Robert Romano is the Senior Editor of Americans for Limited Government.
Tomorrow President Obama will be delivering the State of the Union Address. While this address is provided for in the Constitution in Article 2, Robert wondered why the President should even bother when he's going to tell Congress what he's going to do without their authorization.
For example, Robert cited a recent statement that President Obama made on the national security agency's telephone meta-data collection program that he says is authorized under Section 215 of the Patriot Act. He's referring to an authorization that's coming up on March 28th. In this case the President wasn't talking about Congress, he was talking about the foreign intelligence surveillance court that has been conducting surveillance on the entire nation every 90 days for the past 12 years without the knowledge of Congress. In other words, this program was never authorized by Congress even though the government claims it was. It's coming up for re-authorization except that it won't be Congress re-authorizing it. It's going to be re-authorized by the same secret court that allowed it to come into existence in the first place.
Then there's the issue of 501(c)4's. These are social welfare organizations that are not tax deductible and they can engage in issue advocacy. The day after Thanksgiving, the IRS, via the Treasury Department, issued a new regulation that will severely restrict the political speech of all such organizations. (c)5 labor organizations and (c)6 Chamber of Commerce organizations will not be affected by the new regulations.
There's also the issue of the President wanting to take unilateral action to close the gap between the rich and the poor. This attitude toward solution creation is, as Robert described it, “...the breakdown of the separation of powers.”
Other issues discussed related to tomorrow evening's address and the overreaching of our government included:
--The granting of amnesty.
--John Boehner and will he capitulate with the President on immigration issues.
--Chuck Schumer's suppression of dissent as he has proposed to use the IRS to curtail the Tea Party.
--In 2009 the EPA issued a finding claiming that carbon dioxide, under the terms of the Clean Air Act, is a harmful pollutant in spite of the fact that the Clean Air Act never regulated carbon emissions.
As Vic asked, “If the Constitution places limits on the Executive Branch, how is it that the White House is able to get by doing what it's doing?” You decide when you review this important edition of Crosstalk.
To comment on the changes proposed for 501(c)4 organizations, go to