Michael Gerson of The Washington Post is disappointed with President Obama for issuing an executive order on immigration. He dislikes his decision to “act with the most expansive definition of presidential power” and for giving up on politics.
“Obama has now officially abandoned the harder path,” he laments, “not because the issues surrounding immigration will never be resolved (a case no one has adequately made) but because he wants to be the president to resolve them. Since our democratic process has proved disappointing during his time in office, we get a convenient reinterpretation of tradition — using a history of reasonable discretion in tying up the loose ends of a law to justify a major policy shift in the absence of law. This is motivated reasoning on steroids — and future presidents of both parties will likely find it appealing, on a variety of issues.”
Some might say this is selective reasoning on steroids. It’s rich to blame Mr Obama for using his executive powers when the legislature has been unable to do its job, which is, as the President said, to “pass a bill”.