Where does Trump Supreme Court nominee Neil Gorsuch stand on marijuana law?


Dylan Stableford

Senior Editor

Yahoo NewsFebruary 1, 2017

President Trump’s Supreme Court nominee, Neil Gorsuch, is a native of Colorado, the first state to legalize marijuana for recreational use. So where does Gorsuch stand on the pot issue?

It’s not entirely clear.

Gorsuch, a conservative federal judge on the 10th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Denver, has not voiced his views on legal weed — at least not publicly.

But the 49-year-old, who lives with his family in the cannabis-friendly college town of Boulder and teaches at the University of Colorado Law School, has offered a written opinion in several marijuana-related cases.

In 2010 (U.S. v. Daniel and Mary Quaintance), Gorsuch ruled against a couple who tried to argue that federal marijuana distribution offenses should be dismissed on religious grounds because he found the defendants to be insincere:

Daniel and Mary Quaintance responded to their indictment for conspiracy and possession with intent to distribute marijuana with a motion to dismiss. They didn’t deny their involvement with the drug, but countered that they are the founding members of the Church of Cognizance, which teaches that marijuana is a deity and sacrament. As a result, they submitted, any prosecution of them is precluded by the Religious Freedom Restoration Act (“RFRA”), which forbids the federal government from substantially burdening sincere religious exercises absent a countervailing compelling governmental interest.

After taking extensive evidence, the district court denied the motion to dismiss. It held, as a matter of law, that the Quaintances’ professed beliefs are not religious but secular. In addition and in any event, the district court found, as a matter of fact, that the Quaintances don’t sincerely hold the religious beliefs they claim to hold, but instead seek to use the cover of religion to pursue secular drug trafficking activities.

In 2013 (Family of Ryan Wilson v. City of Lafayette and Taser International), Gorsuch held that a Colorado police officer’s fatal Taser use on a man who was fleeing a marijuana arrest was justified:

Illegal processing and manufacturing of marijuana may not be inherently violent crimes but … they were felonies under Colorado law at the time of the incident. And Officer Harris testified, without rebuttal, that he had been trained that people who grow marijuana illegally tend to be armed and ready to use force to protect themselves and their unlawful investments.

And in 2015 (Feinberg et al. v. IRS), Gorsuch ruled against the owners of a Colorado dispensary who had refused to turn over data to the Internal Revenue Service because they feared they would be incriminating themselves, since marijuana remains illegal under federal law:

This case owes its genesis to the mixed messages the federal government is sending these days about the distribution of marijuana. The Feinbergs and Ms. McDonald run Total Health Concepts, or THC, a not-so-subtly-named Colorado marijuana dispensary. They run the business with the blessing of state authorities but in defiance of federal criminal law. Even so, officials at the Department of Justice have now twice instructed field prosecutors that they should generally decline to enforce Congress’s statutory command when states like Colorado license operations like THC. At the same time and just across 10th Street in Washington, D.C., officials at the IRS refuse to recognize business expense deductions claimed by companies like THC on the ground that their conduct violates federal criminal drug laws. So it is that today prosecutors will almost always overlook federal marijuana distribution crimes in Colorado but the tax man never will.

“Yes, the Fifth Amendment normally shields individuals from having to admit to criminal activity,” Gorsuch explained. “But, the IRS argued, because DOJ’s memoranda generally instruct federal prosecutors not to prosecute cases like this one, the petitioners should be forced to divulge the requested information anyway. So it is the government simultaneously urged the court to take seriously its claim that the petitioners are violating federal criminal law and to discount the possibility that it would enforce federal criminal law.”

Outside of those cases, there isn’t much on Gorsuch’s pot stance to go on. However, one of Gorsuch’s former students told a website called the Joint Blog that he once asked the Colorado jurist whether he supports legalization of marijuana.

Gorsuch reportedly responded by saying that he “at the very least” supports states’ rights in regulating marijuana. Cannabis, like heroin and LSD, is currently a Schedule I drug under federal policy, “defined as drugs with no currently accepted medical use and a high potential for abuse.”

The cannabis industry remains cautiously optimistic Gorsuch will allow states to continue their march toward marijuana legalization. (Yahoo News photo illustration; photos: AP)

The cannabis industry remains cautiously optimistic that Neil Gorsuch, if he is confirmed as a Supreme Court justice, will allow states to continue their march toward marijuana legalization. (Yahoo News photo illustration; photos: AP)

If the account is true, that would put Gorsuch more or less in line with the man who nominated him.

At a campaign event in October 2015, Trump said he thinks legalization of pot should be “a state issue, state-by-state.”

In an interview with Fox News that year, Trump said he supports medical marijuana “100 percent.”

Which is why marijuana industry leaders are cautiously optimistic about the prospects of cannabusiness growth in the Trump era.

“For the most part, experts all think we will see a continuation of some form of the status quo,” Chris Walsh, editor of Marijuana Business Daily, told Yahoo Finance last month. “Maybe there will be some efforts to crack down here and there, but the consensus is that a widespread crackdown will be difficult.”

“If Trump’s going to attack the marijuana industry — like the recreational side, or the new states that legalized — it’s going to be very difficult for him to do that,” Walsh added. “He’s going to have a very hard time unwinding all the time and money and effort that states have put into these programs.”

