The Campaign For DA

7.27.2011

Will President Obama Interpret His Constitutional Presidential Powers . . .


. . . in a financial crisis in the same manner as President Bush did during a terrorism crisis? That being: "I can do whatever needs to be done."
WASHINGTON (AP)—House Democrats are saying that President Barack Obama should invoke a little-known constitutional provision to prevent the nation from going into default if Congress fails to come up with a plan to raise the debt ceiling. Rep. James Clyburn, a member of the Democratic leadership, says he told fellow Democrats Wednesday that Obama should both veto a House GOP plan for a short-term extension of the debt ceiling and invoke the 14th amendment, which says that the validity of the nation's public debt “shall not be questioned.”
The specific applicable passage from the 14th Amendment says:
 
Section 4. The validity of the public debt of the United States, authorized by law, including debts incurred for payment of pensions and bounties for services in suppressing insurrection or rebellion, shall not be questioned. 
I think I speak for all constitutional scholars everywhere when I say, "I have no idea what that sentence means."