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Impeach Obama? NO WAY!

March 23, 2011

Not so fast my friends.  “No way” could quickly become “way” if a couple of House of Representative members have their way.  A few short days ago, under orders from President Obama, the U.S. military engaged in combat actions in the country of Libya.  The purpose of these actions were to impose a no fly zone over Libya under authority of UN Security Council Resolution 1970 (2011) of 26 February 2011.  You can read the Resolution here:

It seems that this UN Resolution was the sole authority for President Obama to dispatch our armed forces into conflict with a foreign nation.  But there is another U.S. law called the Constitution that limits the ability of the President to do this.  There is also the War Powers Act of 1973, of which many claim gives the President the authority to take such actions.  With that in mind, let’s investigate President Obama’s actions to determine if his actions are Impeachable.

President Obama ordered our armed forces to engage in hostile action against the country of Libya under the guise of a humanitarian mission, namely to stop the reported slaughter of innocent civilians.  Implementing a “no fy” zone over Libya was put in place to stop Libyan aircraft from killing it’s civilians.  On the surface, these actions appear to be for the cause of saving innocent lives, but were President Obama’s actions legal under U.S. law?  The Constitution outlines the separation of powers and gives authority to declare war to the Congress. Specifically:

The Congress shall have Power To lay and collect Taxes, Duties, Imposts and Excises, to pay the Debts and provide for the common Defence and general Welfare of the United States; but all Duties, Imposts and Excises shall be uniform throughout the United States;

To declare War, grant Letters of Marque and Reprisal, and make Rules concerning Captures on Land and Water;

To raise and support Armies, but no Appropriation of Money to that Use shall be for a longer Term than two Years;

To provide and maintain a Navy;

To make Rules for the Government and Regulation of the land and naval Forces;

To provide for calling forth the Militia to execute the Laws of the Union, suppress Insurrections and repel Invasions;

To provide for organizing, arming, and disciplining, the Militia, and for governing such Part of them as may be employed in the Service of the United States, reserving to the States respectively, the Appointment of the Officers, and the Authority of training the Militia according to the discipline prescribed by Congress;

Looking at the powers of Congress, specifically:  To provide for calling forth the Militia to execute the Laws of the Union, suppress Insurrections and repel Invasions;  it is the sole responsibility of Congress to call for military action.  Through out the last three major military operations in foreign countries (Iraq and Afghanistan), the approval of Congress, by their vote, was given in each instance before hostile actions were undertaken.  Based on the powers of Congress as given, President Obama stepped beyond his authority to order combat actions against Libya.

The President is also given certain powers in the Constitution.  The most important one dealing with his role as Commander in Chief is stated as such:

  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; 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, and he shall have Power to Grant Reprieves and Pardons for Offenses against the United States, except in Cases of Impeachment.

It is easy to see the authority levels when it comes to the military, most importantly this: ” when called into the actual Service of the United States”.  This statement in the Constitution makes it very clear who has the authority to order military action, that would be Congress.  It is only after the Congress orders the military to action, that the President  has any authority to direct our nations military forces in combat.  Once again, President Obama has overstepped his authority by directing hostile action against a foreign nation.

Congress passed a law in 1973 that outlines the Presidents authority to direct hostile actions.  That law is The War Powers Act of 1973.  The Act supplies the President with some authority to order combat operations, and they are outlined in section 1541:  Purpose and Policy:

a) Congressional declaration It is the purpose of this chapter to fulfill the intent of the framers of the Constitution of the United States and ensure that the collective judgment of both the Congress and the President will apply to the introduction of United States Armed Forces into hostilities, or into situations where imminent involvement in hostilities is clearly indicated by the circumstances, and to the continued use of such forces in hostilities or in such situations.

(b) Congressional legislative power under necessary and proper clause Under article I, section 8, of the Constitution, it is specifically provided that the Congress shall have the power to make all laws necessary and proper for carrying into execution, not only its own powers but also all other powers vested by the Constitution in the Government of the United States, or in any department or officer hereof.

(c) Presidential executive power as Commander-in-Chief; limitation The constitutional powers of the President as Commander-in-Chief to introduce United States Armed Forces into hostilities, or into situations where imminent involvement in hostilities is clearly indicated by the circumstances, are exercised only pursuant to (1) a declaration of war, (2) specific statutory authorization, or (3) a national emergency created by attack upon the United States, its territories or possessions, or its armed forces.

