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FR exclusive: Press Ignores Unprecedented Unconstitutional use of Autopen to Ratify Legislation
FreeRepublic.com ^ | self

Posted on 05/27/2011 8:44:38 AM PDT by Notwithstanding

Prior to 0bama's act yesterday, no US president has used an autopen to sign legislation into law (there is no evidence of this prior to yesterday - likely because noone but a president with no proof he is Constitutionally qualified would be so cavalier about signing a bill into law).

You would think a real journalist would investigate and highlight this fact as incredibly problematic (especially a journalist who formerly hated the Patriot Act when it was Bush's legislation).

All TSA-type actions (that are lawful only by virtue of the Patriot Act) performed in the period between the old law's expiration date and the date he actually signs this extension in person are null and void.

We will all be quite surprised if a marxist or islamist does not use this fact to claim that his rights were violated during that period.

Some smart patriot who refuses a body scan and is groped before 0bama makes it back to correct his gross error by signing this in person should sue.

Otherwise our Constitution is weakened once again by 0bama's disregard for it.


TOPICS: Miscellaneous
KEYWORDS: autopen; legislation; obama

1 posted on 05/27/2011 8:44:41 AM PDT by Notwithstanding
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To: Notwithstanding

This might bear some checking. If a president doesn’t actually sign a bill, does it become law, in circumstances such as these?


2 posted on 05/27/2011 8:54:28 AM PDT by sayuncledave (A cruce salus)
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To: Notwithstanding

I was curious about this last night and I found an interesting article by NPR complaining that President Bush used an autopen for autographed photos. So they make a big deal about autographs but they ignore using it for legislation.


3 posted on 05/27/2011 8:59:51 AM PDT by mnehring
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To: Notwithstanding

WND will be all over this...


4 posted on 05/27/2011 8:59:51 AM PDT by Tex-Con-Man
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To: sayuncledave
If a president doesn’t actually sign a bill, does it become law, in circumstances such as these?

Technically yes. Per the Constitution, if a passed bill is not signed or vetoed by the President within 10 days, it automatically becomes law. (Article 1, Section 7)

5 posted on 05/27/2011 9:02:29 AM PDT by mnehring
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To: sayuncledave

No - I have already considered that.

This was last-minute legislation for a law that expired at midnight on the day it was passed by Congress and subsequently autopenned.

Failure of the president to sign would be a pocket veto, and it would go back to Congress for an override (and regardless, a pocket veto requires a waiting period of over a week).

No matter what else has happened or will happen, unless and until 0bama signs this in person (before the pocket veto time elapses), any actions that would only be lawful because of the Patriot Act are actually unlawful.


6 posted on 05/27/2011 9:02:49 AM PDT by Notwithstanding
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To: Notwithstanding

The autopen was in response to having someone actually fly the document to Paris for the presidential signature.

Since it’s only 2008 there’s plenty of time for him to sign the document when he arrives back in the US


7 posted on 05/27/2011 9:02:49 AM PDT by Carley (OBAMA, DO YOU HEAR ME NOW.......'67 BORDERS, IT'S NOT GOING TO HAPPEN)
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To: Notwithstanding

SCOTUS always has and always will, side with Obama.

Essentially, Obama and the Dems have successfully suspended the rule of law. And every (almost) court in the county is supporting them in doing so.

Welcome to the (I’ll do whatever the hell I want) USSA.


8 posted on 05/27/2011 9:02:57 AM PDT by 240B (he is doing everything he said he wouldn't and not doing what he said he would)
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To: Notwithstanding
I'm curious why your declaring Hussein's use of the auto pen to sign this legislation unconstitutional. Are you really so sure it is unconstitutional or are you just guessing it is? In what way is this an exclusive to FR.

I did a quick check and from what I read the constitutionality of doing this was settled in 2005 during the Bush administration by the Office of Legal Council. They ruled the following:

We examine the legal understanding of the word 'sign' at the time the Constitution was drafted and ratified and during the early years of the Republic. We find that, pursuant to this understanding, a person may sign a document by directing that his signature be affixed to it by another. … Reading the constitutional text in light of this established legal understanding, we conclude that the President need not personally perform the physical act of affixing his signature to a bill to sign it within the meaning of Article I, Section 7 [of the Constitution.]

I am not saying you are definitely wrong and this legal council opinion is right, but don't you think it would be better not to declare something unconstitutional in your subject line when you really have no clue if that is true or not - and may very well be entirely wrong?

9 posted on 05/27/2011 9:03:47 AM PDT by Longbow1969
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To: mnehring

NO!

The legislation is considered as vetoed if the time period you mention lapses without signature. Then it can be overridden with a new passage by supermajorities in both houses.


10 posted on 05/27/2011 9:05:58 AM PDT by Notwithstanding
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To: Longbow1969; jimrob

I have practiced Constitutional law.
I know this is unconstitutional.
That is why this is unprecedented.
This is a huge deal.
I am certain that someone who is groped or searched during the gap period will file suit.


