Sunday, February 10

Congratulations, Senator.

And now, a little more about rolling back Presidential power, please.


  1. Now that is something I would love to here!

  2. Agreed. On both sentiments.

  3. Power does not roll itself back.
    I would like to make a suggestion to the forces campaigning for impeachment and advocates for responsible government. Devote at least a portion of your passion and resources to fixing the problem. Pressure each presidential candidate and each senator and representative to investigate what went wrong during the Bush administration and devise legislation that prevents a recurrence. It is incumbent upon our legislators to repair the system. However, since Congress has been dysfunctional and oft times impotent, we the citizens must vociferously demand they be responsive to renewing accountability. For those congressmen who do not respond, expose their recalcitrance and campaign for their defeat. In less than 11 months the Bush & Cheyney Prestidigitation Show closes. America will be best served focusing our outrage and disappointment on the solution.

  4. Actually, Stephen, Sen. Obama is a former Constitutional law professor (taught at University of Chicago) - he probably knows better than the current office hold what the actual powers of the office really are. It is not going to fall to laws to reign in the office, there are very core laws that are currently being ignored. It depends greatly on the office holder him/herself.

  5. At this point there is no reason to question the ethics and noble intentions of candidate Obama. However, we have seen seven plus years of the system of checks and balances not working - in spite of curent law. Regardless of the winner of the 2008 election we cannot assume the perfect storm of a Bush-like president and an enabling congress was a one time perfect storm. I suspect that the unsung American hero Henry Waxman (D-CA) would agree.

  6. Anonymous1:07 PM

    Since the Republic began, well maybe not Washington, Presidents have craved more power to enact their policies.

    What better way to undo what Bush hath wrot, than to use his new powers to force rapid change in the halls of the Federal government?

    And therein lies the rub my friends. I think most people on this blog will say FDR was a good President, but his attempt to pack the court to get his policies enacted into law was unconstitutional.

    Power seduces and the Bushies know that. I will take even money that at the end of the next Democratic administration many of the power issue will be unresolved.

  7. "I'll call in my new attorney general to review every single executive order that's been made by George Bush. And any of those that have undermined our Constitution or subverted our civil liberties are going to be reversed."

    --Obama at the debate in Des Moines. See

  8. i'm afraid to let myself hope that things can be fixed.

  9. Oh please, please, please have Universal Health Care by the end of your first term, too!

    You promised! Last night, even!

  10. Obama's health care plan leaves 15 million people out. He hasn't been in the Senate long enough to know that you must ask for MORE than you hope to get, in order to get something CLOSE to what you want.

    Obama will make a great president in 2016.

    And Stephen, there are mechanisims within the system now to fix the problem -- we simply don't have a Congress with enough votes to make it happen. So, instead of pushing ahead and trying to do the right thing, they are simply rolling over and playing dead.

    NOW, if we GIVE Reid the 60 votes he needs, and he STILL doesn't do the right thing by us, then it would be time to show him the door.

    For the life of me I cannot figure out why Reid has not allowed the Republicans to just filibuster on things like the war, and FISA ... so the American people could see for themselves just who is obstructing the "will of the people" as demonstrated by the 2006 vote.

    I have to stop thinking about it now, or my head will explode.


  11. You really want his health care plan? It's not universal.
    He said in the SC debate that you can opt not to take health care because some are too poor to afford it. When asked what happens when they get sick and go to the emergency room, he replied then they'd pay back premiums and choose a plan. Ridiculous. He also ran ads making fun of Hillary's plan (same as Edwards) saying she was for "mandatory" health care. All the insurance companies have to do to fight any universal health care plan is play Obama's ad (complete with Harry and Louise).

  12. Obama's plan doesn't leave anyone out. It allows people to opt out if they so choose. The main thrust of the plan is to bring down costs enough that anyone who wants insurance will be able to get it.

    Clinton's plan is a mandate, meaning that if you fail to buy insurance, you're breaking the law. You can be fined, or they can garnish your wages. That's better?

  13. On this issue, I think it's a wash for both candidates. Very unfortunately. It's very hard to see how the executive powers that Bush seized are going to be rolled back, with a Senate that's enabling them, and two Senatorial Presidential candidates who are not using what could be the bully pulpit of the Senate to stop it.

    If Obama had filibustered with Dodd, he would have my whole-hearted and unreserved support today. I believed, and wrote, that would have been a transformative moment, both for the campaign, and more importantly for the country and the Constitution.

    It would have been the right thing, and the smart thing, too. It would have blown open the entire race, not just Iowa.

    Unfortunately, that didn't happen. I realize that Hillary, as well, issued mere statements of support -- but she is not a professor of Constitutional law.


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