I tend to agree with the former Speaker. Not so much because I’m a proponent of DOMA – far from it, I support gay marriage – but because I don’t think Presidents should be allowed to pick and choose which laws they enforce.
Former House Speaker Newt Gingrich, who plans within two weeks to announce if he will run for president, said today that if President Obama doesn’t change his mind and order his Justice Department to enforce the Defense of Marriage Act, Republicans in Congress should strike back and even consider impeachment proceedings.
“I believe the House Republicans next week should pass a resolution instructing the president to enforce the law and to obey his own constitutional oath, and they should say if he fails to do so that they will zero out [defund] the office of attorney general and take other steps as necessary until the president agrees to do his job,” said Gingrich. “His job is to enforce the rule of law and for us to start replacing the rule of law with the rule of Obama is a very dangerous precedent.”
A dangerous precedent, indeed. What use is Congress’ law-making authority if the President can simply choose to stop enforcing them when he chooses? Monarchs can do such things, not the elected representative of constitutional republics.
Obama’s decision on DOMA marks the latest manifestation of a disturbing trend from the President which is little respect for the rule of law. From Obamacare waivers being granted to the very unions that campaigned the hardest for the law to waivers from environmental regulations being granted to the President’s favorite corporate cronies it seems as though Obama feels the law only applies when he decides it applies.