corps are prohibited by a Department of Defense directive, not by the Act itself from going against their own citizens and the Coast Guard, under the Read more…
Dissatisfaction and anger with the federal government are at a nearly 20-year high, according to the results of a
new ABC News/Washington Post poll released Wednesday.
When asked how they felt about the federal government, 80 percent of poll respondents said that they felt dissatisfied or even angry about the work the government is doing. The last time such a peak of ill will was felt was during 1992’s economic slump, under President George Bush’s leadership.
The public’s slumping opinion of the country’s political class can be actively attributed to the negotiations surrounding the debt ceiling: The dissatisfaction numbers rocketed up 11 points between this month and last.
Indeed, congressional Republicans are facing the fire of poor public opinion. The ABC News/Washington Post poll shows a 28 percent approval rating for them, with 77 percent of participants saying the Republican leadership is unwilling to negotiate, further slowing debt talks.
A CBS poll released earlier this week is even darker for the Republicans — they garnered only a 21 percent approval rating in that poll.
President Barack Obama and the Federal Reserve have declared a rapidly approaching August 2 deadline for a solution to the nation’s debt.
Treated to standing ovations from US lawmakers just days after strained talks with President Barack Obama, Netanyahu said he was ready for “painful compromises.” But Palestinians swiftly rejected his list of conditions as unacceptable.
The right-wing Israeli leader’s speech to Congress capped a turbulent five-day visit to Washington that laid bare his differences with Obama on how to revive the moribund peace process and raised little hope for getting new talks off the ground any time soon.
Though Netanyahu recognized in the clearest terms yet that Israel would have to abandon some Jewish settlements built Read more…
WASHINGTON (Reuters) – When Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu addresses Congress on Tuesday, many will be watching to see whether he escalates a war of words with the White House over how to make peace in the Middle East.
Netanyahu has a mostly sympathetic ear in Congress, where few lawmakers in either party speak up for the Palestinians, hewing to decades of Read more…
Pakistan’s prime minister will on Monday warn the United States it will defend its air space if American forces mount another raid on terrorists suspected of hiding inside the country.
Yusuf Raza Gilani will seek to restore some dignity in an address to the nation after the humiliation caused when American forces killed Osama bin Laden at a compound close to Pakistan’s main military academy in Abbottabad last week without alerting Pakistan.
A senior government source close to the prime minister said while Mr Gilani will take an aggressive stand to shore up the government’s position.
The source said: “The Prime Minister will say that the United States should not have bypassed Pakistan. We have made a huge contribution in fighting terrorism. We’ve arrested close to 100 al-Qaeda people, including Khalid Sheikh Mohammed.
“We’ll take appropriate action if any further violation takes place. We will defend our air space by any means we have.”
He will say that Washington’s decision to launch the raid without consulting Islamabad had plunged military and political relations Read more…
WASHINGTON (Reuters) – President Barack Obama has signed a secret order authorizing covert U.S. government support for rebel forces seeking to oust Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi, government officials told Reuters on Wednesday.
Obama signed the order, known as a presidential “finding”, within the last two or three weeks, according to government sources familiar with the matter.
Such findings are a principal form of presidential directive used to authorize secret operations by the Central Intelligence Agency. This is a necessary legal step before such action can take place but does not mean that it will.
As is common practice for this and all administrations, I am not going to comment on intelligence matters,” White House spokesman Jay Carney said in a statement. “I will reiterate what the president said yesterday — no decision has been made about providing arms to the opposition or to any group in Libya.”
The CIA declined comment. Read more…