Signing statements

One of the most bizarre things our current sitting president does is issue signing statements for any (every?) bill he signs into law. Don’t know what a signing statement is? Well here is a Washington Post article that covers the bases fairly well and goes on to say that the Government Accounting Office is investigating them. Some signing statements have included things like the office of the president is exempt and is allowed to wire-tap or open the mail if US residents without a warrant.

I say if Congress was not clear enough on a bill, a president should ask for clarity before signing it. This practice of giving one’s own spin on the law, and claiming that it is legal to do so, just pisses me off. It is just another example of how this president, and our government in general, feel they don’t have to follow the same rules we do. The best example that I can give to show what I mean is: I’d end up in prison if I ran up a debt proportional to the one the US federal government has.

I’d like to be issuing signing statements of my own. Just a few months back it would have been nice when signing a Parent Plus student loan if I could have written in the margin that I didn’t have to start paying the loan back until after my kid graduated. And how about a statement on the electric bill that states they will refund me for every minute my home goes without electricity. Or that cellular phone plan… I would love to have changed the hours which are free, how the “rollover” minutes work, what “roaming” means, etc., etc.. I bet if I did issue my own signing statements, and followed through on them, that I’d get arrested or sued.

But what if I could? I think the best signing statement of all would be one that I’d place beside my signature on election day. A statement that all of our government officials; federal, state and local–elected, appointed or hired; would be required to follow all the laws of the land as if they were Francis Q. Citizen. There would be no need to have a special “balanced budget amendment”, they would get the debt under control or go to jail. Wiretap without a warrant? Jail. Drive drunk? Jail. Jaywalk? Ticket. Falsify documents? Jail. Perjury? Jail.
I am not just talking the talk. I am a hired government official, and I would have to walk the walk as well. Wait! I’m already doing that.

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2 Responses

  1. If I wrote a “signing statement” on my ballot, it would be one holding politicians to their campaign platforms. I’m tired of the spin they all put on everything just so we’ll approve of them while they continue doing whatever they want.

    “Politician” wasn’t a dirty word to me until fairly recently. Now, I’m tired of the lies and self-interest of which too many politicians are guilty. America used to be a country to admire, with a government to admire. What happened?

  2. Signing statements piss me off. “I’ll sign this, but it doesn’t apply to me so I reserve the right to ignore it …”

    How fricking retarded and arrogant is this guy?

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