As a Senate committee debated yesterday whether to create a "truth commission" to investigate alleged abuses of White House authority during the Bush era, President Obama has quietly adopted some of his predecessor's expansive views of the power as commander in chief - especially concerning antiterrorism policies.
Those moves could lead to a confrontation over the scope of presidential authority with the Democratic-led Congress, whose leaders say they intend to recalibrate the balance of power between Congress and the White House. Some top Democrats, Obama allies, and civil libertarians say they are closely watching how the new president uses his power, and intend to challenge him if he does not voluntarily roll it back to pre-Bush limits.
What, you thought it was going to be any different with a hip and cool new President? Oops - this isn't an iPod commercial anymore; this is the real thing.
Republicans get into power in the late 90s and early 2000's and end up with infighting and a go-nowhere approach to politics. Democrats get into power in 2008 and 2009, and the same thing happens. When are we going to finally realize that both parties are the same group of morons just spinning their wheels on Capitol Hill?
We don't need a "truth commission" to reign in some of the executive authority granted to - well, himself - by Bush. We simply need to move forward with an approach that stems from the Constitution: "Do you have the power, as the head of the executive branch of government, under the Constitution to do that? No? Well then you can't do it. And if you do, our Court system will ensure you're stopped."
The Constitution is somewhat complex, but it also provides very set guidelines and a great balance of power. That power was bound to be corrupted at some time or other - whether by FDR for (seemingly) the public good so that the government could provide for people, or by Bush for the moronic notion that he had some mission from God (a la Blues Brothers) to fight terrorism with any authority he deemed necessary.