Can the President's executive order override the constitution?

Discussion in 'Politics and News' started by JEDI, May 23, 2006.

  1. JEDI

    JEDI Lifer

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    I'm thinking yes, but be challenged in the courts. (ie: separation of church and state, or how about that pesky one about illegal searches)

    but in the meantime, it'll take in effect.

    Right/Wrong?
     
  2. MrChad

    MrChad Lifer

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    Yes, I suppose. According to Wikipedia, only two executive orders have ever been overturned by the courts.
     
  3. Linflas

    Linflas Lifer

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    Which would indicate that they are subject to court review and can be nullified if they are unconstitutional.
     
  4. RichardE

    RichardE Banned

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    Unless the executive order included a stipulation to overide any court decision
     
  5. Linflas

    Linflas Lifer

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    I suspect that any President that tried that would find himself pretty quickly embroiled in his defense at his impeachment.

    Edit: After pondering this a second more I doubt that a President could add that stipulation to an executive order since it would then intrude on the judicial branch's constitutional powers.
     
  6. MrChad

    MrChad Lifer

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    Of course, but I think that's what the original poster was arguing.

    By the same token, Congress and the President could pass an unconstitutional law. It would be up to the courts to declare it as such.
     
  7. acemcmac

    acemcmac Lifer

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    Bush has made it very clear during interviews that he thinks they do.
     
  8. acemcmac

    acemcmac Lifer

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    By the way, why didn't this end up in P/N?
     
  9. mwtgg

    mwtgg Lifer

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  10. Vic

    Vic Elite Member

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    LOL! Break out the tinfoil!! :laugh:
     
  11. ruffilb

    ruffilb Diamond Member

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    I don't think the limits of executive orders have really been tested.
     
  12. mugs

    mugs Lifer

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    link?
     
  13. fitzov

    fitzov Platinum Member

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    'can' is vague

    if it means: might the president give an order that is unconstitutional, then the answer is "yes"
    if it means: might the president give an order that changes the meaning of 'constitutional' then the answer is "no"

    SCOTUS directly, and Congress, by the making of amendments, decides what is constitutional
     
  14. villageidiot111

    villageidiot111 Platinum Member

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    It depends.

    If its something controversial then it will be overridden by the courts, but if the people fully support it then it may not be.
     
  15. JDrake

    JDrake Banned

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  16. mwtgg

    mwtgg Lifer

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    Look, anyone who says yes is an idiot.
     
  17. mugs

    mugs Lifer

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    If the courts work the way they should then it will be overturned as long as there is someone willing to bring the case. And fortuantely there are groups that are willing to take unpopular cases in the defense of the ideals this country is founded on. (i.e. defending the KKK's right to free speech)
     
  18. mwtgg

    mwtgg Lifer

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    Well, we're sure to get good responses in here.
     
  19. JEDIYoda

    JEDIYoda Lifer

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    http://www.ncpa.org/oped/bartlett/jul3100.html
    But clearly the power is not unlimited. "Executive orders are a source of law only when they draw upon the constitutional powers of the President or powers expressly delegated by Congress," Louis Fisher writes in his authoritative book, "Constitutional Conflicts Between Congress and the President" (Princeton University Press, 1985). "When executive orders lack statutory support, they have been held by the courts to be without the force and effect of law. Executive orders may not supersede a statute or override contradictory congressional expressions."


    One problem with executive orders is that the courts have ruled that it is mainly Congress's responsibility to protect its own turf. If Congress acquiesces in a presidential usurpation of power without protest, the courts are inclined to let such action stand if challenged at a later date.

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    http://www.eagleforum.org/psr/1999/may99/psrmay99.html

    Not only does President Clinton not feel any shame about his impeachment (as he told Dan Rather), Clinton now feels stronger than ever, able to override the U.S. Constitution and ignore Congress. He has been exercising extraordinary new powers -- never asserted by any prior President -- both through Executive Orders (EO) and abuse of his title of Commander in Chief. Rep. Jack Metcalf (R-WA) says that Clinton has "made himself a super-legislator by issuing executive orders that require the appropriation of funds."

    The term Executive Order does not appear in the Constitution. The Executive Order authority derives from the President's Article II, Section 3 power to "take care that the laws be faithfully executed." However, "laws" must mean laws that are already passed, not laws that an Executive Order purports to create. The validity of particular Executive Orders has often been questioned, but neither Congress nor the Supreme Court has ever defined the extent of their power, and courts have rarely invalidated or even reviewed EOs.

    President Franklin D. Roosevelt proclaimed a national emergency and issued wide-reaching Executive Orders, notably his 1933 bank holiday and prohibition on private possession of gold, but those orders were subsequently ratified by Congress. The notorious EO 9066, under which some Japanese-Americans were interned during World War II, was subsequently upheld by the Supreme Court under FDR's war powers. In 1952, the U.S. Supreme Court struck down Harry Truman's EO 10340 to seize the nation's steel mills.

    In 1996, the Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit invalidated Clinton's EO 12954, which attempted to prohibit federal agencies from doing business with companies that had permanently replaced strikers.

