It is the power of the Congress to control the finances. This is commonly called the power of the purse strings and is a part of the checks and balances system the Founding Fathers put in place.
When Palestine decided to bypass the United States peace process and apply for statehood directly to the UN, Congress decided to withhold the 192 million dollars they were going to give them in aid. President Obama has decided to pay the money to Palestine regardless of Congress’ wishes. His rationale for this is that this payment is important to the security of the United States.
Even if you were to agree with his logic, you cannot give the President (or any branch of government) an easy work around for the checks and balances. What if Obama were to say that internet security is important to the security of the United States and takes full control of it? What if they say that energy use is important to the security of the United States and forces everyone to live in 200 square foot apartments with seven foot ceilings to minimize energy use?
One of my favorite quotes is by William Pitt, “Necessity is the plea for every infringement of human liberty; it is the argument of tyrants; it is the creed of slaves.” This quote inspired a lot of the material in 2084.
I am sick of how many times this President has exceeded his Constitutional authority. No one seems to be willing to cry foul. At least some people cried foul when Bush exceeded his authority. Where are these whistle blowers now? Or is it only about the D or R after their name that really matters?
Long Live the Constitution!