An amazing lie told on Obama’s behalf

There’s been a controversy over President Obama’s request to address a joint session of Congress Wednesday night, which Speaker Boehner rejected because the Republican presidential candidates are having a debate at the Reagan Library that night. Boehner asked Obama to choose a more convenient night, and Obama, after making a big deal over Boehner’s supposed dissing of him, yielded and agreed to Thursday night. You can check out the controversy here and here.

Politico has a symposium on the matter, with many views expressed. Among the participants is Steve Murphy, identified as a Democratic consultant and Managing Partner at Murphy Vogel Askew Reilly. Murphy writes:

Speaker Boehner has done more than snub the president, in fact he is creating a constitutional crisis. The president has the authority to call Congress into session whenever he wishes. Clearly the speaker said no because Republicans have other partisan plans for TV that night—an unconscionable intrusion of politics into the speaker’s role as the holder of one of three national offices established by the Constitution. The President seeks to present his jobs plan to the country and he is fully within his constitutional authority to do so. Country first, Mr. Speaker, no matter who is president.

I was stunned by Murphy’s comment, went to his company’s website, and sent him this message:

Dear Mr. Murphy,

In the symposium at Politico, you refer to the President’s authority under the Constitution to call a session of Congress. True, he does have such authority. Article III, Section 3 of the Constitution says:

“He may, on extraordinary Occasions, convene both Houses, or either of them, and in Case of Disagreement between them, with Respect to the Time of Adjournment, he may adjourn them to such Time as he shall think proper.”

However, you leave out the fact that (as far I as I am aware) no President has ever used this extraordinary power, and, more importantly, you leave out the fact that President Obama was not invoking this extraordinary power in the present circumstance. He was simply asking for Congress to invite him to address a joint session. But, whether through error or stupidity or partisan mischief, he asked for this joint session on the same night that the Republican presidential candidates were debating, so Speaker Boehner asked him to choose a different night.

For you to try to make people believe that the President was exercising his emergency powers of calling a session of Congress, and that Speaker Boehner was stopping him from doing so, thus creating a constitutional crisis, is shockingly dishonest of you.

Lawrence Auster
View from the Right
New York City

I might have added, but didn’t: “Of course, the very concept of honesty means nothing to you. You are a professional Democrat, and, as such, a professional liar.”

- end of initial entry -

Michael S. writes:

Although this comment could apply to virtually anything on your blog, it is at times like this that I truly appreciate the liberating power of the Internet. At least now, we can call the liars on their lies!

Even though he will very likely not reply (as I never get replies to my critical e-mails to Wash Post libs), it definitely has an effect on their trumped-up egos.

James N. writes:

The idea that President Obama was calling Congress into session is absurd. He could call Congress into session, because it is already in session.

What he wanted to do was to command the orders of the day for both the Senate and the House on September 7, 2011—if he had requested this in a normal way I have no doubt it would have been granted. But to schedule it AFTER his public announcement would have set a very bad precedent.

Posted by Lawrence Auster at September 01, 2011 09:18 AM | Send

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