Thursday, April 12, 2007

Pelosi's Felonious Shadow Presidency Isn't Just a Vast Right Wing Conspiracy Theory

Now she wants to go to Iran??? No wonder the rest of the world seems to think that we have two operating Heads of State, just like Europe (a President and a Prime Minister). What they don't understand is that our constitution and laws clearly leave foreign policy (especially with our enemies) to our only Head of State, the President of the United States. Unfortunately, that quaint piece of ancient legalese is also lost on our House Speaker, Ms. Nancy Pelosi.

The "Logan Act" (one of our oldest laws) makes it a felony and provides for a prison sentence of up to three years for any American, "without authority of the United States," to communicate with a foreign government in an effort to influence that government's behavior on any "disputes or controversies with the United States."

The WSJ Reports:

When proposing the law, Rep. Roger Griswold of Connecticut explained that the object was, as recorded in the Annals of Congress, "to punish a crime which goes to the destruction of the executive power of the government. He meant that description of crime which arises from an interference of individual citizens in the negotiations of our executive with foreign governments."

The Secretary of the Treasury under President Thomas Jefferson, who was wary of centralized government: "it would be extremely improper for a member of this House to enter into any correspondence with the French Republic . . . As we are not at war with France, an offence of this kind would not be high treason, yet it would be as criminal an act, as if we were at war . . . ."

Indeed, the offense is greater when the usurpation of the president's constitutional authority is done by a member of the legislature -- all the more so by a Speaker of the House -- because it violates not just statutory law but constitutes a usurpation of the powers of a separate branch and a breach of the oath of office Ms. Pelosi took to support the Constitution.

The Supreme Court has spoken clearly on this aspect of the separation of powers. In Marbury v. Madison, Chief Justice John Marshall used the president's authority over the Department of State as an illustration of those "important political powers" that, "being entrusted to the executive, the decision of the executive is conclusive." And in the landmark 1936 Curtiss-Wright case, the Supreme Court reaffirmed: "Into the field of negotiation the Senate cannot intrude, and Congress itself is powerless to invade it."
These trips of hers go beyond fact finding. If Pelosi continues to play the part of President II, then perhaps it's time to take a long hard look at a law that has been part of this country almost as long as the country itself has been in existence, and prosecute her under the Logan Act.

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