Who knew Americans didn’t have to travel to the Middle East to experience power grabs of the brutal sort? Only those living in a cave, or not paying attention. Taking his cues from the behavior of the lawless, we have our own Harry Reid to squash the checks and balances of power in the U.S. government. After promising not to implement the “nuclear option” to redefine the power of the Senate, he’s launching the nuclear option to redefine the power of the Senate.
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The bi-partisan process isn’t working for Obama and his Liberal minions.
The Washington Times reports,
Senate Democrats laid the groundwork Thursday to trigger the “nuclear option” against minority filibusters, setting up a dramatic Tuesday showdown in which Republicans either will have to accept seven of President Obama’s controversial appointments or watch as Democrats change the rules and end filibusters of executive branch nominees.
The move would fundamentally alter the balance of power between the White House and the Senate and would give the president more latitude to put his team into place. But it also would aggravate a contentious atmosphere in the Senate and dim prospects for bipartisan agreements this year, with spending, debt and immigration fights still simmering.
The term “nuclear option” refers to changing the rules by a majority vote, rather than the two-thirds vote the Senate usually requires — a rule that guarantees the minority certain rights that have defined the chamber throughout its history.
If Republicans filibuster the nominees, Mr. Reid likely will ask for a parliamentarian ruling on whether the filibuster is legal. Based on Senate history, the parliamentarian will rule that it is, and Mr. Reid will move to overturn that ruling — which requires a simple majority and sets official precedent. …
The increasing use of filibusters — or even their threat — has shifted power from the president, whom the Constitution gives the right to nominate officers of the United States with the “advice and consent” of the Senate.
Mr. Obama tried to regain some of that power by using his recess appointment powers in an unprecedented way. He appointed members to the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau and the National Labor Relations Board even though the Senate didn’t consider itself in recess.
Two federal appeals courts have ruled that Mr. Obama’s NLRB appointments violated the Constitution. The Supreme Court said last month that it would hear one of the cases, and the ruling could dramatically circumscribe the president’s power.
Obama’s Constitution only allows the advice and consent of the
Senate Democrats. Fortunately, power is fickle, and payback hurts.