"It profits me but little that a vigilant authority always protects the tranquillity of my pleasures and constantly averts all dangers from my path, without my care or concern, if this same authority is the absolute master of my liberty and my life."

--Alexis de Tocqueville, Democracy in America

Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Obama as Failed ConLaw Professor

Arguably, the two great sea changes of the Obama Administration will end up being the legalization of gay marriage and the quasi-legalization of five million or more illegal immigrants.   Both could fundamentally change the character of the American civilization, by devaluing marriage, on the one hand, and by devaluing our Anglo-Saxon heritage, on the other.   Both involve Constitutional questions -- does the Equal Protection Clause demand equal treatment under state marriage laws?   And, can the President unilaterally choose not to enforce immigration laws as a matter of "prosecutorial discretion"?   When President Obama ran for office in 2008 he stated that he did not favor gay marriage.   Later he said he evolved.   When President Obama ran again for office in 2012 he stated that he did not have the authority to unilaterally grant amnesty to illegal immigrants.   Now, it must be supposed, he has "evolved" again.

Putting aside the arguments for or against the propositions, isn't it noteworthy that Obama, whose main credential when he first ran for President was that he had at one point been a Constitutional Law professor, now essentially admits that, on both of these somewhat important Constitutional Law questions, he had been wrong for the bulk of his Presidency and, hence, for the first two-plus decades of his career as a lawyer?

Either he must not have been a very good Constitutional Law scholar or else, perhaps, he just thinks that the Constitution matters less than whatever political expediency demands.  

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