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After Congress rejected President Trump’s request for 5.7 billion dollars for the border wall, the president declared a national emergency at the southern border. Present Trump claims this “emergency” gives him the authority to divert funds appropriated for other purposes to building the border wall.

President Trump’s emergency declaration is not just an end run around Congress. It is an end run around the Constitution. Article One of the Constitution gives Congress sole authority to allocate federal funds.

While President Trump’s order may be a particularly blatant abuse of power, it is hardly unprecedented. Most modern presidents have routinely used so-called national emergencies to expand their power, often at the expense of liberty. For example, Present Franklin Delano Roosevelt used “emergency powers” to justify internment of Japanese-Americans during World War Two.

President Trump, like other recent presidents, is relying on the 1976 National Emergencies Act for legal justification for his emergency declaration. This act gives the president broad powers to declare national emergencies for almost any reason. All the president need do is inform Congress he has declared an emergency. Once the emergency is declared, the president simply needs to renew the declaration once a year to maintain a state of emergency. Since this act passed, 59 emergency declarations have been issued, with 31 of those still in effect.

Another statute giving the president broad “emergency” powers is the Defense Production Act. Under this law, the president can force private businesses to produce goods for the military. The law also enables the president to impose wage and price controls and even make loans to private businesses. All a president need do to invoke these vast powers is submit “findings” to Congress that “national security” requires the president seize near-dictatorial control of certain industries or even the entire economy. According to the Congressional Research Service, some presidents have invoked the Defense Production Act without making the required findings to Congress, and the act has been used to justly federal interference in areas having little or nothing to do with national defense.

Section 606(c) of the Communications Act gives the president “emergency” power to seize control of every television network, radio station, smartphone, laptop, and other electronic devices.

Emergency powers are not the only means by which presidents violate the Constitution. The 2001 authorization for use of military force (AUMF), which only authorizes the president to use force against those responsible for the September 11 attacks, has been used to justify military interventions that have no relationship to those attacks. The 2001 AUMF has been used to justify mass surveillance, indefinite detention, and even “kill lists.” Fortunately, Representative John Garamendi has introduced the Walter B. Jones Restoring Power to Congress Act that would pay tribute to a true champion of peace by repealing the 2001 AUMF.

Many neoconservatives and progressives who defended prior presidents’ abuses of power are critical of President Trump’s emergency declaration. These “never-Trumpers” will no doubt resume their love affair with the imperial presidency when the Oval Office is again occupied by someone who shares their agenda.

This week, the House of Representatives will vote on a resolution terminating President Trump’s declaration of a national emergency. Hopefully, this precedent will be used against all future presidents who use spurious claims of national emergencies to expand their powers and shrink our liberties.

(从重新发布 罗恩·保罗学院 经作者或代表的许可)
 
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  1. Sigh. 说:

    Oh Ron, Ron, Ron. This comment suggests Pat Buchanan levels of out-of-touchness.

    Resolution. Congress. At that we’re all sitting making exaggerated masturbation gestures. Congress is CIA’s rubber stamp.

    Your constitution’s gone. You’re not getting it back. The constitution went away when Rumsfeld went to DEFCON 3 and invoked COG. That put CIA in charge for good. The only remaining check on CIA’s state of emergency is human rights law (in accordance with your former constitution’s supremacy clause, if that helps you face it.) Specifically, ICCPR Article 4, HRC General Comment 29, and the Siracusa Principles.

    You flag-wavers are really missing the boat, ignoring the one thing that could help you. CIA doesn’t give a shit what you think, but they’re exquisitely sensitive to external pressure. Because explicit international censure is what creates precedents in international law.

    Your US judiciary is comically cowed by CIA – when it’s not packed with CIA torturers. It’s not a real court. They won’t dare help you. By contrast, and I guarantee you never heard of this, Britain got its judge kicked off the ICJ for the first time ever. So that’s one less flunky kissing CIA’s ass on that bench. You’ve got a fighting chance there.

    Ron. You live in a totalitarian state. To free yourself you have to get help from the outside world.

    • 回复: @Achmed E. Newman
  2. @Sigh.

    As much as I like Ron Paul, and normally agree with him, you are completely right, Mr. Sigh.

    Hopefully, this precedent will be used against all future presidents who use spurious claims of national emergencies to expand their powers and shrink our liberties.

