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Friday, June 27, 2014

Triage for a bleeding lame duck

"We conclude that the Recess Appointments Clause does not give the President the constitutional authority to make the appointments here at issue." - Supreme Court Justice Stephen Breyer, writing for the majority opinion in the unanimous finding of N.L.R.B. v Canning, issued 26 June, 2014
"The Constitution makes it clear that a president’s job is to faithfully execute the laws. In my view, the president has not faithfully executed the laws." - Speaker of the House, John Boehner (R-Ohio) announcing to the press his intention to get Congress to sue President Obama for not following his oath of office
There's blood in the water fountain on the North Lawn of the White House. Phrases like "constitutional authority" and "not faithfully executed" cast a shadow of doubt in the minds of the undiscerning, over the integrity of the president they elected to office, twice. The question is whether the Supreme Court and House Speaker John Boehner are inflicting a thousand tiny cuts or whether it's a self inflicted mortal wound cut by the knife of good intention.

White_House-NorthLawn
Wikimedia Commons

How the administration responds to these slings and arrows of misfortune is important, not only for President Obama, but also for the Democrats who hope to succeed him. With his popularity numbers hovering around 40 percent, and a public perception of disregard for the rules of power, the meme that asks "Do you want another four years of the kind of governing we saw under Obama," is going to make any Democratic candidate's push to the 2016 election difficult, especially those who have no buffer from the actions of the administration, like Vice President Joe Biden and the favored, former Secretary of State, Hillary Clinton.

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