That’s how Mark Levin described President Obama’s approach to the presidency, underscored by Obama’s comments today in his first official cabinet meeting of the year. As quoted by The Daily Caller, he said:
“One of the things I’ll be emphasizing in this meeting is the fact that we are not just going to be waiting for legislation in order to make sure that we’re providing Americans the kind of help that they need.”
“I’ve got a pen and I’ve got a phone,” he went on, “and I can use that pen to sign executive orders and take executive actions and administrative actions that move the ball forward in helping to make sure our kids are getting the best education possible, making sure that our businesses are getting the kind of support and help they need to grow and advance, to make sure that people are getting the skills that they need to get those jobs that our businesses are creating.”
After playing this clip, Mark Levin commented on his radio program this evening, “He’s just announced that he is going to assume lawmaking powers.”
As I have written about this executive abuse of power, I have commented that the dangerous part of what is going on is not that there is a man in the White House who loves power this much and is willing to grab it. Our founders understood that many men have that propensity. I am LDS, and in our own writings, in the Doctrine and Covenants, Joseph Smith declared:
“We have learned by sad experience that it is the nature and disposition of almost all men, as soon as they get a little authority, as they suppose, they will immediately begin to exercise unrighteous dominion.”
Almost all men, as Joseph Smith’s inspired declaration warns, have this tendency. Our founders understood this well, and it was this natural tendency of man that caused them to create a system of constitutionally limited power in a central government, characterized by checks and balances. So our system is designed to hold people like Barack Obama in check.
No, what is scary about the present circumstance is the culture of complicity in the nation. We have one entire political party without a single prominent member willing to speak out against the abuses of their leader. In fact, the majority leader of the Senate appears to be totally in alliance with his power grab. Harry Reid won’t even schedule a vote on Iranian sanctions, in spite of a strong current of dissent within his own party, apparently because Obama doesn’t want it. So much for the Senate checking Obama’s power.
Then we have no serious opposition party. The House of Representatives, controlled by Republicans, should theoretically be able to impeach Obama. Impeachment requires a simple majority. He has committed more impeachable offenses than all of his predecessors combined. His legislating from the Oval Office is only one of many. But they won’t even speak the “I” word. And Speaker Boehner, by refusing to organize select committees to investigate the Benghazi and IRS scandals, as demanded by a majority of his caucus, is actually complicit in those scandals.
And the free press, which is also supposed to be a check on runaway government power, is a joke. The establishment media cheer him on. Even supposed independent media, such as Fox News and the Wall Street Journal, dare not fully warn the people about what is going on. They protest, yes, but only fairly mildly. Even among them, there is nothing even approaching the uproar I remember among all press outlets at the comparatively mild abuses of Nixon.
“He has just announced,” said Mark Levin, “that he is going to assume lawmaking powers. He does not recognize the majority in the House of Representatives. I don’t know how much more clearly he can say it.”
“You know what this is, folks?” he asked. “This is a gradual, quiet coup.”
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