    Hahahaaa, haha, cough, hahahaa! Sure, the Socialists and Commies of the Blue Squad should make this a precedent and be sure to never, ever use this Emergency Power that has been used 32 times already, mostly for piddly stuff (but that past is no predictor of future performance!). They must play by the rules in the future … haha .. cough, cough, … ah… cough, cough … I can’t do this ….

    • 回复: @David
  3. Svigor 说:

    President Trump’s emergency declaration is not just an end run around Congress. It is an end run around the Constitution. Article One of the Constitution gives Congress sole authority to allocate federal funds.

    Trump is gonna use funds allocated by Congress to the military.

    The Constitution isn’t a suicide pact, sperg.

    • 回复: @Mark G.
  4. bob sykes 说:

    The Constitution died when Marshall usurped the power to judge the constitutionality of laws. There was no precedent in Common Law for that claim, and there is no delegation of such a power in the Constitution.

    The corpse of the Constitution was buried by Lincoln.

  5. David 说:
    @Achmed E. Newman

    Mr Newman, in reference to Mr Sigh’s comment, I wish such off-color comments were only made under articles where the author sets that kind of tone, or he’s impolitely dismissive of his ideological opponents. But here as always Mr Paul is an impeccable gentleman. The import of Mr Sigh’s comment I agree with completely, but he is not completely right to create a crude atmosphere here.

    And, Man, did you notice this little phrase or did you just feel the need to expand Mr Paul’s stated expectation for others that might have missed it?

    “never-Trumpers” will no doubt resume their love affair with the imperial presidency when the Oval Office is again occupied by someone who shares their agenda

    • 回复: @Achmed E. Newman
  6. @David

    David, you’ve gotta know that Dr. Paul doesn’t likely read these comments. His columns and youtube videos are syndicated or just taken for free. He is definitely a gentleman. This is nothing against Ron Paul, but what’s going on in America today won’t take gentlemen to fix. This kind of leads to the point of my previous comment.

    Yes I read the sentence you excerpted the gist of, David. See, that’s just it – the ctrl-left may even use Ron Paul-worthy Constitutional talk to explain why these emergency powers should not be used (IN THIS CASE). Dr. Paul maintains that if this particular emergency order (you know, about the existential problem of the immigration-invasion) is rescinded, then this “precedent” will, OK, may, be upheld later on. That’s what he’s hoping.

    Hope ain’t gonna help us, David. The Ctrl向左, when it gets back into complete power again, will do whatever the fuck they want to further their agenda. I’m sorry, David, I’m using this kind of language because people better wake up. Do you want to end up like the 1/3 of Cambodians shot and pushed into ditches? That’s where this is leading to in the not too long run. Just read the Commies on this very site, man, or watch TV about the D-candidates. (I don’t watch TV, but if you can do that, you’re a tougher man than me)

    I really apologize for the language, even though I could obviously delete it right now, because you seem like a decent sort. If this bothers you, things coming up may also bother you. I suggest you read Peak Stupidity’s 6-part series “There’s Battle Lines Being Drawn”: 部分1, 部分2, 部分3, 部分4, 部分5部分6.

  7. Article One of the Constitution gives Congress sole authority to allocate federal funds.

    The President, as Commander-in-Chief of the US Armed Forces, has authority to send them to bomb the hell out of another country, without Congressional approval or specific financing.

    I do not understand why, as C-in-C, he cannot simply instruct the Army Corps of Engineers to build the wall, using the same DoD contingency funds that allow him to finance a new overseas military operation.

    • 同意: Achmed E. Newman
  8. Vagabond 说:

    Trump doesn’t argue power of the purse, Trump argues the inability of Congress to recognize an emergency. President’s have the authority to ensure the emergency is tackled when Congress is unable to do so.

    Perhaps form an argument for/against Trump’s point rather than addressing the point the Left and traitors use to attack Trump’s lawful move.

  9. Mark G. 说:
    @Svigor

    If we support Trump on this then this is really short term thinking. The next time a liberal president does the same thing we won’t be able to make the argument that it’s unconstitutional because we’ve already argued that it was ok when Trump did it. The only reason this country hasn’t devolved into a dictatorship and has maintained it’s freedom for such a long time is that the people who founded the country and wrote the Constitution were brilliant and put various roadblocks in the way of that happening. To maintain our freedom and prosperity we need to look back to their principles and the institutions they created and advocate the preservation of those principles and institutions.