The same goes for Gorsuch.

“We believe that a conservative legal philosophy should be consistent with respect for federalism and state sovereignty,” Taylor West, deputy director of the National Cannabis Industry Association, wrote in an email to Yahoo News. “Voters in 28 states have chosen to establish legal, regulated cannabis programs in their states, and state lawmakers and regulators have implemented those programs. Trampling on those state initiatives would be the kind of federal overreach that conservative judicial leaders typically speak out against.”

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KDA proposes legislation to help feed the hungry


Ag News

 

Proposals would double tax credit for donated food, strengthen liability protections

For Immediate Release
Monday, January 30, 2017
For more information contact:
Angela Blank
(502) 573-0450

FRANKFORT, Ky. — The Kentucky Department of Agriculture (KDA) has come forward with legislation to help businesses and .individuals who wish to donate food to organizations that serve hungry Kentuckians.

“These measures would provide incentives and protections for those who want to join the fight against hunger in Kentucky,” Agriculture Commissioner Ryan Quarles said. “This is due to the work of the Hunger Task Force, which met for the first time last spring. This is just the beginning of our efforts to reduce food insecurity in the Commonwealth.”

One proposal would double the tax credit for food products donated to food banks to 20 percent. The current tax credit is 10 percent and is scheduled to expire at the end of this year. Quarles also called for the tax credit to be made permanent. Few Kentucky farmers know about the tax credit, and even fewer use it. The state Department of Revenue reported that only one taxpayer was approved to claim the credit in its first two years. Quarles said this measure would provide a stronger financial incentive for farmers to donate surplus foods.

A second proposal would strengthen the shield against legal liability for food donations beyond that of the federal Good Samaritan Food Donation Act, making Kentucky’s food donor immunity shield one of the strongest in the nation. The measure would provide a stronger immunity shield for individuals and businesses, and their employees, who donate to food banks; for food banks and their employees; and for landowners who allow gleaners to come onto their land to pick vegetables and fruits for the hungry.

Commissioner Quarles launched the first-of-its-kind Kentucky Hunger Initiative and formed the Hunger Task Force last spring to bring together farmers, businesses, charitable organizations, faith groups, community leaders, government entities, and others to study food insecurity in Kentucky and take an inventory of the resources that can be utilized against the problem.

To raise awareness of the scope of the hunger problem in Kentucky, the KDA will join the Kentucky Association of Food Banks to host the annual Rally to Solve Hunger on Feb. 7 at 1 p.m. EST at the Capitol Rotunda.

Map the Meal Gap 2016, an annual study by Feeding America, revealed that one in six Kentuckians – including one in five children – was food insecure in 2014, meaning that consistent access to adequate food is limited by a lack of money and other resources at times during the year. Kentucky organizations that serve the hungry fed an estimated 58 million meals to approximately 611,000 Kentuckians in 2016.

For more information about the Hunger Initiative and the Hunger Task Force, go to kyagr.com/hunger.

Would a Border Water Canal Be Better Than President Trump’s Border Wall?


By CrisEricson2016 | Tue, January 31 2017

POTUS BORDER WALL?

POTUS stands for President of the United States of America. Our current President is Donald J. Trump and he wants to build a Border Wall between the United States of America and Mexico.

Some people think this is a male fantasy, a type of penis elongation wet dream, spitting out illegal aliens instead of sperm.

Many Presidents of the United States of America have been known to love sex, such as POTUS John F. Kennedy and POTUS Bill Clinton. Men with high testosterone levels need lots of activity to release their urges. Running for political office is therapy for them, they need to shake a lot of hands, they need all that contact with people. They probably have some honey bee DNA.

President Donald J. Trump probably also has some pittbull DNA from eating genetically modified foods, as well as a little un-neutered male cat DNA. The Donald needs to mark his territory.

Citizens shouldn’t try to curtail his instinctive behavior, there are other ways to deal with The Donald.

So, how do we deal with The Donald? Your guess is as good as mine, but I’ll give it a try!

Please keep in mind that rousing protests outside the White House will only excite and stimulate President Donald J. Trump, so you may be certain his wife will probably get pregnant again soon.

My first tactic in dealing with The Donald is to keep in mind that he is sexy, and virulent and moist, overall. Sexy men like water, they like the idea of slipping and sliding in and out. So, how do we turn a Border Wall into a Border Water Canal concept? 

A Border Wall doesn’t have to be a Wall at all;
it could be an agricultural canal to supply fresh water along the border, from the Gulf of Mexico to the Pacific Ocean, overseen by drones the whole length.

A Border Canal would create a new green growing zone all along the Border between Mexico and Texas and Mexico and New Mexico and Mexico and Arizona and Mexico and California, a great deal of which is desert sands. This would create permanent new farms and jobs taking care of fruit and vegetable crops, and new schools for the children, etc.

Half of the water from the new Border Canal would go to agricultural fruit and vegetable farms in Mexico, for a per-gallon fee; and half would go to agricultural fruit and vegetable farms in the American States of Texas, New Mexico, Arizona and California. I would suggest a stipulation that none goes to cattle ranches, but they would scream their heads off, because cattle weigh more and get more money (per pound) at the scales when the cattle are allowed to drink more water. Actually, let the cattle have water, so long as their cow platters go fertilizing   the fruit tree farms.

