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Debates Forum

Debates Forum

  1. 14 Oct '13 23:19
    Impeached if you do—or you don’t?

    Rep. Louie Gohmert recently declared that a debt default would be “an impeachable offense by the President.” I t appears that POTUS may have no Constitutionally sanctioned avenues for action (or non-action) in the event that the debt ceiling is not raised. Apparently some Constitutional scholars argue for the “least unconstitutional” option—

    http://www.theatlanticwire.com/politics/2013/10/obamas-options-avoid-default-impeached-if-you-do-impeached-if-you-dont/70524/

    http://verdict.justia.com/2013/01/11/why-president-obama-could-easily-be-impeached-over-the-debt-ceiling-if-congress-fails-to-raise-it

    http://www.newrepublic.com/article/115034/debt-ceiling-3-ways-obama-could-circumvent-congress

    http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/wonkblog/wp/2013/10/10/should-obama-just-ignore-the-debt-ceiling-these-law-professors-think-so/

    Just looking for thoughts . . .
  2. 14 Oct '13 23:56
    Originally posted by vistesd
    [b]Impeached if you do—or you don’t?

    Rep. Louie Gohmert recently declared that a debt default would be “an impeachable offense by the President.” I t appears that POTUS may have no Constitutionally sanctioned avenues for action (or non-action) in the event that the debt ceiling is not raised. Apparently some Constitutional scholars argue for the “le ...[text shortened]... a-just-ignore-the-debt-ceiling-these-law-professors-think-so/

    Just looking for thoughts . . .[/b]
    I don't think Obama uses executive power to raise the debt ceiling on his own without congressional approval.

    And any impeachment by the House would dead-end at the Senate. Yet, interesting links you list.
  3. 15 Oct '13 00:13
    Originally posted by vistesd
    [b]Impeached if you do—or you don’t?

    Rep. Louie Gohmert recently declared that a debt default would be “an impeachable offense by the President.” I t appears that POTUS may have no Constitutionally sanctioned avenues for action (or non-action) in the event that the debt ceiling is not raised. Apparently some Constitutional scholars argue for the “le ...[text shortened]... a-just-ignore-the-debt-ceiling-these-law-professors-think-so/

    Just looking for thoughts . . .[/b]
    The debt ceiling is an interesting study in futility. It has been raised about 50 times in as many years. Does it really mean anything? Any limit that is routinely increased, isn't really limiting anything.

    Suppose that when caught speeding we could petition the Court to raise the speed limit, and they actually did it? Posted limits would mean nothing. Pretty soon the posted limits would be 200mph, until cops clocked someone at 210.

    I haven't read the links, but failing to budget responsibly doesn't fit what an impeachable offence is, IMHO. Budgeting and spending is pretty subjective, although it is hard to excuse constant deficit budgets. If anything the first level of responsibility is with the House for budgets.
  4. 15 Oct '13 00:42
    Originally posted by vistesd
    [b]Impeached if you do—or you don’t?

    Rep. Louie Gohmert recently declared that a debt default would be “an impeachable offense by the President.” I t appears that POTUS may have no Constitutionally sanctioned avenues for action (or non-action) in the event that the debt ceiling is not raised. Apparently some Constitutional scholars argue for the “le ...[text shortened]... a-just-ignore-the-debt-ceiling-these-law-professors-think-so/

    Just looking for thoughts . . .[/b]
    It is pretty clear to me that this ought not to have reached this crisis stage, as it should not have last spring. Both political sides like posturing for their constituencies over this, and add the chance to damage the ACA and it is a toxic stew.

    The fundamentals are:
    The national debt is fast approaching $17 trillion.
    There hasn't been a budget since Obama became President.
    Continuing resolutions grant automatic baseline increases.

    Questions for those willing to think:
    How much debt will permanently sink the U.S.?
    How dependent on federal debt monetized by the Fed buying Tbills is Wall Street and the US economy?
    When the eventual crash comes, will it be worse the longer it is delayed?
  5. 15 Oct '13 03:09
    Originally posted by vistesd
    [b]Impeached if you do—or you don’t?

