The only way to explain President Obama’s radical claims of executive power to justify unauthorized war in Libya is that he must be Dick Cheney in disguise. Even John Yoo, the architect of the War Powers memo, is drooling over Obama’s tyrranical claim to power, as he had this to say in a recent Wall Street Journal op-ed:
President Barack Obama has again flip-flopped on national security—and we can all be grateful. Having kept Guantanamo Bay open, resumed military commission trials for terrorists, and expanded the use of drones, the president has now ordered the U.S. military into action without Congress’s blessing.
Yoo doesn’t hesitate to remind us that Barack Obama has gone even further than Bush 43 did:
The truth is that Mr. Bush’s case for constitutional authority far outstrips Mr. Obama’s. In 2001 and 2002, Mr. Bush won legislative approval for both the Afghanistan and Iraq wars even though he didn’t need it.
Ironically, it wasn’t that long ago that candidate Obama had this to say about executive war power:
The President does not have power under the Constitution to unilaterally authorize a military attack in a situation that does not involve stopping an actual or imminent threat to the nation.
As Commander-in-Chief, the President does have a duty to protect and defend the United States. In instances of self-defense, the President would be within his constitutional authority to act before advising Congress or seeking its consent. History has shown us time and again, however, that military action is most successful when it is authorized and supported by the Legislative branch. It is always preferable to have the informed consent of Congress prior to any military action.
So here we have President Obama, who as a Senator vehemently rejected the Bush/Cheney notion of executive power, only to embrace it even further than Dick Cheney could have ever imagined. He may sound less evil and more charming than the previous administration, but his pretty rhetoric doesn’t change the fact that when it comes to the power of the
King President, Obama and Cheney are one in the same.