Also, to pay for the Border Canal, and to give tours to the protesters who will be shrieking their heads off that to build a Border Canal is an environmental disaster digging up natural areas and protected parks, we will have lots of solar powered motor boats with computer GPS chips.

The tourists can rent the solar powered motor boats and likewise, the protesters, so they can charge up and down the 2,000 stretch of canal waving protest signs against environmental destruction of natural areas – and while they are shouting chants, they will see all of the fruit and vegetable agricultural farms are vibrant and alive, green and growing, and the cattle gazing on green grass and alfalfa are fat. 2,000 miles of farms on each side of the Border Canal, lots of new employment.

So, how is President Donald J. Trump going to pay for this new Border Canal? He’s not! Ridiculous! Why should he? He has resources! Aren’t there about 2 million people in prison in the United States of America? Sitting there with a roof over their heads, served three meals a day and getting fat? Put them to work! Take them back from the private-for-profit prisons! They should be working for the taxpayers, not the private-for-profit prisons!

Your arithmetic is probably pretty good, even if you went to public schools in the U.S.A. and were socially promoted from one grade to the next higher grade without learning anything because of the “mafia” – oops, I mean the Teachers’ Union.

Well, lets give it a try here: a 2000 mile long Border Canal divided by about 1,000,000 (million) healthy prisoners (skip the other million, they are being denied health care in prison and denied outdoor exercise and served fake chemical slop instead of food) – comes to about 250 prisoners per 1/2 (one-half) mile. How long will it take 250 prisoners per each one-half mile of the Border Canal to dig it wide enough and deep enough to carry water all the way from the Gulf of Mexico to the Pacific Ocean, and have cruising room on the surface for solar powered motor boats? Remember, a lot of this area is sand and rock, so don’t get excited about this happening overnight.
Go out in your own yard and dig a hole any size and measure it and time it, and then start multiplying one million prisoners doing that.

Well, you get the idea, this would require computer models like a video game or cartoon. 2,000 miles, lots of sand and rock, and one million prisoners. Extreme heat will make them collapse unless the working hours are very early before sun up and late in the day after sun down. Mexicans have an afternoon siesta for a reason. And you have to have trailers for the prisoners to sleep in and food served to them. You have to be ready to trust the prisoners with pick axes – (do you like that part of it?)

President Donald J. Trump could grant pardons to prisoners who perform above average and sing songs while working to keep other workers happy.

If too many prisoners get sick from  heat exhaustion, just arrest a bunch of the protesters and put them to work. Remember, we are talking 90 degrees in the shade during morning and evening in some desert areas.

There are no cool hours in the desert depending on the time of year.

Now, you tell me why the Border Water Canal won’t work to keep undocumented illegal aliens from crossing the border between Mexico and the United States of America?

Think about the terrorists pretending to be Mexicans and El Salvadorans and Guatemalans; do you seriously think any border patrol agent can tell the difference? Think again! The undocumented illegal aliens can swim across the Border Canal, they can use a disposable blow-up air raft, they can snorkel across or use under-water diving equipment and air tanks – so how would POTUS stop all of that?

President Donald Trump would certainly have flying spy drones patrolling the entire 2,000 mile Border Canal with border police speeding east and west along the Canal, some of them having once worked on cattle ranches would use lassos to capture the swimming illegal aliens, and large fish nets, and POTUS would erect huge American Flag poles with whale nets attached to the bottom of the flag poles and sunk underwater, so every now and then a crane next to the flag pole could lift up the net and remove some of the illegal aliens. Oooops- nasty phrase, I mean undocumented workers.

Of course, if President Donald Trump fills up the 2,000 mile Border Canal with Killer Whales and Sharks, that’s not really fair, their natural diet does not include illegal aliens and they could get sick and the nature lovers would protest like crazy. We all want a Movie of the first 100 Days in Office of POTUS Donald Trump, but we don’t want to be too grossed out.

Part of the Border Canal will be allocated to fish farms, of course, that only makes common sense, because the flow of water would be going from the Gulf of Mexico to the Pacific Ocean, and the Border Canal would be wide enough and deep enough to section off fish farms where the fish are lured down open pipes into breeding areas. This is all good, more jobs.

Now, what if an illegal alien undocumented worker actual gets across the Border Canal? No problems, just have a drone pick him up and with robotic gripper arms, slip on a GPS bracelet and hand cuffs and deliver the worker to any farm anywhere in the U.S.A. which has contacted Amazon, or any such company, for a Drone Delivery, and drop the worker off with a new social security number and automatic billing and garnishment of wages for taxes installed in a computer chip drilled into the worker during the Drone Deliver Flight. No one will hear the worker screaming up in the sky at the right altitude.

Are you still thinking that President Donald J. Trump’s Wall idea is better than this Border Water Canal idea? Think of the Border Canal as a birth canal. Fish farms, Lobster, I’m already hungry, pass the butter, please!

To tell POTUS, President of the United States of America, Donald J. Trump, to not build a Border Wall or a Border Canal, would have as much effect as telling a bird not to build a nest, or to tell a pit-bull not to dig holes all over your front yard – it’s in their DNA; like an artist descended by a caveman who did cave drawings, you can’t stop certain behavior.

