Vox has posted an article titled “How the Supreme Court put itself in charge of the executive branch” in which they complain about SCOTUS declaring that the Biden administration cannot do things like fight climate change, declare pistol braces to be illegal, or forgive student loans. The entire article is complete bullshit. The President never had those powers, and it’s time that we all recognized why.

The document that grants powers of lawmaking to the Federal government is Article 1 of the Constitution, which lays out the lawmaking power of the United States in Section 1:

All legislative Powers herein granted shall be vested in a Congress of the United States

The laws passed by Congress are called the United States code (USC). This is what the USC looked like in 1925. Note that all of the laws passed by Congress in the first 150 years of its existence were found in one book:

That one volume represents all of the laws that were passed by Congress in the first 150 years of this country’s existence. That Federal Law library has now expanded immensely.

What was one volume in 1925 expanded to become 25 volumes just 90 years later.

Article 2 of the Constitution lays out the duties of the Executive branch, along with those of the chief executive (The President).

The executive Power shall be vested in a President of the United States of America.

The duties of the President are found in sections 2 and 3, which I have summed up in the following bullet points:

  • The President shall be Commander in Chief of the Army and Navy and of the Militia
  • he may require the Opinion, in writing, of the principal Officer in each of the executive Departments, upon any Subject relating to the Duties of their respective Offices
  • He shall have Power to grant Reprieves and Pardons for Offenses against the United States, except in Cases of Impeachment.
  • He shall have Power, by and with the Advice and Consent of the Senate, to make Treaties, provided two thirds of the Senators present concur
  • He shall nominate Ambassadors, other public Ministers and Consuls, Judges of the supreme Court, and all other Officers of the United States
  • The President shall have Power to fill up all Vacancies that may happen during the Recess of the Senate, by granting Commissions which shall expire at the End of their next Session.
  • He shall receive Ambassadors and other public Ministers
  • He shall Commission all the Officers of the United States.
  • He shall take Care that the Laws be faithfully executed

That last one is really important. He, through the executive branch, sees to it that the laws of the United States are faithfully executed. Note that CONGRESS has been vested with ALL legislative powers, and the executive makes sure that those laws are carried out. Nowhere in the Constitution is there any provision for the Congress to abdicate and delegate its legislative powers to the executive branch.

Even so, our government has created an entire branch of government and of law called Administrative law. It is through this law that administrative departments like the ATF are declaring things to be illegal or prohibited, even when those things are not prohibited by legislation.

Administrative law is the body of law created by the agencies and departments of the government, which carry out the laws passed by Congress or a state legislature. Why do they need help doing this? BEcause most of the members of Congress are complete morons who spend most of their time chasing pussy, getting drunk, and using their power to enrich themselves. They don’t have time to be informed on the issues, so they punt.

When Congress passes a law on a complicated issue, Congress often needs help determining all of the details of how the law will be enforced and implemented, because they are corrupt morons. Administrative agencies and government departments fill in those gaps for Congress and pass additional rules and regulations to achieve what they want Congress’s goals to be, in their own opinion. Of course there is a great deal of corruption, graft, and people putting their own desires and spin on the ball.

All of these administrative laws are called the Code of Federal regulations. The number and complexity of laws passed by the executive dwarfs the 25 volumes of laws that have been passed by Congress.

This, despite the fact that the Constitution explicitly states that all legislative Powers shall be vested in Congress, and makes no provisions for Congress to abdicate, delegate, or assign those legislative powers to the executive branch.

The case of Marbury v. Madison established the concept of Judicial review. The court has had the power to declare laws unconstitutional ever since. In my opinion, the Supreme Court hasn’t gone far enough in declaring that the entire CFR is unconstitutional wherever and whenever those regulations do anything except control how the laws will be enforced. As soon as a regulation changes the plain meaning of the wording of any law passed by Congress, it is null and void.

For example, there is nothing in the laws passed by Congress that would permit a machine gun to be defined as anything other than a firearm that discharges more than one shot for each function of the trigger. The President can’t forgive student loans because all expenditures must originate from the House of Representatives. If Congress wanted student loans forgiven, they would have done so.

Of course, that can’t happen any longer. The system is far too complex for it to suddenly by unrestrained. The damage that has been done to the intended form of government by permitting these administrative agencies to write laws out of wholesale cloth.

Categories: Government


Boneman · July 18, 2023 at 5:15 am

It’s despicable the administrative laws that are passed. What “representation” of the will of the people applies there? Anyone ever elect any members of the EPA? Yet they can with complete authority declare a puddle in your yard to be “Wetlands” (that’s a SWAMP to you youngsters) and your property is now pretty much OWNED by sheaves of “regulations”. The Court has it’s moments for sure but I’m glad it’s there. Not that (as we are seeing again) Jo(k)e Biden won’t end run around it.

Great post, THANKS!

Don Curton · July 18, 2023 at 6:13 am

This is exactly what I’ve been saying for years (although you put it better!). We are no longer governed by the three traditional branches of govt as taught to us in middle school social studies. We are ruled (not governed) by an unelected bureaucracy via the CFR. The legislature, executive branch, and judiciary are all just window dressing and play-acting to distract the masses with needless drama.

oldvet50 · July 18, 2023 at 6:25 am

Most people believe the USSC is the most powerful branch of government, and it would seem so since it can countermand any law by Congress or action by the President if it believes it violates the Constitution (by any stretch of their imagination sometimes). The system was designed so that all three branches are equal. When we see the Executive acting as though unrestrained by the Court, the Legislative shirking their duty by delegation to unelected officials, and the Supreme Court ruling in direct violation of any common sense interpretation of the Constitution, we will know we have lost our freedom and country. The only thing to be done then is to start over like our Declaration of Independence directs. Who will go first, though? Perhaps we should take hints from Jefferson Davis?