As we look at the War Powers Act, paragraph (a), it outlines the authority to introduce the U.S. Armed Forces into hostilities.  1.  a declaration of war.  As I have outlined, it is the responsibility of Congress to declare war.  Congress has taken no such action against Libya.  2. specific statutory authorization.  As I have also outlined, this would have to come from a vote of Congress to approve military action, which no such authority was given concerning Libya.  3.  a national emergency created by attack upon the United States, its territories or possessions, or its armed forces.  In this instance, Libya did not attack any part of the United States, its territories or possessions, or its armed forces.

In Section 1542:  Consultation;  Initial and regular Consultations, it states the following:

The President in every possible instance shall consult with Congress before introducing United States Armed Forces into hostilities or into situations where imminent involvement in hostilities is clearly indicated by the circumstances, and after every such introduction shall consult regularly with the Congress until United States Armed Forces are no longer engaged in hostilities or have been removed from such situations.

It appears that President Obama chose not to consult with Congress.  Had he done so, the law of statutory regulation would have been demanded.  This did not occur.  At this point of the investigation, the remaining sections are moot to the decisions of the President.  Once the President violated th conditions in Section 1541, the remaining sections are meaningless.  Had President Obama acted in accordance with the War Powers Act, his Constitutional violations would also have been avoided.  However, President Obama failed to act in accordance with both the Constitution and the War Powers Act.  This is an impeachable offense which should certainly be pursued by the House of Representatives.

I have presented my opinion on the actions of President Obama concerning actions in Libya.  We are a nation of laws.  Our Constitution is very clear on the separation of powers when it comes to our armed forces.  As a Constitutional Republic, no one person should ever have the sole authority to direct our armed forces into hostile actions, those are the actions of dictators, not U.S. Presidents.  The American people should be screaming for impeachment.  Our President acted as a dictator, we must remind him that he is not, and do it quickly a decisively.  There must be lessons taught to those who blatantly abuse their power, that time has come!

Live Free!


14 Comments leave one →
  1. Greg Fessler permalink
    March 23, 2011 7:53 pm

    ok its been some time since i took U.S. government, but does not the president have the power, (authority) to declare a police action, like korea in 1950, with a time limit of 3 yrs, thats what i remember, dont get me wrong, we shouldnt be there ( as usual ) but i do remember that it at least used to be within his realm of im allowed to do this,,, get back to me on this one g,

    • gmanfortruth permalink*
      March 23, 2011 8:03 pm

      Greg, I outlined the law as it is stated. Forget Korea, that has nothing to do with today. There are no other laws that could possibly give more power, they would be unconstitutional. The Constitution is clear on separation of powers, that can only be changed by Amendment.

      • Greg Fessler permalink
        March 23, 2011 11:11 pm

        ok, wasnt sure on that one, so they have set it up so he cant do that, i say impeach him then, but i also question the people doing the fighting, if they are given an order that they know is given unlawfully, not backed by the constitution, are they not under an obligation to ignore it?,,,, i think thats somewhere in the jist of things,,

        • gmanfortruth permalink*
          March 23, 2011 11:15 pm

          Yes Greg, our miltary commanders followed illegal orders. But they unlikely knew it was illegal, but soon will. This could be a great lesson to our miltary, on that could save our very lives in the future. We shall see!

      • Bingotownboy permalink
        March 25, 2011 7:24 pm

        ” In this instance, Libya did not attack any part of the United States, its territories or possessions, or its armed forces.” By this same logic why wasn’t Pres. GWB impeached for invading Iraq? Just saying. To your point, if the shoe fits then impeach.

        • gmanfortruth permalink*
          March 25, 2011 7:31 pm

          I can see how you may percieve GWB as being under the same umbrella. But the War Powers Act as stated requires on of three things for a President to order the military into action. What you are either missing or ignoring is the second part of that part of the law, which, for the sake of simplicity, is the requirement of Congressional approval. GWB had that approval. As our laws are written, regardless of whether I like or dislike GWB’s actions, he had Congressional approval for the invasion of Iraq. Because of this fact, he acted within the laws that are written. If you can refute that, please do so, I would like to hear it. Thanks for commenting, I like all views that can be presented, regardless of political affiliation.

