Monday, July 24, 2006

American Bar Association Denounces Bush's Signing Statements

What I have said before about Bush's unprecedented use of "signing statements" that he attaches to bills when he signs them, has been denounced by the American Bar Association.

Bush's Tactic of Refusing Laws Is Probed
By Michael Abramowitz
Washington Post Staff Writer
Monday, July 24, 2006; Page A05

A panel of legal scholars and lawyers assembled by the American Bar Association is sharply criticizing the use of "signing statements" by President Bush that assert his right to ignore or not enforce laws passed by Congress.

In a report to be issued today, the ABA task force said that Bush has lodged more challenges to provisions of laws than all previous presidents combined.

The panel members described the development as a serious threat to the Constitution's system of checks and balances, and they urged Congress to pass legislation permitting court review of such statements.

"The president is indicating that he will not either enforce part or the entirety of congressional bills," said ABA president Michael S. Greco, a Massachusetts attorney. "We will be close to a constitutional crisis if this issue, the president's use of signing statements, is left unchecked."

The report seemed likely to fuel the controversy over signing statements, which Bush has used to challenge laws including a congressional ban on torture, a request for data on the USA Patriot Act, whistle-blower protections and the banning of U.S. troops in fighting rebels in Colombia.

(Full Story)

NYT's take - Legal Group Faults Bush for Ignoring Parts of Bills

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