How many children in the U.S.A. are given building blocks to play with?

So, get used to it. President Donald Trump just happens to have more testosterone than our most recent President, and this trend is born out in scientific research – apparently men born more recently have 30% less testosterone – and chemicals used for insecticides may be the reason. Glyphosate, for one, is blamed by some scientists
for reducing male testosterone. The Donald must build. All we can do is re-direct him to digging rather than stacking blocks.

Please take the time to search internet images
for the border between Texas and Mexico, and New Mexico and Mexico, and Arizona and Mexico, and California and Mexico. Imagine a Border Wall or a Border Canal in those photos you see on the internet.

Photo:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mexico%E2%80%93United_States_border

 

SOURCE LINK

Marijuana lobby goes mainstream


By Reid Wilson – 02/01/17 06:00 AM EST

Marijuana lobby goes mainstream

State regulators and government officials involved in crafting rules for the budding legal and medical marijuana industry are going to pot. 

In a sign that the budding marijuana industry is moving away from the fringes and into the political mainstream, into the political mainstream, a number of officials once tasked with managing the growing legal cannabis sector are leaving their government positions to take jobs in the sector.  

Many are advising states and cities as voters loosen marijuana restrictions across the country. Others are becoming industry advocates, lobbying the former colleagues and coworkers they left behind to craft more favorable rules and regulations. 

In Colorado, Andrew Freedman, once the state’s director of marijuana coordination, and Lewis Koski, who headed the state Marijuana Enforcement Division, teamed up to form a consulting firm that advises local and state governments on crafting new marijuana regulations. Laura Harris, Koski’s predecessor at the Marijuana Enforcement Division, took a post this month as director of the Colorado Cannabis Chamber of Commerce. 

Manny Munson-Regala, who oversaw Minnesota’s medical marijuana program, now runs a consulting firm of his own. John O’Brien resigned his post overseeing New Jersey’s medical marijuana program to take a job as chief compliance officer of a New York cannabis company. And several former top officials at Washington State’s Liquor and Cannabis Board have left in recent years to form their own firms. 

“That’s how America works. You work for the government, then you become a lobbyist,” said Ian Eisenberg, a leader in the legal marijuana industry who runs Uncle Ike’s, a dispensary in Seattle, Wash. “I don’t think it’s any different than the defense industry.”

Those who have made the jump from the government sector to the private sector say they offer a valuable service, both to governments that need to establish new rules and to the businesses that need to navigate complex regulatory schemes that have never been implemented before.

“We’re the only ones to have stood this up before,” said Freedman, who now consults with governments looking to set up their regulatory structures. “There’s a real opportunity to come in and show lessons learned quickly.”

The comparison between legal marijuana and the defense industry is apt: North American consumers spent $6.9 billion on legal cannabis products in 2016, a figure that is expected to grow to $21 billion by 2021, according to an analysis by Arcview Market Research, a leading industry observer.

“This is an industry that ultimately is going to be, in gross revenues, what, eleven figures,” said Rob Kampia, co-founder of the Marijuana Policy Project. “Wouldn’t you rather have the most well-informed people in the private sector and the government sector actually knowing what they’re talking about?”

But opponents of legalized pot, and some government transparency groups, say the relationship between the marijuana industry and its regulators should be treated like any other.

“The revolving door from government to private sector isn’t anything new, but it represents the worst of our politics. This isn’t the paper clip or oven mitt lobby, this is the drug lobby,” said Kevin Sabet, who heads Smart Approaches to Marijuana, a group that opposes legalization. And we know that the pot lobby wants to make money, just like big tobacco executives do.”

Aaron Scherb, legislative affairs director at the government transparency group Common Cause, said states should implement a cooling-off period between the time when a regulator leaves government service and when he or she begins working on behalf of the industry.

“These individuals are the most familiar with the rules and regulations of a particular industry, and their experience means they’re able to exploit loopholes,” Scherb said. “At least some minimal amount of time is appropriate so we can avoid this revolving door problem.” 

At least one state, Minnesota, required its regulators to take a year off before returning to work in the field they oversaw. Munson-Regala, the former head of the state’s medical marijuana program, said that reminded him of other industries he helped regulate, like the insurance business. 

“Embedded in that one-year cooling off period was an understanding that regulators are in a good position to help folks who are being regulated, in part because they understand what it takes to be compliant,” Munson-Regala said in an interview.

The revolving door is just one of the ways an industry that was once seen as the domain of hippies is trying to professionalize. Just a few years ago, proponents of legalizing marijuana brought 1970s-era stoner icon Tommy Chong to Capitol Hill to woo lawmakers. 

Today, Chong is gone, replaced by a booming industry of cultivators and retailers — and the trade shows, consultants and lobbyists who offer services to boost their business.

On Tuesday, the National Cannabis Industry Association kicked off a two-day Seed to Sale trade show in Denver, focusing on business practices for producers and retailers. The group’s first trade show several years ago attracted 800 participants; this year, they expect 2,000 vendors — and 4,000 to 5,000 at the annual Cannabis Business Summit and Expo, said Taylor West, the group’s deputy director. In November, 10,000 people showed up to another trade show in Las Vegas.

“This industry is not slowing down,” West said.

