Ignoring the Rule of Law: The Obama Version

To me, the most dangerous idea coming out of Washington right now is not any particular law like Obamacare; it’s the attitude behind it, the belief that our constitutional form of government is not to be respected. President Obama has brought to the forefront this attitude with his recent declaration that he’s not going to wait for Congress to act, that he will do whatever he can to advance his political agenda, even if Congress disagrees.

Refuse to Cooperate

His latest iteration of his willingness to act unilaterally is to smugly warn he has a phone and a pen, an intimation that he can simply make something happen all by himself:

Three Branches

Here’s a cartoonist offering a different take on the phrase:

Pen & Phone

There is something called the “rule of law.” It means no one, not even a president, can rule by his own decrees. He is just as accountable to the law as any other citizen. America never gave its assent to the concept of divine right of kings, whereby a ruler believes he is in office by direct approval of God and can therefore do whatever he desires. If I remember correctly, the Constitution set up a limited government overall and a carefully defined role for the chief executive. I don’t recall a monarch being mentioned at all. President Obama acts as if he has never read the document. Perhaps he reads it differently:

Obama Constitution

Battered, bruised, and generally ignored as it is, the Constitution is still supposed to be the supreme law of the land. The royal “we” is not found within it.