Thursday, July 06, 2006

Broder on Congressional Opportunities

David Broder's column today is well worth a read; he rightly suggests that the Supreme Court's decision last week in the Hamdan case is an important opening for Congress to re-assert its authority, and a necessary slap-down of an overreaching executive:

"Once again the chief executive had to be reminded that he is not above the law. No more than the security threats Nixon invented to justify his rogue police state operations will the war on terrorism relieve the president of the burden imposed by the Constitution to 'faithfully execute the laws.' He can't just make them up to suit his convenience.

For anyone who was worried that the United States was in danger of losing its precious freedoms as it mobilized to combat the threat of Islamic terrorism, the Stevens opinion was the best possible Independence Day gift. The Supreme Court that helped install President Bush in the presidency when it cut off the recounting of Florida votes sent him a clear message that he must operate in ways that Congress and the Constitution permit."

Quite so. As Broder goes on to say, Congress should not fear, or shirk, their responsibilities here - even if they have done so for the past five years. Our checks and balances continue to work, but Congress must step up and do its part.


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