Around the country, hundreds of lobbyists are already bending lawmakers’ ears on marijuana measures. In Colorado alone, 81 lobbyists reported advocating on marijuana proposals before the state legislature, according to data filed with the Secretary of State’s office. 

Recreational marijuana use has been legal in Washington and California since 2013. Voters passed legalization measures in Alaska, Oregon and the District of Columbia in 2014, and in California, Nevada, Massachusetts and Maine this year. On Monday, Maine’s legalization measure became law.

Marijuana is now legal to possess and consume in the four states where voters passed legalization laws this year. But purchasing and selling marijuana and cannabis edibles are on hold until regulators come up with rules governing everything from production to retail — what the industry calls Seed to Sale. 

Most states have a year, under ballot measures passed in November, to implement their new structures. And as regulators move to create those rules, they will receive plenty of input from those who structured systems in other states.

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Get America out of United Nations


To the editor:

The United Nations was founded in 1945 at a founding conference in San Francisco. In attendance were scores of communists, communist dupes, Soviet agents and American traitors. The secretary general at the founding conference, Alger Hiss, spent 20 years in our prison system for lying under oath about being a communist. The UN was founded to prevent any future wars and promote world peace. Conversely, we have been at war someplace in the world ever since.

The United Nations cannot push their agenda of world socialist government directly. If they do, the people will catch on. They do it through nongovernmental organizations like ICLEI (International Council on Local Environmental Initiatives) that has about 1,100 member municipalities throughout the world under their propaganda thumb. Through a fairly complicated “visioning process” and manipulating promised grants from the EPA, DOT and HUD they have given training to the local city councils in the United Nations agenda for eventually total control.

This is done locally through more familiar NGOs like Envision Utah, League of Cities and Towns and Southeast Idaho Council of Governments. There are thousands of NGOs worldwide pushing Agenda 21 into local municipalities. It is no accident that the comprehensive plan for Singapore is not much different from the plan for Logan Utah.

This has been going on for many years with Land Use Planning. Our local officials no longer answer to the people that elect them. Many of them through their political correct nice guy methods will rival the arrogance of the National Socialists of 1939 Germany while totally ignoring their constituents. They attend summits sponsored by these United Nations NGOs. These people we have elected then make the transition from the good old boy at the coffee shop and benevolent PHD down the street into hard core environmentalists, if they are not already, passing sustainable development ordinances suggested by Agenda 21 through the NGOs.

In other words your city councilmen and county commissioners have now submitted to a foreign power. Now more than ever we need to get us out of the United Nations. Your representatives need to be encouraged to seek H.R.193 vote yes and get us out of the United Nations this year. Trump has said he wants to cut off American funding for the UN Our legislators need to extradite that.

Without the guidelines and control from the United Nations our locals might find another guideline to embrace. The Constitution and their oath of office would be a nice place to start. Local planners have all but eliminated property rights and have no intentions of stopping there. Get America out of the United Nations now!

Mike Lowe

Preston

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(OR) Senate Bill 301 may make marijuana drug tests illegal in the workplace


by Kimberly Kolliner

Monday, January 30th 2017

MEDFORD, Ore. – Regardless of if it’s legal in the state, right now, failing a marijuana drug test could cost you your job.

“For us, marijuana is still classified federally as a schedule 1 controlled substance so we do include it in our drug screening,” People’s Bank Chief Operating Officer, Jeri Reno.

However, this may change.

The Oregon Senate has introduced Bill 301, which proposes marijuana testing in the work place to be illegal, because its use in the state is legal.

This is something that Reno sees no immediate threat with.

“I think that’s going to be a wave of the future in that just like alcohol, marijuana is going to be used recreational and it would be honored as such. I think we’ll just see what it brings,” Reno said.

As an employer, Reno says work performance is the only thing she would be concerned with.

Something the bill also clearly outlines.

“We essentially are looking for employees who are productive and without possibility of being impaired in the workplace,” Reno said.

She believes if marijuana is used on employees off time, it should have no burden on employees while they’re on the clock.

“I would think our employees would continue to be responsible in the way they use marijuana or alcohol and I wouldn’t see much difference in the workplace,” Reno said.

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Presidential Executive Orders and the Constitution: What Can Trump Really Do?


