The American Founders and signers of the Constitution, despite their brilliance, failed to anticipate a president who would take the law-making powers they had given solely to the peoples’ Congress into his own hands. After a brutal 11-year war to win a new nation from a tyrannical king, they couldn’t imagine a future leader who would don metaphorical crown and ermine robes to impose his imperial will upon a people conceived in liberty. Also, they believed that by separating government into three branches, each with its own clearly defined roles, no one branch could usurp the power of the others. They were wrong.
As Thomas Jefferson said, “An elective despotism was not the government we fought for…but (one) . in which the powers of government should be so divided and balanced among several bodies as that no one could transcend their legal limits without being effectually checked and restrained by the others…”
But Jefferson never met constitutional expert Barack Obama. This president has seized powers light-years beyond his designated role to “take care that the laws be faithfully executed” (Article II section 3.) This president regularly proves that the Founders’ careful construction of the founding document is no match for a determined autocrat bent on breaching its firewall of checks and balances.
Having just struggled through a long and bloody battle won against the most powerful nation on earth and finally secured “the blessings of liberty” for the people, the Framers would never have fathomed a president could have such contempt for those who died for that liberty as to systematically violate it.
A president whose Democrat minions in Congress force-passed a bill without one Republican vote that deprived the people of their freedom to make their own decisions on doctors and health care and required them to buy a government-imposed product. Unheard of. This takeover of one-sixth of the nation’s economy would have been simply beyond belief to the Founders.
They would be furious that the same overweening government would shred the Constitution’s pledge of the “free exercise” of religion by hounding a group of altruistic, care-giving nuns and many others into court to force them into supplying abortion drugs to employees in violation of their faith. Thomas Jefferson would be especially livid, having assured the worried Baptists of Danbury, Connecticut that a “wall of separation” between church and newly created state would protect them from such malicious government interference. Yes, that wall of separation – a phrase originated ironically by the founder of the Baptist Church in America, Roger Williams, who wrote of a wall being erected around the “garden of the church” to protect it. How perverse that today this Baptist phrase is viciously wielded against believers instead of in support of their rights to free expression.
Likewise the Founders would be appalled at a president who uses the cynical subterfuge of executive orders and unelected agencies like the EPA to actually make laws, a function the Constitution assigns solely to the peoples’ elected representatives in Congress.…