Presidential Usurpation of Congressional Power

If Obama attacks without an actual declaration of war, it will be a violation of the Constitution — just like it was when Bush did it, when Clinton did it, when the other Bush did it — even when Reagan did it.

CONSTITUTIONAL ERROSION: Presidential Usurpation Of Congress’ Authority To Declare War

Since the end of WW II, every time we used our military against another nation, this nation has acted outside the confines of the Constitution.  The Constitution is the Social Contract which formed this nation, and under which this nation continues to exist.  This means the Constitution is the supreme law of our land.  This also means that the government has violated the Social Contract every time it used military power since WW II – and the people have done nothing about it.  If one side of a contract continuously breaks their terms of the agreement and the second Party doesn’t object and seek restitution, eventually, it is assumed that the second Party agrees to the violation.  At that point, the Party that has been violating the contract either assumes those violations as rightfully theirs, or the contract is considered null and void all together.  This happens with republics, as well.  If we allow our government to continuously violate the Constitution, sooner or later, it will either assume those violations are part of its authority or, more likely, that the Constitution no longer applies to it or its actions. When that happens, we will have the tyranny our founders warned us about, and it will have come from exactly the place our founders told us it would: from within our own borders – from us.

The Constitution grants the authority to declare war and to raise an Army to Congress and only to Congress:

Article I, Section 8

Read the rest…

12 thoughts on “Presidential Usurpation of Congressional Power

    • Neither of them got a declaration of war. The last declaration of war was WW II. So, all they really got was an ‘approval’ to go around Congress because Congress didn’t have the intestinal fortitude to actually declare war.

      It’s sort of like the get away driver giving the robber ‘approval’ to go hold up the bank 🙂

  1. On the use of the military, you can make the argument that the resolutions passed by congress for “use of force” are technically declarations of war. Under the war powers act, the attack can only be justified as a direct threat to American interests, or the Republic itself. Syria does not meet that standard under any propaganda, let alone standards. I also disagree that the constitution is a social contract. It is a legal contract of the rule of law. Social contracts are made between individuals or groups to assist each other in times of crisis. For example, when the Red Cross comes to the aid of disaster victims after an earthquake or a church adding a family after a parent has lost their job. Under the legal contract, we all agree to the terms as a nation or community and they are enforced on everyone equally. Whereas with the social contract, you have the right to participate, or refuse and you are not held in criminal liability. You can say I am wrong, but I think your definition is a principal of progressivism.

    • Old Vet,

      If you are going to view the Constitution as a ‘legal contract’ and NOT as a Social Contract, then you have just ceded any objection you might have had to those who have abused the Constitution. If you view contracts as strict legal documents, then they are ALL subject to being broken and challenged at any time — which means Obama can do whatever he pleases, as can Congress.

      As for these authorizations of force: if you see the Constitution as a legal document, then they are NOT declarations of war as they do not meet the requirements laid out by the Constitution. You morphing them into such is a perfect example of what I just mentioned: once the Constitution is removed from the corrective protections afforded by the Social Contract, it means whatever people say it means. As a contract and nothing but a contract, you accept the Progressive “living document” doctrine.

      However, I do not think you believe any of this. Rather, I suspect you have a slightly confused understanding of the Social Contract. You seem to be describing the same idea — only you are using different words to describe it. Have you studied Locke? Or read my blog, They might help a bit.

      Just a thought.

      • I disagfree. As a social contract, the constitution can be changed at the whim of congress, and ignored as it presently is by the president. As a legal contract, the rule of law is set in the initial document and is not supposed to be open to interpetation. I believe you are confusing symantics with function. As a legal contract between all of the people and the federal government, the constitution cannot be changed without a great deal of effort. Contracts between businesses and/or individuals are renegotiated all the time. This places them in a social context, and not legal(law). If you want examples of social contracts in the context of an alleged government, I suggest the California or New York, or Massachutes constitutions. The founding fathers did borrow a great deal from english common law, but were very careful to try and make sure that they exluded anything that might leadto a “devine right” type of law.

        • Old vet,

          I want to be charitable here because I know we are allies in the cause for liberty, but I’m not entirely sure you understand the nature of a contract. Congress does not ‘change’ the contract on a whim: it violates it. These are two very different things. On the other hand, Congress CAN AND DOES change the law on a whim. Which leads me to suspect you have the rule of law equally confused. The rule of law is not what you apparently think it to be UNLESS the Constitution is viewed as a contract. However, if you view the Constitution as a contract, then you have just agreed to the principle of the Social Contract.

          The Constitution can be “renegotiated” by Amendment or Convention. So, again, I’m having a difficult time understanding how you can object to the Constitution being a contract. If it is not, then you are asserting the law as the rule of men, and this is the negation of the rule of law.

          Please, read my blog,

          • I’m not objecting to it being considered a contract, I disagree with it being a social contract. Social contracts are malleable and are renegotiated all the time. For example, the social security is a social contract idea because it is a response that used to be carried out by families for their elderly members without government interference. Churches assist the people and families that are in need within their membership, their families, and communities, without the involement of th egovernmetn. The law, however should never be in that classification. I agree that congress “violates” the constitution all the time, It might be that we are arguing over the words “legal” and “social”.

            • Old Vet,

              I suspect you are correct: we have a semantics issue here. But I can assure you of this: I am firmly within the founders understanding of the Social Contract. Read Locke and you’ll find that Jefferson’s Declaration is very much aligned with Locke’s work.

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