David Schultz

What is an executive order and what can presidents such as Trump do with them?
Article I, Section 7 of the Constitution describes the process for how a bill becomes a law. The process requires both houses of Congress to pass legislation with identical language and for it to be signed by the president. In the alternative, Congress by two-thirds majorities in both Houses can override a presidential veto to make something a law, and in some cases bills the president has not signed but not vetoed and returned to Congress may also become a law (if the president refuses to return a bill adopted in the last 10 days of a session, the president has exercised what is known as a pocket veto). Once a bill becomes a law it is legally binding, enforceable by the executive branch.
Yet the congressional route is not the only way law is created. Orders by the courts become binding and enforceable as law by the courts. In some circumstances, orders issued by the President of the United States too carry the force of law. These executive orders have been issued by presidents since the time George Washington became president, and over time they have been used by almost every president, often either with support or controversy.
The legal or constitutional basis for executive orders has several sources. The first is in Article II, Section I, Clause 1,which vests in the president the executive power, and Article II, Section 3, which requires that presidents “take care that the laws be faithfully executed.” While lacking precise definition, the executive power gives presidents broad enforcement authority to use their discretion to determine how to enforce the law or to otherwise manage the resources and staff of the executive department. Second, executive orders have a legal basis in power delegated by Congress to the president or executive department agencies. Congress may delegate to the Environmental Protection Agency, for example, authority to make determinations about what constitutes clean air or water under the Clean Water Act of 1972 or Clean Air Act of 1973. This delegation power is subject to the constitutional limits outlined by a host of Supreme Court decision.
Third, since the adoption of the Administrative Procedures Act (APA) in 1946, there is a complex process and structure for how administrative agencies and members of the executive branch can make rules and have then become legally binding. Taken together, these constitutional clauses, specific congressional delegation, and the rule making process of the APA form the legal basis of presidential executive orders.
With the exception of President William Henry Harrison who died barely a month after being sworn into office, every president has issued executive orders. George Washington issued the first one, directing officers of the Articles of Confederation government to compose a report for his administration on the status or state of affairs of America. Other famous orders included Thomas Jefferson ordering the Louisiana Purchase, James Knox Polk ordering the annexation of Texas, Abraham Lincoln’s Emancipation Proclamation, Franklin Roosevelt ordering the internment of Japanese-Americans during World War II, and John Kennedy creating the Peace Corps. The numbering of executive orders began in 1907, and not until the Federal Registration Act of 1936 was there a formal process for recording executive orders. Prior to 1936 and 1907 executive orders were issued less formally.
From 1789 to the end of the Obama presidency there have been nearly 14,000 executive orders. Franklin Roosevelt holds the record with 3,721 orders, with second place going to Woodrow Wilson at 1,803, and third place to Calvin Coolidge with 1,203. Among recent presidents, Bill Clinton issued 364, George Bush 291, and Barack Obama fill in. The American Presidency Project at http://www.presidency.ucsb.edu/data/orders.php maintains a list of all executive orders.
In the last several years, partisan and political gridlock between Congress and the president has led the latter into using executive orders as a way of addressing issues or creating rules of laws in the absence of explicit congressional action. The Obama Administration through the EPA issued rules regulating carbon emissions. Yet in Murray Energy Company v. Environmental Protection Agency, U.S., ;136 S.Ct. 999; 194 L.Ed.2d 18 (2016) in a suit brought by more than two dozen states and several utility company, the Supreme Court in a 5-3 vote issued a stay on the rules pending review by the Court of Appeals. In United States v. Texas, ___ U.S. ; 136 S.Ct. 2271 (2016), the Supreme Court deadlocked 4-4 and issued a per curiam decision that upheld a lower decision that issued an injunction to prevent enforcement of an executive order or program entitled Deferred Action for Parents of Americans and Lawful Permanent Residents (DAPA), which would provide legal presence for illegal immigrants who were parents of citizens or lawful permanent residents. This decision effectively ended President Obama’s effort to use an executive order to effect immigration reform. The lower court decision is provided in this book.
While many criticize executive orders as a way to circumvent Congress and the separation of powers process, there is no question that these orders are a major part of federal executive power that is unlikely to disappear in the future. However, as should be clear, presidents are not kings and do not have any inherent power to issue orders. Their authority must come from the Constitution or law, subject to limits. Nor are presidents like Captain Pikard able simply to say “Make it so” and it will happen. Once presidents do issue executive orders they carry the binding force of law and they are hard to repeal or undue. This will make it difficult for Trump to undo except a very few of Obama’s recent executive orders. Conversely, moving forward , any of Trump’s orders will have to follow a specific process to have the force of law, and there are many things he simply cannot order.
Finally, when one looks at the executive orders Trump has already issued, they really are so vague and general that they really do not do anything. His first on Obamacare did not really order anyone to do anything, and the executive order on the Mexican wall too was vacuous and could not really command anything, especially when it required an appropriation of money that Trump did not have. In many cases these “executive orders” seem more like press releases or public relations than real legally-binding executive orders.

Follow David Schultz on Twitter: www.twitter.com/ProfDSchultz

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Presidential Executive Orders and the Constitution: What Can Trump Really Do?