  2. Greg Fessler permalink
    March 24, 2011 7:13 am

    well ive always wanted to believe that our military wouldnt follow some idiot into battle, just because he is president doesnt mean follow blindly, he should be jailed to say the least . since when does the u n tell us what to do, since when did WE vote for the u n to replace our congress,, this country is a mess

  3. charlie miles permalink
    March 24, 2011 8:31 am

    i totaly agree with greg. obama is not a leader not even close. he thinks he got elected president of the whole world and he is afraid of hurting somebodys feelings. he is weak and afraid to lead. perhaps he should appoint another czar.

  4. Judy Sabatini permalink
    March 24, 2011 4:57 pm

    I agree with both Greg & Charlie on their statements. Obama hasn’t followed the constitution since he was elected. He has done everything in his power to change that to suit his needs & only his needs. It’s the last thing we need now, is more forces fighting on the ground in Libya. Aren’t we stretched to the limit now? Are we going to start losing our guys there now too? Impeach him, & impeach him now. We have nothing but a bunch of weenie ass wussies running this government & if something isn’t done soon, this country is going to be a bigger laughing stock than we are now.

  5. Ann Hughes permalink
    March 25, 2011 6:00 pm

    How could this president put the horrific burden of another war on the backs of Americans who are still reeling from the Great Recession? It is unconscionable. Aside from the Constitutional issue, Obama’s first obligation is to the people of our own country. We cannot afford the financial and psychological burden of a third war. What in the world was he thinking?

    • gmanfortruth permalink*
      March 25, 2011 6:03 pm

      Ann, Thank you for commenting. I could not agree with you more. We need to bring our troops home and let the chips fall where they fall.

  6. Monty Montgomery permalink
    March 27, 2011 5:18 pm

    President Obama has used our military illegaly to further Muslim rule in another nation. I have to agree that he is not a leader (a good one anyway) with a personnal agenda to destroy America. Impeach this man before it is too late.

  7. George permalink
    April 3, 2011 10:32 am

    Hello, gman, and thank you for your efforts here. I found this site because of your excellent report on the Fukushima cover-up. I have been thinking long and hard on the events of the last couple months and I have some thoughts I’d like to add to this discussion.

    First, on the subject of impeachable presidential actions, check out this wikipedia article on the 35 articles of impeachment brought by rep. Wexler and rep. Kucinich against W in 2008:

    Lots of good reasons to impeach a president in there. Hypothetically, what happens when the assholes in charge get away with torture and murder (and all that other stuff) scott-free and rich, with lucrative public speaking gigs and even a book deal?

    The answer, of course, stems from the truism that ‘unpunished high crimes will always pay better than legitimate enterprise and responsible stewardship’.

    The party favors showered on these clowns were nothing compared to the billions (going on trillions) showered on the war profiteers inside and outside the Pentagon, and those numbers continue to increase under Obama.

    In fact, I have come increasingly under the impression that, if you listen to the left-ish types during Bush’s administration and the right-ish types during the Obama administration (while applying appropriate filtering for the wingnuttery present in both camps), the picture that emerges is remarkably consistent from one administration to the next.

    This would not be so strange in 2002, because the country was still reeling from 9/11 and many political differences were temporarily set aside to ‘get Osama’. But, in 2011, after the incredible nation-wide (and world-wide) outpouring of support for the leader Obama seemed to be and for the very peaceful and democratic sentiments he so eloquently articulated in 2008, the consistency of certain aspects (notably the continued growth of militaristic activity and ambitions) points to nothing less than the complete breakdown of our democratic institutions.

    “Yes Greg, our miltary commanders followed illegal orders. But they unlikely knew it was illegal, but soon will.”

    This strikes me as a bit naive. I suspect it is the military commanders, along with those like Goldman Sachs, along with the largest multinational corporations who are now calling the shots. And if that is the case, impeaching the president so that they can install a new sock puppet seems like missing the point.

    Some articles to check out for more on this:

    • gmanfortruth permalink*
      April 3, 2011 4:39 pm

      George, Thanks for the great well thought out comment. I’ll be checking out your links in short time. I don’t see much I cannot agree with. Our government is corrupt to the core, and it is unlikely that there will be any impeachment happening. We’d sure have a blast talking about Biden if it did 🙂 During the Bush administration, I really didn’t follow politics. Heck, I was rarely on the computer. Then I found a blog called Stand Up for America (on my blog roll) and spent alot of time there since 2009. I learned a great deal about politics and economics over the past two plus years. I’m now a regular contributer on that blog, but felt I could do more by starting this blog.

      I just got in from a hard day cutting trees, so I will reply further when I get cleaned up and eat something. I hope you come back often to share your insight and knowledge.


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