    Rep. Louie Gohmert recently declared that a debt default would be “an impeachable offense by the President.” I t appears that POTUS may have no Constitutionally sanctioned avenues for action (or non-action) in the event that the debt ceiling is not raised. Apparently some Constitutional scholars argue for the “le ...[text shortened]... a-just-ignore-the-debt-ceiling-these-law-professors-think-so/

    Just looking for thoughts . . .[/b]
    This is one of many impeachable offenses. The NDAA is yet another.

    So what? These goons do as they please. We live in a post Constitutional Republic/Aristocracy.
  6. 15 Oct '13 05:26
    Originally posted by normbenign
    The debt ceiling is an interesting study in futility. It has been raised about 50 times in as many years. Does it really mean anything? Any limit that is routinely increased, isn't really limiting anything.

    Suppose that when caught speeding we could petition the Court to raise the speed limit, and they actually did it? Posted limits would mean noth ...[text shortened]... t deficit budgets. If anything the first level of responsibility is with the House for budgets.
    Right. The congress decides what is worth paying for, and how to collect enough to do that, whether by creating debt or collecting taxes, duties, etc. I see no risk of impeachment.
  7. 15 Oct '13 06:06
    Originally posted by normbenign
    The debt ceiling is an interesting study in futility. It has been raised about 50 times in as many years. Does it really mean anything? Any limit that is routinely increased, isn't really limiting anything.

    Suppose that when caught speeding we could petition the Court to raise the speed limit, and they actually did it? Posted limits would mean noth ...[text shortened]... t deficit budgets. If anything the first level of responsibility is with the House for budgets.
    An external observer might wonder why it was implemented at all - what's the point of borrowing money if you don't intend to pay it back? The only point a debt limit might have is if it also restricts spending obligations, which it does not. Even that would be an ill-advised policy - if you are far from the debt limit, then it is immaterial to spending decisions. If you are close to it, then it creates unnecessary tension on the bond markets. It's just a moronic policy.
  8. Standard member Soothfast
    0,1,1,2,3,5,8,13,21,
    15 Oct '13 19:03
    Originally posted by JS357
    Right. The congress decides what is worth paying for, and how to collect enough to do that, whether by creating debt or collecting taxes, duties, etc. I see no risk of impeachment.
    Especially given that, if a president really were using his veto power gratuitously, Congress could always override the veto. Congress has the "power of the purse" and Congress can override a veto. Ergo, it's on the Congress to get itself sorted out.
  9. Standard member Soothfast
    0,1,1,2,3,5,8,13,21,
    15 Oct '13 19:06
    Originally posted by KazetNagorra
    An external observer might wonder why it was implemented at all - what's the point of borrowing money if you don't intend to pay it back? The only point a debt limit might have is if it also restricts spending obligations, which it does not. Even that would be an ill-advised policy - if you are far from the debt limit, then it is immaterial to spending ...[text shortened]... lose to it, then it creates unnecessary tension on the bond markets. It's just a moronic policy.
    The so-called debt ceiling is like a kind of voodoo ritual sacrifice. It's there for theater. It's there for sport. It is not there to limit debt.
  10. 15 Oct '13 19:45 / 1 edit
    From http://www.theatlanticwire.com/politics/2013/10/obamas-options-avoid-default-impeached-if-you-do-impeached-if-you-dont/70524/:

    What's interesting is that, if Congress doesn't act, Obama would be put into a position where he essentially has to break a law. Earlier this month, Business Insider quoted an analyst from Morgan Stanley, who pointed out three laws that, in the aftermath of a default, couldn't all be followed. Those laws:

    The Second Liberty Bond Act of 1917 that establishes the debt ceiling;
    The Federal Reserve Act that prohibits the Fed from lending directly to the Treasury; or,
    The 14th Amendment of the Constitution that holds that the debt of the US government, lawfully issued, will not be questioned.

