Obama, not surprisingly, defended his unconstitutional actions with a plea to a higher standard of morality.
To brush aside America’s responsibility as a leader and — more profoundly — our responsibilities to our fellow human beings under such circumstances would have been a betrayal of who we are,” the president said tonight. “Some nations may be able to turn a blind eye to atrocities in other countries. The United States of America is different. And as president, I refused to wait for the images of slaughter and mass graves before taking action.
The best response to President Obama’s actions came from Senator Rand Paul of Kentucky. To see his five minute speech, click here.
As Senator Paul correctly states, Obama, when senator, opposed unilateral executive decisions to go to war. Only Congress, the then Illinois senator correctly argued, had the power to declare war. Or, perhaps to be fair, let’s let then-Senator Obama speak for himself:
The President does not have power under the Constitution to unilaterally authorize a military attack in a situation that does not involve stopping an actual or imminent threat to the nation. In instances of self-defense, the President would be within his constitutional authority to act before advising Congress or seeking its consent. History has shown us time and again, however, that military action is most successful when it is authorized and supported by the Legislative branch. It is always preferable to have the informed consent of Congress prior to any military action. (Source: Boston Globe questionnaire, December 2007)
Tonight, though, the president offered a very different vision of his own authority and power.
As Commander-in-Chief, I have no greater responsibility than keeping this country safe. And no decision weighs on me more than when to deploy our men and women in uniform. I have made it clear that I will never hesitate to use our military swiftly, decisively, and unilaterally when necessary to defend our people, our homeland, our allies, and our core interests. That is why we are going after al Qaeda wherever they seek a foothold.
Last weekend, while traveling in Brazil, the chief executive called the attack/no-fly zone orders in.
For Obama’s full speech tonight, click here.