    • 回复: @Achmed E. Newman
  10. ‘Emergencies Do Not Trump the Constitution’

    It should be noted that the Weimar Republic was basically ruled by emergency decree in the early thirties. The Reichstag was chronically deadlocked, and the Great Depression required a response, so…

    The first two prime ministers to resort to it made judicious and limited use of their power. The third proved more ambitious.

    Much as I would like to see Trump prevail, it might be best in the long run if he were slapped down.

  11. Anonymous [AKA "Vagabond Forgot Email"] 说:

    宪法已死。

    We have no Republic.

    We have no free speech, we have incredible infringement on the right specifically noted not to be infringed, we have no free press, we have no freedom of association. We are a tributary state to a stolen land in the Middle East, with no politicians willing to serve and or capable of serving our needs.

    With these points noted, your points are dismissed.

  12. @Mark G.

    No, it’s not short-term thinking. It’s long-term thinking from people who have been around for the long(er)-term. In other words, you sound naive about it, Mark, that’s all. I’ve been following politics a long time, and ever since the mid-1990’s NOTHING has been changing for the better, i.e. toward greater freedom and smaller government. NOTHING.

    If we listen to Dr. Paul on this one (though President Trump is no Libertarian/Constitutionalist to begin with, so he wouldn’t) and just keep letting the country get invaded, while we go through all legal channels for 10 years, here will be the deal: 10 years later, there will be another 10,000,000 illegal aliens that, guess what, Mark?: DON’T vote for smaller government and don’t give a rat’s ass about Constitutionality. In the meantime, the Blue-team squad of our Socialist Party will come up with all the emergencies they want to. Have you heard these people worrying about the US Constitution any single time over the last 3 decades, Mark?

    The other side is playing hard-ball, while (Bless his heart – I really appreciate the guy) Ron Paul urges we continue to play whiffleball.

  13. Trump had the power on Day One to order the military to build the wall.

    Whether he squeaks by in 2020 or not, he’s the last retardican president. Texas and Florida are almost blue states.

    When whichever communist slag takes over in 2024, the false dichotomy of the Uniparty will be gone.

    It will be communists vs. everyone else.

    • 回复: @APilgrim
  14. APilgrim 说:

    I leaned toward Rand Paul & Ted Cruz EARLY in the 2016 Presidential Primary. However, upon closer review of the candidates …

    Ted Cruz was Article II ineligible, & Rand Paul was an ‘Open-Borders-Guy’. So, I voted for Donald Trump in the 2016 Texas Republican Presidential Primary.

    And Rand Paul is STILL an ‘Open-Borders-Guy’.

  15. APilgrim 说:

    Actually Rand, Emergencies DO have constitutional implications.

    The Suspension Clause of the Constitution (Article I, Section 9, Clause 2), states: “The Privileges of the Writ of Habeas Corpus shall not be suspended unless when in Cases of Rebellion of Invasion the public Safety may require it.” Although the Constitution does not specifically create the right to habeas corpus relief, federal statutes provide federal courts with the authority to grant habeas relief to state prisoners. Only Congress has the power to suspend the writ of habeas corpus, either by its own affirmative actions or through an express delegation to the Executive. The Executive does not have the independent authority to suspend the writ.

    https://www.heritage.org/constitution/#!/articles/1/essays/61/habeas-corpus
    https://www.law.cornell.edu/wex/habeas_corpus
    https://quod.lib.umich.edu/j/jala/2629860.0029.205/--lincoln-s-suspension-of-the-writ-of-habeas-corpus?rgn=main;view=fulltext

    That notwithstanding, Abraham Lincoln’s power to suspend the writ of habeas corpus was extensively explored during the Civil War, but since then his suspensions have escaped detailed scrutiny despite the controversy they provoked, their widespread and effective use to combat malignant opposition to the war, and their uncertain grounding in the Constitution.

  16. APilgrim 说:
    @Sick of Orcs

    All the Southern States withdrew from the Democrat Party decades ago.

    For Texans, the problems were government overreach and systemic corruption.

    Texans will ditch a few RINOs from time to time, but is NOT going back to the Democrats.

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