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King Op-ed in The Washington Times: The Constitution always trumps politics

Congressman Steve King
Congressman Steve King

From Congressman Steve King –

Everyone who takes an oath of office, whether it be for Congress,  the judicial branch or the presidency, vows to “preserve, protect and defend the  Constitution.” Because of this oath, the American people rightfully expect their  public officials to do their job. In Congress,  that includes passing a budget.

Members of the House of  Representatives recently cast their votes for the No Budget, No Pay Act.  Although I supported the concept behind the No Budget, No Pay bill, the 27th  Amendment to our Constitution specifically says, “No law, varying the  compensation for the services of the Senators and Representatives, shall take  effect” until after an intervening election. The language is clear and  unambiguous. All members take their own oath of fidelity to the Constitution,  and I respect the view of my colleagues who disagree. However, the No Budget, No  Pay Act does not meet constitutional standards. Therefore, my only choice was to  vote no.

The Constitution is the supreme law of the land, and I consider it a high  responsibility to uphold its principles and preserve the contractual obligation.  As Supreme CourtJustice  Antonin Scalia has said regarding the importance of the Constitution and the  law, “The judge who always likes the results he reaches is a bad judge.” Similarly, the representative who disregards the plain meaning and language of  the Constitution, when inconvenient, to pass legislation he favors is not being  faithful to his oath.

President Obama taught constitutional law, yet he has the most fundamental  and straightforward process of federal lawmaking backward. Congress  is to make the laws, and the executive branch carries them out, not the other  way around. Last year, Mr. Obama said, “This is my last election, and after my  election, I have more flexibility.” He didn’t realize his microphone was on, but  his message rang loud and clear. He unveiled his vision for his second term  during his inaugural address last week.

The president believes that during his first term he was unable to follow  through on his agenda, but his constitutional abuses show otherwise. Mr. Obama  has violated the rule of law and his oath repeatedly when it was inconvenient  for him to work for a constitutional legislative solution.

By implementing the Dream Act via executive fiat, actually legislating by  press conference, Mr. Obama usurped the specific constitutional authority of Congress to craft the nation’s immigration laws.  There was no ambiguity in Congress about whether  the Dream Act’s amnesty program should be the law of the land, because it has  been rejected by Congress several times, yet Mr.  Obama issued an executive fiat creating immigration law out of thin air.

Mr. Obama’s executive elimination of all work requirements of “welfare to  work” violated the 1996 welfare reform work legislation, which was signed by  President Clinton. Mr. Obama violated the Constitution by waiving provisions  that the law specifically stated could not be waived by the president.

Similarly, the rule published by Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen  Sebelius directing even religious institutional health care providers to offer  abortifacients, sterilizations and contraceptives free of charge was  unprecedented. This violated the religious convictions of the Catholic Church as  well as many other religious institutions. After getting heat from religious  organizations, Mr. Obama held a press conference where he announced an “accommodation” for religious organizations and a requirement for insurance  companies to provide the very same products “for free.” Again, the president  legislated by press conference and presidential edict.

More recently, the courts have been forced to step in to address the Obama  administration’s overreach. Mr. Obama, by attempting to use his recess  appointment power to appoint members to the National Labor Relations Board while  the Senate was not in recess, clearly violated his constitutional powers as  president — and the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit  unanimously told him so. The appointments violated the Constitution and resulted  in unnecessary uncertainty for job creators who are bound by the law and the  Constitution.

Unconstitutional violations of the separation of powers, rooted in Mr.  Obama’s lawless approach to federal policymaking, are exactly the reason the  framers of our Constitution designed a three-branch government. James Madison  warned in the Federalist Papers that power is “of an encroaching nature,” and  that the three branches of government need “practical security for each, against  the invasion of the others.” I carefully consider each vote I cast, even when  political repercussions are at stake, because it is essential to our posterity  that we all “preserve, protect, and defend” the Constitution. The supreme law of  the land, our Constitution, towers over our Founding Fathers. It surely must  tower over our current president.

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only reason he voted no was because he is afraid he will miss a pay check.

I agree 100%. If you swear in and do NOT follow the constitution you should be tried for treason. You knew what the constitution said….if not move overseas..

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