You gotta hand it to the guy. After weeks of debate over whether or not the President has the authority to rewrite US immigration law via executive order, it turns out Obama has not actually issued any such executive order. Apparently, he unilaterally legislated his amnesty via a memo:
WASHINGTON – Sen. Jeff Sessions, R-Ala., a leading opponent of President Obama's move to provide amnesty for up to 5 million illegal immigrants, expressed astonishment Monday and ridiculed the administration for not carrying out the action through an executive order.
In remarks made at the Washington office of the government-watchdog group Judicial Watch, Sessions said: "I guess they just whispered in the ear of (DHS Director) Jeh Johnson over at Homeland Security, 'Just put out a memo. That way we don't have to enforce the law.'"
The news that Obama had not signed an executive order to carry out the policy he announced to the nation in a televised address Nov. 20 was broken by WND Senior Staff Writer Jerome Corsi last week.
As a result of the president's use of a memo instead of an official order, the senator observed: "We don't even have a really significant, direct, legal direction that we can ascertain, precisely what the president is doing. It's a stunning event in my view."
So now we can have weeks of debate from learned constitutional scholars on what the constitution says about memos - plus, of course, lots of cable news punditry on how the GOP would have to be insane to risk the wrath of the electorate by shutting down the government over a memo.
That is, if there is any such memo.
Maybe the President just issued a press release. Maybe, as befits the first President to bestride social media like a colossus, he issued an executive Tweet. Or twerk. Maybe he just went down to the National Archives in a Miley Cyrus thong and twerked out his new immigration law in the Constitution's face.
Democrats have moved on - from passing the law to find out what's in it to bypassing the law to find out what's in it. For them.
~My SteynPost on the multi-thousand hotel-room booking required to fly Obama to Brisbane for a night is not unrelated to the above. As I said when I was Down Under myself, you can't have small government with big entourages. The risible Obamacade prompted a lot of response. Simon Carson writes from New Zealand:
Just a comment on your post about President Obama's entourage. I was in the Air New Zealand lounge in Auckland on Sunday and saw John Key, the New Zealand Prime Minister, who was apparently on his way to the climate meeting in Lima. He was sitting quietly on his own in the general lounge area. No one bothered him. When he left to board the aircraft he was accompanied by one security guy and followed by one policeman. A bit of a contrast.
Across the Tasman Sea, Tony Abbott goes Mr Key one better. The Aussie Prime Minister doesn't need to board an aircraft to attend a summit. He can just run there:
I've also seen him out just jogging - well he runs actually - on his own around the local neighbourhood where we both live.
As for Messrs Abbott and Key's sovereign, Her Majesty is not yet jogging to the State Opening of Parliament, but, unlike President Obama, she does not require a 40-car motorcade to venture out of the house:
I thought that you might be amused to learn of the security, such as it was, surrounding our dear Queen when she visited Lloyd's of London a few months back, the better to commemorate the 325th anniversary of that venerable institution. Her Majesty, accompanied by the Duke of Edinburgh, arrived in one of her aged State cars, followed by another car containing her Royal Protection Officers and, er, that was it. London was not "locked down" – ghastly phrase – she made the short journey from Buck House to the City, navigating the usual traffic conditions en route sans outriders or any other paraphernalia so beloved of the Leader of the Citizen Republic.
Once inside Lloyd's, Her Majesty evidently felt happy to move freely among her subjects, without an army of reflector shade wearing, earpiece sprouting gorillas glowering at everyone. To be fair, if you looked carefully, you could make out a couple of discrete looking don't mess with me types, but that was it. Even allowing for the fact that she was among the friendliest audience possible, the contrast with Barry is remarkable, no? As you have alluded to on numerous occasions, perhaps they would have been better off sticking with King George and saved themselves the bother, to say nothing of the expense.
Keep up the good work and good luck dealing with the oaf Mann.
I can vouch personally for the Queen's traveling light. When my daughter and I saw her in Glasgow during the Diamond Jubilee, she had the old two-car motorcade - one for her and the Duke, with a couple of coppers in front.
Meanwhile, HRH The Duke of Cambridge, second in line to the thrones of Britain, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, Jamaica, Belize, Papua New Guinea, etc, etc, has been glimpsed with his tray table stowed and his seat in the full upright position on US Airways:
Prince William shunned exclusive treatment, instead boarding a commercial flight to get to his meeting with President Obama.
His surprise appearance aboard the plane as it sat in LaGuardia Airport, New York, sparked a flurry of excitement, with passengers gasping and taking pictures...
Though William eventually found his seat in First Class, onlookers said he appeared to have just one or two people accompanying him.
Anyone who's been at the hideous dump that is LaGuardia's US Air terminal will wonder if the Duke isn't taking this whole man-of-the-people thing too far. But still: The impenetrable entourage symbolizes the isolation and cocooning of the President and too many of the political class. As Mr Abbott and Mr Key and His Royal Highness demonstrate, very few normal people would want to live like that. It's not a good thing to make your principal political offices attractive only to weirdoes.
~Aside from a disinclination to burden the taxpayers, the New Zealand Prime Minister was also flying to that climate summit with a splendidly cheeseparing carbon footprint. When he landed in Peru, it was another story entirely:
The Lima conference is expected to have the biggest carbon footprint of any U.N. climate meeting measured to date.
At more than 50,000 metric tons of carfb/phbon dioxide, the negotiations' burden on global warming will be about 1 1/2 times the norm, said Jorge Alvarez, project coordinator for the U.N. Development Program.
The venue is one big reason. It had to be built.
Eleven football fields of temporary structures arose for the 13-day negotiations from what three months ago was an empty field behind Peru's army's headquarters. Concrete was laid, plumbing installed, components flown in from as far as France and Brazil.
Why? Why did it "have to be built"? Why couldn't they hold their pointless meeting in a crappy old Marriott like everybody else?
Because climate change is the Obama motorcade of international summitry: its bloat is central to its sense of itself. And, as with Obama, it's telling us something pretty basic about the relationship between the people who matter and those who don't.
~If you're stuck in traffic waiting for Obama's 40-car motorcade to pass and the streets to be reopened, what about a musical diversion to make the hours of lockdown fly by? Hugh Hewitt seems to be enjoying my new CD:
@MarkSteynOnline "Goldfinger" is terrific! Must organize Steyn @ericmetaxas talk-crooner fest w/ me moderating. Question/song/Q/song #Hit
And at least one of his listeners sounds quite partial to it, too:
@MarkSteynOnline @hughhewitt love the new song just played as bumper on #Hewitt