Monday, December 22, 2008

One More Thing on the Auto Bailout

Here's a chance for all the Dick Cheney haters...

You can read the Emergency Economic Stabilization Act of 2008 (P.L. 110-343) here. I do not see any plausible argument that the statute authorized President Bush and the Secretary of the Treasury to lend TARP money to GM and Chrysler.

Indeed, in a little-noted moment in his interview with Chris Wallace, Cheney seemed to acknowledge that Congress did not authorize the loans and, with what can only be regarded as constitutionally twisted logic, used that fact to justify rather than indict Bush's action:

I think it's a good package. I think -- you know, we talk about the Congress being critical. They had ample opportunity to deal with this issue, and they failed. The President had no choice but to step in.

Can someone show me where in Article II it says that if Congress "fails" to appropriate money for a particular purpose, the President can "step in" and do it himself? And can anyone explain why liberals who have been so vociferously (and wrongly) critical of alleged Presidential usurpation in foreign policy have been almost uniformly silent about this actual usurpation in domestic policy?

"Unitary Presidency," indeed.

HT: PowerLine


Anonymous said...

I agree and I would hope someone will use the courts to stop this. Bush has been great on judges and security but is a miserable failure when it comes to the economy. He has plenty help, mind you, including the congress. But soon it will be Obama's turn.

Beer, Bicycles and the VRWC said...

Congress doesn't want any part of a bailout that is destined for failure. The President stepped in it pretty bad on this one....

Anonymous said...

It took the guts of some GOP Senators to stop the initial bailout. Congress couldn't wait to get in there and fund the UAW, errr...Big Three.

I would have thought Bush and Cheney could read a balance sheet and maybe some projections. We're going to paying for this for years.