11 posted on 05/27/2011 9:08:59 AM PDT by Notwithstanding
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To: Notwithstanding
US Constitution, Article 1, Section 7-

Every Bill which shall have passed the House of Representatives and the Senate, shall, before it become a Law, be presented to the President of the United States; If he approve he shall sign it, but if not he shall return it, with his Objections to that House in which it shall have originated, who shall enter the Objections at large on their Journal, and proceed to reconsider it. If after such Reconsideration two thirds of that House shall agree to pass the Bill, it shall be sent, together with the Objections, to the other House, by which it shall likewise be reconsidered, and if approved by two thirds of that House, it shall become a Law. But in all such Cases the Votes of both Houses shall be determined by Yeas and Nays, and the Names of the Persons voting for and against the Bill shall be entered on the Journal of each House respectively. If any Bill shall not be returned by the President within ten Days (Sundays excepted) after it shall have been presented to him, the Same shall be a Law, in like Manner as if he had signed it, unless the Congress by their Adjournment prevent its Return, in which Case it shall not be a Law.

So the only exception that would make it a pocket veto is if Congress adjourns. Congress is still in session so it would be made law if not signed.

12 posted on 05/27/2011 9:09:39 AM PDT by mnehring
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To: Notwithstanding

Once again an illegal president shredding what is left of the Constitution. “ Dictators don’t need no stinkin’ Constitution!” This is done deliberately by a man who was touted as a ‘Constitutional Scholar’.


13 posted on 05/27/2011 9:11:52 AM PDT by Don Corleone ("Oil the gun..eat the cannoli. Take it to the Mattress.")
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To: Notwithstanding
I have practiced Constitutional law. I know this is unconstitutional.

So are you saying the constitutional lawyers in Bush's Office of Legal Council did not know the constitution? They disagree with you.

14 posted on 05/27/2011 9:21:08 AM PDT by Longbow1969
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To: Notwithstanding

Wonder what the year is??


15 posted on 05/27/2011 9:22:59 AM PDT by Sacajaweau
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To: Longbow1969

They gave a self-serving opinion that covered any potential use by Bush of the autopen (if paralyzed or in a bunker, perhaps).

Also: Congress has adjourned, so the pocket veto is in play. But even if it isn’t, the bill would not become law until the 10 day period expires, so that 10 day period is when the unlawful acts would occur.


16 posted on 05/27/2011 9:28:53 AM PDT by Notwithstanding
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To: Notwithstanding
Thanks for bringing this up. When I heard this on the radio news this morning, my reaction was, "Huh?" (Keeping it clean for the children!) I had never heard of this before, but maybe I haven't been paying close attention. I do recall times in the past where a bill was flown to where the President was, but never this autopen thing.

ML/NJ

17 posted on 05/27/2011 9:40:15 AM PDT by ml/nj
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To: mnehring

While the Senate is technically still not recessed so as to prevent 0bama from making recess appointments. But the House is in recess as of sometime today. Thus presidential inaction for the 10 day period would actually void the bill and it would have to be passed as a brand new bill.

But as I said, many TSA actions are unlawful unless and until he signs it in person before the 10 day period expires.

The point is that the Constitution cannot be ignored.


18 posted on 05/27/2011 9:44:41 AM PDT by Notwithstanding
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To: mnehring

The other point is that the press is not even curious about this.

It would be interesting to research whether any journalists reacted negatively when Bush’s lawyers issued the self-serving legal opinion on auto-penning legislation. I am glad Bush never actually used that method.


19 posted on 05/27/2011 9:50:45 AM PDT by Notwithstanding
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To: Notwithstanding

This is leading to something my friends.....Why does he want to be able to sign legislation from another country? I don’t trust this rat bastard at all.


20 posted on 05/27/2011 10:27:39 AM PDT by AngelesCrestHighway
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To: jimrob; Admin Moderator

Please place add the news topic to this thread. A few hours after I posted this FR exclusive, Jack Tapper at ABC News ran a piece on the same topic:

http://blogs.abcnews.com/politicalpunch/2011/05/robama-is-it-ok-for-a-president-to-autopen-a-bill-into-law.html

Which is at FR here:

http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/chat/2726056/posts?page=1


21 posted on 05/27/2011 10:50:36 AM PDT by Notwithstanding
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To: Notwithstanding

An unconstitutional ineligible President signs a bill into law unconstitutionally. What a shocka!!!


22 posted on 05/27/2011 11:13:12 AM PDT by Georgia Girl 2 (The only purpose of a pistol is to fight your way back to the rifle you should never have dropped.)
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To: Notwithstanding

Alas, Daily Caller was first:

http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/f-news/2725898/posts


23 posted on 05/27/2011 11:17:47 AM PDT by Notwithstanding
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To: Notwithstanding

The Hill also has it:
http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/f-news/2726044/posts


24 posted on 05/27/2011 11:34:41 AM PDT by Notwithstanding
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To: Longbow1969
So are you saying the constitutional lawyers in Bush's Office of Legal Council did not know the constitution?

Luckily for us, a president's legal council is not the first and last word on constitutionality. One assumes Obama's White House will make the same case but it's something that should be adjudicated in a court of law.

25 posted on 05/27/2011 1:49:55 PM PDT by newzjunkey (teleprompter + autopen)
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