Eagle Forum Legislative Alerts

Tuesday, November 05, 2013

Beware of Giving Obama More Power

Why in the world would Congress give Barack Obama more power than he already has? Haven't we had enough of Obama exceeding his presidential authority by issuing executive regulations to "legislate" what Congress refuses to pass, such as the Dream Act? He repeatedly grants waivers or exceptions or delays to his favorite groups from laws that give the president no such authority, such as welfare reform and ObamaCare. The latest example of Obama grabbing more personal power is his demand for something called Fast Track. This is not authorized in the U.S. Constitution, which gives Congress exclusive authority "to regulate commerce with foreign nations." Fast Track would turn most of the power over foreign trade to the president and allow him to sign trade agreements even before Congress has an opportunity to vote on them, and then unilaterally write legislation making those agreements U.S. federal law. Fast Track allows the president to send these executive-written bills directly to Congress under rules that limit debate, forbid all amendments, and require a vote within a short time period. In other words, the House cedes to the president its constitutional power to write legislation that regulates commerce with foreign nations.

We know how Fast Track works because the President had it when we joined NAFTA. Among its obnoxious provisions is allowing the president to appoint 700 industry advisers (probably lobbyists), and they are given access to confidential negotiating documents that are denied to Congress and the U.S. public. Obama is pressing hard for immediate passage of Fast Track so he will have a free hand in making deals with foreign countries. Already in the fast lane is a new trade treaty called the Trans-Pacific Partnership with eleven countries: Mexico, Canada, Japan, Vietnam, Singapore, Malaysia, Australia, New Zealand, Peru, Chile, and a country named Brunei.

Listen to the radio commentary here:



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