David Schultz

What is an executive order and what can presidents such as Trump do with them?
Article I, Section 7 of the Constitution describes the process for how a bill becomes a law. The process requires both houses of Congress to pass legislation with identical language and for it to be signed by the president. In the alternative, Congress by two-thirds majorities in both Houses can override a presidential veto to make something a law, and in some cases bills the president has not signed but not vetoed and returned to Congress may also become a law (if the president refuses to return a bill adopted in the last 10 days of a session, the president has exercised what is known as a pocket veto). Once a bill becomes a law it is legally binding, enforceable by the executive branch.
Yet the congressional route is not the only way law is created. Orders by the courts become binding and enforceable as law by the courts. In some circumstances, orders issued by the President of the United States too carry the force of law. These executive orders have been issued by presidents since the time George Washington became president, and over time they have been used by almost every president, often either with support or controversy.
The legal or constitutional basis for executive orders has several sources. The first is in Article II, Section I, Clause 1,which vests in the president the executive power, and Article II, Section 3, which requires that presidents “take care that the laws be faithfully executed.” While lacking precise definition, the executive power gives presidents broad enforcement authority to use their discretion to determine how to enforce the law or to otherwise manage the resources and staff of the executive department. Second, executive orders have a legal basis in power delegated by Congress to the president or executive department agencies. Congress may delegate to the Environmental Protection Agency, for example, authority to make determinations about what constitutes clean air or water under the Clean Water Act of 1972 or Clean Air Act of 1973. This delegation power is subject to the constitutional limits outlined by a host of Supreme Court decision.
Third, since the adoption of the Administrative Procedures Act (APA) in 1946, there is a complex process and structure for how administrative agencies and members of the executive branch can make rules and have then become legally binding. Taken together, these constitutional clauses, specific congressional delegation, and the rule making process of the APA form the legal basis of presidential executive orders.
With the exception of President William Henry Harrison who died barely a month after being sworn into office, every president has issued executive orders. George Washington issued the first one, directing officers of the Articles of Confederation government to compose a report for his administration on the status or state of affairs of America. Other famous orders included Thomas Jefferson ordering the Louisiana Purchase, James Knox Polk ordering the annexation of Texas, Abraham Lincoln’s Emancipation Proclamation, Franklin Roosevelt ordering the internment of Japanese-Americans during World War II, and John Kennedy creating the Peace Corps. The numbering of executive orders began in 1907, and not until the Federal Registration Act of 1936 was there a formal process for recording executive orders. Prior to 1936 and 1907 executive orders were issued less formally.
From 1789 to the end of the Obama presidency there have been nearly 14,000 executive orders. Franklin Roosevelt holds the record with 3,721 orders, with second place going to Woodrow Wilson at 1,803, and third place to Calvin Coolidge with 1,203. Among recent presidents, Bill Clinton issued 364, George Bush 291, and Barack Obama fill in. The American Presidency Project at http://www.presidency.ucsb.edu/data/orders.php maintains a list of all executive orders.
In the last several years, partisan and political gridlock between Congress and the president has led the latter into using executive orders as a way of addressing issues or creating rules of laws in the absence of explicit congressional action. The Obama Administration through the EPA issued rules regulating carbon emissions. Yet in Murray Energy Company v. Environmental Protection Agency, U.S., ;136 S.Ct. 999; 194 L.Ed.2d 18 (2016) in a suit brought by more than two dozen states and several utility company, the Supreme Court in a 5-3 vote issued a stay on the rules pending review by the Court of Appeals. In United States v. Texas, ___ U.S. ; 136 S.Ct. 2271 (2016), the Supreme Court deadlocked 4-4 and issued a per curiam decision that upheld a lower decision that issued an injunction to prevent enforcement of an executive order or program entitled Deferred Action for Parents of Americans and Lawful Permanent Residents (DAPA), which would provide legal presence for illegal immigrants who were parents of citizens or lawful permanent residents. This decision effectively ended President Obama’s effort to use an executive order to effect immigration reform. The lower court decision is provided in this book.
While many criticize executive orders as a way to circumvent Congress and the separation of powers process, there is no question that these orders are a major part of federal executive power that is unlikely to disappear in the future. However, as should be clear, presidents are not kings and do not have any inherent power to issue orders. Their authority must come from the Constitution or law, subject to limits. Nor are presidents like Captain Pikard able simply to say “Make it so” and it will happen. Once presidents do issue executive orders they carry the binding force of law and they are hard to repeal or undue. This will make it difficult for Trump to undo except a very few of Obama’s recent executive orders. Conversely, moving forward , any of Trump’s orders will have to follow a specific process to have the force of law, and there are many things he simply cannot order.
Finally, when one looks at the executive orders Trump has already issued, they really are so vague and general that they really do not do anything. His first on Obamacare did not really order anyone to do anything, and the executive order on the Mexican wall too was vacuous and could not really command anything, especially when it required an appropriation of money that Trump did not have. In many cases these “executive orders” seem more like press releases or public relations than real legally-binding executive orders.

Follow David Schultz on Twitter: www.twitter.com/ProfDSchultz

CONTINUE READING…

Presidential Executive Orders and the Constitution: What Can Trump Really Do?