    So those laws, in order, mandate that there is a limit on the government's ability to incur debt, prevents the Fed from helping to pay bills, and demands that all bills will be paid. . . .

    The President is constitutionally sworn to “take Care that the Laws be faithfully executed,” but if he enforces the debt ceiling, established by one law, he cannot meet obligations that other laws command him to fulfill. Nor can he submit to blackmail, lest the Constitution be informally amended to provide that any law, duly passed by the House and the Senate and signed by the President (and, if challenged, upheld by the Supreme Court), may be effectively voided by the action of one faction of one party in one half of the national legislature. And he absolutely cannot permit default, the consequences of which would be global and catastrophic.

    _________________________________________________

    From http://verdict.justia.com/2013/01/11/why-president-obama-could-easily-be-impeached-over-the-debt-ceiling-if-congress-fails-to-raise-it:

    The bottom line is that if the debt ceiling is not adjusted to comply with spending and tax laws, it will create “an unsolvable problem” for President Obama, who has the Constitutional duty (under Article II, Section 3) to “take Care that the Laws be faithfully executed.” The President, by oath, has pledged to honor the spending laws, the tax laws, and the debt ceiling, but when these three bodies of law are incompatible, he has no constitutional option. . . .

    Faced with that impossible choice, the president risks acting unconstitutionally no matter what he might do, because he will have failed to execute at least one duly enacted law of the United States. He thus faces a ‘trilemma:’ a choice between three bad options, all of which are unconstitutional. . . .

    The reason I hope that the Republicans in Congress never read the Buchanan and Dorf analysis is because it may give them thoughts about how to checkmate President Obama into an impeachable offense. [No matter what he does or fails to do.]
    ____________________________________________________

    The point is, at least some Republicans (e.g. Louie Gohmert) seem to be licking their chops over a debt-ceiling opportunity to start impeachment proceedings—no matter what President Obama might or might not do in the event that the debt ceiling is not lifted.
  11. 16 Oct '13 01:03 / 4 edits
    Originally posted by normbenign
    The debt ceiling is an interesting study in futility. It has been raised about 50 times in as many years. Does it really mean anything? Any limit that is routinely increased, isn't really limiting anything.
    The debt ceiling doesn't even make sense. It should be understood without any kind of debt ceiling or debt ceiling vote that if Congress appropriates money, it will pay the bills. That is their job. There should be no conditions on Congress doing their job and paying for what they already appropriated.

    I think the President and Reid are doing harm to the country and our budget process in entertaining conditions on the debt ceiling vote. Setting very harmful precedent.

    Instead, stand strong, and have a CLEAN CR and a CLEAN debt ceiling votes with no conditions. There are a MAJORITY votes in the Senate and a MAJORITY votes (Democrats + moderate Republicans) in the House for both a CLEAN CR and CLEAN debt ceiling vote.

    Let Cruz stop it in the Senate, or Boehner at the urging of the Tea Party radicals not let the votes go to the House Floor. Let Cruz or Boehner force the US default. Do not give them their ransom and reward their taking America hostage.

    Consider the particulars and lunacy of having ransom conditions. For instance, the condition that the medical device tax be delayed for 2 years to get 3 months of debt ceiling increase? Really? And then what will be the ransom at 3 months? And the next time? And the next?

    If you are Cruz, or Boehner, or Tea Party ideologues, do not take America hostage but instead fight in the budget process for deeper sequestration cuts or repeal or defunding of the ACA, and so forth. Do not demand such as ransom for America paying our past obligations. Win the Presidency and the Senate, especially if you want to repeal the main legislative achievement of the sitting President.

    As for America, never a good thing to give in to terrorist ransom demands. We have no choice. Let Cruz or Boehner take us down. The US default is coming. Vastly increased interest rates. No more 0% auto loans, that's for sure. A lot of bankruptcies on the way. As for me, I hope I still have enough clients who can pay their bills.

    The US default will happen. No doubt. I do not think Boehner will let the votes (clean or even conditioned votes) go to the House Floor where the Democrats and moderate Republicans would give the needed 218 votes.