To the editor:
When is it OK for the president to issue executive orders? Some would say when fast action is needed and the legislative process takes too long. Others would say it should be used to bypass political obstructionism to at least get something done.
Executive orders are not a substitute for the legislative process and are limited in what they can accomplish. All modern presidents have used the authority, Obama less per year than any prior office-holder since Grover Cleveland.
Republicans in the U.S. House are planning to sue the president for his use of executive orders, primarily in connection with the Affordable Care Act. They are upset for two basic reasons: His actions are assisting the implementation of the ACA, which Republicans want to fail. Secondly, he is out maneuvering their legislative maneuvering to block all his initiatives. Of course, their stated reason is that he has exceeded his constitutional authority not that he is beating them at their own political gamesmanship.
But hold on a minute! There is apparently another reason for presidents to use an executive order — to bail out a dysfunctional Republican majority in the House of Representatives who has embarrassed itself with callous and irresponsible behavior.
Speaker John Boehner was unable to control his right-wing members and pass any refugee/immigration action before leaving on a five-week vacation. This is not good public relations for the Republicans and could hurt them in the upcoming election.
So how is Boehner going to limit this potential damage? His “super creative” solution is to call on the president to take executive action to alleviate the refugee situation, in particular, and therefore take the heat off himself and his members.
Do we call this fuzzy logic, convenient rationale, desperation or pure political hypocrisy?