David Schultz

What is an executive order and what can presidents such as Trump do with them?
Article I, Section 7 of the Constitution describes the process for how a bill becomes a law. The process requires both houses of Congress to pass legislation with identical language and for it to be signed by the president. In the alternative, Congress by two-thirds majorities in both Houses can override a presidential veto to make something a law, and in some cases bills the president has not signed but not vetoed and returned to Congress may also become a law (if the president refuses to return a bill adopted in the last 10 days of a session, the president has exercised what is known as a pocket veto). Once a bill becomes a law it is legally binding, enforceable by the executive branch.
Yet the congressional route is not the only way law is created. Orders by the courts become binding and enforceable as law by the courts. In some circumstances, orders issued by the President of the United States too carry the force of law. These executive orders have been issued by presidents since the time George Washington became president, and over time they have been used by almost every president, often either with support or controversy.
The legal or constitutional basis for executive orders has several sources. The first is in Article II, Section I, Clause 1,which vests in the president the executive power, and Article II, Section 3, which requires that presidents “take care that the laws be faithfully executed.” While lacking precise definition, the executive power gives presidents broad enforcement authority to use their discretion to determine how to enforce the law or to otherwise manage the resources and staff of the executive department. Second, executive orders have a legal basis in power delegated by Congress to the president or executive department agencies. Congress may delegate to the Environmental Protection Agency, for example, authority to make determinations about what constitutes clean air or water under the Clean Water Act of 1972 or Clean Air Act of 1973. This delegation power is subject to the constitutional limits outlined by a host of Supreme Court decision.
Third, since the adoption of the Administrative Procedures Act (APA) in 1946, there is a complex process and structure for how administrative agencies and members of the executive branch can make rules and have then become legally binding. Taken together, these constitutional clauses, specific congressional delegation, and the rule making process of the APA form the legal basis of presidential executive orders.
With the exception of President William Henry Harrison who died barely a month after being sworn into office, every president has issued executive orders. George Washington issued the first one, directing officers of the Articles of Confederation government to compose a report for his administration on the status or state of affairs of America. Other famous orders included Thomas Jefferson ordering the Louisiana Purchase, James Knox Polk ordering the annexation of Texas, Abraham Lincoln’s Emancipation Proclamation, Franklin Roosevelt ordering the internment of Japanese-Americans during World War II, and John Kennedy creating the Peace Corps. The numbering of executive orders began in 1907, and not until the Federal Registration Act of 1936 was there a formal process for recording executive orders. Prior to 1936 and 1907 executive orders were issued less formally.
From 1789 to the end of the Obama presidency there have been nearly 14,000 executive orders. Franklin Roosevelt holds the record with 3,721 orders, with second place going to Woodrow Wilson at 1,803, and third place to Calvin Coolidge with 1,203. Among recent presidents, Bill Clinton issued 364, George Bush 291, and Barack Obama fill in. The American Presidency Project at http://www.presidency.ucsb.edu/data/orders.php maintains a list of all executive orders.
In the last several years, partisan and political gridlock between Congress and the president has led the latter into using executive orders as a way of addressing issues or creating rules of laws in the absence of explicit congressional action. The Obama Administration through the EPA issued rules regulating carbon emissions. Yet in Murray Energy Company v. Environmental Protection Agency, U.S., ;136 S.Ct. 999; 194 L.Ed.2d 18 (2016) in a suit brought by more than two dozen states and several utility company, the Supreme Court in a 5-3 vote issued a stay on the rules pending review by the Court of Appeals. In United States v. Texas, ___ U.S. ; 136 S.Ct. 2271 (2016), the Supreme Court deadlocked 4-4 and issued a per curiam decision that upheld a lower decision that issued an injunction to prevent enforcement of an executive order or program entitled Deferred Action for Parents of Americans and Lawful Permanent Residents (DAPA), which would provide legal presence for illegal immigrants who were parents of citizens or lawful permanent residents. This decision effectively ended President Obama’s effort to use an executive order to effect immigration reform. The lower court decision is provided in this book.
While many criticize executive orders as a way to circumvent Congress and the separation of powers process, there is no question that these orders are a major part of federal executive power that is unlikely to disappear in the future. However, as should be clear, presidents are not kings and do not have any inherent power to issue orders. Their authority must come from the Constitution or law, subject to limits. Nor are presidents like Captain Pikard able simply to say “Make it so” and it will happen. Once presidents do issue executive orders they carry the binding force of law and they are hard to repeal or undue. This will make it difficult for Trump to undo except a very few of Obama’s recent executive orders. Conversely, moving forward , any of Trump’s orders will have to follow a specific process to have the force of law, and there are many things he simply cannot order.
Finally, when one looks at the executive orders Trump has already issued, they really are so vague and general that they really do not do anything. His first on Obamacare did not really order anyone to do anything, and the executive order on the Mexican wall too was vacuous and could not really command anything, especially when it required an appropriation of money that Trump did not have. In many cases these “executive orders” seem more like press releases or public relations than real legally-binding executive orders.

Follow David Schultz on Twitter: www.twitter.com/ProfDSchultz

CONTINUE READING…

Wells Fargo Issues Statement in Response to Dakota Access Pipeline Protests


Ryan Burns / Monday, Jan. 30

PREVIOUSLY:

Press release from Wells Fargo:

Wells Fargo understands the social and environmental concerns associated with projects such as the Dakota Access Pipeline (DAPL). As a company committed to environmental sustainability and human rights, we respect all the differing opinions being expressed in this dispute. We are closely following the developments in this situation and are hopeful that all parties involved will work together for a peaceful and positive outcome.

Wells Fargo is one of 17 financial institutions involved in financing the DAPL. The loans we have provided represent less than 5% of the total. We remain committed to our obligations to serve our customers’ financial needs, and will continue to be respectful of the concerns being expressed by Tribal governments and communities, other groups and individuals.

Environment

Wells Fargo is committed to the responsible development of all forms of energy, and while we maintain a large conventional energy portfolio to support U.S. infrastructure, we are also a leader in the financing of renewable energy and clean technology. We have supported the evolution of energy markets toward cleaner forms of generation by investing more than $52 billion in environmentally sustainable businesses since 2012. In 2015, projects owned in whole or in part by Wells Fargo produced 10 percent of all solar photovoltaic and wind energy generated in the U.S.

Native American Communities

Wells Fargo has been serving Native American governments and communities  for more than 50 years, and today we provide capital and financial services to more than 200 tribal and native entities in 27 states, including tribal community development projects.

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