For Nixon, everything was black and white. (AP Photo) For Nixon, everything was black and white. (Associated Press)

George Will drops a big ol’ bomb on the Opinions page today, arguing that the only defense President Obama has for his recent Obamacare “tweak” (delaying for a year penalties for businesses that don’t provide insurance) is the one President Nixon made famous — that the president can’t do anything illegal because he’s the president.

So, wow.

Five thousand comments later, once you sift through the people who believe either that President Obama should have long since been impeached or that nothing a Republican says about Obama can be trusted, the argument is pretty interesting.

TyrantofReason

I voted for Obama twice, but I don’t like how he’s handled the ACA in the past few months. A President has the right to not enforce laws that he/she finds to be unconstitutional. But this is the President’s law! He has to enforce it unless Congress tells him otherwise. This is simply how our government works. All you Democrats out their defending him will regret it when the next Republican president abuses this new power even worse.

chieftrollhunter

Yes, I can see how the above is the same as an enemies list, bugging offices, slush funds for dirty tricks, etc.

Iconoblaster

What? Extrajudicial executions by explosive ordnance are okay, but this administrative fiat about health care is unacceptable? Clandestine surveillance of the personal communications of millions of Americans is just fine, but not delaying implementation of a law that probably couldn’t BE implemented quickly, without a train wreck? Very amusing. Obamacare is going to be a train wreck anyway, so I don’t much care that they are slowing down the train, but Will sure picks and chooses which violations of the Constitution he cares to notice.

dcostello

“Unconstitutional steps”? If Obama has broken any laws or done anything unconstitutional let the Tea Party controlled House of Representative carry out its constitutional responsibility and bring articles of impeachment against him. Don’t argue that such articles of impeachment would not be approved by the Senate. 40 votes to defund the ACA by the House show that thought process doesn’t apply to them. Time for all those who throw around terms like unlawful and unconstitutional when describing the President to either put up or shut up.

JoeT1

Telling an executive agency to delay an executive action because it can’t be executed without difficulty until an executive process is simplified sounds within his executive authority with respect to executing the law to me.
If it’s not, a court will say so.

kurtisfechtmeyer has an interesting argument that builds from the argument that Obama should have long since been impeached but then blames partisan Republicans for why he won’t be:

Articles of Impeachment against Obama are certainly called for by any fair reading of his obligation and oath. Here are just few sample charges: arresting Nakoula Nakoula as part of false Benghazi cover story in violation of the 1st Amendment, the abuse of power with the IRS, the gross dereliction of duty as Commander in Chief in Benghazi and by disclosing the name of Seal Team 6 after the OBL assassination, violating the 4th Amendment prohibition against general warrants with the NSA spying scandal. So on and so on.

But here is the problem: the Republicans stupidly impeached Slick Willy and put partisan antics above the good of the country in the 1990s. Newt Gingrich hypocritically chased Ahab-like after his great white whale and got nothing. Between that Republican failure with Clinton and the Obama status as the first black president, Obama is safe from impeachment and the country will simply have to suffer his stupidity, vanity and ignorance for another 3 years.

And PostScript wants to include kitchendragon50 for declaring that the press never, ever does what Will just did in this very column upon which we are all commenting.

The liberals love to point out that Obama is a constitutional law professor. Have you ever noticed that the press never, ever asks about the constitutionality of his actions?