    Clinton has issued 279 Executive Orders, but many others are not numbered. The Presidential Decision Directives (PDD) have a different sequence of numbers, and many of them are kept secret, such as the notorious PDD 25, by which Clinton presumed to give himself the power to assign U.S. troops to serve under foreign commanders and under foreign rules of engagement.

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    http://www.freerepublic.com/forum/a393dd6e16eb1.htm

    Many of the fears of the founding fathers may now be coming to fruition. Today, the executive branch of the government is immensely powerful, much more powerful than the founding fathers had envisioned or wanted. Congressional legislative powers have been usurped. There is no greater example of that usurpation than in the form of the Presidential Executive Order. The process totally by-passes Congressional legislative authority and places in the hands of the President almost unilateral power. The Executive Order governs everything from the Flag Code of the United States to the ability to single-handedly declare Martial Law. Presidents have used the Executive Order in times of emergencies to override the Constitution of the United States and the Congress.


    President Andrew Jackson used executive powers to force the law-abiding Cherokee Nation off their ancestral lands. The Cherokee fought the illegal action in the U.S. Supreme Court and won. But Jackson, using the power of the Presidency, continued to order the removal of the Cherokee Nation and defied the Court's ruling. He stated, "Let the Court try to enforce their ruling." The Cherokee lost their land and commenced a series of journeys that would be called The Trail of Tears.


    President Abraham Lincoln suspended many fundamental rights guaranteed in the Constitution and the Bill of Rights. He closed down newspapers opposed to his war-time policies and imprisoned what many historians now call political prisoners. He suspended the right of trial and the right to be confronted by accusers. Lincoln's justification for such drastic actions was the preservation of the Union above all things. After the war and Lincoln's death, Constitutional law was restored.


    In 1917, President Woodrow Wilson could not persuade Congress to arm United States vessels plying hostile German waters before the United States entered World War One. When Congress balked, Wilson invoked the policy through a Presidential Executive Order.



    President Franklin Delano Roosevelt issued Executive Order No. 9066 in December 1941. His order forced 100,000 Japanese residents in the United States to be rounded up and placed in concentration camps. The property of the Japanese was confiscated. Both Lincoln's and Roosevelt's actions were taken during wartime, when the very life of the United States was threatened. Wilson's action was taken on the eve of the United States entering World War One. Whether history judges these actions as just, proper or legal, the decision must be left to time. The dire life struggle associated with these actions provided plausible argumentation favoring their implementation during a time when hysteria ruled an age.

    A Presidential Executive Order, whether Constitutional or not, becomes law simply by its publication in the Federal Registry. Congress is by-passed. Here are just a few Executive Orders that would suspend the Constitution and the Bill of Rights. These Executive Orders have been on record for nearly 30 years and could be enacted by the stroke of a Presidential pen: see artcle...

    A series of Executive Orders, internal governmental departmental laws, unpassed by Congress, the Anti-Drug Abuse Act of 1988 and the Violent Crime Control Act of 1991, has whittled down Constitutional law substantially. These new Executive Orders and Congressional Acts allow for the construction of concentration camps, suspension of rights and the ability of the President to declare Martial Law in the event of a drug crisis. Congress will have no power to prevent the Martial Law declaration and can only review the process six months after Martial Law has been declared. The most critical Executive Order was issued on August 1, 1971. Nixon signed both a proclamation and Executive Order 11615. Proclamation No. 4074 states, "I hereby declare a national emergency", thus establishing an economic crisis. That national emergency order has not been rescinded.


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    http://www.rumormillnews.com/cgi-bin/archive.cgi?read=27801

    Here's the thing: Nothing can override the Constitution.

    If I understand it correctly, Executive Orders are directives to members of the Executive Branch. Period.

    The problem is, a massive deception is in place, giving us the impression that the President is "the king" and must by obeyed; that all rights, as well as privileges and licenses, come from "the federal government" and can be amended "at the pleasure of the President" as long as the President's actions can be shown to rest on something we'd tend to accept as "authority".
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    alot of information online about this subject....

    have fun kiddies






     
  20. MadRat

    MadRat Lifer

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    Thanks for clearing it up! People should realize executive orders were only meant to clarify enforcement, never to carry the weight of law.
     
  21. dmcowen674

    dmcowen674 No Lifer

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    King David :D
     
  22. jackschmittusa

    jackschmittusa Diamond Member

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    My opinion is that the buck stops at the Constitution. Anything else is not "government by the people".
     
  23. Hayabusa Rider

    Hayabusa Rider Elite Member

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    The opinion which counts is the one of those with the guns AKA the military. What would they say I wonder?
     
  24. Vic

    Vic Elite Member

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    Which is why the 2nd Amendment is so important. A piece of paper doesn't protect our rights. Our guns protect our rights which happen to be defined on a piece of paper. The day the guns go, that paper goes, along with our rights. Gun-haters should learn from the Bush Admin... try to imagine what his presidency would have been like so far if the right to private gun ownership didn't exist. Yeah, I immediately shudder too...
     
  25. Jaskalas

    Jaskalas Lifer

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    It does not matter; the theory of Natural Law, the basis of our entire government over two hundred years ago tells us we should never permit or withstand any authority that violates our basic rights. Any act or law that does so is an unjust act or law and by Constitution it is our duty to remove those acts or laws.