executive power

Anniversary Reflections on the Last Days of King Louis XVI

Early on the morning of January 21, 1793, King Louis XVI heard his last Mass. Following Mass, the king was taken from his prison to the Palace Louis XV, where he would suffer the same fate on the same date as Agnes of Rome, the ancient martyr commemorated in the Mass of the day. This [...]

On the Relative Unimportance of Our Leaders

To most Americans, the election of Donald Trump to the presidency was a surprise, but for a certain segment of the population, the suddenly live prospect of “President Donald J. Trump” evoked stronger reactions. Groups of people that were described as “horrified” included “climate change supporters” (presumably this means “supporters of the fight against climate [...]

Put Not Your Trust in Princes

Now that the election is over, the nation’s attention turns to the Trump presidency. Leaving the stage is an administration that made it public policy to assault religious institutions. Many Catholics supported Mr. Trump in the hope that he could secure the future of the Supreme Court and end the more anti-religious policies of the [...]

How to Curtail Judicial Activism

I hear frequently in this year’s election campaign that Supreme Court appointments should be the key consideration in the choice between the presidential candidates. That’s certainly understandable, and perhaps true. It reflects, however, an unfortunate attitude—widespread and deeply ingrained in the American psyche—that the Court is somehow the ultimate, sovereign institution in the United States. [...]

Persecution More Likely With Court’s Marriage Decision

The U.S. Supreme Court has just engaged in its latest unconstitutional exercise of raw judicial power and surely its most extravagant attempt to forcibly remake American culture since the 1973 Roe v. Wade/Doe v. Bolton abortion cases. The Obergefell v. Hodges decision on same-sex “marriage” was based on the notion of “substantive due process”—which essentially [...]

Obama’s Immigration Decree

President Barack Obama’s reaction to the shellacking he and his policies received from the American people in the midterm elections surprised no one in its stubborn petulance. Along with some eye rolling and clearly perfunctory statements about how he would “cooperate” with the new Republican majority, President Obama made clear that he sees himself as [...]

Governors Who Properly Use or Misuse Executive Power

I have written in this column about how in these times when our traditional liberties and even such natural rights as religious freedom are under siege, we need to look to executive power—exercised in the right way—to help us. In recent months we have seen striking examples of how noted state governors in varying ways [...]

More on Presidential Power as Rescuer: A Rejoinder

Joe Hargrave’s response in Crisis to my article “Presidential Power: A Rescuer, Not a Nemesis” was thoughtful, but contained certain problematical assertions. The first was his suggestion that my call for a new American Cincinnatus—an utterly virtuous, capable, and self-limiting leader who will exercise sweeping executive power in our critical current situation—is an “appeal to [...]

Rescuing American Civilization: A Response to Stephen M. Krason

Yesterday, Crisis published a piece by Stephen M. Krason in which he argues that “the strong exertion of presidential power may be the best way after Obama to restore liberty and begin to mend the social fabric whose erosion has accelerated during his administration.” This appears to be part of an ongoing tendency, recently and [...]

Presidential Power: A Rescuer, Not a Nemesis

Conservative voices are railing against excessive presidential power in this Obama era of government by executive order to advance a destructive leftist political agenda. Their criticism is “spot-on,” but they need to consider that the strong exertion of presidential power may be the best way after Obama to restore liberty and begin to mend the [...]

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