Bending the Third Rail
Because We Should, We Can, We Do
Monday, July 17, 2006
One More Nail
This is just what I've been afraid of with regard to the Presidential "signing statements":
Charlie Savage writes in the Boston Globe: "In his dissenting opinion to the Supreme Court's decision on Guantanamo Bay military trials earlier this month, Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia gave a presidential signing statement significant weight in determining the meaning of a statute, marking a milestone in the debate over the Bush administration's expansion of executive power. . . .

"Scalia's dissenting opinion gave Bush's signing statement on a Guantanamo-related law passed by Congress equal weight to statements by the bill's authors, suggesting that there is no legal difference between the views of Congress and the president about what a law means."
The next step will be for a majority SCOTUS decision to overrule a piece of legislation citing the Presidential signing statement in it's opinion. At that point, Congress is pretty much meaningless.
2 Comments:
Blogger Debra said...
Like they aren't now? What exactly have they done for the last 5 years that would make you think they are independent of the Prez?

Blogger GreyHair said...
I have to disagree. They have bucked the President. But they can only do so when a case is brought before them .... which takes time. And each time there's been a challenge, he's had his ears pinned back (except the energy task force decision). But if a conservative majority believes in these "signing statements", that will codify signing statements as a part of the law making process.