Toastrider · July 18, 2023 at 7:47 am

>article consisting of complete bullshit

Were you surprised by this, sir? Vox is pretty much preschooler logic with lattes, all the time.

Anonymous · July 18, 2023 at 8:54 am

I would argue that federal law is now so voluminous and so involute that, in effect, there is no federal law. Any federal prosecutor could claim that any arbitrarily selected individual had broken some federal statute, and the poor guy would have no recourse. That’s part of Harvey Silverglate’s argument in “Three Felonies A Day.”

The matching contention would be that, as it is now impossible to know whether one is in violation of federal law at any moment, the individual has no obligation to conform to federal law…but our rulers would never allow us to get away with that.

    Nemo · July 18, 2023 at 2:22 pm

    Three Felonies a Day, Harvey Silverglate, June 7, 2011, Forward by Alan Dershowitz, Professor Emeritus Harvard Law.

Elrod · July 18, 2023 at 9:31 am

Were SCOTUS to declare the entire body of Administrative Law unconstitutional most of the fed dot gov would immediately grind to a halt.

Which sounds like a feature, not a bug.

The issues from that point would be “how to enforce the SCOTUS verdict” and the lawless shenanigans of the executive branch masses as they scrambled to justify their existence.

All of which why that “in the normal course of events” such cannot happen. Doesn’t mean it won’t, someday, but I suspect it would take a period of Irate Maxwells to achieve and I’m not convinced whatever came from that would be recognizable from a constitutional perspective.

JaimeInTexas · July 18, 2023 at 11:24 am

Article 2, Clause1
The President shall be Commander in Chief of the Army and Navy of the United States, and of the Militia of the several States, when called into the actual Service of the United States;

Article 4, Section 4
The United States shall guarantee to every State in this Union a Republican Form of Government, and shall protect each of them against Invasion; and on Application of the Legislature, or of the Executive (when the Legislature cannot be convened) against domestic Violence.

Which branch gets to call the Army, Navy or Militia into service?
To which branch is a petition from a State in the union is to be made?

    Divemedic · July 18, 2023 at 12:56 pm

    There is a comma in there. He is the CiC of the Army and Navy, and of the Militia when it is in Federal Service. The Militia is normally under state and local control.

      JaimeInTexas · July 18, 2023 at 2:48 pm

      U see it but I do not read it your way. The commas are separating a list (army,navy,militia).

      The President shall be Commander in Chief of the {items}, when called into the actual Service of the United States;

      The comma before the “and of” is not necessary. The Militia is just the last item in the items.
      So, is the comma in question modifying only the last item in items? If so, why the comma?
      No comma before “then” then I would agree with you.

      Article 1 is where war declaration is found. CiC is a title only to be used under special circumstances.

      IIRC, there was no standing Army at the time. Standing Navy?

        Divemedic · July 18, 2023 at 3:32 pm

        The rest of COTUS spells it out. The Army and Navy belong to the United States. The militias belong to the several states, and the POTUS is only the CIC when they are in Federal Service.

          JaimeInTexas · July 18, 2023 at 5:47 pm

          Not enough at times. Too many in others.

          Given your other post re. SCOTUS, title 7and trannies, sigh, we are circling the drain.

JaimeInTexas · July 18, 2023 at 11:29 am

BTW, the system is too far gone into power politics. Call me pessimistic in our ability to undo the Bureaucratic National State. That includes restraining the SCOTUS.

Gryphon · July 18, 2023 at 2:27 pm

Ultimately, the “Failure to adhere to the Constitution” was committed by the Congress – by Abdicating (knowingly or not) by passing “Laws” that authorized the Creation of Bureaucracies not mentioned in the Constitution, and then giving those unelected bureaucrats the power to “Make Laws”.

But the real Root of the Problem is the creation of the commercial entity known as “THE UNITED STATES CORPORATION” which is conveniently OWNED by the (((banksters))) who PRINT its “Money” in Violation of the Constitution. At this point, the only way it gets Corrected is by “Rule .308”. Or the Bear delivering some Canned Sunshine to Mordor-on-the-Potomac.

    Joe · July 18, 2023 at 4:05 pm

    it always help to read stuff from the left but trying to read anything on vox or slate is like trying to piss broken glass through your pee hole after drinking a gallon of water… the level of bullshit is being reason… it’s why they don’t allow comments…

    Dirty Dingus McGee · July 18, 2023 at 4:45 pm

    Most of the bureaucracies, up to and including the FBI, were created via executive order. The rallying cry was always “it’s for the greater good”. As we, those that care to pay attention, all know, the only good it does is keep government drones employed.

    The camel took over the tent long ago and has pretty much forced us out of it.

Jester · July 18, 2023 at 7:08 pm

Really Vox and the rest of their Ilk love Obama’s I got a pen speach or statement. The issue is that both scum bag sides have exercised too much power and used too many emergent events as justification to take power from the people. And those that know if they passed a bunch of laws that were say unpopular get the varous agencies to do it for them. EPA, etc. It’s not congress always saying somethings illegal for example, when agencies just write their own regulations due to congress abdicating the role… we end up with a lot of the situation we are in. Rarely are those regulations reversed. And all this stuff coming out from shumer calling the courts nazis because all 9 some of which were appointed by Biden And OBama is a veiled threat to do what the congress wants. Also a signal to deligitimize the decisions

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