Re-Examining Checks & Balance On Independence Day, July 4, 2019
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After the Department of Justice moved to block the initiative to add a citizenship question to the 2020 census, Texas Representative Chip Roy, a freshman member of the conservative House Freedom Caucus, told President Donald Trump that he should move forward with the previous plans to include a citizenship question. Roy tweeted on Tuesday evening, “Absolutely. It’s the lawyers advising him. @realDonaldTrump should ignore him. Completely. Print the census with the question-and issue a statement explaining why-“because we should.’Done.”.
In essence, Rep. Chip Roy suggested that the Executive Branch (President Trump) should defy a ruling by the Judicial Branch (Supreme Court). This is both unprecedented and prohibited by the U.S. Constitution. The current law and Constitution also hinder a president’s ability to delay the census.
Roy’s office did not respond to a request for comment. This freshman Republican had also recently blocked $19 billions in disaster relief money already approved by the president and Senate that would have provided federal funds for victims of hurricanes, floods, and wildfires across the country. His reason: the disaster relief of $19 billion legislation did not include funding for President Trump’s border wall.
The Justice Department confirmed that it ordered the printing of census materials without the citizenship question.
On Wednesday evening, July 3, 2019, Trump contradicted his own Commerce and Justice Department in a tweet, in italics, “The News Reports about the Department of Commerce dropping its quest to put the Citizenship Question on the Census is incorrect or, to state it differently, FAKE! We are absolutely moving forward, as we must, because of the importance of the answer to this question.”
Chief Justice John Roberts wrote that the Commerce Department lacked justification when claiming the question would help enforce the Voting Rights. Roberts wrote, in italics, “Accepting contrived reasons would defeat the purpose of the enterprise. If judicial review is to be more than an empty ritual, it must demand something better than the explanation offered for the action taken in this case. We do not hold that the agency decision here was substantively invalid. But agencies must pursue their goals reasonably. Reasoned decision-making under the Administrative Procedure Act calls for an explanation for agency action. What was provided here was more of a distraction.”
President Trump blasted the Supreme Court decision as “totally ridiculous” in a tweet and writing that he requested if the lawyers could “delay the Census, no matter how long.”
The printing of the census was originally scheduled to begin no later than July 1, 2019, to ensure that it would be ready for mailing next Spring. At this point, it is not clear how Trump’s announcement would affect this deadline.
So, what’s next? Your guess is as good as mine. One thing is certain. There is a pattern of testing the boundaries of power of the Executive Branch. It is very clear in the U.S. Constitution where the boundaries are for Executive and Judicial Branches. It is now a question of how and when will the Judicial Branch respond. Officers of the Commerce Department will be in a difficult spot: if following President Trump’s order, they may have to risk being arrested by Judicial Branch (Supreme Court) and if following Supreme Court decision, they may have to risk being fired by the Executive Branch (Trump). The reason we have arrived at such a mess is because the Legislative Branch did not hold the Executive Branch accountable early on. So, when will Nancy Pelosi and the people in Congress who did not have enough guts to stand up to Trump start to hold the Executive Branch accountable? I sure hope they will act before our democracy will be completely destroyed.
To better understand the three branches (Legislative, Executive, and Judicial) of the U.S. Government and its respective Checks and Balance, below:
Article Three of the United States Constitution establishes judicial branch of the federal government, which explains and applies the laws. This branch, primarily referring to the Supreme Court, does this by hearing and making decisions on various legal cases. Enjoy this fifth video in our Principles of the Constitution Series, in the video “Judicial Powers & Limitations, Principles of the Constitution“, below:
In this episode of Our American Republic we are going to address the Executive Branch of the Federal Government of the United States. The Executive Branch, led by the President, is one vested with key powers; but, what are those key powers? .How are they different from the other two branches of government and what affect if any does it have on our daily lives? In the video “O.A.R.Ep. 17: The Executive Branch“, below:
In the video below, in which Craig Benzine teaches you about the US Governments Separation of powers and the system of checks and balances. In theory, the Legislative Branch, the Executive Branch, and the Judicial Branch are designed to keep each other in check, and to keep any branch from becoming too powerful. In reality, the system was designed to keep the president from becoming some kind of autocrat. For the most part, it has worked. Craig will call in the clones to explain which powers belong to which branches, and to reveal some secret perks that the Supreme Court justices enjoy, in the video “Separation of Powers and Checks and Balances: Crash Course Government and Politics #3“, below:
This week Craig looks at the expressed powers of the President of the United States – that is the ones you can find in the Constitution. From appointing judges and granting pardons, to vetoing laws and acting as the nation’s chief diplomat on foreign policy, the Commander in Chief is a pretty powerful person, but actually not as powerful as you might think. The Constitution also limits presidential powers to maintain balance among the three branches of government, in the video “Presidential Power: Crash Course Government and Politics #1“, below:
Craig Benzine is going to tell you about the Supreme Court’s most important case, Marbury v. Madison, and how the court granted itself the power of judicial review. Judicial review is the power to examine and invalidate actions of the legislative and executive branches. It happens at both the state and federal court levels, but today we’re going to focus primarily on the court at the top – the Supreme Court of the United States. Now it’s important to remember that the court has granted itself these powers and they aren’t found within the Constitution, but as with the executive and legislative branches, the courts rely heavily on implied powers to get stuff done, in the video “Judicial Review: Crash Course Government and Politics #21“, below:
Gathered, written, and posted by Windermere Sun-Susan Sun Nunamaker More about the community at www.WindermereSun.com
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